IT'S A SUMMER VACATION ITINERARY THAT only a builder could love: Atlanta, Phoenix/Mesa, Ariz., Riverside/San Bernardino, Calif., Houston, the Washington, D.C., metro area, Chicago, Las Vegas, Dallas, Orlando, Fla., and Minneapolis/St. Paul. They're not all places you'd head to for fresh breezes and cool summer nights, but these hot spots will sure tell you a lot about the booming housing industry. They're the top 10 best-selling markets in the country.

There seems to be no end in sight when it comes to good news on the housing front. According to the NAHB chief economist David Seiders, the strong housing demand continues to be fueled by affordable mortgages, growth in household incomes, and reliable house appreciation. The Commerce Department's latest numbers show that in March, sales of new, single-family homes climbed 8.9 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.228 million units. That's the highest level of new-home sales on record.

Best-Selling Community Links

America's Best-Selling Communities
Visionary Appeal
Window on the Old World
Safe Bet
Standard Heights
Team Effort
Lexus Living
California Style, Florida Sizzle
Home of the Free
Intimate Infill
Design Intervention

To find out more about which communities in particular made up this selling binge, Builder turned to the Meyers Group, a real estate consulting firm in Costa Mesa, Calif. It looked at housing-permit numbers and came up with a list of the 100 best-selling communities in the country. (For a complete list, searchable by builder name, market, project type, square footage, number of sales, sales velocity, or price range, see America's Best Selling Communities.)

On the following pages, we take a closer look at 10 of these best-selling communities. Given their location, some of them would probably sell well no matter what the product type, marketing campaign, or builder's reputation. But every one of them has a story to tell, from the Aubrey, Texas, project that looked to Cape Cod for its inspiration to a 10-acre, infill site in Overland Park, Kan., that's dotted with European-styled manor homes. Attention to design detail, a sense of community, and solid building techniques all combined to make them winners.

Learn more about markets featured in this article: Atlanta, GA.