St Louis Area New Home Building Permits Decline In All Counties Except St Charles

During the 12-month period ending February 29, 2024, there were 3,993 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St. Louis area. This figure marks a 4.29% decrease from the previous 12-month period, which saw 4,172 permits issued, as per the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St. Louis HBA). The downturn was observed in all counties except St Charles County, with three of them experiencing double-digit declines.

  

St Louis New Home Building Permits – February 2024

(click on table below for page with live charts showing additional permit data)St Louis New Home Building Permits - February 2024

 

St Louis New Home Constructions Begins 2024 Down From a Year Ago

In the 12-month period ended January 31, 2024 the St. Louis area saw the issuance of 3,996 building permits for new single-family homes. This represents a decline of 3.64% compared to the previous 12-month period, which had 4,147 permits, according to the latest figures from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St. Louis HBA). This downward trend was noted across all counties with the exception of St. Charles County, with two counties reporting double-digit decreases.


  

St Louis New Home Building Permits – January 2024

(click on table below for page with live charts showing additional permit data)St Louis New Home Building Permits - January 2024

 

Smaller, Personalized Homes Dominate 2024 Trends: Insights from NAHB Study

The dynamics of the new home market are shifting significantly as we advance into 2024, with a clear trend towards smaller, more personalized living spaces emerging nationwide. This evolution reflects a broader change in homeowner preferences and market conditions, according to the latest “What Home Buyers Really Want” study by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).

Recent data points to a decline in the average size of new homes, continuing a trend that began following a brief uptick in 2021. The average new home size has decreased to 2,411 square feet in 2023, marking the smallest average size in over a decade. This reduction aligns with homebuyers’ preferences, which have also shifted towards more compact living spaces. Today, the desired home size is around 2,070 square feet, significantly less than the 2,260 square feet preferred two decades ago.

Rose Quint, NAHB’s assistant vice president of survey research, identifies two main factors driving this trend: a change in homebuyer preferences and the escalating challenge of housing affordability. In response, builders are adapting their strategies, with 38% reporting a shift towards constructing smaller homes in 2023 to facilitate sales, and 26% planning to continue this approach into 2024. Efforts to address affordability concerns have led to reductions in median new home prices to $427,400 in 2023, a 7 percentage point drop from the previous year and the most significant decrease since 2009.

Beyond size, homebuyers are increasingly seeking personalized and authentic living spaces. Donald Ruthroff, AIA, of Design Story Spaces LLC, highlights a growing demand for customization, with homeowners desiring unique features that set their homes apart. This trend towards personalization is evident in the choice of home upgrades, from custom kitchen islands to premium flooring options.

The study also reveals that homebuyers’ priorities have evolved, with a focus on outdoor living, kitchen functionality, and energy efficiency. Top desired features include laundry rooms, patios, Energy Star windows, and smart home technology, such as security cameras and programmable thermostats. Additionally, preferences have expanded to include quartz countertops, outdoor kitchens, and built-in seating, underscoring a shift towards both practicality and luxury in home design.

As we move through 2024, the shift towards smaller, more personalized homes is reshaping the real estate landscape. This trend, driven by changing preferences and affordability challenges, highlights the importance of staying informed about market dynamics for both homebuyers and builders and you’re in the right place now to do that, St Louis Real Estate News.


  

 

New Single-Family Home Permits Dip by 14.71% in St. Louis Area; Warren County Bucks the Trend

During the 12-month period ending November 30, 2023, there were 3,932 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St. Louis area. This figure marks a 14.71% decrease from the previous 12-month period, which saw 4,515 permits issued, as per the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St. Louis HBA). The downturn was observed in all counties except Warren County, with five of them experiencing double-digit declines. Warren County notably reported an increase in building permits for the fourth consecutive month.


