Just a few years after the housing crash left the metro awash in developed lots, the pendulum is swining in the other direction. MetroStudy, a national research firm that tracks housing activity, said that the number of buildable lots in the Twin Cities had fallen to the lowest level since 2007.
There are now 25,268 vacant developed lots throughout the 13-county Twin Cities metro, a 9-percent decline from last year. In the 7-county metro there were only 12,614 lots, 12.7 percent lower than last year.
Ryan Jones, director of the local Metrostudy office, said that the declines are evidence of the recent uptick in new home sales.
Other tidbits from the quarterly survey:
- The Twin Cities area started 1,344 new homes in 4Q12, up 57 percent from the fourth quarter 2011 when just 855 homes were started.
- The rate of annual new home starts for single-family and townhome units across the Twin Cities area is 4,706 new units. This is an increase of 47 percent compared to 2011 and represents the highest annual starts pace since 2008.
- At the end of 2012 there were 2,309 new housing units in inventory, up 25 percent from the third quarter 2012. Of that total, 1,675 units (72 percent) are under construction, 435 (19 percent) are finished vacant inventory and 199 (9 percent) are model homes.