March Housing Starts Down 8.8%

Filed in Economics by on April 19, 2016 0 Comments

housing starts and building confidenceNationwide housing starts fell 8.8% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.089 million units in March, according to newly released data from HUD and the Commerce Department. Overall permit issuance was also down 7.7%.

“Single-family starts are off from their strong showing in February, but this slowdown represents a return to a long-run, gradual growth trend that is consistent with builder confidence levels, which are  positive overall,” said NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz. “While we are also seeing a monthly decline on the multifamily front, multifamily construction is expected to level off at a solid rate, given the high level of rental housing demand.”

“Starts are up at a double-digit rate from a year ago, and builders remain fairly optimistic that more consumers will return to the housing market in the months ahead,” said NAHB Chairman Ed Brady.

Both housing sectors posted production declines this month. Single-family starts fell 9.2% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 764,000 units in March while multifamily dropped 8.5% to 312,000 units. On a year-over-year basis, however, single-family starts were up 22.6%.

Get additional analysis in this latest Eye on Housing blog post.

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