More metros showing improvement in housing markets

Markets added to the list in September include Tucson, Ariz.; Jacksonville, Fla.; Springfield, Ill.; Greenville, N.C.; and Bend, Ore.

The index identifies metropolitan areas that have shown improvement from their respective troughs in housing permits, employment and house prices for at least six consecutive months. 

"Combined with recent positive reports on builder confidence, housing starts and new-home sales, the September IMI adds to the growing consensus that housing is finally moving in the right direction, which in turn is spurring more potential buyers to get off the fence," said Kurt Pfotenhauer, vice chairman at First American Title Insurance Company, which produces the index with the NAHB.