Business Journal: Housing Starts Fall

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(Sacramento, CA)
Monday, April 28, 2008
The Sacramento region’s construction and real estate industries continued to struggle last month, the most recent sign of the hard-hit economy. Sacramento-area homebuilders applied for 278 building permits for single-family homes in March, that’s 67 percent less than a year. Homebuilders in the four-county region, one of the nation’s best housing markets for price appreciation and sales a few years ago, have been battling record-high foreclosures that are causing a glut of existing homes on the market. Lenders foreclosed on almost 5,300 homes during the first three months of the year – increasing the tally to 15,300 homes since January 2007. Those foreclosures have greatly hurt homeowners in the region who are trying to sell their property, with the median home price declining 29 percent to $258,600 last month from a year ago.