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Charlotte REALTORS® Help Make Building Permit Process More Efficient, Less Costly

By HOM Editorial Team
July 2015

With Charlotte, N.C., being one of the fastest growing cities in the United States, the Charlotte Regional REALTOR® Association has been working to ensure the availability of affordable housing in the city and surrounding Mecklenburg County by encouraging local officials to speed up the process for approving new construction.

Charlotte’s rapid growth has sparked high demand for housing, with thousands of new residential construction permits issued by Mecklenburg County in each of the last few years. However, the county’s system for permitting and inspecting new construction was not able to keep up with the pace of demand, resulting in numerous delays.

Consequently, city and county attempts to provide housing to meet the increased demands were frustrated. New-home buyers’ certificates of occupancy and the construction of thousands of new apartment units may have been delayed as well.

Such delays end up increasing expenses for builders, who ultimately pass on the higher costs in higher prices for new-home buyers.

Because the Charlotte Regional REALTOR® Association realized that delays in the permitting and inspection process were costly, it collaborated with other organizations to challenge the county to make the process more consistent and efficient.

In response to this challenge, Mecklenburg County took action. The county implemented many of the group’s recommendations and revised the permitting and inspection process, making inspections more consistent and all steps of the process more expedient. As a result, new-construction costs have stabilized for builders, buyers have been able to occupy their newly constructed homes more quickly, and multifamily construction projects are being completed with far fewer delays, resulting in faster and more dependable availability.

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