A Note on Housing Permits in Jefferson County (July 2009 data)

I received this from the director of the Greater Birmingham Association of Home Builders. (republished with permission)

I don’t have good data on Starts vs. permits. I’d also note that the other areas we follow, including Huntsville and Shelby County also showed pretty substantial increases in permit activity.


Read with interest your latest report. One item I would
point out regarding Permits for new construction…..

Last month JeffCo was threatening a “moratorium”
on new home permits due to the budget crisis (not enough inspectors, etc…).
They said that they would stop issuing permits on a date certain for a period
of 30-90 days but would “honor” permits pulled prior to this time.
For this reason, several “track” builders pulled
enough permits to get them thru the 90 day period “just in case.”
Eventually the county did not implement the moratorium; however, the permits
had already been pulled.

I would suggest you look at “starts” vs. permits
in the coming months. I anticipate much lower permit activity in the coming
months as builders work thru the permits they had purchased in advance and I
would expect the actual new home starts would be much lower than the permits.

Best regards,


J. Bart Fletcher,
Executive Vice President

Greater Birmingham
Association of Home Builders


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