Housing Starts

What are 'Housing Starts'

Housing starts are the number of new residential construction projects that have begun during any particular month. The New Residential Construction Report, commonly referred to as "housing starts," is considered to be a critical indicator of economic strength. Housing start statistics are released on or around the 17th of each month by the U.S. Commerce Department. The report includes building permits, housing starts and housing completions data. Surveys of homebuilders nationwide are used to compile the data.

BREAKING DOWN 'Housing Starts'

Investors and analysts watch the housing starts figures each month, comparing them with previous months' data and year-over-year periods. Because housing starts can be significantly affected by weather, the numbers are also presented as seasonally adjusted and smoothed using statistical formulas. The housing starts data are often revised to reflect the most current evaluations. Housing is a key part of the U.S. economy, which has an effect on related industries, such as banking, the mortgage sector, raw materials, employment, construction, manufacturing and real estate. In a strong economy, people are more likely to purchase new homes; conversely, in a weak economy, people are less likely to buy new homes.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Building Activity Indicators

    Economic reports that tell investors about the current and projected ...
  2. Construction Spending

    An economic indicator that measures the amount of spending towards ...
  3. Housing Bonds

    Debt securities issued by state or local governments to raise ...
  4. House Poor

    A situation that describes a person who spends a large proportion ...
  5. Open House

    A scheduled period of time in which a house or other dwelling ...
  6. Manufactured Housing - MH

    A housing unit constructed primarily off-site prior to being ...
Related Articles
  1. Managing Wealth

    Top US Housing Market Indicators

    A quick overview of the top economic indicators to track the housing market in the US.
  2. Personal Finance

    8 Signs Your Neighborhood Is On The Upswing

    If you were hard-hit by the real estate crash, you may be wondering when things will get better for you. We show you how to keep tabs.
  3. Personal Finance

    5 Ways an Open House Can Actually Hurt Your Home Sale

    Open houses have long been a way to get exposure for a home that's up for sale. But it turns out it may be more trouble than it is worth.
  4. Managing Wealth

    4 Reasons Why the Housing Recovery Will Be Short-lived (LOW, HD)

    Evidence would suggest that the same culprits from 2008 and some new ones are re-inflating a housing bubble.
  5. Insights

    Australian Construction Sector Slows in Q1

    The total value of construction work completed in Australia slumped by 2.6% to A$47.928 billion in Q1 2016 following a 3.6% contraction in Q4 2015
  6. Personal Finance

    Why Housing Costs Shouldn't Exceed 30% of Your Budget

    Financial experts will argue that there’s no problem with allocating 50% of your net income to housing, but that barely leaves enough money for living comfortably. Reducing housing expenses to ...
  7. Markets

    The Canadian Economy, At A Glance

    The 12 economic indicators described here together provide a comprehensive picture of the state of the Canadian economy.
  8. Personal Finance

    The Best Day and Month to List Your Home

    Want to make a quicker sale? Get your house on the market this spring and pick the perfect day of the week to attract buyers.
  9. Personal Finance

    Why Housing Market Bubbles Pop

    Home price appreciation is not assured. Can you withstand the volatility in this market?
  10. Personal Finance

    Real Estate Traps To Avoid

    Here are some tips to help you make sure you don't fall victim to these real estate pitfalls.
RELATED FAQS
  1. What's the difference between housing starts and building permits?

    Both housing starts and building permits are economic indicators used to assess the health of the housing market, but their ... Read Answer >>
  2. Should we buy a new house or stay mortgage free?

    I have a house that is valued at $80,000. We would like to move, but because of this market we would break even. The home ... Read Answer >>
  3. How can my husband inherit a house deed?

    My mother in law wants to know the best way to leave the deed to her house to her son (my husband). Should it be left in ... Read Answer >>
  4. Is there a correlation between inflation and house prices?

    There is a correlation between inflation and house prices - in fact there are correlations between inflation and any good ... Read Answer >>
  5. Is it better to live in a state with a high tax base but low housing costs or a state ...

    My husband and I recently retired. We have lived in Montana for the past 15 years and want to retire to a warmer climate. ... Read Answer >>
  6. How does a decline in housing prices affect the banking sector?

    Learn about the affects on banks when housing prices go down, including loan delinquency rates, mortgage foreclosures, and ... Read Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. Duration

    A measure of the sensitivity of the price (the value of principal) of a fixed-income investment to a change in interest rates. ...
  2. Dove

    An economic policy advisor who promotes monetary policies that involve the maintenance of low interest rates, believing that ...
  3. Cyclical Stock

    An equity security whose price is affected by ups and downs in the overall economy. Cyclical stocks typically relate to companies ...
  4. Front Running

    The unethical practice of a broker trading an equity based on information from the analyst department before his or her clients ...
  5. After-Hours Trading - AHT

    Trading after regular trading hours on the major exchanges. The increasing popularity of electronic communication networks ...
  6. Omnibus Account

    An account between two futures merchants (brokers). It involves the transaction of individual accounts which are combined ...
Trading Center