It’s not an illusion: New construction continues its steady growth in Flagler County during the first quarter of 2014 according to a report presented to the county’s Economic Opportunity Advisory Board this morning.
Jason Delorenzo, government affairs director of the Flagler County Homebuilders Association and a Palm Coast City Council member, said the first quarter of this year saw an increase in the number of single family home building permits issued for the same period in 2013.
“There was a 29 percent increase in the first quarter and we are getting continued encouraging numbers,” Delorenzo said.
In the first quarter of this year, 126 construction permits were issued for single-family homes in Flagler County, most of them in Palm Coast. Bunnell issued just one permit, Flagler County had 34, and Palm Coast issued 88. Flagler Beach reported three permits, but Delorenzo said the figure did not include all of March as the city’s final numbers aren’t yet available. By the end of the first quarter in 2013, just 89 single family home permits were issued in the county.
“We have experienced nice growth over the last four years,” Delorenzo added.
The housing industry was the mainstay of Palm Coast’s and Flagler County’s economy until the housing crash, starting in late 2006. Because of the county’s disproportionate dependence on construction, when the bust took place, the county’s unemployment rate soared. New construction provides local jobs and supports the local economy, and helps explain the sharp increase in net jobs in the last unemployment report. Delorenzo said new construction in the first quarter brought in $13.8 million dollars in local revenue. The 126 single family homes supported 352 jobs paying $10 million dollars in wages and another $2.5 million dollars in taxes and fees to local governments, he said. The numbers are based on home builders’ estimate of what economic activity each new home generates.
Commercial construction also fared well in the first quarter. Commercial construction value for the first quarter totaled $491,625 as a result of the 18 permits issued in Flagler County. The county issued two permits for commercial construction in the first quarter.
“Some of these permits are being issued for interior alterations which means businesses are expanding,” Delorenzo explained.
New commercial properties in Palm Coast include a Verizon Store, valued at $300,000, which is under construction on an outparcel at the Kohl’s location on Palm Coast Parkway. Nearby, a new McDonald’s restaurant is going up, valued at $800,000. Town Center on State Road 100 will be adding a $715,000 Dollar General Store, which will be one of the largest stores in the franchise chain.
DeLorenzo told the board that the homebuilders association continues to see a growing interest in Flagler County both nationally and internationally. He said traffic associated with the association’s annual Parade of Homes was 100 percent higher this year than last year.
“We had inquiries from people representing 42 states and 25 countries,” he said. Inquiries came from Brazil, Turkey, Chile and German internationally as well as Canada.
Residents from other states also are weighing in on Flagler County’s real estate. Delorenzo said the top number of inquiries come from within Florida followed by New York, North Carolina, Ohio and Georgia. “New homes and businesses mean jobs which is important to a community that is dependent on construction,” he said.
[email protected] says
Jobs, another McDonalds, Dollar General, that is really progress i guess to some people, and what happens when the 10-12$ an hour construction jobs dry up again DeLorenzo?
Florida Native. says
“New homes and businesses mean jobs which is important to a community that is dependent on construction,” he said. Really? Who in the hell would want to buy or build a home in this hell hole? Apparently they haven’t heard about the red light cameras,no jobs,anti-business attitudes and dysfunctional Palm Coast politics.
The Truth says
I’m sure the panic party (aka Republicans) will spin this into ‘growing to fast’ and ‘another collapse is coming’ but this is welcome news. Slow steady growth is what we need. Our community is what many want to raise a family in, I just hope we can entice more companies to move in and provide better paying jobs here and the surrounding areas.
Obama 2014 says
Palm Coast is a Hell hole? Are you kidding me? Minus the red light cameras what else can you ask for?
Parks are free, you can buy a house for less that 100k and have a pool. 30 min from St Augustine and Daytona, 90 Minutes from Jacksonville and Orlando. 3 Major toll free roads to travel on to get all over the state and a very good mix of shopping, food and entertainment. We are within an hour of the NFL, NASCAR and the NBA and about 90 minutes from the MLB and NHL. We have 3 major Gyms, some of the top hospitals in the state and very good schools. Our Police and Fire departments are always on the ball and protecting the people of the city . Jobs are hard to come by but if you can drive 30 mins north or 30 min south you can find one. A lot of people come here to retire so the economy is a little different then most county in Florida.
We can do better but no where is perfect but a hell hole palm coast is not.
How about building factories in West Flagler County so the thousands of un-employed can have a job to PAY for a new home. Someone call Remington Firearms Co. and BEG them to set up a factory here !!!!
Really, “panic party”? There are still not enough jobs in PC to support the amount of residents here. Construction is not the starting point for this community’s growth. It’s called common sense.
Well, I would say something is better than nothing.
I’d like to think what little funds that are headed for this town just might start to compensate for the millions the red lights are shipping out. We’re still behind at that.
Sometimes I do get tired of all the complaining. Yes, Florida has a lot of $10 hr jobs. Don’t like it? Move north where all the unions are. Just remember, you’re not finding a 3/2 house for $150,000 up there. You’re paying more than that for some condo in a bad neighborhood.
Palm Coast is a great place to raise a family and to retire to. I just wish that instead of so much new construction, that people would buy one of the already vacant homes. We have so many. That would help our community.
wait lets be clear, i know businesses are hurting and shutting down. also wouldn’t it help to sell the empty houses everywhere in county, oh and maybe open some real paying bussiness. i mean we have enough fast food places. this was never about growing to fast either. if you lived here more then five years you would know it didn’t grow fast, palm coast grew irresponsibly, putting the housing and community beautification above employment. it doesn’t need anymore growth because it can’t sustain itself. it relies on bunnell and flagler beach tax money to help maintain it’s roads, money that should be divvied amongst the county is instead sunk into that scum pit. the P, B, R and L sections look more and more like slums, every year, the W section looks abandoned on many streets. the kids run wild at night, and The truth is, I’d rather raise my kids in Bunnell or Flagler Beach, where my neighbour will say hey, i saw a car pull in your yard that looked unfamiliar, or if my dog gets out they will help catch it instead of call animal control and the cops. we need palm coast out of our pocket is what we need.