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Custom homes accounted for 17.6% of new single-family homes started in 2021, the lowest annual share since 2005, according to NAHB analysis of the Census Bureau’s Survey of Construction (SOC). The share has declined each of the past two years after reaching 20.2% of the new single-family market in 2019.

Although the custom-home percentage declined slightly in 2021, more single-family homes were started; so, the number of custom homes started in 2021 (199,683) was actually higher than the number of custom homes started in 2020 (176,499).

When analyzed by the 9 census divisions, the annual data show that the highest custom home share in 2021 was 40.1% in the New England Division. In the South Atlantic Division, on the other hand, the share was only 11.5%. In the East South-Central Division, 38.8% of new homes started were contractor-built or owner-built houses, followed by the East North-Central Division at 32.8% and 31.5% in the Middle Atlantic Division. In the West North Central Division, 20.3% of new homes started were custom homes, followed by 15.0% in the West South-Central Division, 14.7% in the Pacific Division, and 12.9% in the Mountain Division.

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