While new home construction in the Greater Portland market continues to grow, bad winter weather blunted new home building statewide in the first five months of the year, according to new data from the U.S. Census.

From January through May, 1,130 new building permits were issued in Maine. That’s down 4 percent from the same period a year ago.

The statewide lull – which includes construction of new single-family and multifamily homes – reflects what’s happening regionally. In the six New England states, the number of building permits filed decreased 3.8 percent to 10,097 compared with the same period last year.

Both trends buck what’s happening nationally. Through May, the number of building permits issued across the U.S. rose 4.6 percent over the same period in 2013, to 410,968. In June, builder confidence in the market for newly built, single-family homes rose four points to 49 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index.

Local builders and industry observers said that severe weather earlier this year stymied new home construction in the state and region.

“The weather wreaked havoc on us, just like everyone else,” said Mark Patterson, co-owner of PATCO Construction Inc., based in Sanford. “It was so cold all winter, from December through February, everybody just got out of work, went home and huddled by their wood fires. They were just not thinking about housing.”

Patterson said that throughout the winter, every time the bad weather broke, he’d get a flurry of phone inquiries.

Given that it can take about two months between signing a contract and pulling a permit, he’s eager to see permit numbers for the summer to see whether the warm weather has ushered in a flurry of permits that might allow builders to catch up with sales lost at the start of the year.

“If we don’t see permits jumping in June and July, I’ll definitely have some concerns,” he said.

Despite the murky picture for the state and the region, home-building activity is growing steadily in Greater Portland. In the Portland-South Portland-Biddeford Metropolitan Statistical Area, which includes York, Cumberland and Sagadahoc counties, 594 building permits for new single and multifamily homes were filed from January through May, up 4 percent over the same period last year.

“The city is certainly a magnet for growth, especially in the residential condo and apartment market,” said Mike O’Reilly, president of the Maine Real Estate and Development Association and senior vice president at Bangor Savings Bank. With several luxury condo projects in Munjoy Hill, Bayside and other areas of Portland in the planning or development stages, and market-rate apartment complexes being built in other areas, “we do see the Portland market, and all of southern Maine, as a driver of activity, and we’re hoping that it works its way out to the other regions.”

Rob Sherman, president of Hallmark Homes Corp., a Topsham-based builder of modular homes, said he is seeing growth from people moving in from other major metro areas in the Northeast.

“People are definitely coming from the Boston market and moving up toward Maine, where they can get more reasonable housing,” said Sherman, who is president of the Home Builders and Remodelers Association of Maine.

Building permit data for individual cities and towns is only reported annually to the U.S. Census, officials said. It is not available on a monthly basis. There is typically at least one month between the time a building permit is pulled and when construction starts.