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Builder Confidence in 55+ Housing Remains Strong
Nov 8, 2013
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Builder confidence in the 55+ housing market showed continued improvement in the third quarter of 2013 compared to the third quarter of 2012, according to the National Association of Home Builders' latest 55+ Housing Market Index (HMI).

Strong increases were seen in all segments of the market: single-family homes, condominiums, and multifamily rental.

The single-family index was up 14 points to a level of 50--the highest third-quarter number since the index was launched in 2008 and the eighth consecutive quarter of year-over-year improvements.

There are separate 55+ HMIs for two segments of the 55+ housing market: single-family homes and multifamily condominiums.

All of the components of the 55+ single-family HMI showed growth from a year ago:
* present sales were up 16 points to 52
* expected sales for the next six months were up 11 points to 53
* traffic of prospective buyers was up 10 points to 43

The 55+ multifamily condo HMI gained 14 points to 37--the highest third-quarter reading since the index began. All 55+ multifamily condo HMI components were up from a year ago:
* present sales were up 15 points to 37
* expected sales for the next six months were up 11 points to 40
* traffic of prospective buyers rose 13 points to 35

The 55+ multifamily rental indices also showed strong gains in the third quarter as present production increased 17 points to 48, expected future production rose 15 points to 50, current demand for existing units climbed 18 points to 60 and future demand increased 16 points to 60.

"We have seen steady improvement in the 55+ housing sector as buyers and renters are attracted to new homes and communities that offer the lifestyle they desire" said Robert Karen, chairman of NAHB's 50+ Housing Council and managing member of the Symphony Development Group. "Although the market is significantly stronger than it has been in recent years, we still have a ways to go to get back to full production."

"Right now the positive year over year increase in confidence by builders for the 55+ market is tracking right along with other segments of the home building industry," said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. "And like other segments of the industry, the 55+ market is improving in part because consumers are more likely to be able to sell their current homes, which allows them to buy a new home or move into an apartment that suits their specific needs."

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