Greenville MSA makes the Improving Markets Index for the sixth consecutive month
Anderson makes the list for the first time in November
For the sixth straight month, the Greenville MSA (Greenville, Laurens, and Pickens counties) made the NAHB/First American Improving Markets Index (IMI). The list of U.S. housing markets showing measurable and sustained improvement rose by 22 to include 125 metros in November. This number includes representatives from 38 states and the District of Columbia, up from 32 states in October. One other city from South Carolina made the list: Anderson.
“Greenville’s inclusion on the Improving Markets Index is testimony to the solid improvements our housing market has made in the last year,” Robert Markel, CGR, President of the Home Builders Association of Greenville, said. This marks a third consecutive monthly gain for the index.
The index identifies metropolitan areas that have shown improvement from their respective troughs in housing permits, employment and house prices for at least six consecutive months. That means Greenville has been improving for a full year. Markets added to the list in November include such geographically diverse locations as San Diego, Calif.; Gainesville, Fla.; Omaha, Neb.; Louisville, Ky.; and Charlotte, N.C.
“Not only did 22 additional markets qualify for the improving list in November, but the geographic distribution of included metros expanded from 33 states to 38 (plus the District of Columbia), while 97 out of 103 markets retained their spots on the list from the previous month,” observed Barry Rutenberg, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and a home builder from Gainesville, Fla. “This shows that a housing recovery is firmly taking root and helping generate needed jobs and economic growth across much of the country — though we know that this expansion could be even stronger were it not for ongoing challenges including overly tight lending conditions and difficult appraisals.”
“The solid increase in the number of improving housing markets this month illustrates the degree to which the housing recovery has gained momentum since we initiated the IMI last year,” noted NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. “Compared to the 30 markets that made the list as of November 2011, we now have 125, which is about one-third of all the markets surveyed for this index.”
“This new high point for the Improving Markets Index provides the latest evidence that housing has turned a corner due to rising demand from consumers who are increasingly confident about the direction of local home values,” said Kurt Pfotenhauer, vice chairman of First American Title Insurance Company.
The IMI is designed to track housing markets throughout the country that are showing signs of improving economic health. The index measures three sets of independent monthly data to get a mark on the top improving Metropolitan Statistical Areas. The three indicators that are analyzed are employment growth from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, housing price appreciation from Freddie Mac and single-family housing permit growth from the U.S. Census Bureau. NAHB uses the latest available data from these sources to generate a list of improving markets. A metropolitan area must see improvement in all three measures for at least six consecutive months following those measures’ respective troughs before being included on the improving markets list.
A complete list of all 125 metropolitan areas currently on the IMI, and separate breakouts of metros newly added to or dropped from the list in November, is available at www.nahb.org/imi.