NAHB’s Economics team provides in-depth economic analysis of the most significant issues and latest trends driving the housing industry. In addition to national housing market data, this section includes state and local data for the Western region.

Housing Market Snapshot

Housing Starts
Total: 1.45 million
(July 2023)
Single: 983,000

Multi: 469,000
Home Sales*
New: 714,000
(July 2023)
Existing: 4.07 million

Median Home Prices
New: $436,700
Existing: SF: $406,700

* Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate; Arrows indicate the direction from the previous month for starts and sales and year for prices.

NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index The index, which measures builder confidence in the market for newly built single-family homes, fell six points to 50 in August from a reading of 56 in July. This was the first drop in builder sentiment following seven consecutive monthly gains. Any number over 50 indicates that more builders view sales conditions as good than poor.

NAHB Chief Economist Dr. Robert Dietz’s analysis

  • With many home owners choosing to stay in their current home to preserve their existing low mortgage rate, resale inventory is limited, thereby increasing demand for new home construction and pushing up single-family starts in July even as builders continue to struggle with increased uncertainty stemming from rising mortgage rates.
  • Falling builder sentiment in August is a reminder that housing affordability is an ongoing challenge, as builders continue to grapple with elevated construction costs stemming from a dearth of construction workers, a lack of buildable lots and ongoing shortages of distribution transformers. In order to bring down shelter inflation, which accounted for 90% of the overall inflation rate in July, we need to enact policies that will allow builders to boost the nation’s housing supply.

Regional Economic Data Highlights

  • California had the highest number of home improvement loan applications in 2021, with 109,856 applications.
  • Single-family units started in the Pacific U.S. Census division decreased to 94,158 in 2022, compared to 106,240 new single-family starts in 2021.
  • Nonfarm payroll employment increased in 36 states in July compared to the previous month, while 14 states and the District of Columbia lost jobs. On a month-over-month basis, employment data was strong in Florida, which added 44,500 jobs, followed by California (+27,900), and Texas (+26,300).

Labor and Workforce Data

  • Employment by State and Metro Areas: Access the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics about overall employment and construction employees in your state and local metro areas.
  • Western Region Workforce Data: Find the construction trades wage data for the 13 states comprising the Western region of the United States.
Building Permits in the Western Region Access single-family and multifamily data by state and metro areas.
New and Existing Homes Sold in the Western Region See the latest regional sales data. 
Access More Housing Economics Get the latest economic news and analysis from NAHB's team of economists.