Data from the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Commerce Department showed overall housing starts rising 5.2% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.178 million units in February. While single-family production spiked, multifamily production saw only a marginal gain of 0.8%.
“This month’s report is consistent with positive builder sentiment and other economic indicators showing that the housing market continues to recover at a gradual pace,” NAHB Chairman Ed Brady said.
“February’s single-family gains indicate that this sector is strengthening in line with our forecast,” said David Crowe, NAHB chief economist. “As the U.S. economy firms, job creation continues and mortgage interest rates remain low, we should see further growth in housing production moving forward.”
Total housing starts rose in three of four U.S. regions last month, according to the NAHB. The West posted a spike of 26.1%, while the Midwest and South saw gains of 19.9% and 7.1%, respectively. The Northeast saw a 51.3% loss.
Single-family housing starts spiked 7.2% to an annual pace of 822,000 units in February, the highest level since 2007, according to the National Association of Home Builders.