Washington, DC, United States (4E) – Construction of newly built homes in the U.S. increased in July, a sign that the strength in multifamily properties made up for the slowdown in single-family projects.
In a seasonally adjusted basis, U.S. housing starts in July jumped 5.9 percent to an annual pace of 896,000, with construction of apartments recovering after a decline in June, according to U.S. Department of Commerce data released Friday.
In a survey by Bloomberg, the median estimate of 82 economists called for a 900,000 rate. Multifamily construction increased 26 percent, while work started on 2.2 percent fewer single-family homes.
The government revised the starts rate for June to 846,000. Starts for buildings with at least five units jumped 25.5 percent in July, while starts for single-family homes fell 2.2 percent. Overall starts in July increased 20.9 percent from the year-earlier month, a sign that the property sector is bouncing back, though rising mortgage rates could slow down recovery in the housing market.
In terms of region, three of four areas recorded increase in starts in July, with the Northeast posting a 40.2 percent rise, though construction fell in the South by 7 percent.
A home builders’ confidence index by the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo for August rose to its highest level since 2005 as demand for new homes surged, according to a report released Thursday.