Statewide total housing units trend down mid year

With colder months typically being slow in permit issuance, we were hopeful that May and June would bring up the totals for California, but instead, statistics took a downward turn.


If you thought the first quarter of 2019 was disappointing for building permits issued, just wait until we fill you in on quarter 2.

January through March of this year revealed a 10% decrease in new single and multi-family housing units compared to the first three months of 2018 (Read the blog post here on Q-1 2019 permit statistics).

With colder months typically being slow in permit issuance, we were hopeful that May and June (historically high months of new housing permits pulled), would bring up the totals for California, but instead, statistics took a downward turn.

As you can see in the chart above, excerpted from the latest CIRB Snapshot of Housing Activity in California Report, June 2018 stands tall at 13,886 new dwelling units, while June 2019 took a 35% dive, reporting only 8,975 units issued.

<<Download the FREE June infographic here.>>

The cumulative 2019 year-to-date statistics are not quite as drastic, but the 52,844 total housing units issued from January through June of this year show a 19% decrease compared to the 65,351 units reported semi-annually for 2018.

According to Dan Dunmoyer, CBIA CEO, “The hope for a Q2 upward adjustment on permits has faltered. Even with the recent Fed rate reduction, permits may actually decrease in 2019. State leaders need to act now.”

If Dunmoyer’s observations prove correct and 2019 housing totals decrease from 2018, this year would be the first since 2009 without an increase in annual new home permits.

Quarter 3 may continue this downward trend, but there is slight hope in the fourth quarter of 2019, as the volume of permit issuance could increase in December in response to California energy regulations taking effect January 1, 2020.

Want to keep up with current housing activity in California? Click here to subscribe to the CIRB Report or CHF-CIRB@mychf.org for more information on building permit data, custom reports, and more.