In another dive into data from the Census Bureau's Survey of Construction (SOC), the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) found that one third of the nine census divisions and thus 21 states were responsible for 60 percent of single family housing starts last year. The South Atlantic division encompasses the coastal states stretching from Delaware to Florida plus West Virginia and accounted for 260,000 of the 848,000 starts last year. The West South Central division was in second place and the Mountain division third.  



The number of starts in 2017 was up 9 percent from 2016 and four divisions outpaced the national rate; the Pacific division at 17 percent, West North Central at 11 percent, South Atlantic and Mountain divisions at 10 percent each.

Growth decelerated from the 2016 rate in seven out of nine divisions as shown in Figure 2 while it accelerated in both the Pacific and West South Central areas. The East South Central division, fell into a negative growth rate in 2017, likely because of the explosive growth it experienced the previous year.



The analysis by Jing Fu, published in NAHB's Eye on Housing blog, found that single family starts in 2017 were still well below the average rate pre-recession, that is between 2000 and 2003.  The national average of housing starts represents only 63 percent of that earlier level and the average in the nine census divisions range between 46 percent and 93 percent of pre-crash activity. Divisional recoveries relative to their average number of starts between 2000 and 2003 are illustrated in the table below