From the Census Bureau: Permits, Starts and Completions
Privately‐owned housing starts in April were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,569,000. This is 9.5 percent below the revised March estimate of 1,733,000, but is 67.3 percent above the April 2020 rate of 938,000. Single‐family housing starts in April were at a rate of 1,087,000; this is 13.4 percent below the revised March figure of 1,255,000. The April rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 470,000.
Privately‐owned housing units authorized by building permits in April were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,760,000. This is 0.3 percent above the revised March rate of 1,755,000 and is 60.9 percent above the April 2020 rate of 1,094,000. Single‐family authorizations in April were at a rate of 1,149,000; this is 3.8 percent below the revised March figure of 1,194,000. Authorizations of units in buildings with five units or more were at a rate of 559,000 in April
The first graph shows single and multi-family housing starts for the last several years.
Multi-family starts (red, 2+ units) increased slightly in April compared to March. Multi-family starts were up 91% year-over-year in April.
Single-family starts (blue) decreased in April, and were up 59% year-over-year (starts slumped at the beginning of the pandemic).
The second graph shows the huge collapse following the housing bubble, and then the eventual recovery (but still not historically high).
Total housing starts in April were below expectations, and starts in February and March were revised down.
I’ll have more later …