August 20, 2012 (Chris Moore)
Housing starts continued their bumpy up and down ride in July by following June’s revised 6.8 percent increase with a 1.1 percent decline according to the latest data released by the Census Bureau.
Filings for building permits increased for the month as both single-family and multi-family permits posted increases while the number of completed single-family homes fell during July but the number of multi-family units increased by over fifty percent from the previous month.
Privately owned housing starts fell by 1.1 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 746,000 in July from a revised estimate of 754,000 in June. Housing starts were still 21.5 percent higher than in July 2011 which had an estimated 614,000 starts.
Single-family housing starts declined in July to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 502,000, down 6.5 percent from a revised estimate of 537,000 starts in June and but were still 17.0 percent higher than in July of last year when an estimated 429,000 starts were reported.
Housing starts for multi-family dwellings improved by 9.6 percent from a revised rate of 209,000 starts in June to a seasonally adjusted rate of 229,000 starts in July. Housing starts for multi-family dwellings were 30.1 percent higher than a year ago when an estimated 176,000 starts were recorded.
Regionally, monthly housing starts fell in three of the four regions with the West posting the largest decline of 5.3 percent, followed by the South at 3.5 percent and the Northeast with a decline of 1.3 percent while the Midwest posted the only increase of 17.0 percent.
Compared to a year ago, three of the four regions posted increases in housing starts with the West posting the largest increase of 48.1 percent, followed by the Midwest and the South at 28.6 and 16.8 percent, respectively, while the Northeast reported the only decline of 10.5 percent.
The number of building permits issued in July climbed to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 812,000, up 6.8 percent from a revised estimate of 760,000 permits in June. Authorized building permits were 29.5 percent higher than the July 2011 estimate of 627,000.
Single-family building permit authorizations were 4.5 percent higher in July than June with 513,000 permits authorized in July compared to a revised 491,000 in June. Building permit authorizations for single-family homes were 19.0 percent higher than in July of last year which had an estimated 417,000 permits issued.
Multi-family dwelling permits in July jumped to 274,000 authorizations from a revised total of 248,000 in June, an increase of 10.5 percent. Authorizations for multi-family dwellings were 47.3 percent higher than in July of last year which had an estimated 186,000 authorizations.
Building permit authorizations increased in three of the four regions in July compared to June. In the West, authorizations rose by 14.0 percent followed by increases of 12.2 percent in the Northeast and 5.8 percent in the South. The Midwest suffered the only decline, falling 4.2 percent from June to July.
Year-over-year, building permit authorizations increased in all four regions with the West posting the largest increase of 53.8 percent, followed by the Northeast which posted a 43.8 percent increase and South and the Midwest saw gains of 21.8 and 14.0 percent, respectively.
Housing completions increased by 7.1 percent from June to July with a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 668,000 completions reported in July compared to June’s revised estimate of 624,000 completions. Housing completions were 5.4 percent higher than in July of last year when an estimated 634,000 completions were reported.
Single-family completions in July were at an annual rate of 448,000 units, which was 5.9 percent lower than June’s revised rate of 476,000 and 7.2 percent below last year’s rate of 483,000 units. Multi-family completions in July were at a rate of 209,000 units, 58.3 percent higher than the 132,000 units completed in June and 47.2 percent higher than the 142,000 completions in July of last year.
Tags: housing starts, single-family homes, multi-family dwellings, building permits, housing completions