Most States Record YTD SF Permits Growth in February 2018

Over the first two months of 2018, the total number of single-family permits issued nationwide reached 123,871. On a year-over-year basis, this is an 11.2% increase over the February 2017 level of 111,356. The results from the SOC are similar, single-family permits over the second month of 2018 was, 122,800 which is 10.2% ahead of its level over the same period of 2017, 111,400*.Between February 2017 to February 2018, 34 states saw growth in single-family permits issued while there was no change in New Hampshire. Seventeen states, including California, recorded a growth above 11.2% but 15 states, including New Jersey, Connecticut and Illinois, as well as the District of Columbia registered a decline. Idaho had the highest growth rate during this time at 53.9% while single-family permits in the District of Columbia declined by 51.0%.

The year-to-date declines in single-family permits across higher tax states of Illinois, Connecticut, and New Jersey suggests that the individual side changes to the tax code by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act may be playing a role. However, strong growth currently prevails in California. Alternately, a previous post indicated that population growth in New Jersey, Connecticut and Illinois were in the bottom half of all 50 states and the District of Columbia, with the populations of Connecticut and Illinois declining over the year. Meanwhile, population growth in California was in the top half across all states. This suggests a role for economic fundamentals in the determination of housing production. NAHB will continue to track these trends going forward in order to improve understanding of their effects.

In the single-family sector, Texas led with 19,893 permits issued year-to-date in February 2018 and Florida was second with 13,964 during this time. Meanwhile the lowest number came from the District of Columbia with 24 permits.  The 10 states issuing the highest number of single-family permits combined accounted for 64.0% of the single-family permits issued.

Year-to-date, ending in February 2018, the total number of multifamily permits issued nationwide reached 64,382. This is 5.9% ahead of its level over the second month of 2017, 60,803. The results from the SOC show an increase of 5.8% in multifamily permits over the second month of 2018, 64,300 compared to the same period of 2017, 60,800.

Between February 2017 to February 2018, 21 states recorded growth while 29 states and the District of Columbia recorded a decline in multifamily permits. Hawaii lead the way with a growth rate of 552.6%, from 78 to 509, while Mississippi had the largest decline of 94.2% from 755 to 44. Of note, the number of multifamily permits in California year-to-date rose by 66.0%, from 4,646 to 7,714. In 2017, multifamily permits in California accounted for 12.4% of all multifamily permits issued nationwide. Excluding California, multifamily permits would have been about flat on a year-to-date 2017 to year-to-date 2018 basis (+0.9%).

In the multifamily sector, California issued the highest number of permits YTD in February 2018 at 7,714, with Florida and Texas issuing the second and third most multifamily permits year-to-date, 7,559 and 7,466 respectively. Meanwhile Wyoming issued the lowest number of multifamily permits at 14. The 10 states issuing the highest number of multifamily permits combined accounted for 66.8% of the multifamily permits issued.

* The SOC is the source of the monthly New Residential Construction release.