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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Housing Off Lows... Slightly

The AP details:

Home construction increased last month and applications for building permits also grew. But the gains were driven mainly by apartment and condominium construction, not the much larger single-family homes sector.

Construction of new homes and apartments rose 10.5 percent in August from a month earlier to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 598,000, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. That's the highest level since April.

Pulling the figures up was a 32 percent monthly increase in the condominium and apartment market, a small portion of the market. Single-family homes, which represent about 80 percent of the market, grew more than 4 percent.
Below we see that "jump".

And now... a little perspective.
Housing starts are up 25 percent from their bottom in April 2009, but are still down 74 percent from their peak in January 2006.
New Home Starts Over the LONG Term

What's this all mean? Calculated Risk sums it up best:
As I've mentioned many times - this low level of starts is good news for the housing market longer term (there are too many housing units already), but bad news for the economy and employment short term.
Source: Census