Housing starts saw a slight fall during the month of March, falling for the second month in a row, according to Wells Fargo. Of the past seven months, six saw declines. Wells Fargo attributes some of this fall to poor weather conditions during the end of 2018, while lower mortgage rates have only seen "limited success" at breathing life back into the homebuilding market.
On a year-to-date basis, through March, housing starts have fallen nearly 10% from their pace of a year ago. Multi-family starts saw the biggest drop at 18.8% below and single-family starts down 5.3% below.
"We doubt homebuilding has lost as much momentum as the first quarter data indicate," a Wells Fargo release says. "Homebuilding confidence has been rebounding and builders' assessments of buyer traffic and their expectations for single-family home sales over the next six months have improved slightly. The rebound in builder optimism still comes up well short of the previous highs, however."
—Christie Citranglo, editorial associate