Permits for multifamily housing units nearly doubled in California in September, largely due to a change in the state building code affecting handicapped persons, according to the California Building Industry Assn.
The 86% jump in multifamily permits taken out in September was mainly for structures of five units or more, according to Robert Rivinius, the association's executive vice president.
"Apart from this code change, requiring stringent handicapped access in future apartment buildings, multifamily construction has been strong this year due to the increased availability of mortgage-revenue bond financing," he added. "The amount available jumped from $1.1 billion in 1984, to more than $3 billion this year. Also, builders fear that tax reform will make rental housing construction less feasible in the future."
Rivinius predicted that multifamily housing starts will total 141,000 units this year in California, 26% higher than last year's level.
According to the Construction Industry Research Board, all residential building will remain strong for the next three months, with single-family production of 114,000 units bringing this year's production total to 255,000 units, 13.5% more than in 1984.