The housing market recovery of the United States is right on track and is inching toward the finish line with a full upturn, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).
The association's "First American Leading Markets Index (LMI)" reports 59 of the 350 metro areas in the country have exceeded or returned to normal levels recorded before the crash of 2007-08.
For the third quarter of 2014, the nationwide LMI moved up to 0.90 points from the 0.89 points recorded in the previous quarter. The report also found that the housing market has returned to 90 percent normal and expects a full recovery in the coming year.
The NAHB calculates the LMI using average current employment, price and permit data in 350 main metro areas and divides it by their annual average over the past year to gauge growth.
"The markets are recovering at a slow, gradual pace. Continued job creation, economic growth and increasing consumer confidence should help spur pent-up demand for housing," Kevin Kelly, chairman of the NAHB, said in a statement.
"Nearly half of all the markets on the Leading Markets Index are up since August, which is a good sign that the ongoing housing recovery will keep moving forward in 2015," Kurt Pfotenhauer, vice chairman of First American Title Insurance Company which co-sponsors the LMI report, added in the statement.
The housing market has shown robust growth in 2014 despite the cold freeze in the beginning of the year. Currently, home prices are soaring at a restrained pace, mortgage rates are still hovering at record lows, and inventory – while still low – is matching up to existing demand in the market.
The US market is now tilting toward the buyers. As they are more cautious about taking the property plunge, sellers have been reducing asking prices. Also, as lending standards loosen gradually with mortgage rates still averaging around 4 percent – this makes for an ideal buying situation.
The NAHB is not the only agency reporting the housing market's growth. More recently, a study by Zillow, a real estate research entity, showed sustained growth in the housing market. Another report titled "Emerging Trends in Real Estate® The global outlook for 2015" by PwC LLP and the Urban Land Institute also echoed the results.
"Unlike previous reports and previous cycles, we are seeing sustained growth. In the past several years, we reported that real estate market participants' main fears revolved around the uncertainty with the economy," Mitch Roschelle, a real estate advisory practice leader and a partner at PwC, said in the report.
The US economy has stabilized significantly and is holding steady despite the recent Ebola scare and terrorism issues.
"I think we've recovered - that's the message. We've recovered all the ground lost in many of the economic metrics that we'd look at for growth in terms of jobs. So, we've gone beyond the recovery phase. We are in the growth phase now. The economy is well ahead of where it was (when the economy went into major recession in 2008)," Shaun Osborne, chief currency strategist at TD Securities, said at the Columbia World Affairs Council commenting on the country's economic growth.