WASHINGTON – Feb. 4, 2014 – Builder confidence in the 55+ housing market for the fourth quarter of 2013 is up sharply, according to the National Association of Home Builders’ (NAHB) latest 55+ Housing Market Index (HMI) y.
All segments of the market – single-family homes, condominiums and multifamily rentals – had strong increases compared year-to-year. The single-family index increased 20 points to a level of 48, which is the highest fourth-quarter reading since the inception of the index in 2008, and the ninth consecutive quarter of year-over-year improvements.
“We’re seeing continued improvement in the 55+ housing market because consumers have gained confidence in the economy and are able to sell their current homes and move,” says Robert Karen, chairman of NAHB’s 50+ Housing Council and managing member of the Symphony Development Group. She expects builder optimism to continue through 2014.
There are separate 55+ HMIs. Each focuses on different segments of the 55+ housing market: single-family homes and multifamily condominiums. Each HMI measures builder sentiment based on a survey that asks if current sales, prospective buyer traffic and anticipated six-month sales for that market are good, fair or poor (high, average or low for traffic). An index number below 50 indicates that more builders view conditions as poor than good.
All of the components of the 55+ single-family HMI showed significant growth from a year ago: present sales climbed 26 points to 53, expected sales for the next six months rose 24 points to 62 and traffic of prospective buyers increased 9 points to 33.
The 55+ multifamily condo HMI posted a gain of 16 points to 35, which is the highest fourth-quarter reading since the inception of the index. All 55+ multifamily condo HMI components increased compared to a year ago. Present sales increased 20 points to 37, expected sales for the next six months increased 15 points to 40 and traffic of prospective buyers increased 9 points to 30.
The 55+ multifamily rental indices also showed strong gains in the third quarter. Present production increased 12 points to 43, expected future production rose 12 points to 46, current demand for existing units increased 16 points to 54 and future demand increased 16 points to 55.
“The 20 point year-over-year increase in 55+ HMI for single-family homes matches earlier gains in the NAHB/Wells Fargo HMI for the overall single-family market and surpasses the more recent gains in the other housing segments,” says NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe.
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