Housing starts rise more than expected in August, but building permits drop

Sep. 20, 2022 8:31 AM ETBy: Liz Kiesche, SA News Editor11 Comments

New Home Construction On Dirt Lot With Sky In Background

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August Housing Starts: +12.2% M/M to 1.575M vs. 1.440M expected and 1.404M prior (revised from 1.446M). On a Y/Y basis, housing starts edged down 0.1%.

Single-family housing starts in August were at a rate of 935K, 3.4% above July's 904K.

Building permits: -10.0% M/M to 1.517M vs. 1.621M expected and 1.685M prior (revised from 1.674M). The figure fell 14.4% from August 2021.

Single-family authorizations in August came in at a rate of 899K, 3.5% below the revised July figure of 932K.

Privately owned housing completions in August were a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.342M, 5.4% below July's 1.419M and 3.1% higher than the August 2021 rate of 1.302M. Single-family housing completions in August were at 1.017M, up 0.4% from the revised July rate of 1.013M.

"Housing starts increased in August, with a majority of the gain coming from multifamily starts which increased nearly 30% over their July numbers," said Kelly Mangold of RCLCO Real Estate Consulting. "Multifamily continues to be a bright spot with starts up 31% Y/Y in August."

She also sees some housing market indicators "trending in a positive direction, with construction materials prices trending down somewhat in August."

On Monday, homebuilder confidence continued to erode in August as buyer traffic was weak and a higher percentage of builders reported reducing home prices.

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