Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Metro housing sales start 2003 with a roar.(Final)

Byline: Richard Metcalf Assistant Business Editor

* Quarter's numbers suggest another record year is building

The public's appetite for houses remained insatiable during the first three months of this year in the Albuquerque metro area.

Both house construction and sales of existing houses are on pace to shatter records set in 2002.

Building permits were issued for 1,564 single-family houses in the first quarter, a 19.7 percent jump from a year earlier, according to the Home Builders Association of Central New Mexico.

"I am especially surprised at the magnitude of this increase, said Jim Folkman, the association's executive vice president. …

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