Southern California real estate bosses slash hiring – OCRegister

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Southern California real estate bosses have dramatically cooled their hiring pace as high interest rates trim construction plans and home sales.

My trusty spreadsheet found property-linked employment in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties was 755,900 in March 2024. That’s up only 2,200 jobs from February and 36% slower than the seasonal norm. In pre-pandemic 2015-19, an average 3,460 jobs were added in March.


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Another slowdown sign: In the last 12 months, real estate work grew locally by 7,400 positions, but the industyr’s hiring pace has averaged 13,800 a year since 2010. So, 2024 is running 46% below par on an annual basis.

Also, current real estate staffing is 26,800 jobs below the most recent employment peak set in July 2022. Remember, many people who work in the real estate world are self-employed and are not tracked by traditional government job counts.

Don’t overlook real estate’s job-market clout, with its share of local employment at 9.5% in March 2024. The industry’s hiring equaled 11% of all new local jobs since 2010, the end of the Great Recession.

Across Southern California, employment in all other industries was 7.19 million workers in March – up 25,600 jobs in a month. Over 12 months, non-real estate jobs were up 69,500, or a 1% gain – equal to real estate’s growth rate.

By the slice

Here’s how key real estate-related employment niches in Southern California fared …

Trade construction specialists: 248,800 employed by contractors – up 700 for the month and up 7,100 over 12 months, or a 2.9% gain. Average March in 2015-19 had a 2,760 job increase. It’s 9,500 below post-Great Recession high (October 2023).

Building, civil, construction: 121,400 workers in many trades – up 900 for the month and up 2,000 over 12 months, or a 1.7% gain. Average March was a 350 job gain. It’s 2,100 below post-Great Recession high (October 2023).

Lending: 88,200 folks in various slices of credit work – down 100 for the month and off 4,000 over 12 months, or a 4.3% drop. Average March was a 340 job loss. It’s 36,700 below post-Great Recession high (December 2012).

Real estate services: 138,200 people handling transactions – down 1,200 for the month and up 200 over 12 months, or a 0.1% gain. Average March was a 160 job loss. It’s 5,200 below post-Great Recession high (December 2022).

Building supplies: 50,700 sellers of equipment and materials flat for the month and off 800 over 12 months, or a 1.6% drop. Average March was a 640 job increase. It’s 5,300 below post-Great Recession high (June 2021).

Building services: 108,600 jobs in commercial property operations – up 1,900 for the month and up 2,900 over 12 months, or a 2.7% gain. Average March was a 220 job gain. It’s 100 below post-Great Recession high (October 2023).

Geographically speaking

Here is real estate employment’s breakdown, by metro area …

Los Angeles County: 361,300 real estate jobs – up 300 for the month vs. an average March in 2015-19 with 1,100 hires. It’s down 700 over 12 months, or a 0.2% one-year drop. Jobs are 15,400 below post-Great Recession high (February 2020). Real estate equals 7.9% of all LA jobs.

Orange County: 213,700 real estate jobs – up 800 for the month vs. average March with 500 hires. It’s up 2,300 over 12 months, or a 1.09% one-year gain. Jobs are 16,700 below post-Great Recession high (August 2018). Real estate equals 12.6% of all OC jobs.

Inland Empire: 180,900 real estate jobs – up 1,100 for the month vs. average March with 1,800 hires. It’s up 5,800 over 12 months, or a 3.3% one-year gain. Jobs are 5,200 below post-Great Recession high (October 2023). Real estate equals 10.7% of all IE jobs.

Jonathan Lansner is the business columnist for the Southern California News Group. He can be reached at [email protected]

This post was originally published on 3rd party site mentioned on the title of this site

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