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Completed homes drop almost 40%, home building permits down 28% in 2011

The number of completed homes in Hungary for which permits to use were issued declined 39.2% yr/yr to 12,655 in 2011, the Central Statistics Office (KSH) said on Thursday.

The number of building permits issued for homes fell 28.0% from a year earlier to 12,488 in 2011.

The number of completed homes peaked a 43,913 in 2004 and has fallen each year since 2007. The number of building permits issued for homes has fallen steadily after peaking at 59,241 in 2003.

Home construction numbers have fallen to levels unprecedented even during the economic crisis between the two world wars and the difficult economic times of the 40's and 50's, KSH noted. The number of completed homes and the number of permits was about the same, but the extremely low level of the latter promises now rapid improvement, the report said, adding that permits typically outnumbered completed homes in the past 20 years with only two exceptions, in 2009 and 2010.

Permits issued in 2011 for the construction of residential buildings were for a total useful space of 1,300,600 square meters, 22.4% less than a year earlier, KSH said.

The average area of completed homes for which utilization permits were issued in 2011 was 103.1 square meters, up 11.1 square meters from last year, and 42% of the newly completed homes was bigger than 100 square meters, up from a 33% ratio in 2010.

The number of construction permits issued for non-residential buildings rose 2.7% to 5,237 in 2011. These permits were for a total useful space of 2,294,100 square meters, 24% under the figure a year earlier.

The number of permits issued for industrial buildings rose 8.4% to 970 in 2011, but that for commercial use dropped 7.1% to 290. The number of permits for agricultural buildings declined 7.5% to 1387 from a year earlier. The useful floor space fell in every segment, falling the least, by 5.7% for industrial buildings.

The number of new home building permits issued fell in most regions of the country in 2011, with the steepest drops of 46.6% in Baranya county (SW Hungary), 41.8% in Somogy county (SW Hungary) and 41.5% in Central Hungary, including a 55.6% drop in Budapest. The number rose in Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén county (NE Hungary) and Central and Western Transdanubia, by 3.8%, 6.5% and 19.2%, respectively, from a low base. Southern Transdanubia and Southern Hungary registered respective drops of 38.2% and 28.1%.

The number of completed new homes in Hungary with permits issued dropped 35% to 20,823 in 2010, and the number of building permits issued for homes fell 39% to 17,353 in 2010, earlier KSH figures show.