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Can California Realtors tackle a housing shortage, rising prices and inequality? – Times-Herald

Dave Walsh purchased his first property, a modest three-bedroom home in San Jose, for $ 67,500 in 1980.

Decades later, Walsh climbed the ladder of property and career. The modest home he owned was worth $ 1.2 million, and Walsh is now chairman of the California Real Estate Agents Association.

It’s a crucial time for his industry. Median homes in California rose to a record $ 814,000 in April, with housing shortages and rising prices showing little sign of a slowdown. Building permits have been declining for several years, and construction costs are getting higher and higher.

The market is different from what Walsh saw as an agent for 41 years. “This is a really critical level,” said Walsh, president of CAR until December. “How can I stop this?”

Walsh has been actively involved in reforming building codes to support housing development and fair housing policy. Still, challenges remain beyond housing production.

Walsh also set the goal of state-wide associations to promote fairer housing rules to rectify past legislative efforts that limited opportunities for people of color to buy homes. “California has a problem we need to address,” he said.

This interview has been lightly edited for length and clarity.

Question: You got a real estate license in 1980. How has the California market changed?

A: I was good at my job and knew the market, so I believed that anyone could get a home.

I was familiar with financing. And I can help people connect with the right type of funding for their particular financial situation. And I knew the up-and-coming marketplace. And it may not be the perfect area today. But it was becoming an emerging region.

Frankly, I can’t say the same thing today. It’s hard to get a house for someone. For buyers, the market feels like a dramatic change.

Question: What happened between 1980 and 2021?

A: In 2005, we stopped building enough homes. From that point on, it couldn’t be built close enough to keep up with California’s housing demand. By the way, for the past five years, every year in a row, we built less every year. So even in the midst of this crisis, we haven’t built enough homes yet. What you have is that the property (price) is rising so fast that we can’t keep up.

It drives out the middle class and allows “people who have” to have more and “people who don’t” to have fewer.

Question: What about the argument from slow-growing community members and real estate owners that the solution is to move jobs from Silicon Valley to California? It’s a pretty strong emotion in the suburbs.

A: I always listen to that discussion. (Real estate owners) want to maintain quality of life without increasing density. And the solution they suggest is, “Simply put a job in Stockton. Put them in a modest. Put them in the Central Valley.’

It’s easy to say, “Let’s put the work somewhere else.” Then people will go there. Well, maybe they will, maybe they won’t. (Tesla CEO) I’m not worried about Elon Musk leaving California. I’m worried that the next Elon Musk will leave California.

Question: What is the reaction from Sacramento?

A: I have regular discussions with elected officials not only at the state level but also at the federal level, and they all know that we are facing a huge housing crisis.

The housing bill that passes must include an element of union labor. Well, union labor adds (cost). And I’m not an anti-union, just a professional home. Find a way to develop an affordable home. And when you start adding qualification costs, trade union labor costs, and CEQA (California Environmental Quality Act) legal costs to all types of homes, it’s a mistake to suddenly call them affordable. It’s no longer affordable in California.

Question: As President of the California Real Estate Agents Association, what are your main goals for this year?

A: I have focused on very specially fair housing. I have a great book, (Law color) By Richard Rothstein. I read the book … and it changed my overall focus on California housing.

We face the big challenge of helping colored people join California’s homes. (Early generation National Association of Realtors members) has never been the biggest supporter of this in the past. We have been involved in helping legislation, or at least helping people of color make it difficult to get a home. And we endorsed (what) eventually becoming a redlining. After all, we were an obstacle to color.

So my goal and focus of this year’s leadership team is to take concrete steps to improve fair housing opportunities for people of color in the state.


About Dave Walsh

Age: 66 years old

Family: wife and 4 children

Birthplace: Born in Toronto, raised in Silicon Valley and attending school

Education: Attending Willow Glen High School, San Jose State University

Employment: Walsh has been an active real estate agent for 41 years at several real estate companies in the Bay Area. He is the vice president of Compass and the sales manager of the San Jose office.


5 things

1. Walsh is an avid traveler to Europe and enjoys visiting England with his family. “I was able to live in London with a heartbeat,” he said.

2. Once upon a time, he held the record for the most expensive home sale in Los Gatos. This is a $ 12 million mansion.

3. Walsh was born in Toronto. His father moved his family to Sunnyvale in 1959 and got a job as an engineer at Fairchild Semiconductor.

4. He sold his first home in San Jose to a friend, a young painter and his wife, an elementary school teacher. He said today’s young couples with similar careers couldn’t buy a similar home without financial support from their parents.

5. “I eat, sleep, and drink real estate,” he said.

Can California Realtors tackle a housing shortage, rising prices and inequality? – Times-Herald Source link Can California Realtors tackle a housing shortage, rising prices and inequality? – Times-Herald

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