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Is Housing Sector Getting Better? Increase In Starts May Signal It Is

A home construction site in Westport, Conn., last December.
Spencer Platt
Getty Images
A home construction site in Westport, Conn., last December.

There was a 2.6 percent increase in housing starts in April from March, the Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development just reported.

The Associated Press calls the increase "evidence that the battered housing market is slowly healing." Bloomberg News says the larger-than-expected increase signals the housing sector may be stabilizing. It adds that "employment gains, cheaper homes and record-low mortgage rates are combining to lift demand and encourage builders to take on projects."

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Mark Memmott is NPR's supervising senior editor for Standards & Practices. In that role, he's a resource for NPR's journalists – helping them raise the right questions as they do their work and uphold the organization's standards.