Columbus home construction rises, but housing shortage deepens

More homes were built last year in the Columbus area than in any year since 2005, but the region’s housing shortage worsened because of a drop in apartment construction.

Columbus-area builders started 6,160 single-family homes in 2021, up 17% from the previous year and the most in 17 years, according to figures released by the Building Industry Association of Central Ohio.

Apartment construction, however, fell 29% from 6,620 units in 2020 to 4,699 last year.

In all, 10,859 housing permits were issued in 2021 in central Ohio, down nearly 8.5% from the previous year and well below the number of new homes experts say the area needs to meet demand.

“Obviously, we’re pleased to see single-family home starts increase,” said BIA Executive Director Jon Melchi.