Foundations of Single-Family Homes Completed in 2018

Foundations of new single family homes

In 2018 there were 840,000 new single-family homes completed. According to the Census Bureau, the majority were built with slab foundations, air conditioning, a forced-air furnace and use gas as the heating fuel. However, the percentages vary greatly for these characteristics when the Northeast, Midwest, South and West regions of the country are viewed separately.

The foundation characteristics are noted below. Part 2 of this article discusses the HVAC characteristics.

Nationally for all new single-family homes completed in 2018, 60% were built with slab foundations*, while 25% were built with full or partial basements. The percentage built with crawl spaces was 14%.

Homes in colder climates most often are required by code to be built with a foundation that extends below the frost line. As a result, the majority of homes built in the Northeast and Midwest have basements. In the South the majority—78%—of new homes were built on slabs and in the West a smaller majority were built on slabs. See the chart below.

Foundations of Single-Family Homes Competed in 2018

Areas of Growth

The percentage of new homes completed in the South and West has increased while the percentage in the Northeast and Midwest has decreased over the last 20 years. The South increased from 45% of new homes completed in 1998 to 53% of new homes completed in 2018. The Northeast shrunk from 10% of new homes completed in 1998 to 6% of new homes completed in 2018.

New homes completed in 1998 and2018

The Northeast and Midwest sections of the country account for only 21% of the new homes completed in 2018, which was down from 31% in 1998. Since the volume of new homes are down in these regions, it corresponds to fewer overall new homes built with basements.

The NAHB Eye On Housing article Basements Continue to Fall Out of Favor covers more trends and additional information about this topic.

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Part 2: HVAC of Single-Family Homes Completed in 2018

*Includes raised supports such as pilings and piers, and other types.