May 8, 2012
Largest housing markets continue to improve
The number of housing markets that are improving across the country held more or less steady in the month of May as consumers continued to scoop up properties.
In all, 100 housing markets nationwide were classified as improving in May, down very slightly from the 101 observed in April, and the number of states (plus Washington, D.C.) that contained improving markets was steady at 35, according to new data from the National Association of Home Builders. This is the result of 18 major metropolitan areas dropping off the list of improving markets, and 17 new ones being added. One such added metro area is Phoenix, Arizona, which is notable because that state's housing market suffered heavily in the recent recession.
"The fact that there are 100 markets in 34 states and the District of Columbia represented on the improving list illustrates that all housing markets are local, and that the national headlines often don’t apply to what’s happening in a specific metropolitan area," said NAHB chairman Barry Rutenberg, a home builder from Gainesville, Florida.
Home affordability is hovering near all-time highs with many prices still below previous levels and mortgage rates near record lows.