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Fewer applications for building permits in July

Posted: August 27, 2011 1:30 a.m.
Updated: August 27, 2011 1:30 a.m.

Residential building activity in Los Angeles and Ventura counties dropped sharply in July, said a spokesperson for the Building Industry Association’s Los Angeles/Ventura Chapter.

Some of last month’s decline is blamed on two state building requirements which went into effect Jan. 1. Builders say the green building and mandatory fire-sprinkler requirements in new construction are costly.

Although the two counties registered sharp drops in the number of permits pulled, Southern California remains one of the bright spots overall around the state when it comes to homebuilding, said Holly Schroeder, the chapter’s CEO.

There were only 125 single-family permits pulled in L.A. County in July, and 150 permits pulled for multifamily units.

The combined 275 permits pulled in July brought the year-to-date total to 5,367, a 20.4 percent increase when compared to the first seven months of 2010.

Statewide, the Construction Industry Research Board, or CIRB, lowered its forecast to 46,700, down from 51,000, for single and multifamily permits this year. The revised numbers are only slightly higher than last year and the second-lowest of starts since record keeping began in the early 1950s.

“Housing starts from Ventura to the Mexican border are up 22.4 percent for the year, the only region in the state to post an increase,” Schroeder said.

“This demonstrates that there is a demand for new homes, condos and apartments in the region if projects can be made to pencil out financially.”


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