Building construction picks up in Grand County

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The building pace in Grand County is picking up, according to anecdotal reports as well as statistics from local building departments.

The Grand County Building Department has reported nearly double the number of single-family home permits from 2011 to 2012, as of this September. Last year, Grand County issued only 25 permits for new single-family homes. The county department includes the towns of Grand Lake, Hot Sulphur Springs and Kremmling.

“I think the Denver market is cranking again and that trickles to our satellite location of second homes and commuters,” said Dave Clingman, president of the Grand County Builders Association and owner of Imagin3 LLC.

“Also, our housing stock from the first wave in the ’90s is dated. (Consumers) are putting some money in increasing efficiency and finishes.”

Although permits for single-family homes are increasing, the total valuation of all 486 projects (including remodels, roofs, garages and sheds) in the county building department has decreased from $32.9 million last year to $21 million this year.

At the other building department, which includes the towns of Winter Park, Fraser and Granby, total valuations are up year-to-date, from $8.2 million last year to $9.9 million this year. Out of all projects, most of the new single-family home activity is taking place in Granby Ranch, with 17 permits pulled in 2011 and another 17 pulled in 2012.

Permits for new single-family homes increased in Fraser this year, with three new homes being built in Grand Park and another three in Rendezvous; and in Winter Park, one home is being built compared with a permit for one new single-family home last year.

Although no permits were issued for duplexes or multi-family dwellings, the Grand County Building Department is nearly keeping up with years in permits for home remodels, detached garages and shop buildings.

Summer had a slow start in terms of the local building climate, Clingman said, but “as of fall, everyone within our organization and its subparts is really busy. New starts still are low, but the remodeling has been substantially busier. Folks are retrofitting their houses as opposed to a total move.”

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