SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA REAL ESTATE BRIEFS APRIL HOUSING MIXED There’s that word again–mixed. But that is a common trend in recent local economic stats, with the April housing data from the Construction Industry Research Board a good example. In Los Angeles and Orange counties, the April numbers were down over the year (apartment permits were down in both), but total units for the first 4 months are still running ahead of 1998. Elsewhere in the region, the April numbers were up, with another good gain in the Riverside-San Bernardino area, and a stunning jump in San Diego County. For the first 4 months of 1999, San Diego County has permitted the largest number of new housing units in the state, with Riverside-San Bernardino breathing down its neck. For the state as a whole, new housing units so far during the year are running ahead 17.4%. In the three big Bay Area metro areas (Oakland, San Francisco and San Jose), housing permits are trailing the 1998 numbers, which is interesting given the strength in the resale housing market. NONRESIDENTIAL CONSTRUCTION STILL ROLLING April trends in nonresidential construction were a pinch more positive. The value of new industrial permits to date is up 213.5% in San Bernardino County to $131.9 million, which leads the state. In Los Angeles County, permit values are ahead a more modest 41.6% to $98.9 million, which is good for second place. San Diego County is up just 2.5%, but the three other counties are running behind the year ago totals. An interesting sidebar is found in Santa Clara County which is off 48.4% in permit values, but still checks in with a four month value of $85.5 million, which places it third in the state in industrial permit value. In the office sector, Los Angeles and Orange counties are leading the pack, with the former up 33.9% to $86.4 million, and the latter ahead 74.1% to $73.3 million. Riverside County checks in with a 118.5% gain to a four month total of $6.3 million (small base), but the other three counties are running behind 1998 values. In the retail sector, Ventura County is up 642.6% to $43.3 million (small base again), while Orange County is running ahead 91.3%, with a four month value of $70.4 million. Los Angeles County is up just 11.9%, but its four month permit value is a huge $134.2 million (there seems to be an inverse relationship between permit values and excitement in the stores). In the remaining 3 counties, retail permit values so far are below 1998 levels. REAL ESTATE INDUSTRY LOOKS FORWARD… The Real Estate Conference Group will present its 1999 Midyear Real Estate Outlook conference on Monday, June 28, 1999, at the Century Plaza Hotel. Top industry leaders will discuss strategies to deal with the latest emerging trends. Registration fee is $215 before 6/14/99, or $240 thereafter. For more information, please call 310-285-5327 or visit http://www.realestateoutlook.com Jack Kyser is with the Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC). To contact LAEDC, call 213-622-4300.