D-FW Tops the U.S. in New Home Starts
Dallas-Fort Worth is still the country's top homebuilding market.
But analysts aren't expecting an increase in North Texas house production this year. At the end of the first quarter, the D-FW area ranked just ahead of Houston as the country's busiest housing market. Home construction in the area totaled more than 34,500 units on an annualized basis compared with just over 30,000 in Houston, according to the latest data from Metrostudy Inc.
Central Florida was third in construction with about 28,000 homes. D-FW home construction was up 2.75% from first-quarter 2018 levels. Home starts were down in half of the top 10 building markets that Metrostudy tracks.
And the housing consultants aren't expecting a rise in starts in North Texas for 2019. "I think 2019 starts will be flat or down by a percent or two — mostly due to weather, the mortgage rate spike in 2018 and overall affordability issues," said Metrostudy's Paige Shipp. "Interestingly, if you look at the other markets — mostly outside Texas — they are also experiencing a slowdown, many of which are due to the same reasons as D-FW. "Because we are still ahead of Houston by 4,000 starts, I expect we'll keep the top spot in spite of the fairly flat starts pace." D-FW has been the country's busiest homebuilding market for several years.
In 2018, North Texas home starts were up more than 4% to the highest level since the Great Recession. But total home construction in the area remains more than 30% below where it was before the housing bust a decade ago. Builders started 34,750 houses in North Texas last year. For the first quarter of 2019, most of Texas' major metro areas were on Metrostudy's top home starts list. Austin ranked eighth and San Antonio was in 12th place among the largest U.S. homebuilding markets...