As part of our ongoing Data Talk series, this discussion provided a rare opportunity for participants to hear chief economists of two of the largest trade associations, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), and the National Association of Realtors (NAR), discuss their housing data that so many of us use on a daily basis.
New and existing home sales data are closely followed to gauge the health of the housing market. The speakers discussed how these series are constructed and any limitations on their use. The NAR and NAHB both produce affordability measures, which were compared during this talk. In addition, the NAR publishes monthly survey information on realtor activity, including information on cash sales and investor activity, and the NAHB looks at various measures of builder activity, including single-family and multifamily builder confidence, an index of metropolitan leading indicators, an index of 55+ activity, and an index of remodeling activity. The economists discussed the uses and limitations of these survey reports.
David Crowe, chief economist and senior vice president, National Association of Home Builders
Lawrence Yun, chief economist and senior vice president of Research, National Association of Realtors