The list of housing markets that are considered “improving” rose again in March, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) said in a recent report.
According to the NAHB/First American Improving Markets Index (IMI) the number of U.S. metropolitan areas across the U.S. that are considered to have improving housing markets expanded by 15 to reach 274 metropolitan areas.
The list of improving metro areas now includes areas from each of the 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia.
“This is the second consecutive month in which every state is represented by at least one metro on the improving list,” Rick Judson, NAHB Chairman, said in a statement. “The expanding housing recovery is energizing communities nationwide by generating jobs and local tax revenues — and it could be an even more potent force for economic growth if credit for building and buying homes was more readily available.”
In March, 34 new metro areas popped up on the list, while 19 fell off the list. The net result is a gain of 14 metropolitan areas.
“With just over 75 percent of the 361 metros covered by the IMI now seen as improving, the housing market is on considerably more solid footing than it was at this time last year,” David Crowe, NAHB Chief Economist, said in a statement.
Among the list of new members of the “improving” list were Birmingham, AL; Santa Barbara, CA; Colorado Springs, C); and Bloomington, IN, the NAR noted.
Crowe continued: “While we expect this positive momentum to continue, it’s important to understand that many markets are just beginning the recovery process, and that numerous issues – from credit availability to the rising cost of building materials and emerging lot shortages – are slowing the pace of that advancement.”