DALLAS (Dallas Morning News, National Association of Home Builders) – Houston and Dallas were the strongest homebuilding markets in the nation for the year ending in August, according to a new report by John Burns Real Estate Consulting.

Houston had almost 27,000 single-family homebuilding permits during that period. Dallas was second with 11,460 permits.

Also cracking the list of top 20 U.S. homebuilding markets was Austin (sixth with 7,519 permits), Fort Worth (13th with 5,074 permits) and San Antonio (15th with 4,886 permits).

Meanwhile, the National Association of Home Builders reports that, nationally, housing production last month was at its highest level in over four years.

According to HUD and the U.S. Census Bureau, the pace of new housing construction rose 15 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 872,000 units. The pace of permits issued jumped 11.6 percent to 894,000 units. Both categories are at their highest rates since July 2008.

For September, single-family housing starts increased 11 percent to 603,000 units, with multifamily housing starts climbing 25.1 percent to 269,000 units.

Regionally, only the northeast posted a decline in September housing starts, down 5.1 percent.