The top 10 builders captured 30.4% of new single-family home closings in 2019, according to data released by BUILDER Magazine. The 30.4% share represents 207,724 closings out of the 683,000 new single-family home sales reported by the U.S. Census Bureau in 2019. However, these closings represent approximately 23% of single-family starts, a broader measure of home building that includes custom (not for-sale) home construction.
Data going back to 1989 shows a rising trend in the top ten builder share. The share grew significantly from 1989 (8.7%) to 2006 (28.2%). For the next ten years, the share remained fairly steady, between 25% and 27%, with slight dips in 2009 (23.9%) and in 2012 (24.2%). From 2017 to 2018, the top 10 share jumped significantly, rising 4.2 percentage points to 31.5%. This jump was mostly due to the acquisition of CalAtlantic by Lennar Corporation. The top 10 share edged down slightly to 30.4% in 2019 (Figure 1).
Figure 1: Top Ten Builder Share, 1989 to 2019
The 2019 top 10 builder ranking remained unchanged in 2019 from the previous year, with builders occupying the same rank positions. D.R. Horton was the top builder in 2019, capturing 8.6% of the market with 58,434 closings. D.R. Horton has been the top builder since 2002. Lennar ranked second on the list with 7.5% in market share and PulteGroup in third, with 3.4% (Figure 2).
The market share captured by each of the 10 builders did not change much from 2018 to 2019. Lennar Corporation and PulteGroup were the biggest movers on the list, losing only 0.4 percentage points each.
Figure 2: Top Ten Builder % Market Share, 2018 & 2019
|7||Meritage Homes Corp.||1.4%||1.4%|
BUILDER magazine also released Local Leaders, data on the top 10 builders in the top 50 largest new-home markets in the US (ranking determined by number of single-family permits) (Figure 3). The 2019 data show that the top 10 builders in each of the 50 markets captured at least 31.3% of the market share (Kansas City, MO) and reached as much as 91.2% of the market in Richmond, VA.
Analyzing the map in more detail shows clusters of metro-markets in the Midwest (Ohio and Indiana), the Mid-Atlantic (Maryland and Virginia), Florida, and Southern California with highly concentrated markets. Less concentrated markets include metro areas in the Northeast, Texas and the Pacific Northwest.
Among the builders, D.R. Horton, had a presence in 40 of the top 50 metro-markets in 2019, more than any other builder, closely followed by Lennar Corporation and PulteGroup with 36 and 32 appearances, respectively.
From 2018 to 2019, the top ten builders’ market share fell in most of the top 50 metro areas. While most metro areas (29) saw a decline of six percentage points or less in their top ten builder share, a few metros had larger drops – Denver-Aurora, CO (17.6 percentage points), San Diego/Carlsbad, CA (9.7 percentage points), Riverside, CA (8.5 percentage points), Charlotte, NC (7.4 percentage points), and Miami, FL (6.6 percentage points). The top ten builders’ share grew in 11 markets, but only one metro area – Indianapolis, IN – saw significant growth (9.1 percentage points).
This post was authored by NAHB 2020 intern Shea Krekorian, with editing by Carmel Ford.