However, planning applications in Donegal fell by -9% for the same period.
The data contained in the National Housing Construction Index is aggregated by consultancy Link2Plans from real time planning and project information in every local authority area.
Nationally, project commencements rose substantially in the first four months of 2014 with an increase of +132% compared to the same period in 2013.
Every county saw an increase in commencements with Donegal recording an increase of +194%, which was well above the national average.
Nationally, planning applications rose by +19% in the first four months of the year when compared to the same period in 2013.
The only downside to the overall positive news for the sector was that planning applications were down in 10 counties, including Donegal.
Applications in Donegal fell from 211 in January to April 2013 to 191 for the same period in 2014, which represented a fall of -9%.