One of California’s wealthiest counties may continue to get a pass under the state’s affordable housing laws. Lawmakers are considering a measure that would allow parts of Marin County to limit growth more tightly than other regions of California. The provision, inserted last week into a bill connected to the state budget, lets Marin County’s largest cities and unincorporated areas maintain extra restrictions on how many homes developers can build. . . . Since the changes are tied to last week’s passage of the state budget, which Brown has yet to sign, the measure does not have to go through the regular committee process. It’s had just one public hearing and lawmakers could vote on the bill as early as Thursday. . . . Today, the county’s per capita income of $60,236 is the highest of any county in the state, according to U.S. census figures. But the average renter in Marin County makes just $19.21 an hour and would need to work 77 hours a week to afford a studio apartment at the $1,915-a-month market rate, according to data from the National Low Income Housing Coalition.
Home prices in Los Angeles have never been higher, and rents are increasingly unaffordable for many residents. Sadly, a new report from the UCLA Anderson Schoolf of Management predicts the situation is unlikely to change in the near future. The report finds that three of the six most unaffordable cities for homebuyers nationwide are in Southern California and that Los Angeles is the single most unaffordable city for both renters and buyers. Though the cost of housing is higher in other cities, median income in LA is low enough that more residents will struggle to make monthly rental payments or save to buy a home.
Market-rate development has outstripped the supply of affordable units. And “regressive” zoning and environmental regulations, combined with California’s reputation as a tech behemoth are leading to the “hollowing out of the middle class,” Shulman said. “President Trump wants to keep people out by building a wall. California is more sophisticated – it uses zoning and development laws to keep people out, but they have the same effect,” he said.
Homebuilding was down across Southern California in the first three months of 2017, but nowhere more than San Diego County, said a Real Estate Research Council report released Monday.
Residential building permits were down by 10 percent in the seven-county region compared to the same time last year and 37 percent in San Diego County.
In yet another sign of L.A.'s growing poverty and lack of low-income housing, local officials are preparing for a torrent of applications when they open up the wait list for federal housing aid later this year.
The city stopped taking applications for Section 8 housing over a decade ago because there were too many people already waiting for the limited rental assistance vouchers.
Last time L.A.'s waitlist opened, in 2004, about 300,000 people applied. When the process opens for a two-week window this year, officials are expecting at least twice that number. As a result, only a fraction of people who apply will make the cut.