“THE REASON OUR POVERTY RATE IS THE HIGHEST IN THE COUNTRY IS THE COST OF HOUSING.” - GAVIN NEWSOM
Local Control of Zoning Approval- local control of land, limits the amount of housing permits being approved. This is due to the strenuous land use regulations in CA. These rules allow property owners to stop new development such as building new apartments.
Apartments can house more people in a given space. Even though this would help with California’s housing demand, and create more affordable homes, the population increase can have strain our roads, traffic, and schools. Due to this, property owners have opposed and voted against much needed construction permits. This opposition limits new housing supply for middle and lower income Californians, while driving up the prices for existing homes.
In 1978, 2/3rds of California’s voters passed Proposition 13. This limited property tax increases to no more than 2% annual as long as the property is not sold nor renovated. People who oppose Prop 13, claim that tax laws can influence local governments who determine how available land is used. They argue that officials give preference to businesses over housing developments because companies can generate tax revenues beyond property tax. This means that local tax law limits our supply.
It’s expensive to build in CA. Many homes are 3 times the costs to build compared to the rest of the country. The cost of labor, land, material, and government fees are extremely high.
Building standards are more stringent in California, which can be costly as well as slow down the pace of new construction. For example, the state requires builders to use higher quality building materials- such as windows, insulation, and heating and cooling systems. (2015 Report on CA Housing Costs).
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