Housing starts rebound from December, still down annually

Privately owned housing starts increased 18.6 percent from December 2018 to January 2019, but were still 7.8 percent lower than January 2018, according to the most recent statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Housing starts were reported at a seasonally adjusted rate of 1,230,000, of which 926,000 were single family homes.

New privately-owned housing units authorized by permits were reported at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,345,000, a 1.4 percent increase over December, but down 1.5 percent year-over-year. The number of single-family homes authorized by permits dropped 2.1 percent month-over-month.

In a market where sales have slowed and inventory is still tracking on the weaker side, privately-owned housing completions are rebounding. The number of housing completions reported in January was at a rate of 1,244,000, a 27.6 percent increase from December and a 2.1 percent year-over-year increase.