Housing Starts Jump to Highest Level Since 2007

Housing starts in April rose to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.135 million, 20.2 percent above the revised March estimate of 944,000 and 9.2 percent above the April 2014 rate of 1.039 million. Single-family housing starts grew at a rate of 733,000, 16.7% above the revised March figure of 628,000. The rate of growth for multifamily units was 389,000, 31.9 percent above the revised March estimate of 295,000.

The rate of housing starts accelerated in three of the four regions. Housing starts in the Northeast increased 85.9% to 184,000 total units, the largest of the four regions, followed by a 39 percent increase to 278,000 units in the West and a 27.8 percent increase to 170,000 units in the Midwest. In the South, the only region to experience a deceleration in housing starts, starts decreased 1.8 percent to 503,000 units.

Building permits were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.143 units, which is 10.1 percent above the revised March rate of 1.038 and 6.4 percent above the year-ago estimate of 1.074. Building permits for single-family units were at a rate of 666,000, 3.7 percent above the March figure of 642,000. Building permits for multifamily units were 444,000, 20 percent above March’s revised rate of 370,000.

Housing completions in April were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 986,000, 20.4 percent above the revised March estimate of 819,000 and 19.4 percent above the year-ago rate of 826,000. Single-family housing completions were at a rate of 688,000, 14.5 percent above the revised March rate of 601,000. The April rate for multifamily units was 288,000, 39.8 percent higher than March.