WASHINGTON (National Association of Home Builders) – Builder confidence in the new single-family home market edged higher for a third consecutive month in September, according to the latest National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI), released Wednesday.

The HMI rose one point to 19 this month, its highest level since May 2008.

The HMI gauges builder perceptions of current single-family home sales and sales expectations for the next six months as “good,” “fair” or “poor.”

The index gauging current sales conditions rose two points to 18, while the index gauging traffic of prospective buyers rose one point to 17. Meanwhile, the index gauging sales expectations for the next six months declined one point to 29.

Specifically, the Southern region of the United States posted a two-point gain to 19.