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California builders aren't building

Home production in California is grinding to a halt. The number of single-family home permits dropped 61% to 8,189 during the first quarter of this year compared to the same period in 2007, according to an April 25 report from the California Building Industry Association.

To put it in perspective, 35,329 single-family home permits were issued in california during the 1st quarter of 2005.

These days building new homes makes little sense with so many foreclosed homes competing for buyers. Builders are waiting for the market to turn around, said Alan Nevin, the builder group’s Chief Economist.

“It basically is a case where builders have more or less decided not to build,” Nevin said. “They are almost viewing this as being custom home builders to the extent that they almost won’t start a new home until somebody has bought it.”

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