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Ground Up

The Daily Record's real estate blog

Report: National housing construction weak, Northeast not as bleak

Construction of new homes nationally remains slow as a lack of supply continues to drive up housing prices, but there’s some encouraging numbers for the Northeast.

Nationally, the number of seasonally adjusted housing starts dropped 12.3 percent in June compared to last year, while they increased by 3 percent year-over-year in the Northeast, according to statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The Northeast was the only region in the country to experience an increase in the number of single-unit housing starts, at 6.3 percent. The number of homes authorized but where construction had not started increased 33.3 percent from the previous June. But the number of permits to build single-family houses in the region fell by 1.8 percent.

Maryland, much like the rest of the nation, has been struggling with a lack of supply of single family homes. The dearth of inventory has caused housing prices in the state’s two major metro regions to reach levels not seen since before the housing bubble burst and subsequent economic collapse a decade ago.

The median home price in the Baltimore area increased by 2 percent year over year. At the same time the sales volume of $1.37 billion represented a 5.4 percent decrease for the same time last year.

The Washington suburbs also saw median sales prices increase, with an 8.6 percent in Montgomery County and a 6.1 percent increase in Prince George’s County. Montgomery County’s inventory was down by nearly 7 percent and the median price of a home reached $477,750. In Prince George’s County, the inventory of houses increased by 7.1 percent and its median sales price of $296,970 was the lowest in that region.

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