The housing market in the area got really hot, even before the high summer temperatures hit.

Sales of existing houses by Realtors in the Volusia/Flagler area were at 1,032 in April, up 3.7 percent from April 2017. The median price, where half sold for more and half for less, was at $209,900, up 13.4 percent. Sales of condos by Realtors were at 291, up 4.3 percent. The median price was at $197,500, up 16.2 percent.

The U.S. Census Bureau reported permits were issued for 192 housing units in the Volusia/Flagler area in April (176 single-family) up from 174 in April 2017 (149 single-family). The agencies reporting to the Census Bureau even covered a smaller area this year at 64 percent, compared to 70 percent last year.

The demand for new and existing houses in our area obviously is high and probably will just go higher.

The Census Bureau also recently released the latest population estimates for municipalities. While Volusia County's population growth was just 1.8 percent from July 1, 2016, to July 1, 2017, some cities were growing much faster.

Percentagewise, the fastest growing city is still DeLand at 3.4 percent, going from 31,4224 to 32,506. In real numbers, Port Orange was the fastest growing, adding 1,666 more residents over the 12-month period. Port Orange went from 61,531 to 63,203, or up 2.7 percent.

Deltona was still, by far, the county's most populated city, going from 89,410 to 90,746. The second most populous place is still Daytona Beach, going from 67,139 to 68,055.

The other two cities with significant population growth were New Smyrna Beach at 26,470, up 2.9 percent and Ormond Beach at 42,816, up 1.9 percent.

When I look around the county, though, I have a feeling population growth will be much higher in the next reporting period of July 1, 2017, to July 1, 2018.

***

One Daytona is picking up some steam Claire de Lune and Kasa Living opening, giving it some more high-end shopping. The interior buildout has begun for Oklahoma Joe's BBQ, so it looks like it's opening could happen as soon as July. Also, Game Time recently held a job fair and is expected to open in June, which will really get the huge complex hopping.

***

Not a whole lot new happening right now – must be all the rain. Site work has begun for a Wawa on Howland Boulevard, near Interstate 4, in Deltona. Also, the owner of Suds at 1330 Beville Road in Daytona Beach wants to convert it from a self-service to full-service carwash.

Managing Editor Cecil G. Brumley has been tracking business and the economy in Volusia County for more than 21 years. Contact him at cbrumley@hometownnewsol.com (no hyphens) or follow him on Twitter @cecilbrumley.

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