January's deep freeze and blizzards cut into builders plans for new homes in Northwest Indiana, with just 36 new home construction permits issues as compared to 46 in the same month last year.
“The weather is inevitability a large factor in our permit numbers,” said Vicky Gadd, executive director of the Home Builders Association of Northwest Indiana. “The recent bad weather has crippled our industry for the past four to six weeks. I am not surprised to see a slight dip.”
The Home Builders Association of Northwest Indiana derives its data from the Construction Market Report, a publisher of commercial and residential permitting information in Greater Chicagoland and northern Indiana.
Other Northwest Indiana industries were also significantly affected by the serial snow storms and road closures in January.
Home sales dipped for the first time in 2 1/2 years in the month of January on a year-over-year basis, with 5.8 percent fewer homes sold than in January 2013, according to the Greater Northwest Indiana Association of Realtors. Northwest Indiana casino revenues dropped 17 percent in January as compared to the year-ago month, according to the Indiana Gaming Commission.
Gadd anticipates a rise in home sales as the weather returns to normal.
In 2013, the Northwest Indiana home building industry had its best year since the recession, with 962 home building permits issues as compared to 747 issued in all of 2012.