Single-family starts, the largest segment of the market, increased 5.3 percent to 877 thousand, led by a 16.6 percent recovery in the South after damages causaded by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Also, the volatile multi-family segment went up 37.4 percent to 393 thousand. Overall, housing starts rose in the South (17.2 percent to 621 thousand), the Midwest (18.4 percent to 212 thousand) and the Northeast (42.2 percent to 145 thousand), but fell in the West (-3.7 percent to 312 thousand).
Building permits increased 5.9 percent to a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 1,297 thousand, higher than 1,225 thousand in September and market expectations of 1,240 thousand. It is the biggest value so far this year. Permits for construction of single-family homes increased 1.9 percent to 839 thousand while for multi-family homes permits rose 13.4 percent to 416 thousand. Permits increased in all main areas: the South (3 percent to 613 thousand), the West (13 percent to 366 thousand), the Midwest (3.8 percent to 192 thousand) and the Northeast (4.1 percent to 126 thousand).
Year-on-year, starts shrank 2.9 percent while permits gained 0.9 percent.