Homebuilding Activity Takes a Dip in August

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Following a record July, permits for both single-family and multifamily Twin Cities homes dipped into negative territory in August. With 600 permits pulled, single-family construction dropped by 15% in August compared to August 2019. Multifamily activity dropped by 34% compared to August 2019, with permits pulled for 458 units.

“The demand for new homes is there, as housing inventory on both the existing and new side of the market is at record lows,” said Gary Kraemer, president of Housing First Minnesota. “I think what we are seeing reflected in these numbers is the lingering effect of the slowdown that occurred immediately following the introduction of COVID-19.”

According to data compiled by the Keystone Report for Housing First Minnesota, there were 633 permits issued for a total of 1,058 units during four comparable weeks in the month of August.

“Even with the decline in permits in August, the numbers and interest from homebuyers we are seeing in the housing market are still at the higher end of what we expected when this pandemic started,” said David Siegel, executive director of Housing First Minnesota. “Emerging problems, in addition to the ongoing affordability crisis, are construction delays and cost increases on the supply side due to COVID-19, all of which further exacerbate the housing affordability problem. Our call to reimagine housing in Minnesota to lower costs and grow inventory has never been more important.”

For the month, Lakeville took the top spot with 51 permits issued. Cottage Grove came in next with 45 permits issued. Otsego with 37 permits, Plymouth with 35 permits, and Woodbury with 34 permits rounded out the top five cities in August.

Download the August Data Chart >>