Single-family permits are up, according to the National Association of Homebuilders (NAHB). Single family permits reached 521,438 over the first seven months of 2018, a 7.0 percent increase year over year as of July 2017. According to the Census Bureau's New Residential Construction Survey, the data is similar, with the year-to-date single-family permits over the first seven months of 2018 was, 522,200 which is 7.5 percent ahead of its level over the same period of 2017, 485,900.
According to the survey, single-family permits grew in the Southern and the Western regions of the country year-to-date, with the Western regions seeing the highest growth in single-family construction, by 14.3 percent, and the South recorded the highest multifamily permits growth 15.2 percent.
Meanwhile, the Midwest reported no change and Northeast declined by 1.6 percent compared to July 2017 year-to-date.
On a state by state basis, 34 states saw growth in single-family permits issued while 16 states and the District of Columbia registered a decline between July 2017 and July 2018. Colorado recorded the highest growth rate during this time at 27.6 percent while single-family permits in the District of Columbia declined by 69.6 percent, from 217 in 2017 to 66 in 2018.
Texas led with the most permits issued, at 76,144 permits issued year-to-date in July 2018 and Florida came in second with 56,939 year-to-date. The District of Columbia came in last with 66 permits. The NAHB notes that the 10 states issuing the highest number of single-family permits combined accounted for 60.6 percent of the single-family permits issued.
Previous studies indicated that construction companies have not been able to keep up with the increase in permits. For example, according to the July 2018 New Residential Construction survey from the Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, building permits increased 1.5 percent month over month, but housing completions saw a decline of 1.7 percent.