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Area homebuilding hits highest mark since 2008

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Home builders in the Indianapolis area may have reason to be optimistic this year judging by the increased demand shown for new houses in 2012.

The number of single-family building permits in the nine-county area jumped 9 percent in December and even more—16 percent—for the entire year, according to figures released Wednesday by the Builders Association of Greater Indianapolis.

Overall, builders filed 4,182 permits in 2012, up from 3,614 in 2011. It's the first time the number surpassed the 4,000 mark since 2008, when 4,688 permits were filed.

In addition, the 16-percent spike was the biggest year-over-year percentage increase since 1998.

“It says a lot about the strength of our local industry for permits to increase that much for the first time in 14 years,” BAGI CEO Steve Lains said in a written statement. “I am excited to see what 2013 will bring.”

The number of building permit filings now has climbed for six straight months after dipping 3 percent in June. Further, seven months in 2012 saw double-digit increases.   

Last year’s increase marks just the second time since 2005 that area home construction improved from the previous year. That year, 13,202 permits were filed, up from 13,046 in 2004. Permit filings rose 3 percent from 2009 to 2010, to 3,720. But generous federal tax incentives available to home buyers in early 2010 played a big role in the increase.

While home building rose in 2012, activity is far behind the pace set before the recession. Almost twice as many permits—7,331—were filed in 2007. More than 9,500 were filed in 2006.

For December, 275 permits were filed in the area, up from 252 in the previous year. The most permits—110—were filed in Hamilton County, which posted a 17-percent increase from the previous December. The number of permits in Marion County rose 10 percent, to 46.

Just 27 permits were filed in Boone County last month, but that was good enough for a 69-percent increase from December 2011. Filings fell 17 percent in Hendricks County in December, to 30 permits. Johnson County filings remained flat, at 35.

 

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  • Conundrum
    Huh, growth in an industry that wasn't goosed by RTWFL, Daylight Savings Time, or new terrain 69. This will of course be the engine that gets the economy closer to normal, not all the corporate welfare and largesse slathered around the last eight years.

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  1. So as I read this the one question that continues to come to me to ask is. Didn't Indiana only have a couple of exchanges for people to opt into which were very high because we really didn't want to expect the plan. So was this study done during that time and if so then I can understand these numbers. I also understand that we have now opened up for more options for hoosiers to choose from. Please correct if I'm wrong and if I'm not why was this not part of the story so that true overview could be taken away and not just parts of it to continue this negative tone against the ACA. I look forward to the clarity.

  2. It's really very simple. All forms of transportation are subsidized. All of them. Your tax money already goes toward every single form of transportation in the state. It is not a bad thing to put tax money toward mass transit. The state spends over 1,000,000,000 (yes billion) on roadway expansions and maintenance every single year. If you want to cry foul over anything cry foul over the overbuilding of highways which only serve people who can afford their own automobile.

  3. So instead of subsidizing a project with a market-driven scope, you suggest we subsidize a project that is way out of line with anything that can be economically sustainable just so we can have a better-looking skyline?

  4. Downtowner, if Cummins isn't getting expedited permitting and tax breaks to "do what they do", then I'd be happy with letting the market decide. But that isn't the case, is it?

  5. Patty, this commuter line provides a way for workers (willing to work lower wages) to get from Marion county to Hamilton county. These people are running your restaurants, hotels, hospitals, and retail stores. I don't see a lot of residents of Carmel working these jobs.

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