County building permits for single-family homes up 160% from June 2011 to June 2012

Building permits for single-family homes are up dramatically compared to the same period in 2011. (iStockPhoto)

The most recent Sarasota County business statistics show continued growth for the county, with the total number of building permits for single-family homes up 160% from June 2011 to June 2012.

Residential real estate sales are up 18.7% for those months year-to-year in the county.

Statistics released by the county’s Office of Financial Planning show the number of single-family home building permits was 117 in June, compared to 45 in June 2011. The value of the construction was up 130%, from about $6,585,000 in June 2011 to about $15,145,000 in June this year, or an average of about $129,444 per home.

Although the May business report also showed a percentage increase in the number of permits, that figure was 40.5%, with total value of construction at approximately $9,776,000, compared to $8,332,000 in June 2011.

Regarding the home sales, the Sarasota Association of Realtors reported that 864 residences and condominiums were sold in June this year, compared to 728 in June 2011. The median price of a home was $186,750 in June this year, compared to $180,000 in June 2011. That was an improvement from the median price reported in May, which was $182,875.

However, the median price in May 2011 was $188,875.

The average number of days a home stayed on the market was down year-over-year: 198 days in June  this year compared to 210 in June 2011.

The average number of days on the market in May this year was lower — 176.

Tourism also remains strong, according to the June figures, with 47,151 deplanements at Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport, up 11.4% compared to 42,318 in June 2011.

Deplanements in May also were up year-over-year: 52,991, compared to 49,453 in May 2011.

Gross retail sales for Sarasota County were up 1.5% in May 2012 compared to 2011, based on preliminary unaudited results, at a total of $964.06 million.

May was the latest month for which that figure was available.

In April 2012, gross county retail sales (unaudited) were estimated at $1,196,240,000, up 8% from April 2011.

The county’s unemployment claims also were down year-over-year for June, at 1,003, or 23.3% of the reported workforce. In June 2011, those claims numbered 1,308 according to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity.

The county’s labor force in June numbered 161,797, down 0.1% from June 2011. Of the latest figure, 147,764 were employed, up 2.4% from June 2011.

The employment figures do not reflect approximately 40,000 sole proprietors in the county, the business report says.

Sarasota County’s unemployment rate in June was 8.7%, compared to 10.8% in June 2011. The Florida unemployment rate for June was 9%, while the U.S. rate was 8.4%.

Those figures had not been seasonally adjusted, the report says.