Buildable home lots in LA and Orange counties at lowest levels

61% drop in supply, as developers have scooped up properties over last year


Los Angeles and Orange counties have a major shortage of buildable single-family housing lots.

Availability in the two counties is the lowest of any major market in the country, according to the Los Angeles Daily News, citing market tracker Zonda Economics.

The pandemic has fueled a rise in home sales, which has worsened California’s housing crisis. There was a 61 percent drop in supply of vacant housing lots over the last year in L.A. and Orange counties, the most significant decrease in the nation.

The inventory of lots controlled by developers in the two counties is also 25 percent below what is considered equilibrium, according to the report.

“Builders have been aggressively buying land in different stages of development, and many of these lots will turn into homes for sale in the coming year or two,” said Zonda’s Ali Wolf.

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There is also a shortage of homes on the market in Southern California. Buyers have regularly set new median price records in the months since the pandemic. It’s the same story in many parts of the country.

The Inland Empire has a less severe shortage of lots, though rent prices here have ticked up.

Meanwhile, the shortage of buildable lots is also acute in San Diego and San Francisco. San Diego’s supply is 26 percent of normal levels, while San Francisco’s is just 33 percent. Both saw double-digit drops in supply over the last year.

The supply of buildable single-family housing lots has been steadily dropping over the last five years, according to Zonda.

[LADN] — Dennis Lynch