Housing starts and housing completions were both up in June according to new residential construction data released this morning by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development.  Single family building permits also rose slightly from May levels but residential permits overall declined.  

Permits for all privately-owned housing units were issued in June at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 755,000, a 3.7 percent drop from the upwardly revised May rate of 784,000.  May permits were originally estimated at 780,000.  The June number is 19.3 percent higher than the 633,000 permits issued in June 2011.

Single-family construction permits were issued at a rate of 493,000, 0.6 percent above May which was revised downward from 494,000 to 490,000.  Permits for construction in buildings with five units or more were at a rate of 241,000 down from 272,000 in May.

Building Permits

Privately owned housing starts in June were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 760,000, a 6.9 percent increase over May's estimate of 711,000 and 23.6 percent higher than one year earlier.  May's estimate was revised upward from 708,000.  Single family starts increased 4.7 percent from a May figure of 515,000 (revised down from 516,000).  In June there were 213,000 units for which construction was started in buildings with five or more units compared to 182,000 in May.

Housing Starts

There were 622,000 housing units (on a seasonally adjusted annual basis) completed in June, up 2.6 percent from the revised May estimate of 606,000 (from 598,000) and 7.2 percent higher than the June 2011 rate of 580,000.   There were 470,000 single family units completed, up 1.3 percent from May and 134,000 units completed in multi-unit buildings.

In the Northeast the rate of permitting was unchanged from May at 78,000 but this was an annual increase of 9.9 percent.  Housing starts were at a rate of 77,000, up 22.2 percent from the 63,000 rate estimated in May and an annual increase of 42.1 percent. 

Permitting was down slightly in the Midwest to 118,000, an -0.8 percent change, but still up 16.8 percent from one year earlier.  Starts were at a rate of 101,000, down 7.3 percent from 109,000 in May and 19.8 percent lower than one year earlier.

In the South permitting was at an annual pace of 379,000 units, down 8.0 percent month-over-month but up 17.3 percent in a year.

The West had a permitting rate of 180,000, up 2.9 percent from 175,000 in May, and 30.4 percent higher than a year earlier.

At the end of June there were 88,000 permits outstanding, 41,500 of them for units in multi-family dwellings.  Over 45,000 of the permits for which construction had not yet started were located in the South.  Also at the end of the period there were 482,000 units under construction, 256,000 of which were single family dwellings.