As a home buyer or seller, new residential construction numbers may not seem like they have a whole lot to do with you. But, at a time when there are more buyers than there are homes available for sale, the pace of new home construction has a significant impact on home prices – which are most likely very important to you. In today’s market, for example, home prices are increasing in many areas due to the fact that there is more demand than there is supply. When there are fewer homes for sale, home prices rise as competition among buyers increases. As new homes are built, however, those price increases will begin to moderate and buyers will have more options to choose from. For that reason, the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s New Residential Construction report is widely cited as a good barometer of the housing market’s health. According to the most recent report, new home construction rose more than economists’ expected in June. In fact, the number of single-family homes that began construction during the month was 4.4 percent higher than the month before. The improvement was largely due to a 46.3 percent spike in the Northeast and a 17.4 percent pickup in the West. Also in the report, building permits – which are a good indication of future housing starts – rose 1 percent from May. More here.