Midwest Pushes Housing Starts Down 2% in January

Filed in Economics by on February 18, 2015 1 Comment

housing starts_janNationwide housing starts fell 2% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.065 million units in January, according to newly released data from the U.S. Commerce Department. This drop was mainly due to a 22.2% decrease in the Midwest.

Single-family housing production fell 6.7% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 678,000 in January while multifamily starts rose 7.5% to 387,000 units.

“These numbers are consistent with our recent surveys and are primarily due to severe weather hitting the Midwest and other parts of the country,” said NAHB Chairman Tom Woods.

“After a strong single-family report in December, it is not surprising to see some pull back in January,” said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. “With continued job creation and a growing economy, single-family production should make gains in the year ahead.”

Regionally in January, combined single- and multifamily housing production increased 6.5% in the South. Total starts fell in the Northeast, Midwest and West, with respective losses of 3.5%, 22.2% and 3.4%.

Overall permit issuance was down 0.7% in January to a rate of 1.053 million. Single-family permits decreased 3.1% to 654,000 units while multifamily permits rose 3.6% to a rate of 399,000 units.

Regionally, permits were mixed in January. The Northeast and West registered gains of 29.5% and 16.8%, respectively, while the Midwest and South dropped 16% and 8.7%.

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  1. Frank Morse says:

    New custom home client calls are still fairly consistent in New Orleans and the metro area. Low-income housing is still stagnant but mid-level and upscale housing is still trending upward. There has been a very slight increase in appraisal values, albeit due mostly to the lack of quality housing stock and the ability for sellers to get closer to their already depressed asking price. Appraisers are still leaning 85% more toward market value without ample credit for cost.

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