Construction starts for new homes have fallen sharply across California this year as foreclosures have especially battered it and Florida. As the California Building Industry reports in this media bite today, our own Yuba and Sutter counties have seen California's steepest drop in home starts.
From January through May, they're down 77.2 percent from the same time last year. The only regions close - both in the category of 70 plus percent drops - are our neighbors in Vallejo-Fairfield and Santa Rosa-Petaluma. Why? Foreclosures, a glut of unsold housing and high gas prices is a good guess.
The Sacramento region (El Dorado, Placer, Sacramento, Yolo counties) has a 48 percent drop, roughly about the state average.
Statewide, the BIA still predicts the fewest home starts for 2008 since it began keeping records in 1954.
And Monday, Alan Nevin, chief economist for the Sacramento-based home builder trade group, said prospects for "major recovery" by year's end looks less likely.
He put out a bullish forecast in January, saying the market would start to pick up in the second half of 2008. He admitted then he was being contrary to a lot of more gloomier economists. Now he's scheduled a one-hour address Wednesday at the Pacific Coast Builders Conference in San Francisco. All bets are on eating crow and having to become a gloomier economist. It was a nice try, anyway.
Images: Eaglerealty.org, bp3.blogger.com