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Housing Starts declined 2.6% last month and Building Permits are down 2.5%.  Only 1.172 million front doors were installed on new residences in the last year–well below expectations.  A fully thriving housing industry is expected to average 1.5 million newly constructed edifices per year going forward.  With all the new projects underway, is feels like new construction should be registering a 30-40% growth rate. Actually, the breakdown shows that single-family homes are up 8.9% from this time last year, while multi-family projects have declined 15.1%.  Multi-unit dwellings account for about 30% of new housing, so overall, Starts are up 0.7% from last April.  Interestingly, numbers nerds have found that each single-family home contributes on average, about twice the amount to our nation’s GDP as a dwelling in a multi-unit building.

In related news, Fannie Mae said this morning that the tight supply of homes for sale continues to act as both a boon to home prices and an impediment to affordability.  Thank you, Captain Obvious.