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Housing permits were weak in July, continuing the downward trend in permits over the past 12 months. 8,640 permits were issued statewide in July, down 10 percent from the prior July. In total, 61,200 permits have been issued in the first seven months of 2019, down 17 percent from 2018.

Multifamily housing units (29,100) have made up about half of the permits issued in 2019. Following two very weak months in May and June, multifamily permits posted declines again in July, although not quite as severe. Overall, multifamily permitting is down 23 percent through the first seven months of 2019 as compared to 2018.

Single family housing permits (32,100) have made up the other half of permits issued in 2019. Single family permits declined 3 percent in July relative to a year ago. Through the first seven months of 2019, single family permits are down 10 percent compared to 2018.

The recent slowdown in housing permits is the most severe since the Great Recession. Since 1990, only two other times periods—the first half of 1990s and the Great Recession—have had permitting declines as significant as the state has experienced over the past year.

Data source: CIRB (Construction Industry Research Board), a service provided by the California Homebuilding Foundation


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