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Is the Housing Market Recovery Building New Jobs?

Warren Buffett’s vote of confidence isn’t the only indication the housing market is improving; the fact that more people are gainfully employed in the U.S. today has helped to give the housing market a much-needed boost. Can we also say the opposite is true — that the housing recovery in turn has helped employment? CareerBuilder and Economic Modeling Specialists Intl. explored this question in depth in a new study tracking labor trends in the U.S. The study used EMSI’s vast labor market database, which pulls from more than 90 national and state employment resources and includes detailed information on employees and self-employed workers, to find the answer.

Matt Ferguson, CEO of CareerBuilder, sees a positive correlation between a housing market recovery and job growth. “Several industry segments closely tied to the housing sector have experienced encouraging job growth over the last 12 to 18 months as home prices and sales inch up, and the economy improves. While some segments may still be trailing pre-recession employment levels and may not fully recover jobs lost, we’re seeing signs of a rebound in everything from construction and mortgage banking to home furnishing stores.”

Housing-Related Employment Growth

It’s clear from many of the job growth examples below that as the housing market heals, more and more jobs to support that growth are popping up. Take a look:


  • EMSI’s study found that the construction industry is building up its headcount again after experiencing heavy job losses during the recession.
  • Since 2011, the U.S. has added more than 187,000 construction jobs, an increase of 2 percent.
  • 7,794,077 people are currently employed in this segment.

Outside of construction:

  • Housing-related industries outside of construction have also produced a steady stream of new jobs.
  • Since 2011, the U.S. has created more than 59,000 additional housing supply chain jobs, an increase of 3 percent.
  • 1,755,863 people are currently employed in this segment.


Looking at a sample of specific segments within the housing supply chain, there has been an upward trajectory for job creation from 2011 to 2013:

Mortgage and Non-Mortgage Loan Brokers

  • Added 19,317 jobs since 2011; 30 percent growth.
  • 84,759 people currently employed.

Home Centers and Other Home Furnishing Stores

  • Added 23,849 jobs since 2011, 3 percent growth.
  • 823,496 people currently employed.

Building Materials Dealers

  • Added 11,305 jobs since 2011, 4 percent growth.
  • 317,987 people currently employed.

Hardware, Paint and Wallpaper Stores

  • Added 4,062 jobs since 2011, 2 percent growth.
  • 184,017 people currently employed.


Metropolitan city housing & job trends

In metropolitan areas showing notable increases in both home values and housing market activity, we’re also seeing significant job growth.

Los Angeles

  • Added 191,343 total jobs since 2011, 3 percent growth.
  • Added 22,318 construction jobs, 8 percent growth
  • Added 3,138 other housing supply chain jobs, 5 percent growth.


  • Added 69,622 total jobs since 2011, 5 percent growth.
  • Added 6,243 construction jobs, 8 percent growth.
  • Added 904 other housing supply chain jobs, 6 percent growth.

San Francisco

  • Added 118,617 total jobs since 2011, 5 percent growth.
  • Added 13,963 construction jobs, 13 percent growth.
  • Added 465 other housing supply chain jobs, 2 percent growth.


See the full study, including more examples of housing-related employment growth and growth in cities like Phoenix and Denver, here.

About EMSI

Economic Modeling Specialists Intl. is a CareerBuilder company that provides industry-leading employment data and economic analysis via web tools and custom reports. EMSI turns vast amounts of labor market data into easy-to-use information that helps organizations understand the connection between economies, people, and work, and ultimately build a better workforce.

Amy K. McDonnell

About Amy K. McDonnell

Originally hailing from Ohio, Amy is the editorial manager on the content services team and has been with both CareerBuilder and the city of Chicago for nearly a decade. She writes on a range of recruitment topics on The Hiring Site, striving to bring a dose of clarity and humor to sometimes complicated issues around employee attraction, engagement and retention. When she's not working, Amy spends as much time as possible reading, pretending to be a chef, writing short stories, eating Nutella out of the jar, waiting for CTA buses and trains, going to see her favorite bands live, and spending time with people who inspire and challenge her.


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