By Jon Solomon
It struck me during last week’s presidential debate, with all the talk of creating jobs and balancing budgets, that few people realize custom home builders in Tampa significantly help our community with job growth and balancing city and county budgets.
On the job front, home builders directly employ a lot of people, but even more significantly, our indirect employment of sub-contractors and suppliers is even greater. Research has shown that for every $100k in home construction cost, we create 1 full-time job among our sub-contractors and suppliers. You can see that a custom home costing $500k to build results in 5 full-time jobs. Javic builds 12-15 new homes each year so our small, but “shovel-ready” contribution to the area’s job market is 60-75 jobs.
So how do we help balance the budget?
We help the city and county government with their budgets in two ways. First, each new custom home must pay permit and impact fees. These fees start at $2-3k and go up from there, but they are one time only fees. The more significant way we help is with increasing property values and thus property tax revenue. Whether we start on vacant land or demolish an old home to build a new custom home, the increase in property tax revenue is roughly $10k per home. Again, if you consider just Javic’s 12-15 homes each year, this $120-150k increase in revenue happens not once but every year into the future. The 100+ custom homes that we have built in the area bring in more than $1 million dollars of additional property tax revenue each and every year to help balance city and county budgets.
I certainly can’t speak for all Tampa Bay custom builders, but this builder isn’t looking to run for any office, nor are we looking for a pat on the back or an “attaboy” for these contributions to our local economy. Yet with the political season sharing many confusing “facts”, I thought it might be nice to share some facts that will pass the truth test.
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