Home Builders Association: Single-Family Permits Down 10 Percent, Multi-Family Construction Surges

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Based on residential permit data compiled by the Home Builders Association of Southeastern Michigan (HBA) in Farmington Hills, a total of 315 single-family permits were issued for new home construction in Macomb, Oakland, St. Clair, and Wayne counties in February. Additionally, 110 multi-family permits were issued last month, all in Oakland County.

Single family permits were down 10 percent from February 2016 (352), and only up 1 percent from the revised total of 311 permits issued in January of this year, following late reports by some municipalities. With the revision, the combined January-February total of 626 permits is the second highest since 2006, trailing only 2016, which has 634.

HBA also noted a “significant uptick” in multi-family permits in January, although 2017’s activity so far has been concentrated in Oakland County. February’s activity extended the current multi-family streak of sustained construction activity to 12 consecutive months. This is the second largest period of growth since 2004-2005, (19 months), when at least one multi-family permit has been pulled each month, only behind the 16 months from October 2014 through January 2016.

The HBA also noted a “growing sense of optimism,” by home builders across the country, and attributed 2017’s slow start to a colder winter season. They expect to see an “acceleration of activity” when data from March and April is analyzed.

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