Year-to-date through November of 2012, 89 percent of all new multifamily permits issued have been issued in Arapahoe, Denver, Broomfield, Larimer, El Paso and Douglas counties. 47 percent were issued in Denver county alone.
According to new county-by-county multifamily permit data for Colorado, 8,099 multifamily permits have been issued from January through November of 2012.* 7,247 of them, or 89 percent, were issued in Arapahoe, Denver, Broomfield, Larimer, El Paso and Douglas counties. There were 3,885 permits issued in Denver County alone, during the same period.
Recent multifamily permit data shows that new permit activity is largely confined to counties that have recently showed either stronger job growth, such as Larimer County, or overall higher incomes, as in Douglas County.
El Paso county, which has a relatively high unemployment rate, is nevertheless experiencing a fair amount of multifamily construction following a long period of very low levels of multifamily construction. However, this year, Douglas County, which has fewer than half as many households, has issued about the same number of multifamily permits as El Paso County.
Downtown Denver and the northwest corridor of the metro area, which includes Broomfield, have reported significant rent growth in recent years, and developers appear to be capitalizing on high demand in those markets.
Total multifamily permits issued, Jan-November 2012
El Paso 597
With so little demand for new condominiums right now, it is safe to assume that the lopsided majority of new multifamily permits being issued are for rental housing. The apartment vacancy rates in Colorado continued to decline into the third quarter, and this will lead to sustained demand for additional construction.
Change since 2011
Many counties have reported much more activity this year than last year. There was no multifamily permitting from January to November of last year in Adams, Broomfield, Pueblo and Weld Counties, while there was far more activity this year in all those counties.
From January-November 2011 to the same period this year, multifam permit activity increased 294 percent in Arapahoe County, 238 percent in Boulder County, 181 percent in Denver County, 395 percent in Douglas County, and 49 percent in Larimer County.
Declines in permitting: Permitting over the period declined 70 percent in Jefferson County, 9 percent in El Paso County, and 89 percent in Mesa County.
*These totals do not add up to the totals found in the statewide estimates due to a difference in methods used to produce estimates.