  

St Louis New Home Building Permits – November 2023

(click on table below for page with live charts showing additional permit data)St Louis New Home Building Permits - November 2023

 

St Louis New Home Building Permits For The Past 12-Months Decline in all Counties Except Franklin

There were 4,017 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during the 12-month period ended June 30, 2023.  This represents a decrease of 11.05% from the prior 12-month period, during which 4,516 permits were issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).   Six of the seven counties covered in the report saw a decline in building permits from the previous period, with the City of St Louis and Lincoln County experiencing double-digit declines. 

St Louis New Home Building Permits – June 2023

(click on table below for page with live charts showing additional permit data)St Louis New Home Building Permits - June 2023

 

St Louis New Home Building Permits in February Fall By Double-Digits From A Year Ago In Four of Seven Counties

There were 4,170 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during the 12-month period ended February 28, 2023, a decrease of 10.69% from the same period a year ago when there were 4,669 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).   Six of the seven counties covered in the report saw a decline in building permits from the same period a year ago with four of them experiencing double-digit declines.  Franklin County, on the other hand, saw an increase of nearly 19%.

St Louis New Home Building Permits – February 2023

(click on table below for page with live charts showing additional permit data)St Louis New Home Building Permits - February 2023

 

New Home Building Permits in January Fall By Double-Digits From A Year Ago In 4 of 7 St Louis Counties

There were 4,147 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during the 12-month period ended January 31, 2023, a decrease of 13.48% from the same period a year ago when there were 4,793 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).   Six of the seven counties covered in the report saw a decline in building permits from the same period a year ago with four of them experiencing double-digit declines. 

St Louis New Home Building Permits – January 2023

(click on table below for page with live charts showing additional permit data)St Louis New Home Building Permits - January 2023

 

Home Builder Sentiment Falls For 10th Month In A Row

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) released their NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) report for October 2022 and, not surprisingly, it shows the builders are continuing to lose confidence in the market.  As our chart below shows, the Housing Market Index (HMI), the red line, peaked in November 2020 at 90 and has, with the exception of a few minor upticks along the way, fallen ever since reaching 38, the lowest level since August 2012 when it fell to 37.

Single Family Housing Starts and HMI Index 1985-2022 (NAHB)

Single Family Housing Starts and HMI Index 1985-2022 (NAHB)

New Home Building Permits In St Louis For Most Recent 12-Months Decline Over 12 Percent

There were 4,516 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during the 12-month period ended June 30, 2022, a decrease of 12.05% from the same period a year ago when there were 5,135 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).   Five of the seven counties covered in the report saw a decrease in building permits from the same period a year ago with three of the counties have a double digit decline.

St Louis New Home Building Permits -June  2022

St Louis New Home Building Permits -June  2022

 

Inventory of New Homes In The U.S. Hits Highest level since 2010

Given the low-inventory of homes for sale that has existed for some time now, it may be hard to believe my next statement, but the latest data from the U.S. Census Bureau and HUD show that there is currently a 9-month supply of newly constructed homes in the U.S. As the chart below illustrates, this is the highest level the supply of new homes in the U.S. has reached since May 2010 when there was a 9.3 month supply.

The months supply of depicted below is calculated as the ratio of new homes for sale to the number of new homes sold.  The resulting number represents the number of months it would take for the current new home inventory that is for sale to be depleted given the current sales rate if no new additional new homes were built.

Months Supply of New Homes In The U.S.

(click chart for live, interactive chart)

Months Supply of New Homes In The U.S.

New Home Building Permits Decline In St Louis In Past 12-Months

There were 4,743 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during the 12-month period ended January 31, 2022, a decrease of 2.5% from the same period a year ago when there were 4,864 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).   Four of the seven counties covered in the report saw a decrease in building permits from the same period a year ago.  Warren, Lincoln, and St Charles County had a double-digit decrease.

St Louis New Home Building Permits -January  2022

 

New Home Building Permits Increase By Double Digits in Franklin County and St Louis City In Past 12-Months

There were 4,851 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during the 12-month period ended November 30, 2021, an increase of 3.17% from the same period a year ago when there were 4,702 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).   Three of the seven counties covered in the report saw an increase in building permits from the same period a year ago, two of those, Franklin County and the City of St Louis,  a double-digit increase.

