One of the key metrics for the health in the housing market are the "privately owned housing starts". "Housing starts" are an economic indicator that reflect the number of privately owned new houses (technically housing units) on which construction has been started in a given period. Usually, a decline in the "housing starts" leads to the start of a recession.
Because of the fact that the "housing starts" are a leading indicator, this is a very important metric to predict the unemployment rate. As a consequence, the "housing starts" are also a predictor of real GDP, capacity utilization, the stock market index and the consumer price index (CPI).