Fresno housing boom creates Valley jobs

Fresno, Calif.

It's all about jobs. A growing demand for housing creates jobs across a wide array of sectors. And the increase in homebuilding is putting people back to work.

To build one home in one new housing development many workers are needed. Tasks such as laying the carpet to putting in new sewer lines have to be done when building a home.

It has been a long time since Mike Zamarripa's Landscaping company has been very busy.

" We've had to hire quite a few people, we've brought some people back and hired some new people," said Zamarripa

Like many businesses, Landscape Connections, took a huge hit during the recession, Zamarripa said they had to lay off people, they struggled until recently.

" I'd say probably say 4 to 6 months ago maybe we started picking up and hiring some more guys," said Zamarripa.

The up tick in business for this landscaping company can directly be attributed to the comeback of the housing industry. Homebuilders like Darius Asemi can barely keep up with demand.

" I think every homebuilder is seeing an increase in volume now is having enough product on hand and labor to deliver these homes," Asemi said.

The low prices of homes, down an estimated 30 to 40 percent from 2005, and interest rates at almost half of where they were six seven years ago, are fueling the real estate comeback, Asemi said.

The boom in construction is beginning to ripple through the economy. The boom has created some 800 jobs in Fresno County over the last year. This has put landscapers, plumbers, and tile layers back to work.

Mike Prandini, President of the Building Industry of Fresno and Madera counties said putting in a new housing development has a huge multiplying effect.

"Anytime that a builder builds a home it's got to have the infrastructure to put in first," Pardini said.

That means hiring contractors to put in the streets, water and, sewer lines.

"So you can see it does generate a lot of income for the local area when construction is doing well," Pardini said.

The numbers put the latest construction news in perspective. For instance in May 2006, the peak of the housing boom, there were more than 23,000 people working in construction jobs. In may of 2013 there is less than 13,00 construction jobs.

" The good news is the construction industry; the housing industry in the Fresno area is going to create thousands of jobs over the next few years, " Asemi said.

Asemi believes this current housing boom in the Fresno area could last at least two years. If the economy continues to improve and interest rates will remain relatively low.

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