Richmond American Homes of Colorado, whose parent is Denver-based M.D.C. Holdings, continues to reign as the biggest builder in the metro area.
In the first nine months of the year, Richmond pulled permits for 325 homes, according to a report released today by the HBA of Metro Denver. Richmond’s nearest rival was Century Communities with 241 permits. Permit activity represents future construction.
“I’m not surprised,” said Jeff Whiton, president and CEO of the HBA of Metro Denver. “I know Richmond is active in a number of communities.”
However’s Richmond’s building activity is down 55 percent from the same period last year, when it had pulled 726 permits. That also doesn’t surprise Whiton.
“In general, a lot of builders are constructing fewer home this year, because last year you had that $8,000 tax credit for first-time home buyers,” Whiton said. “A lot of builders constructed homes to meet the increased demand from the tax-credit buying.”
The tax credit program required qualified buyers to place a home under contract by the end of April 2010 and close on it by the end of September of that year. Richmond’s percentage drop, however, was bigger than most of the top builders in the first nine months of this year, compared to the same period last year.
Housing consultant S. Robert August noted that it is rare when Richmond isn’t the No. 1 builder in the Denver area.
“They take a certain amount of pride in being the biggest builder in their backyard,” August said. However, he said they also are careful not to over-build or to construct homes in price ranges where there is not demand.
Builder Permits first 3 quarters 2011 Permits first 3 quarters 2010
Richmond American Homes 325 726
Century Communities 241 209
Meritage Homes 211 207
KB Home 202 227
D.R. Horton 195 275
Lennar 177 287
Pulte Homes 167 172
Shea Homes 163 150
Oakwood Homes 109 249
Metropolitan Homes 100 53