Home Building Geography Index (HBGI)

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The Home Building Geography Index (HBGI) is a quarterly measurement of building conditions across the country and uses county-level information about single- and multifamily permits to gauge housing construction growth in various submarkets. The Q2 2022 rollout of the HBGI focuses on the population density-based delineation of home building that has been the mainstay of the HBGI.

The latest findings show that multifamily home building maintained its brisk pace, while the single-family market experienced declines in the metropolitan areas, especially in the large metro core and suburban markets. Rising interest rates, elevated construction costs and the supply-chain bottlenecks all continued to hamper the single-family market in the second quarter of 2022.

Key findings from the Q2 2022 HBGI

Between the fourth quarter of 2019 (pre-Covid) and the second quarter of 2022:

  • market share for single-family home building in large metro core and inner suburbs fell from 44.5% to 41.6%;
  • single-family home building in outer suburbs in large and medium-sized metros expanded from 17.4% to 19%; and
  • market share of multifamily construction in large metro core areas fell from 41.7 to 39.3%.

Download the data file of the full HBGI findings here.

Regional Building Growth Conditions

NAHB classified all counties in the U.S. as one of seven regional categories based on population density and regional location. For each area, NAHB tracked single-family and multifamily growth rates (not seasonally adjusted) and market shares.

The Home Building Geography Index is the successor to the Leading Market Index (LMI), whose tracking is no longer maintained. The LMI used single-family housing permits, employment, and home prices to measure proximity to a normal economic and housing market. It was calculated for 337 local markets, metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs), as well as the entire country. View an archive of LMI data with its original methodology.

Update to County Populations

Beginning with the second quarter of 2022, NAHB updated the HBGI to use the most recent county population estimates from the 2020 5-year American Community Survey (ACS). This necessitated a reclassification of county-level regional assignments, according to population density-based delineations. The number of counties in the HBGI is 3,133, with the newest updates for counties in Virginia and Hawaii.