Four of last year's Top 15 areas--ranked in terns of the number of residential permits issued for all of 1998--have let fewer permits through the first eight months of this year than over the first two-thirds of last year.
|Recent Trends In New Residential Permits For 1998’s Top Metro Areas
(Preliminary Year-to-date through August 1999)
|1998 Rank||# of Units Permitted Year-to-date||% Change Compared to Year Ago|
|7||Las Vegas NV||20,518||-9.8%|
|13||Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill NC-SC||18,009||34.6%|
|14||Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater FL||15,804||37.0%|
|15||Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill NC||15,622||30.5%|
|Source: U.S. Department of Commerce; Professional Builder|
Four of last year’s Top 15 metropolitan areas--ranked in terms of the number of residential permits issued for all of 1998--have let fewer permits through the first eight months of this year than over the first two-thirds of last year. In two of the areas--Dallas and Detroit--strong numbers for the final four months of 1999 could still allow both to eke out a gain over their strong 1998 totals. Such will not be the case in Houston, however; total residential permit volume in this metro area is running 25.9% below last year’s pace. Las Vegas is running almost 10% behind, so even a strong late-in-the-year rally would be unlikely to bring total permits for 1999 level with 1998.
Last year’s top two areas--Atlanta and Phoenix--will be the top two residential construction areas again. Gains have moderated in both areas in recent months, but both should finish 1999 with modest increases over last year.
Through August of this year, the Tampa, Charlotte, and Raleigh-Durham metropolitan areas (numbers 14, 13, and 15 during 1998) had recorded the strongest gains in residential permits among cities in last year’s Top 15. Over-the-year growth of more than 20% was registered in the Orlando area, but gains here have moderated significantly in recent months.
Among other large metropolitan areas outside of last year’s Top 15, strong gains have been recorded by areas as diverse as the "Sunbelt" cities of Austin (+41.9% growth in permits for the first eight months of 1999 when compared to the same period of last year) and San Diego (+30.9%), to the "Rust Belt" Ohio cities of Columbus (+28.5%) and Cincinnati (+24.3%).
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