Housing Starts Fall 16.5 percent, Permits up

by devteam May 16th, 2013 | Share

The U.S. Census Bureau and thernDepartment of Housing and Urban Development said today that new housing starts</bwere down in April by 16.5 percent compared to March.  Construction began on privately ownedrnresidential units at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 853,000 compared to thernrevised March estimate of 1,021,000.  Thernoriginal March figure was estimated at 1,036,000 units.  April starts were 13.1 percent higher than arnyear earlier when construction was started on 754,000 units.  </p

Single-family construction was begun atrna rate of 610,000 units, down 2.1 percent from the March rate of 623,000.  Starts in buildings with five or more unitsrnwas down 38.9 percent to a rate of 234,000 units compared to 376,000 in March.</p

Housing Starts</p

Click and drag to zoom charts.</p

ChartManager.loadChart(‘housingchartall’, ‘HousingChartAll’);


Residential construction permits werernissued at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,017,000 units.  This is an increase of 14.3 percent comparedrnto the downwardly revised (from 902,000) March rate of 890,000 units.  The April rate was 35.8 percent higher thanrnthat of April 2012 when the estimate was 749,000 units.</p

Single-family permits were at a rate ofrn617,000 compared to the March figure of 599,000 (originally estimated atrn595,000), an increase of 3.0 percent.  InrnApril 2012 the rate was 484,000.  Permitsrnfor units in buildings with five or more were issued at an annual rate ofrn374,000 in April compared to 266,000 in March.</p

Building Permits</p

Click and drag to zoom charts.</p

ChartManager.loadChart(‘permitschartall’, ‘HousingPermitsChartAll’);


Construction was completed on privatelyrnowned residential units at a rate of 689,000 in April, down 14.3 percent fromrnMarch’s figure of 804,000 which was revised up from an original estimate ofrn800,000.  Single-family homes wererncompeted at a rate of 536,000 compared to 594,000 in March (-9.8 Percent) andrnmulti-family completions were at a rate of 149,000 compared to 205,000 a monthrnearlier.</p

On a regional basis, permitting was downrn2.0 percent month-over-month in the Northeast but up 11.4 percentrnyear-over-year.  Housing starts were alsorndown from March by 12.8 percent and up 3.8 percent from April 2012.  Completions in the Northeast were way down,rn-43.2 percent and -39.0 percent for the two periods.</p

In the Midwest permits rose 22.3 percentrnover March and 45.3 percent from April 2012. rnHousing starts increased by 10.9 percent and 19.5 percent respectively.rnThe residential completion rate rose 17.0 percent over March and 28.4 percentrnfrom a year earlier.</p

The South had a 16.0 percent monthlyrnincrease in permits, 37.4 percent on an annual basis, but housing starts fellrn27.9 percent from the previous period and were up only 1.8 percent from a yearrnearlier.  Completions fell 8.3 percentrnfrom the previous month but were up 4.6 percent from April 2012.</p

The West issued permits at a rate 12.9rnpercent above the March rate and 38.4 percent above a year earlier.  Housing starts were down 6.2 percent fromrnMarch but increased 43.2 percent from the prior April.  Completions were down 28.4 percent fromrnMarch, up 6.5 percent from a year earlier.</p

At the end of the period there werern95,400 permits that had been issued nationwide for which construction had notrnyet begun.  As has been typical in recentrnmonths, over half of those permits were in the South.   Nationwide there were 605,000 units in somernstage of construction.

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About the Author


Steven A Feinberg (@CPAsteve) of Appletree Business Services LLC, is a PASBA member accountant located in Londonderry, New Hampshire.

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