A Picture of Housing Constructed in 2012

Written by: Katie McNitt

Did you know that there were 483,000 single-family homes built in the United States in 2012? In addition, there were 166,000 multifamily units completed. How do we know about characteristics of these new homes, such as the number of bedrooms or average square feet?

Earlier this summer, the U.S. Census Bureau released 2012 Characteristics of New Housing.  The publication includes characteristics for privately owned single and multifamily homes and covers topics from the type of foundation to the financing obtained to purchase the home. The report provides current and historical data at both the national and regional level for the majority of the 75 characteristics presented.

Here are some interesting highlights:

Single-Family Homes

In 2012, 483,000 single-family homes were completed.

In 2012, 368,000 single-family homes were sold.

Multifamily Homes

In 2012, 166,000 multifamily units were completed.

Characteristics data are collected monthly through the Survey of Construction.  The Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development jointly fund the survey.

Statistics from the survey have a variety of uses. They are used by the Department of Housing and Urban Development to develop and evaluate housing programs and by other agencies, such as the Bureau of Economic Analysis and the Federal Reserve Board. In addition, manufacturers use estimates from the Survey of Construction to plan production schedules and establish market shares. Insurance companies use estimates to adjust rates and establish replacement costs. Financial institutions use data to estimate mortgage demand.

To see more highlights and view all the characteristics tables, visit the Characteristics of New Housing website.

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