Presidential candidates need to  ensure the American housing market starts to recover, the National Association of Home Builders says.

Presidential candidates - whether President Barack Obama or any of the Republican hopefuls - need to work to ensure the American housing market starts to recover, the NAHB says.

"There can be no economic recovery without a housing recovery, yet the silence on housing was deafening during the (Oct. 18) debate,” said National Association of Home Builders Chairman Bob Nielsen, a builder from Reno, Nev. "It is particularly ironic that with the debate setting in Las Vegas, the epicenter of the foreclosure crisis, the candidates chose to duck this topic and other critical housing issues."

Nielsen said the president also needs to work harder to fix the housing crisis.

"President Obama needs to take an affirmative position on home ownership as well," he said. "The failure of the Administration to put forth pro-housing policies is impeding the economic recovery and hurting job growth and consumer confidence."

Proposals such as mandating 20 percent down payments on all mortgages and eliminating government-backed organizations such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac would only prolong the problems, NAHB officials added.

"Instead of arguing who was to blame for the downturn, all the 2012 presidential hopefuls need to be addressing these housing issues head-on," said Nielsen. "Housing and home ownership are critical to a strong and prosperous nation. If any of these anti-housing policies are codified, it could fundamentally alter the ability of the nation to sustain a middle class that has contributed to a century of economic progress."