Builder confidence in the housing market for those aged 55 years and older strengthened in the fourth quarter of 2018, according to National Association of Home Builders.
The organization’s latest Housing Market Index revealed sales of single-family homes of those aged 55+ increased six points to 66 in Q4.
"Like the broader housing market, the 55+ HMI is benefitting from the recent decline in mortgage rates," NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz said. "Favorable demographics and solid homeowner wealth should continue to support demand for new 55+ housing."
All three measurements of the single-family market for the 55-plus set saw an increase. Present sales climbed six points to 72, expected sales for the next six months grew five points to 70 and traffic for prospective buyers rose 10 points to 53.
When it came to the 55+ multifamily condo market, NAHB’s data indicates that the HMI moderately increased three points to 47. Notably, the index component for present sales inched forward three points to 51.
That being said, expected sales for the next six months retreated four points to 49, but traffic of prospective buyers moved forward seven points to 38.
The NAHB notes that two of the four components of the 55+ multifamily rental market increased in the fourth quarter, both present production and present demand. According to the organization’s data the measurements increased six points to 60 and four points to 67, respectively.
However, future expected production and future expected demand both declined two points to 54 and 62, respectively.
"Overall, builders and developers in the 55+ housing market are reporting strong demand across the country," NAHB's 55+ Housing Industry Council Chairman Chuck Ellison said. "However, builders need to continue to manage rising construction costs to keep homes in 55+ communities at affordable price points."
NOTE: The 55+ Housing Market Index measures single-family homes and multifamily condominiums. The National Association of Homebuilders notes that each segment of the 55+ HMI measures builder sentiment based on survey data.