NAHB’s analysis of Census Data from the Quarterly Starts and Completions by Purpose and Design survey indicates custom home building posted the second best quarter since the Great Recession during the Spring of 2021.
There were 54,000 total custom building starts during the second quarter of the year. This marks a 15% gain from the second quarter of 2020, a comparison affected by the declines in economic activity in the spring of 2020. Nonetheless, over the last four quarters, custom housing starts totaled 187,000 units, a 4.5% gain from the prior four-quarter total.
Despite these gains, the market share for custom home building has declined as other forms of home building have expanded more rapidly. As measured on a one-year moving average, the market share of custom home building, in terms of total single-family starts, declined to 16.6%. This is down from a cycle high of 31.5% set during the second quarter of 2009.
Note that this definition of custom home building does not include homes intended for sale, so the analysis in this post uses a narrow definition of the sector.