Apartment and Condo Construction 'Booming'

Multi-family units jumped 30% in March as more consumers are renting once again.

Single-family housing starts posted a 9.4% gain to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 453,000 units in June, their best pace since November of 2010. Meanwhile, multifamily starts, which tend to display greater volatility on a month-to-month basis, gained a dramatic 30.4% to a rate of 176,000 units—their best pace since January.

"Today's numbers are an encouraging sign that builders are responding to improving consumer interest in new homes and apartments by gradually replenishing their extremely thin inventories in places where demand is evident," said Bob Nielsen, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and a home builder from Reno, NV. "That said, the lack of access to construction credit remains an impediment to starting new projects and getting building crews back to work in markets that are improving."

Starts activity improved across every region of the country in June, with the Northeast posting a 35.1% gain, the Midwest posting a 25.3% gain, the South posting a 10.6% gain, and the West posting a 5.4% gain.

Issuance of building permits, which can be an indicator of future building activity, also improved in June. Overall permits posted a 2.5% gain to 624,000 units, their highest level since December of 2010. Single-family permit issuance held virtually even with the previous month, with a 0.2% gain to 407,000 units. Multifamily permits gained 6.9 % to 217,000 units—their highest level since October of 2008.