After Housing Minister Ariel Atias admitted that there was a drop in the number of housing starts in Israel, on Thursday the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) published data that strengthens his statements.
According to the data, the housing starts dropped by 11% in the first quarter when compared with the corresponding quarter last year.
A 6% drop in housing starts was witnessed when compared with the final quarter of 2011. Nonetheless, at the end of March 2012, some 83,000 homes were under construction – the highest number of homes under construction since June 1999.
In the first quarter of 2012, housing starts fell to 9,666, out of which 36% are single family or two family homes. The biggest housing starts was registered in the center of Israel with 37% of all apartments whereas only 9% of housing starts were registered in Jerusalem.
Some 46% of the apartments under construction were built on private land. Most of the apartments (73%) under construction in the northern district were built in single or two family homes compared to 12% in the Tel Aviv district.
Yavne registered the most housing starts with 760 units, followed by Rehovot, with 475 and Jerusalem with 460.
The biggest difference in this period of time when compared with the same period last year was in housing starts in Kadima-Zoran (260), Or Akiva and Ashdod – times 2.6 in each with 250 and 270 units respectively.
The construction of some 8,410 units was completed in 2012, much like the corresponding period last year. Some 40% of the apartments were built in single and two-family homes.
The largest number of completed homes was registered in the central district – 33% while Haifa saw only 9% completed. The Jerusalem district registered an increase of 35% in the number of homes completed in comparison to the corresponding quarter last year while the Tel Aviv district registered an 11% drop.
The number of homes under construction at the end of March reached a 13-year high with 82,900 units – a 13% increase on last year.