California housing permits lagging

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Even has California continues to face a sever housing crisis, the San Francisco Chronicle reports that from 2013 through 2022 California counties and cities approved housing units at a rate of 2,600 per 100,000 residents, well below the national rate of 3,900. This places California 39th of the 50 states in the issuing of permits.

Analysts say that California’s environmental law is often incorrectly used to force a lengthy review process, thus delaying much-needed housing projects.

Oakland’s housing plan accepted

Green Escrow Services | Oakland

The news is good for the city of Oakland as their plan to add 26,000 new homes in the next 10 years has been accepted by California’s state housing officials.

This means that Oakland will be eligible for needed funding and maintaining a degree of control over local development rules.

To date, only five local governments – Oakland, San Francisco, San Leandro, Emeryville, and the city of Alameda – have had their final plans approved by the state.

Housing in California 2023

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The Department of Housing and Community Development reports that California has the worst homelessness problem in the country with 44 out of 10,000 residents on the streets.

Analysts say that California is at least one million housing units short while others argue the number is closer to 3.5 million. While the state’s official goal is to increase units by 2.5 million by 2030, the rate of construction will have to triple to meet that figure.

California’s expensive regions

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Eleven of the twenty most expensive regions in which to live are in California. And, yes, the San Francisco Bay Area is the most expensive of all.

Hawaii is the most expensive state with prices 13.2 percent higher than the U.S. average and California is now second at 11.8 percent and New York is third.

54.8% of Californians live in a house they own

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According to the Census Bureau, 54.8 percent of Californians live in a house they own in 2022. This is the third lowest percentage in the nation but is the same rate as pre-pandemic 2019 levels.

The only areas with a lower percentage are the District of Columbia at 43.1 percent and New York at 54 percent.

The states with the highest percentage of ownership are West Virginia (78.4%), South Carolina (75.8%), Maine (75.4%), Iowa (75.1%), and Wyoming (74.8%).

East Bay Green

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A recent ranking by WalletHub of the 100 largest U.S. cities in 28 environmental categories has four Bay Area cities in the top 10: Fremont at number 4; Oakland, 6th, San Francisco, 8th, and San José at number 10.

Overall, San Diego was the top-ranked city as California placed 6 in the top 10.

Fremont finished first in the amount of green space, water quality, and Air Quality Index,

Moving out…

Green Esrcow | Afforable Housing

Ever since the start of the pandemic in 2020, California residents have been hitting the roads and heading for the borders in search of … jobs? Cheaper living? Friendlier business climate?

Regardless, only Illinois has seen more residents moving out in the last 2+ years. For the first time since 2013, San Jose has seen its population dip below 1 million, and San Francisco has seen a 3 percent decline.

And where are they going? Texas is the top destination, fueled, no doubt by the fact that Tesla, oracle and Hewlett Packard have all moved their headquarters there.

COVID mortgage relief coming for more California homeowners

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California has expanded a COVID-19 program designed to help those who have fallen behind on their payments during the pandemic. Homeowners who missed at least two mortgage payments before June 30, 2022, now may be eligible to have delinquent payments of up to $80,000 covered.

The one caveat is that homeowners are eligible for assistance if they make 150% or less of their county’s median income. In Contra Costa and Alameda, a family of four that $214,200 or less per year would qualify.

Bay Area population in flux

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While California saw its first population decline since 1900, a handful of Bay Area cities saw an increase in both population and housing units. Santa Clara, Morgan Hill, and Mountain View all saw their housing units grow, with most being multifamily facilities.

Overall, however, The nine counties in the Bay Area added just 20,522 housing units in 2020. Most counties saw sharp declines in the development of new homes and apartments.

Albany, in Alameda County, saw its population decline by 9.6 percent while all the cities in Marin County decreased.

California consumer confidence rising

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For the fourth consecutive month, the Conference Board’s California Consumer Confidence Index rose, bringing it to February 2020 – pre=pandemic levels.

Some sections of the Index rose higher than others. The view of current business conditions, while rising nearly 16 points to 74.8, is still well below the February 2020 mark of 152.3.

On the other hand, the shoppers’ outlook for the future easily surpassed February 2020. Taken all together, the Index shows California consumer confidence is headed in the right driection.