Single-family housing starts in July were at a rate of 856,000, which is 0.5 percent below the revised June figure of 860,000, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Privately-owned housing starts in July were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,155,000, which is 4.8 percent below the revised June estimate of 1,213,000 and is 5.6 percent below the July 2016 rate of 1,223,000.
Single-family authorizations in July were at a rate of 811,000, which is unchanged from the previous month. Privately-owned housing units authorized by building permits in July were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,223,000, which is 4.1 percent below the revised June rate of 1,275,000 but is 4.1 percent above the July 2016 rate of 1,175,000.
Single-family housing completions in July were at a rate of 814,000, a 1.6 percent drop from the revised June rate of 827,000. Privately-owned housing completions in July were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,175,000, a 6.2 percent decline from the revised June estimate of 1,252,000, but 8.2 percent above the July 2016 rate of 1,086,000.
"The housing shortage in America will intensify if new construction remains as lackluster as it was in July," said National Association of Realtors (NAR) Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. "The softening multifamily housing starts brought down the overall new housing unit additions to the second lowest monthly activity this year. Moreover, the latest 15 percent drop in multifamily housing starts and 0.5 percent drop in single family starts will hold back economic growth potential. Because of this continued shortage, expect rents and home prices to rise by at least twice as fast as the broad consumer price index."