March 26, 2017
The decline in homeownership rates to near 50-year lows is partly to blame for the U.S. economy’s sluggish recovery from the last recession, new data suggest.
If the home-building industry had returned to the long-term average level of construction, it would have added more than $300 billion to the economy last year, or a 1.8% boost to gross domestic product, according to a study expected to be released Monday by the Rosen Consulting Group, a real-estate consultant.
March 21, 2017
The possibility of a tax-code overhaul is casting a shadow over the $10 billion affordable-housing industry, which receives tax credits so valuable they often determine whether or not projects get off the ground. . . Developers said investors are valuing the credit 10% to 20% lower since Election Day. In some cases, investors have walked away, opening up funding gaps in projects already in motion. Because developers already walk a financial tightrope to build low-income housing, some projects are simply failing.
March 21, 2017
"There are many ways governments can support the construction of affordable housing. One is to pare back some of the byzantine regulations that control housing development at the state and local level—NIMBY land use and zoning restrictions, unrealistic regulations regarding construction and labor procurement methods—that drive the cost of new housing through the roof. And when that doesn’t work, city and state governments can subsidize rents.
But to create an elaborate investment tax code workaround to problems that blue model governance has created through overregulation, cost inflation, and bureaucratic micromanagement only builds new layers of cost and complexity over the old ones. And of course there is the problem of moral hazard created when it becomes impossible to build housing for the average person with an average income in a given area without getting ‘help’ from insiders who can help you navigate the bureaucratic morass.
March 3, 2017
Assembly Bill 199 was introduced in late January and authored by Kansen Chu (D-San Jose) and the California Building and Construction Trades Council, a labor union group. The bill requires workers to be paid “prevailing wage” on residential projects that have any agreement with “the state or a political subdivision” — a provision that extends the requirement beyond the redevelopment agencies, public agencies and low income housing projects covered under existing state law.
Dec. 15, 2016
A one-two punch of unwavering fees and unavailable labor is leading many homebuilders to seek extensions of entitlements for projects across the region.