The U.S. Census Bureau once again will begin collecting data on remodeling permits next year after a seven-year hiatus. Beginning in January 2002, two questions about remodeling will be added to the new-construction-permit survey mailed to 8,700 local permit offices monthly. The remaining 10,300 permit offices of the 19,000 total will be surveyed at least once every year.
The information requested by the survey is how many permits were issued in the previous month and the dollar value of the projects involved.
The increase in remodeling spurred the resumption of collecting the data, said Barry Rappaport, special assistant for construction programs in the manufacturing and construction division of the Census Bureau. “We collect lots of information about new construction already,” he said. “We saw a need for information about remodeling permits, too.”
Data from the surveys will be available the month after each one is completed. The data will be released as computer files only; the Census Bureau has no plans to publish the results in a report. Unlike the old permits survey, data will not be tabulated by county, state or region.
The remodeling portion of the monthly survey was dropped in 1995 as the result of budget cutbacks.