Leading Markets Index (LMI)

The Leading Markets Index (LMI) is a quarterly measurement of building conditions across the county. The LMI was originally developed to measure housing recovery conditions after the Great Recession.

The LMI was recently modified to incorporate building permit data and provide benchmarks of housing construction growth in various submarkets. As the headline indicator of the new LMI, the count of building permits helps illustrate residential construction’s current growth rate compared to the start of 2003.

National Permit Levels of Single-Family and Multifamily

For the second quarter of 2018:

  • Single-family permit activity was at 82% of the 2003 first-quarter level.

  • Multifamily permit activity was at 137% of the 2003 first-quarter level.


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Regional Building Growth Conditions

NAHB divided all counties in the U.S. into one of seven regional categories. For each area, NAHB tracks single-family and multifamily growth rates and market shares. These categories include: