U.S. Commerce Department reports declining housing startsMortgagePress.comseasonally-adjusted annual rate, builders, single-family housing, multi-family housing
Nationwide housing starts declined 3.7 percent to a
seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 1.19 million units in November,
as home builders continued to put the brakes on new-home
production, according to newly released data from the U.S. Commerce Department.
"Builders are doing exactly the right thing by slowing
production and allowing demand for new homes to catch up with
supply," noted Brian Catalde, president of the National Association of Home
Builders (NAHB). "Working down the inventory of unsold homes is
key to returning the housing market to greater health and
Single-family housing starts declined 5.4 percent in November to
a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 829,000 units, the lowest
level since April of 1991. Meanwhile, permit issuance for new
single-family homes declined 5.6 percent in the month to 764,000
units, their lowest level since June of 1991.
"[This] report is consistent with what single-family builders
have reported in our recent surveys, and is very much in line with
our expectations," said NAHB Chief Economist David Seiders. "It's
no surprise that builders are starting fewer homes and pulling
fewer permits for new home construction at a time when homebuyer
demand is weak and there's a heavy supply of vacant homes on the
market. We expect the supply/demand balance to improve during the
early part of 2008, supporting the early stages of recovery in
starts and permits during the second half of next year."
Multi-family housing starts held firm in November, remaining
virtually unchanged at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 358,000
units. Meanwhile, permits for multi-family production rose 7.5
percent to a 388,000-unit rate.
On a regional basis, housing starts in November were down 1.5
percent in the Midwest, 16.3 percent in the Northeast and 6.9
percent in the West. Starts were up 0.3 percent in the South in
November, although the region was down 27.4 percent on a
For more information, visit www.nahb.org.