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A blog about the economy and the Sacramento-area real estate market.

September 4, 2008
Sacramento-area builders idle 3,500 finished lots

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Part of the almost unprecedented slowdown of new-home construction in the Sacramento  involves builders simply cancelling projects and halting sales.

 If you aren't buying they aren't building.

Hanley Wood Market Intelligence, a building industry consultant, has tabulated the number of idled lots (ready to build on, with finished utility lines etc.) in El Dorado, Placer, Sacramento, Sutter, Yolo and Yuba counties. 

The magic number: 3,500.

I recall last November, writing a story about Pardee Homes, shutting down and fencing off its 660-home project in Natomas, rather than build and sell at late 2007 prices. Then I heard a week or two later about others doing the same: Milwaukee-based Homes by Towne and Nouveau Homes of Rocklin, temporarily closing projects in Natomas, Lincoln and Elk Grove rather than slash prices deeper.

Now look at this barely 10 months later: 3,500 ready-to-go lots idled and cancelled until this all turns around.

 Sacramento Bee Photo/Paul Kitagaki Jr.

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