St Louis New Home Building Permits -November 2021

St Louis New Home Building Permits -November 2021

 

St Louis New Home Building Permits Increase Nearly 6 Percent In Past Year

There were 4,838 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during the 12-month period ended October 31, 2021, an increase of 2.98% from the same period a year ago when there were 4,698 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).   Four of the seven counties covered in the report saw an increase in building permits from the same period a year ago, three with a double-digit increase.  St Charles County continues to show a trend of a slight decline in permits with this period falling short of the 12-month period ended last month.

St Louis New Home Building Permits -October 2021

St Louis New Home Building Permits -October 2021

 

St Louis New Home Building Permits Increase Over 6 Percent In Past Year

There were 4,938 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during the 12-month period ended September 30, 2021, an increase of 6.38% from the same period a year ago when there were 4,642 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).   Five of the seven counties covered in the report saw an increase in building permits from the same period a year ago, three with a double-digit increase.  St Charles County continues to show a trend of a slight decline in permits with this period falling short of the 12-month period ended last month.

St Louis New Home Building Permits -September 2021

St Louis New Home Building Permits -September 2021

 

St Louis New Home Building Permits Increase In August In 6 of 7 Counties

There were 4,926 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during the 12-month period ended August 31, 2021, an increase of 6.44% from the same period a year ago when there were 4,628 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).   Six of the seven counties covered in the report saw an increase in building permits from the same period a year ago, half of them with a double-digit increase and the other half with a slight increase.  St Charles County saw new home permits fall by 1.18% from 1,777 permits to 1,756 permits during the period.

St Louis New Home Building Permits -August 2021

St Louis New Home Building Permits - August 2021

 

St Louis New Home Building Permits Decrease Slightly In June

There were 5,135 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during the 12-month period ended June 30, 2021 an increase of 12.91% from the same period a year ago when there were 4,548 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).  After all seven counties seeing an increase in building permits from the prior period for the prior 4 months, this month six counties covered in the report saw an increase in building permits from the same period a year ago.  Also worth noting is that the 12-month total number of permits dropped slightly in June from May’s 5,201 permits and was also just slightly below April’s 5,138 permits.

St Louis New Home Building Permits – June 2021

St Louis New Home Building Permits - June 2021

 

New Home Sales In Midwest Outperforming Other Regions

In the past couple of days there have been many news reports about new home sales in the U.S. declining and reaching a 14-month low based upon the latest report from the U.S. Census Bureau.  As the table below shows, the reports are accurate as new home sales for June 2021 in the U.S. were at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 676,000 homes, the lowest annual rate in 14-months and a rate that is 6.6% lower than May and 19.4% lower than June 2020..    However, the good news for us here in the Midwest Region is, the same table shows that for our region new home sales in June 2021 were at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 92,000 homes, an increase of 5.7% from the rate for May 2021 and an increase of 7.0% from June 2020.  All of the other regions, as well as the U.S. as a whole, saw a decline in annual rate from the month before as well as the year before.

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Continue reading “New Home Sales In Midwest Outperforming Other Regions

Continued Increase In St Louis New Home Building Permits

There were 5,201 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during the 12-month period ended May 31, 2021 an increase of 17.19% from the same period a year ago when there were 4,438 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).  For the forth month in a row, All seven counties covered in the report saw an increase in building permits from the same period a year ago and with double-digit increases in all counties except Franklin.

St Louis New Home Building Permits – May 2021

St Louis New Home Building Permits - May 2021

 

Nearly One-Fourth The Cost of a New Home is the result of regulatory costs

While lately there’s been a lot of talk about the skyrocketing lumber prices and the impact on the cost of a new home but that’s not the only thing impacting the price of new homes.  The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) recently released the results of its 2021 Land Developer Survey on Regulatory Costs which, as the detailed table below shows, the average total cost of regulatory items in the price of a new home is $93,870.  The NAHB in the same report indicates the average price of a new home is currently $397,300 so the cost of complying with regulatory issues makes up nearly 25%of the price (23.8%) of a new home.

