Information obtained from the US Census Bureau’s Survey of Construction (SOC) and tabulated by NAHB, shows that the rising trend of single-story homes reversed in 2021. The share of single-story homes decreased in 2021 and the share of two or more stories homes started was greater than one story homes. This is in line with recent NAHB analysis of new single-family home size trends.
Nationwide, the share of new homes with two or more stories rose from 50% in 2020 to 52% in 2021, while the share of new homes with one story fell from 50% to 48%. New England and West North Central were the only two regions that saw an increase in the share of one story homes in 2021. Though single story new homes are more common in the South region, shares of single-story homes in the South region declined in 2021 after three years of increases.
Looking deeper, five of the nine divisions saw a greater share of newly-built two or more stories homes. Among these five divisions, New England and Middle Atlantic had a significantly higher proportion (84% and 80%) of two or more stories homes. New homes started with two or more stories in Mountain and Pacific were 53% and 62%. The greatest concentrations of two-or-more story homes were in divisions along the coasts of the country.
New homes started in the Midwest and South showed a stronger preference of single-story homes, except for the South Atlantic division in the South. In the Midwest (East North Central and West North Central), 54% and 60% of new homes started were one-story, while the shares in the East South Central and West South Central were 54% and 60%.