Total private residential construction spending decreased a negligible 0.1% on a month-over-month basis during April 2013, with the net decline driven by a further decrease in improvement spending. However, total housing-related spending is up 18.8% from April 2012 and has increased 35.7% from the cycle low point in 2009.
Spending on new single-family housing has now increased for 22 of the last 23 months, increasing 1.4% over March. On a year-over-year basis new single-family expenditures have grown 38.6% and are up 81.9% from the cycle low pace set in mid-2009.
New multifamily construction spending registered a 3.4% gain in April and has increased 48.6% measured year-over-year. Multifamily construction is up 123% from the cycle low recorded in mid-2010.
While single-family and multifamily construction continue to improve, home improvement spending has been and remains a source of weakness for the residential construction sector. Remodeling-related expenditures have declined significantly over the course of 2013. Improvement spending was down 3.3% in April and is down 7% from April 2012. Rising existing home sales point to increases later in the year.