A “housing start” is a new home on which construction has started and, for the fourth straight month, single-family home construction remained flat in April.
For the battered housing market, this is the latest in a series of signals that a long-awaited turnaround is coming.
- The number of homes under contract to sell are rising
- The national housing inventory is down by nearly 1 million from March 2009
- Home values are rising, according to a government report
The current plateau in Housing Starts may indicate that builders are more confident in the economy, and that Americans are, too. Especially in light of the freefall over the past few years.
Single-Family Housing Starts have hugged the 360,000 mark since January 2009.
However, there is a footnote to the story.
As noted by the Commerce Department in its official report, the April Housing Starts conclusion is suspect because of the data’s large Margin of Error. Had the government’s sample set included a different series of data, in other words, it may have concluded that housing starts had fallen instead of staying flat. Or risen.
We won’t know the final results of the report until 3 months from now but if the initial figures hold, it will fortify the argument that the housing market has, indeed, found its bottom.