Warren Buffett is investing in homebuilders. Can I mimic the billionaire investor with ASX shares?

Warren Buffett's Berkshire has taken a bullish view on three listed homebuilders.

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When Warren Buffett shakes up the portfolio holdings at Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK.A) (NYSE: BRK.B), it tends to grab investors' attention.

And for good reason.

As at 30 June, Berkshire's US stock holdings were valued just north of US$353 billion. And, as we reported earlier this month, Warren Buffett helped Berkshire deliver an eye-popping quarterly profit of some US$36 billion. That's including the share price gains from the company's stock holdings.

This week Berkshire reported some US$814 million worth of new holdings in three major United States homebuilders: DR Horton Inc (NYSE: DHI), NVR Inc (NYSE: NVR) and Lennar Corp (NYSE: LEN).

All three homebuilders' shares are up between 33% and 35% so far in 2023, so Warren Buffett is buying into strength here.

That looks to tie into one of his golden investing rules, "The best investments provide real world value, not just market value."

So, can I mimic the billionaire investor with ASX shares?

Emulating Warren Buffett with ASX homebuilding shares

US and Aussie property markets are obviously not identical.

But both markets are witnessing high demand for new homes amid growing populations and low inventories. And both markets are nearing an end to a period of high inflation and rocketing interest rates.

Now, some smaller Aussie builders have been feeling the heat from rising costs amid fixed-price contracts. That's seen a marked uptick in insolvencies over recent months.

But most of the bigger players, including the three S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) building shares we'll look at below, have been going strong. And they look to potentially provide that "real world value" Warren Buffett seeks out for his own holdings.

And there could be some tailwinds ahead for Aussie homebuilders, with Prime Minister Anthony Albanese pledging to deliver 1.2 million new homes by 2029. (Not personally, mind you. Though that would be quite a feat!)

As part of the plan, the federal government will roll out a $3 billion performance fund to encourage the states and territories to increase Australia's housing supply and increase affordability.

So, which three ASX 200 shares might I buy to try to emulate Warren Buffett in his homebuilder investments?

Well, I'd run my slide rule over Boral Ltd (ASX: BLD). Shares in the building and construction materials company are up 77% so far in 2023, giving Boral a market cap of $5.6 billion.

I'd also consider Brickworks Ltd (ASX: BKW). Shares in the diversified buildings product manufacturer are up 18% in 2023, giving Brickworks a market cap of $3.9 billion. The stock may also appeal to passive income investors, with Boral shares trading on a fully franked trailing yield of 2.5%.

And finally, I'd look into James Hardie Industries PLC (ASX: JHX). Share in the fibre cement building products producer is up a whopping 78% so far in 2023, giving James Hardie a market cap of $20.4 billion.

As with the three US-listed building companies Warren Buffett recently invested in, all three of these ASX 200 building stocks have been trending strongly higher year to date.

Motley Fool contributor Bernd Struben has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has positions in and has recommended Berkshire Hathaway, Brickworks, Lennar, and NVR. The Motley Fool Australia has positions in and has recommended Brickworks. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Berkshire Hathaway. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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