Butler County, region see continued home construction growth in 2015

Home construction in Butler County could have seen a downturn in 2015, but a last-minute resurgence saved it.

The county’s single-family home permit number went from 556 recorded in 2014 to 569 in 2015, a 2.3 percent increase, according to the Home Builders Association of Greater Cincinnati.

That’s quite a ways behind Hamilton County and Warren County, which saw increases of 20.5 and 17.6 percent, respectively.

“That’s reflecting the fact that some of the other counties have new communities opening up … but the demand, regardless, still remains high for that whole Butler County area,” said Ray Neverovich, board president for the HBA, which represents residential construction interests in Brown, Butler, Clermont, Clinton, Hamilton and Warren counties in southwest Ohio.

Neverovich, who also is division president for Drees Homes, said Liberty and West Chester townships still have plenty of new housing being constructed.

Numbers bear that out. Liberty Twp. again led all other communities in the county, with 242 single-family permits for 2016. The township, which recently welcomed the opening of mega retail project Liberty Center, accounted for 4 of 10 permits issued in the county, according to the HBA.

West Chester Twp., Fairfield Twp. and Monroe also experienced significant activity, with 75, 74 and 54 permits issued each, respectively.

Butler County is unlikely to lose any popularity in the new home construction market any time soon, Neverovich said.

“There are more communities on the horizon in Butler County,” he said. “If anything, there’s projected growth in those areas.”

That’s good news for existing homeowners, he said, because continued growth adds value to existing homes.

“People want to live in that area … so demand for new housing also reflects on the resale market to a large degree because it continues to add value to the existing marketplace,” he said.

Butler County’s housing market contributed to a 9.9 percent overall increase for the region, which issued 2,245 single-family permits for new home construction during 2015 in Butler, Clermont, Hamilton and Warren counties, compared to 2,042 in 2014.

“The regional housing market continued its steady improvement last year. We are encouraged by positive signs in the market such as increased employment, higher existing home values and low inventories, which have spurred new home sales ,” said Dan Dressman, HBA Executive Director.

That increase had the most significant help from Hamilton County, which showed the greatest overall increase — 20.5 percent — representing 500 single-family permits. That county’s booming construction was led by strong activity in Cincinnati, with 89 permits issues in 2015, followed by other improving areas, such as Harrison , Colerain Twp. (56) and Green Twp. (58).

Warren County continued to reign over the region last year with a total of 876 single-family permits, a 17.6 percent increase.

Five of the region’s top 10 performing jurisdictions during the year are located in Warren County, including Hamilton Twp. (208), Clearcreek Twp. (162), Mason (131), Turtlecreek Twp (81) and Springboro (79).

“There’s more new land opportunities coming on (in Warren and Hamilton counties) and in Butler County, there’s just not as many opportunities as there used to be for new developments,” Neverovich said.

Clermont County was the only regional county to experience a decrease in activity, dropping 300 single-family permits or 8 percent over the past year from 326 permits issued in 2014 to 300 in 2015. Batavia Twp. was that county’s top performer with 84 permits issued.

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