Behind the rise in residential construction, said Robert Rivinius, chief executive officer of the CBIA, is “strong demand for housing in California combined with low interest rates.”
Housing is adding more than $40 billion a year to the state’s economy, Rivinius said.
Single-family home construction so far this year has been up in 17 of the state’s 25 metropolitan areas. Riverside-San Bernardino continues to lead the state with 9,286 single-family home permits being issued, up 57.2% from the same period a year ago. That is followed by the Sacramento area (4,340), San Diego (2,641), Los Angeles (2,203) and San Joaquin County (1,479). Construction remains weakest in the San Francisco Bay area.
Through March, 15,005 multifamily permits were issued, running ahead of last year by 57.5%.
The CIRB now projects that 176,800 new homes and apartments will be built this year — the largest number since 1989.
While good news for the industry, Rivinius said that this is still below what is needed to meet the state’s growing population. According to state officials, 230,000 new homes a year should have been built over the last decade to meet demand.
In the meantime, Rivinius said that his association is watching debate on several pieces of state legislation that would make it even more difficult than it is already for Californians to become home owners.
On the association’s list of “dream killer” bills are a measure that would require all new homes to use solar energy, adding some $25,000 to the price of a typical home; a new tax on lumber that would add more than $130 to a home’s price; and a mandate for urban growth boundaries across the state.
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