Remodeling activity gains in January

Residential remodeling activity rose 22% in January 2011 in year-over-year comparisons, according to an index compiled by BuildFax, a national database of building permit data. Residential remodels in January were down 5% from December 2010, however. 

All regions of the country posted year-over-year gains, although the Northeast continues to lag behind the other regions. For the first time in four years, the Northeast posted a year-over-year gain (7%) in January.

The other regions all did significantly better than the Northeast, posting double-digit percentage gains over their respective January 2010 values: 13% for the South, 28% for the Midwest and 19% for the West.

As is usual in January, index values were down month-over-month in every region: The Northeast was down 9%, the South was down 5%, the Midwest was down 10%, and the West was down 4%.

Based in Austin, Texas, BuildFax derives its remodeling index on monthly building permit activity filed with local building departments across the country.