The second table below breaks out the regulatory costs between ground development and home construction and, as it illustrates, the costs are fairly evenly divided between the two with ground development experiencing 10.5% cost for regulatory compliances and construction of the home itself 13.3%.

Continue reading “Nearly One-Fourth The Cost of a New Home is the result of regulatory costs

St Louis New Home Construction Still on the rise….Lincoln County leads the way in Percentage Increase

There were 5,045 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during the 12-month period ended March 31, 2021 an increase of over 10.5% from the same period a year ago when there were 4,564 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).  For the forth month in a row, All seven counties covered in the report saw an increase in building permits from the same period a year ago and with double-digit increases for four counties. Lincoln County, for the third consecutive month, saw the largest increase at 60.78% followed by Warren County at 17.61%.

St Louis New Home Building Permits – March 2021

St Louis New Home Building Permits - March 2021

 

St Louis New Home Building Permits Issued In 2020 At Highest Level In 13 Years

There were a total of 7,863 residential building permits issued in the St Louis MSA during 2020 with 5,719 of this being for single-family homes both of which represent the highest number of building permits issued since 2007.  As the table below shows, there were 110 building permits issued for 2-unit buildings, 57 permits for 3-4 unit buildings and nearly 2,000 (1,977) issued for buildings with 5 units or more last year.

We’re not even close to the early 2000’s though…

As the chart below does such a great job of illustrating, even though the number of residential building permits in St Louis has increased significantly from hitting bottom in 2011 as a result of the 2008 housing bubble burst, we are still not close to the levels before the crash.  For the 13 years proceeding the housing bubble burst in 2008, the median number of residential building permits issued in the St Louis MSA in a year was 10,381 permits, 81% more than our “record” year last year.

The “New” Trend?

On the bottom chart, there is a red line which represents the linear trend line for single-family building permits, which on a positive note, does show the number of permits issued in the last 4 years  or so bucking the downward trend.

Is it any wonder the inventory of homes for sale is so low?

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Continue reading “St Louis New Home Building Permits Issued In 2020 At Highest Level In 13 Years

Wonder Why More New Homes Are Not Being Built?

With the inventory of homes for sale remaining at historically low levels for the last couple of years home buyers may be wondering why there aren’t more new homes being built?  Actually, in St Louis, new home construction has been increasing at a pretty good rate but it appears more homes can be absorbed by the market than are being built.

The answer to why more homes are not being built is probably the result of many things such as a lack of available ground in areas that are in demand, a shortage of contractors and tradesmen, the complication of, and cost related to regulatory compliance and the ever increasing cost of building materials.  The cost of many building materials has increased significantly but lumber prices, which is a major component of a new home in many ways, have just shot into the stratosphere.  As the chart below shows, the Producer Price Index for lumber and wood products shot up to 441 in March, an increase of 84% from a year ago.

According the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) the price increases in lumber have caused the price of an average home to increase by $24,000 since April 2020 just to cover this increased cost.

Producer Price Index by Commodity: Lumber and Wood Products: Softwood Lumber

(click on chart for live chart and more data)

Producer Price Index by Commodity: Lumber and Wood Products: Softwood Lumber

New Home Building Permits In St Louis Area Increase Nearly 10 Percent In 2020 From 2019

There were 4,816 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during 2020, an increase of 9.11% from 2019 when there were 4,414 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).  For the second month in a row, All seven counties covered in the report saw an increase in building permits during 2020 from 2019 and with double-digit increases for four counties. Franklin County saw the largest increase at 19.40% followed by Lincoln County at 13.97%.

