Scotsman Guide > News > March 2017 > News Story

 Enter your e-mail address and password below.


Forgot your password? New User? Register Now.

News Archives

Subscribe icon Subscribe to our weekly e-newsletter, Top News.

Single-family starts rise to decade-high level

Home building jumped up to the highest pace in a decade in February after a surge of building in the West region.

Single-family starts were estimated at an annual pace of 872,000, up 3 percent compared to the rate a year earlier and the highest annual pace since September 2007, the U.S. Census Bureau reported.

homestartOverall, the annual pace of starts, including single-family and multifamily, increased to 1.29 million, which is 6.2 percent higher than in February 2016.  

Multifamily construction fell 7.7 percent over the January level, but is up year over year by just over 11 percent.

The boost in single-family starts is welcome news in areas that have seen prices rise rapidly. On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve raised the short-term rate and is expected to raise it at least two more times this year, which is expected to push up longer-term rates and the cost of mortgages. 

"Right now, rents and housing costs are increasing faster than other components because of the stubborn housing shortages in much of the U.S.," said Lawrence Yun, chief economist of the National Association of Realtors, on Wednesday. "To contain inflation and slow the pace of future rate hikes, more home construction is needed now."

Starts are still running well below what is considered a normal level, however. According to an analysis by Trulia, starts are at just under 64 percent of the 50-year average. Trulia also noted that permitting activity also fell over the month, a sign that activity could slow down in the coming months. 

February’s gains in starts came in the West, which saw overall housing starts increase in the month by nearly 36 percent. Starts fell by 3.8 percent in the South over the January level, 4.6 percent in the Midwest and 9.8 percent in the Northeast.

Year over year, starts were up in all regions, except for the Midwest, where they are down by 11.4 percent.

The gains were consistent with the surging levels of builder confidence that hit a 12-year high across the country earlier this month, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).

“We should see single-family production continue to grow throughout the year, tempered somewhat by supply-side constraints, such as access to lots and labor,” said NAHB Chairman Granger MacDonald, a Kerrville, Texas-based builder.

NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz cautioned that the higher numbers could be partly attributable to the warmer weather throughout the country, which was only just interrupted in the Northeast this week by major snow storms. Dietz said the drop in multifamily starts was expected. 


Questions? Contact at (425) 984-6017 or

Bubble 0 Comments

By submitting this comment, you agree to comply with our Terms of Use.

The text exceeds the maximum number of characters allowed.

Are you sure you want to permanently delete this blog comment? This action cannot be reversed.

You must enable your community profile to use this feature.

Cancel Enable profile

You have flagged this post for inappropriate content.

Please explain below. Thank you.

Cancel Submit

Get the latest news and articles from Scotsman Guide straight to your inbox.

Send me the following e-mails:

Learn more about Scotsman Guide e-mails

Thank you for signing up to receive e-mails from Scotsman Guide.

A confirmation e-mail has been sent to the address you provided.

For questions regarding your e-mail subscriptions please contact or call (800) 297-6061.

Fins A Lender Post a Loan
Residential Find a Lender Commercial Find a Lender
Follow Us:Visit Scotsman Guide Facebook pageVisit Scotsman Guide LinkedIn pageVisit Scotsman Guide g+ pageVisit Scotsman Guide Twitter page


© 2017 Scotsman Guide Media. All Rights Reserved.  Terms of Use  |  Privacy Policy