Nationwide’s Health of Housing Markets Report


Select a quarter and then press “Play” to initiate the interactive map. To get the performance ranking for a specific MSA, zoom in or scroll over the map or click on the numerical ranking legend for wider comparisons.

Next Release: Scheduled for Tuesday, June 20, 2017.

2017Q1 HoHM Report Executive Summary

  • The national LIHHM* maintained a positive reading for the U.S. housing market, but it fell to the lowest level in several years. Unsustainably strong house price gains are weighing on affordability and household formations slowed.
  • Regionally, the LIHHM rankings show positive and healthy housing trends in most metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs), suggesting sustainable expansion in many areas over the next year.
  • Despite the overall positive regional LIHHM rankings, nearly all MSA ratings are unchanged or down over the past year. While the outlook in energy-intensive areas is still weaker, more MSAs elsewhere in the country have slipped into neutral or negative rankings as well.
  • House price appreciation in some hot housing markets has been well above the long-term average for these areas since at least 2014 — generating concerns about housing affordability and reducing the outlook for sustainable growth.


* Leading Index of Healthy Housing Markets (LIHHM): A data-driven view of the near-term performance of housing markets based upon current health indicators for the national housing market and 400 metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) and divisions across the country.

Rapid house gains are weighing on the sustainability of the U.S housing market

While the current national LIHHM is positive at 105.0, this is the lowest reading since the first quarter of 2013. Solid job and income gains remain supportive of housing demand, but the latest household formation figures surprisingly have slipped below the long-term demographic trend. Moreover, national house price appreciation is well-above the long-term average and is eroding housing affordability, especially for first-time homebuyers.

Regionally, the LIHHM performance rankings indicate that the majority of metro areas across the country are healthy for now, but similar unsustainable house price trends are reducing the outlook for housing in some local housing markets. While oil prices are up and energy sector employment is slowly stabilizing, areas with strong ties to energy production continue to show a weaker outlook for housing.

National LIHHM

Authored by Nationwide Economics

DAVID BERSON, PhD

Senior Vice President, Chief Economist

David holds a doctorate in Economics and a master’s degree in Public Policy from the University of Michigan. Prior to Nationwide, David served as Chief Economist, Strategist and Head of Risk Analytics for The PMI Group, Inc., and Vice President and Chief Economist for Fannie Mae. David has also served as Chief Financial Economist at Wharton Econometrics and visiting scholar at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City. His government experience has included roles with the President’s Council of Economic Advisors, U.S. Treasury Department and the Office of Special Trade Representative. He is a past President of the National Association for Business Economics.

BRYAN JORDAN, CFA

Deputy Chief Economist

Bryan is a frequent author and knowledgeable source on economic topics, and has been featured in The Wall Street Journal and New York Times. Bryan holds degrees in Economics and Political Science from Miami University and has earned the Chartered Financial Analyst designation. He currently serves as Chairman of the Ohio Council on Economic Education and is a member of the Ohio Governor’s Council of Economic Advisors, the National Association for Business Economics, and the Bloomberg monthly economic forecasting panel.

BEN AYERS, MS

Senior Economist

Ben authors periodic economic analyses from the Nationwide Economics team, as well as commentary on key economic topics. Ben is also responsible for understanding and analyzing the enterprise business drivers to assist the strategic planning process. He holds a Master of Science in Economics from the Ohio State University, specializing in applied economic analysis, and a BSBA from the Fisher College of Business at the Ohio State University, with a focus on economics and international business.

Additional contributors: Ankit Gupta, Steve Hall, Aaron Reincheld, and Emily Watson

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This material is provided by Nationwide Economics and is general in nature. It is not intended as investment or economic advice, or a recommendation to buy or sell any security or adopt any investment strategy. Additionally, it does not take into account the specific investment objectives, tax and financial condition or particular needs of any specific person. We encourage you to seek the advice of an investment professional who can tailor a financial plan to meet your specific needs. The economic and market forecasts in this report reflect our opinion as of the date of this presentation/review and are subject to change without notice. These forecasts show a broad range of possible outcomes. Because they are subject to high levels of uncertainty, they may not reflect actual performance. Case studies and examples are for illustrative purposes only. We obtained certain information from sources deemed reliable, but we do not guarantee its accuracy, completeness or fairness.