WHERE HAVE ALL THE NEW-HOME BUYERS GONE?
For two years, Orange County’s new-home market soared.
Sales of brand new homes climbed to 349 a month in 2014 from a monthly average of 159 units in 2012. The new-home share of all home sales rose from 3 percent in July 2012 to 11 percent two years later.
Then sales dropped.
According to figures from data firm CoreLogic, new home sales have declined year-over-year in Orange County for 10 straight months, with volume down 21 percent. By comparison, existing home sales increased 10 percent in that period.
The new-home sales decline is unique.
Among Southern California counties, only Orange and San Diego counties had new-home sales declines. And Orange County was alone with an unbroken downward streak running from November 2014 through September.
In Riverside and San Bernardino counties, new-home sales were up 20 percent and 23 percent, respectively.
Orange County sales also run counter to nationwide trends. The average number of new-homes sold this year has been up 17.5 percent nationwide, U.S. Commerce Department figures show.
So what is plaguing the new home market here?
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