60 Years of Homebuilding

To a first approximation, every housing unit that gets built in the US is required to have a building permit - a document from the government granting permission to build it. The number of homes built is considered an important economic indicator, and the government closely tracks housing permits as a way to measure it. We have month-by-month housing permitting data for individual counties going back to 1980, and state-level permitting data going back to 1960. Permits issued don't precisely track homes actually constructed, but it’s a

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