St Louis New Home Building Permits – December 2020

St Louis New Home Building Permits - December 2020

 

New Home Building Permits In St Louis Area Increase Nearly 10 Percent In August

There were4,628 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during July, an increase of 9.56% from a year ago when there were 4,224 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).  For the second month in a row, Five of the seven counties covered in the report saw an increase in building permits from a year ago with three of them in the double digits. Franklin County saw the largest increase at 25.69% and Lincoln County experienced the largest decrease at 13.97%.

St Louis New Home Building Permits – August 2020

St Louis New Home Building Permits - August 2020

 

Franklin County Sees Biggest Increase In New Home Permits Again In July

There were 4,573 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during July, an increase of 7.0% from a year ago when there were 4,271 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).  For the second month in a row, Franklin County saw the largest percentage increase in building permits from a year ago with an increase of 27.59% from July 2019.  St Louis County, which a decrease in permits last month from a year ago, so nearly an 11% increase in July 2020 from July 2019.

St Louis New Home Building Permits – July 2020

St Louis New Home Building Permits - July 2020

 

 

St Louis New Home Construction Still On The Rise -Perimeter counties are the big winners

There were 4,468 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during June, an increase of 5.9% from a year ago when there were 4,219 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).  However, the increase in new home construction activity was not shared equally around the St Louis area as the counties of St Charles, Jefferson, and Franklin all saw double-digit increases while the other four counties saw declines.

St Louis New Home Building Permits – June 2020

St Louis New Home Building Permits - June 2020

 

 

St Louis New Home Construction Declines In March In 5 Counties But On The Rise In 2

There were 4,506 building permits issued for new single-family homes in the St Louis area during March, an increase of 4.55% from a year ago when there were 4,310 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (St Louis HBA).  However, the increase in new home construction activity was not shared equally around the St Louis area and, in fact, really only favored St Charles County and Jefferson County.

Of the seven counties reported on by the St Louis HBA, 5 saw a decline in building permits from a year ago with Lincoln County seeing the biggest loss at over 25%, and St Charles County was the big winner where the number of new home building permits in March increased nearly 25% from the same month last year.

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St Louis New Home Building Permits – March 2020

St Louis New Home Building Permits - March 2020

 

 

Things to consider when buying a new home

Buying a new home can be a great experience but it can also be a daunting one as well.  For homeowners that have previously only purchased an existing home, they will quickly find the process is much different.  From the number of decisions that must be made, change orders and other financial surprises along the way, it can be a little overwhelming for a buyer.  Particularly one that went into the process ill prepared or without proper representation by a buyers agent that is experienced in new construction.

What you need to know BEFORE buying a new home…

For more complete information, you can find my complete new home buying report here but I have highlights of the report below:

Continue reading “Things to consider when buying a new home

New Homes Sales In 2019 Drop From Year Before In Midwest

There were 70,000 new homes sold in the Midwest Region of the United States during 2019, a decline of 7.2% from 2018 when there were 76,000 new homes sold, according to the latest data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

As the table below shows, there were 40,000 new homes for sale in the Mideast at the end of 2019, which translates into roughly a 7 month supply of new homes for sale.

New Homes Sold In Midwest – 2018-2019

(in thousands)

New Homes Sold In Midwest - 2018-2019

New Home Construction Trend In St Louis Remains Steady In October

New home construction in St. Louis during October held at about the same trend as September with 4,289 new home permits issued for the 12-month period ended October 31, 2019, a decline of 8.04% from a year ago when there were 4,664 permits issued, according to the latest data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri.  This is about the same as September when the 12-month trend was down 8.05% from the prior 12-month period.

As the table below shows, 4 of the 7 counties covered in the report saw a decline in new home permits from a year ago.  This is the same as last month, with the same four counties on the decline.  For the 9th month in a row, Franklin County suffered the biggest loss at 41.31%.  At the other end of the spectrum, St Charles County had the largest increase at 7.55% and took removed Warren County from the number one slot after Warren County had 9 consecutive months of the highest growth in permits.

St Louis New Home Building Permits – October 2019

St Louis New Home Building Permits - October 2019