Permit volume throughout the nation rose by 6.5% during the first 10 months of this year, and 15 of the country's top 25 metropolitan areas in 2001 managed gains through the first 10 months of 2002 compared with January-October 2001. The Atlanta area recorded 42% more permits than any other metro area in the United States, although this sprawling city's total volume through 10 months of this year was running only 1.0% ahead of the January-October 2001 total.
Among 2001's largest home building markets (as measured by the combined volume of single-family and multifamily permitted construction), Riverside-San Bernardino, Calif. (+26.8%), Houston (+23.6%), New York (+18.0%), Tampa, Fla. (+17.7%), Fort Worth, Texas (+16.9%), Sacramento, Calif. (+16.2%), Minneapolis (+12.8%) and Orlando, Fla. (10.0%), grew at double-digit rates through the first 10 months of 2002. The major metro areas recording the steepest declines during the first 10 months of this year were Denver (-26.0%), Raleigh-Durham, N.C. (-19.7%), San Diego (-13.7%), Kansas City (-8.6%), Las Vegas (-7.8%), Charlotte, N.C. (-6.5%), and Seattle (-6.5%).
Florida's metro markets, almost without exception, recorded strong gains in residential permit volume during the first 10 months of this year. In addition to the solid increases in Tampa and Orlando among, smaller metro markets with increased momentum in home construction during 2002 include Ocala (+92.8%), Fort Pierce (+50.6%), Melbourne (+39.1%), West Palm Beach-Boca Raton (+26.7%), Pensacola (+24.5%), Fort Lauderdale (+22.2%) and Sarasota-Bradenton (+15.2%).