Improving Housing Markets Expand to 242January 7th, 2013 by DWM Magazine
In the latest sign of a burgeoning recovery in U.S. housing markets, the number of metropolitan areas on the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/First American Improving Markets Index (IMI) rose for a fifth consecutive month to 242 in January. This is up from 201 markets listed as improving in December, and includes entrants from 48 states and the District of Columbia, according to the NAHB.
The IMI identifies metro areas that have shown improvement from their respective troughs in housing permits, employment and house prices for at least six consecutive months. A total of 47 new metros were added to the list and six were dropped from it this month. Newly added metros include such geographically diverse locations as Los Angeles, Calif.; Auburn, Ala.; Des Moines, Iowa; Nashville, Tenn.; Richmond, Va.; and Cleveland, Ohio.
“The IMI has almost doubled in the past two months as stronger demand during prime home buying season boosted prices across a broader number of metropolitan areas,” says David Crowe, NAHB chief economist. “Similar home price gains, and hence the IMI, may be tempered in the future as we see data from typically slower months for home sales.”
The IMI is designed to track housing markets throughout the country that are showing signs of improving economic health.
A complete list of all improving markets may be found on the NAHB’s website.