The annual pace of housing starts in the U.S. rose 7.0 percent from February to March, up 46.7 percent on a year-over-year basis. While the pace of single-family home starts remains up 28.7 percent year-over-year, it slipped 4.8 percent from February to March. The pace of construction for structures with five or more units, however, surged 26.9 percent and is up 82.3 percent year-over-year.
The number of structures with five or more units on which construction commenced surged over 60 percent to 32,000 last month having averaged 30,100 a month since 1963, peaking at 87,200 in May of 1973 and measuring 83,900 that March. Construction on 51,700 single-family homes started last month having averaged 87,400 a month since 1959, peaking at 170,400 in May of 2005 and measuring 133,400 that March.
Total housing starts which measured 85,800 in March have averaged 122,500 a month since 1959, hitting 227,300 in early 2006 and peaking at 249,400 in early 1972.
On a year-over-year basis, permit activity to start construction was up 17.3 percent in March with applications for single-family homes up 27.7 percent, up 0.7 percent for multi-family housing. Adjusted for seasonality, permit activity hit a 902,000 pace, down 3.9 percent from the month before.
In the west, starts were up 53.7 percent year-over-year, up 37.4 percent for single-family homes, while permit activity was up 10.7 percent, up 39.2 percent for single-family homes.
∙ New Residential Construction Statistics [doc.gov]
∙ Housing Starts Tick Up, Permit Activity Hits Five-ish Year High [SocketSite]