MH Silver Lining? Residential Construction Report, Oct 2018, per HUD, Census Bureau



Prior to diving into the latest residential construction data from the federal government, we’ll simply note that our reports from official sources are often among the most popular on the Daily Business News on MHProNews.


For example, from our primary URL (web address) – observing that we have several others, which have their own website statistics – the article linked below for 2/3 of November produced over 10,000 hits. That’s as of the date and time shown, shown below.

The data is per third-party Webalizer, with the normal disclaimers previously noted on the linked page.



Usage Statistics for

Summary Period: November 2018
Generated 21-Nov-2018 06:06 CST

Rank on site – Hits – URL

10 10139


It should be noted that even that single article, linked above, reflects more readership – traffic – for manufactured housing trade media than others in our industry will get in weeks-to-months for all of their content.

Because we do over 100 reports monthly, that readers find relevant, and because readers read several reports on average per visit, we get over 2 million total visits annually.  Nothing else in manufactured housing trade media even comes close. Thanks for making and keeping us the runaway #1.

Let’s dive into the data and graphics, and then we’ll do a CNBC video on this related subject, a few announcements, plus some manufactured housing related analytical bullets.




WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Census Bureau jointly announced the following new residential construction statistics for October 2018.

Building Permits:  Privately owned housing units authorized by building permits in October were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,263,000. This is 0.6 percent (±2.4 percent)* below the revised September rate of 1,279,000, and is 6.0 percent (±1.6 percent)* below the October 2017 rate of 1,343,000. Single-family authorizations in October were at a rate of 849,000; this is 0.6 percent (±2.2 percent) below the revised September figure of 854,000. Authorizations of units in buildings with five units or more were at a rate of 376,000 in October.





Housing Starts:  Privately owned housing starts in October were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,228,000. This is 1.5 percent (±12.9 percent)* above the revised September estimate of 1,210,000, but is 2.9 percent (±10.4 percent)* below the October 2017 rate of 1,265,000. Single-family housing starts in October were at a rate of 865,000; this is 1.8 percent (±10.8 percent)* below the revised September figure of 8881,000. The October rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 343,000.



Housing Completions:  Privately owned housing completions in October were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,111,000. This is 3.3 percent (±10.5 percent)* below the revised September estimate of 1,149,000 and is 6.5 percent (±9.2 percent)* below the October 2017 rate of 1,188,000. Single-family housing completions in October were at a rate of 832,000; this is 1.2 percent (±10.6 percent) below the revised September rate of 842,000. The October rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 269,000.

The November report is scheduled for release on December 18, 2018.


In interpreting changes in the statistics in this release, note that month-to-month changes in seasonally adjusted statistics often show movements which may be irregular. It may take three months to establish an underlying trend for building permit authorizations, six months for total starts, and six months for total completions. The statistics in this release are estimated from sample surveys and are subject to sampling variability as well as nonsampling error including bias and variance from response, nonreporting, and undercoverage. Estimated relative standard errors of the most recent data are shown in the tables. Whenever a statement such as “2.5 percent (±3.2 percent) above” appears in the text, this indicates the range (-0.7 to +5.7 percent) in which the actual percentage change is likely to have occurred. All ranges given for percentage changes are 90 percent confidence intervals and account only for sampling variability. If a range does not contain zero, the change is statistically significant. If it does contain zero, the change is not statistically significant; that is, it is uncertain whether there was an increase or decrease. The same policies apply to the confidence intervals for percentage changes shown in the tables. On average, the preliminary seasonally adjusted estimates of total building permits, housing starts and housing completions are revised 3 percent or less. Explanations of confidence intervals and sampling variability can be found at the Census Bureau’s website.

* The 90 percent confidence interval includes zero. In such cases, there is insufficient statistical evidence to conclude that the actual change is different from zero.


As noted in the red text on the second graphic, this data, while somewhat concerning for conventional housing, it points to significant potential for manufactured housing.

To keep it upbeat, but accurate:

  • Marketing and sales operational changes are obviously needed at the location-level to increase the market penetration of manufactured homes.
  • With some 8.3 million housing units needed, there’s a huge upside.
  • The reason that several new HUD Code builders have opened in 2018, is because regulatory and financial conditions are improving.
  • The reason that Legacy Housing, (LEGH) has filed for an IPO, is because the clearly see the upside potential. Their report, linked below, indicates they are planning to significantly grow their retail presence.
  • Based upon October 2018 data, 1,544,187 pages accessed / 24 = 64,341.125.  What that means is that our page views, would be like over 64,300 24 page magazines being read, cover-to-cover. 
  • It should be noted again that MHProNews is projecting the launch of its newest, best yet version of our website in early 2019. Additional features are planned for 2019, and our audience share continues to grow, having more than doubled traffic in the last 12 months. Once that new version of MHProNews goes-live, there will be a rate increase for sponsors, but current and new advertisers can lock in 2017 rates until that time. See the link, here.

Happy Thanksgiving.  See related reports, linked below.  “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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