Single-Family Permit Weakness at Start of 2019

Over the first three months of 2019, the total number of single-family permits issued year-to-date (YTD) nationwide reached 185,336. On a year-over-year basis, this is a 7.3% decline over the March 2018 level of 199,861.

Year-to-date ending in March, single-family permits reported growth only in the Northeast region of the country. The South, Midwest, and the West regions declined by 2.9%, 15.9%, and 15.3% respectively, compared to the same time period in 2018. The Midwest region had the highest growth in multifamily (20.6%) while the West recorded a decline in multifamily permits growth (-19.0%) during the last 12 months.

Between March 2018 YTD and March 2019 YTD, 13 states and the District of Columbia saw growth in single-family permits issued while 37 states registered a decline. The District of Columbia recorded the highest growth rate during this time at 88.24% from 34 to 64 while single-family permits in South Dakota declined by 30.46%, from 453 in 2018 to 315 in 2019. The 10 states issuing the highest number of single-family permits combined accounted for 63.5% of the total single-family permits issued.

Year-to-date, ending in March 2019, the total number of multifamily permits issued nationwide reached 107,248. This is 1.6% ahead of its level over the year 2018, 105,562.

Between March 2018 YTD and March 2019 YTD, 23 states and the District of Columbia recorded growth while 27 states recorded a decline in multifamily permits. Michigan led the way with a sharp rise (205.55%) in multifamily permits from 667 to 2038, while New Mexico had the largest decline at 75.77% from 194 to 47. The 10 states issuing the highest number of multifamily permits combined accounted for 64.2% of the multifamily permits issued.



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