Friday, June 1, 2012

Denver and Douglas counties drive multifamily permits in 2012

Year-to-date through April of 2012, more than half of all new multifamily permits issued have been issued in Denver and Douglas counties alone. 

According to new multifamily permit data for Colorado counties, 2,435 multifamily permits have been issued from January through April of 2012. 1,323 of them, of 54 percent, were issued in Denver and Douglas counties. Adding in El Paso and Boulder counties bring the total to 1,965, or 80 percent, of all multifamily permits through April.

Few other counties issues any multifamily permits at all as of April of this year, although Adams County did issue 220 multifamily permits, which is by far the largest number of new multifamily permits issued by Adams County since 2007. Adams issued 352 permits during 2007, 108 during 2008, 6 during 2009, 27 during 2010 and 0 during 2011.

Total multifamily permits issued, Jan-April 2012
Adams 220
Arapahoe 49
Boulder 327
Broomfield 146
Denver 788
Douglas 535
El Paso 315
Jefferson 8
Larimer 42
Mesa 0
Pueblo 0
Weld 5

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. We see most of this activity in areas where vacancy rates have been tight or look to be tight for the near to mid-term.

With apartment vacancy rates headed below five percent in the metro Denver area, the markets appear to be responding to tight vacancies with plans for future construction. Larimer county has also been a very active county for new multifamily activity over the past 18 months, although 2012 is a moderate year for Larimer county so far.

Change since 2011

Some counties saw very large increases in the number of multifamily permits issued. From January-April of 2011 to the same period this year, in Douglas County, multifamily permits increased more than 5,000% from 10 to 535, while in Adams county they increased from 0 to 220. Boulder County also saw a big increase with a rise in multifamily permits from 0 to 327, year over year through April. Permits also increased in El Paso County and in Broomfield County although they dropped off in Larimer County, dropping from 71 to 42.

There was no multifamily permit activity at all in Pueblo County over the period, and Weld County increased only slightly from 0 to 5.