Improving Housing Markets Rises to 263 Metros in June

June 7th, 2013 | Category: Industry News

According to a release issued by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/First American Improving Markets Index (IMI), improving housing markets increased to 263 in June, up five metro areas. The list includes markets from 49 states and the District of Columbia.

The list saw 29 new markets enter, though 24 were dropped this month. New entrants include Salinas, Calif., Sioux City, Iowa, Chicago, Topeka, Kan., Baton Rouge, La., Laredo, Texas, and Philadelphia.

“This is the fifth consecutive month in which the IMI has designated more than 70 percent of U.S. metros as improving,” says NAHB chairman Rick Judson, a homebuilder from Charlotte, N.C. “While that’s a good sign that the housing recovery is on solid footing, we know that various challenges are slowing its progress—including continuing issues with credit availability for builders and buyers, as well as appraisals that aren’t keeping up with the rising cost of construction.”

“As market conditions improve across most of the country, some metros have moved onto the IMI list while marginal seasonal fluctuations have nudged others off of it,” notes NAHB chief economist David Crowe. “This is to be expected as the recovery expands. Meanwhile, it’s worth noting that the number of improving markets is now more than three times what it was in June 2012.”
“The continued strength of the IMI is an indicator of the ongoing, positive momentum in housing markets nationwide as consumers move to take advantage of historically favorable interest rates and affordable home prices,” adds Kurt Pfotenhauer, vice chairman of First American Title Insurance Company.

The IMI identifies metropolitan areas that have shown improvement from their respective troughs in housing permits, employment and house prices for at least six consecutive months.

A complete list of all 263 metros currently on the IMI, and separate breakouts of metros newly added to or dropped from the list in June, is available at www.nahb.org/imi.

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