WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. property development jumped 5.8% in December to 1.67 million units, a 14-yr high that topped the strongest once-a-year showing from the country’s builders in 15 decades.

The much better-than-expected December achieve followed an maximize of 9.8% in November when housing starts off climbed to a seasonally adjusted annual fee of 1.58 million models, the Commerce Division claimed Thursday. The December speed was the strongest due to the fact the making level reached 1.72 million models in September 2006.

For the yr, development started on 1.45 million units, up 4.8% from 2019 and the ideal speed since building starts off totaled 1.8 million units in 2006. That period of time integrated a enormous U.S. housing boom that eventually burst, kicking off the catastrophic 2007-2009 economic downturn.

Housing has been one particular of the star performers this yr even as the general financial state has been wracked by the spread of the coronavirus. Report-reduced mortgage costs and the migration of People to much larger residences better suited for house offices throughout the pandemic has fueled demand from customers.

“We anticipate the rate of housing starts to reasonable in 2021 as homebuilders confront constraints which includes higher lumber selling prices and shortages of lots and labor,” explained Nancy Vanden Houten, guide U.S. economist at Oxford Economics.

Even with these constraints, Vanden Houten thinks residence design need to continue being at wholesome ranges, supported by minimal property finance loan rates and powerful need when COVID-19 instances start to decrease.

For December, design of single-household households amplified by 7.8% to 1.23 million units. Development of apartments with 5 or a lot more models fell by 2% to a fee of 437,000.

The Northeast was the only area in the nation that fell, struggling a decrease of 7.2%. Design rose 13.6% in the Midwest, 11.2% in the West and 1.3% in the South.