NAHB: The share of wood-framed homes increased in 2021
August 3, 2022 | 12:00 pm CDT

Despite a roller coaster ride in lumber prices, wood framing remains the most dominant construction method for single-family homes in the U.S. per the 2021 Census data.

According to NAHB analysis of 2021 Census Bureau data, for 2021 completions, 92% of new homes were wood-framed, another 7% were concrete-framed homes, and less than half a percent were steel-framed.

On a count basis, there were 895,000 wood-framed homes completed in 2021. This was an 8% gain over the 2020 total. As noted above, steel-framed homes are relatively uncommon, with a total of just 3,000 housing completions in 2021, which was 40% less than the 2019 completion sum of 5,000.

Concrete-framed homes experienced the second straight decline in 2021, after a 13% decrease in 2020. In 2021, the total decreased 5% from 75,000 completions in 2020 to 71,000. However, the gains over the last 10 years are striking. From 2011 to 2021, the concrete-framed market share increased from 4% to 7%.

Non-wood-based framing methods are primarily concentrated in the South due to residential resiliency requirements. In 2021, concrete-framed homes made up 13% of all homes completed in the South. Approximately two-thirds of steel-framed homes completed in 2021 were located in the South, with another one-third in the West.

National Association of Home Builders - Single-Family Home Construction Framing Graph
Source: National Association of Home Builders

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Larry Adams | Editor

Larry Adams is a Chicago-based writer and editor who writes about how things get done. A former wire service and community newspaper reporter, Larry is an award-winning writer with more than three decades of experience. In addition to writing about woodworking, he has covered science, metrology, metalworking, industrial design, quality control, imaging, Swiss and micromanufacturing . He was previously a Tabbie Award winner for his coverage of nano-based coatings technology for the automotive industry. Larry volunteers for the historic preservation group, the Kalo Foundation/Ianelli Studios, and the science-based group, Chicago Council on Science and Technology (C2ST).