Through the first five months of 2018 the number of single-family residential permits issued realized an 8% year-over-year increase. The nationwide increase is due in large part to the increases in the Southern and Western states, 17.9% and 17.0%. According to a report by data and analytics provider Black Knight Inc. Below are a few highlights This Week in Real Estate from the third week of July that influence our business:
* Western States Lead Single-Family Residential Permits Growth. Over the first five months of 2018, the total number of single-family permits issued year-to-date (YTD) nationwide reached 363,327. On a year-over-year basis, this is an 8.0% increase over the May 2017 level of 336,410. The results from the SOC are similar, year-to-date single-family permits over the first five months of 2018 was, 363,700 which is 8.6% ahead of its level over the same period of 2017, 335,000. Year-to-date, across the country, single-family permits grew in all the regions except in the Northeast where it declined by 1.0% compared to May 2017 YTD. Western region had the highest growth in single-family while South recorded the highest multifamily permits growth during the last 12 months. The 8.0% increase in the nationwide growth rate of year-to-date single-family permits, is largely due to the aggregate increase in single-family permits across the Western states. Out of the 13 which are classified as Western states, nine states recorded single-family permit growth exceeding the national average. A total of 20 states recorded growth rates higher than the national average. Nine of these came from the Western region of the county, seven from the South, and three from the Midwest. Year-to-date, ending in May 2018, the total number of multifamily permits issued nationwide reached 187,605. This is 13.3% ahead of its level over the first five month of 2017, 165,645. The increase in nationwide growth rate is due to the increases across Southern and Western states which posted growth rates of 17.9% and 17.0% respectively.
* Builder Confidence Stays at Healthy Level in July. Builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes remained unchanged at a solid 68 reading in July on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI). Builders are optimistic about housing market conditions, basing their confidence on continued solid demand for single-family homes. However, persistent increases in construction costs make it increasingly challenging to produce homes at competitive price points, especially for the entry-level market where inventory is most needed. The HMI index measuring current sales conditions remained unchanged at 74. Meanwhile, the component gauging expectations in the next six months dropped two points to 73 and the metric charting buyer traffic rose two points to 52. Looking at the three-month moving averages for regional HMI scores, the Northeast rose one point to 57 while the Midwest remained unchanged at 65. The West and South each fell one point to 75 and 70, respectively.
* Most Areas See Growth in Single-Family Starts. NAHB analysis of the Survey of Construction (SOC) shows that, nationally, there were 847,830 new single-family units started in 2017, 9% higher than the units started in 2016. Among all of the nine Census divisions, new single-family units started in the South Atlantic, West South Central and Mountain Divisions exceeded 100k in 2017. These three divisions represent 21 states, approximately 41% of the 50 states and Washington, D.C., but the number of new single-family housing starts in these three divisions accounted for about 60% of the total new single-family housing starts in 2017. In addition, there were 95,689 new single-family units started in the Pacific Division and 77,053 units started in the East North Central Division in 2017. The Pacific Division accounted for 11% of the total new single-family housing starts, while the East North Central Division accounted for 9%. The other four divisions, including East South Central, West North Central, Middle Atlantic and New England, accounted for the remaining 20% of the total new single-family housing starts. In addition, there were 95,689 new single-family units started in the Pacific Division and 77,053 units started in the East North Central Division in 2017. The Pacific Division accounted for 11% of the total new single-family housing starts, while the East North Central Division accounted for 9%. The other four divisions, including East South Central, West North Central, Middle Atlantic and New England, accounted for the remaining 20% of the total new single-family housing starts. According to NAHB analysis of the SOC data, national new single-family housing starts reached 63% of the pre-recession normal (the average of housing starts between 2000 and 2003) in 2017.
Have a productive week.