Even as millions of workers struggle amid the pandemic-induced downturn, certain sectors of the economy have emerged as beneficiaries from changing consumer behavior. Chief among these have been those companies that provide suburban housing to city dwellers looking for more room to live and work. In September, housing starts rose by 1.9% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.415 million, the Commerce Department reported on Tuesday.
Building permits also accelerated in September, increasing by 5.2% to a rate of nearly 1.553 million units. Single-family homes were responsible for that increase, rising by 7.8% to a rate of 1.119 million units.
That behavioral shift among potential homeowners and existing homeowners should stimulate a sustained move above the national equilibrium of 1.5 million units on an average annualized pace in the near term and drive both the recovery and expansion once the pandemic has passed.
For more information on how the coronavirus is affecting midsize businesses, please visit the RSM Coronavirus Resource Center.