The city is seeking input on where new housing units could be built in Carlsbad to satisfy a state requirement that cities accommodate their fair share of the region’s housing needs, including homes for people of all income levels and stages of life.
Eighteen proposed locations were chosen based on public input gathered last year, input from a citizens advisory committee and direction from the City Council.
Over the next eight years, Carlsbad was assigned 3,900 new housing units.
The city can meet some of this number through existing locations and approved projects, but the city still needs to identify locations for about 2,600 new homes. Most of those need to be affordable for people with moderate to low incomes, according to state formulas for household income levels.
The city is seeking input on proposed sites that would need to be rezoned, either to allow housing where it’s not allowed today or increase the number of units allowed on sites already zoned for housing. Owners and people living within 600 feet of all the potentially affected properties have been notified by mail of the potential rezoning.
The city would not build housing on these sites. Instead, the city’s obligation is to identify space for housing and create policies that would facilitate new housing to be built based on different income levels and stages of life.
All feedback gathered will be presented to the City Council in early 2022.
CARLSBAD — Affordable housing is a challenge for many cities as the housing crisis rages statewide.
But the Carlsbad City Council chipped away at its state-mandated affordable housing requirements by approving 70 units for very-low to low-income households during its Aug. 31 meeting.
Additionally, the council approved a $3.1 million loan as requested by Bridge Housing, which partnered with Summerhill Apartment Communities, to develop the Aviara Apartments.
The loan will allow Bridge Housing to cement its application for state and federal tax credits to help fund its affordable portion of the 329-unit project on Aviara Parkway just south of Palomar Airport Road, according to Mandy Mills, Carlsbad’s director of housing and homeless services.
The Aviara East Apartments, where the 70 units will reside east of Aviara Parkway and north of Laurel Tree Road, make up the bulk of the affordable units for the project
In total, 81 units, or 25% of the total project, will be affordable units, Mills added.
The cost for the entire project, which rests on lots east and west of Aviara Parkway, is estimated at $30.9 million, Mills said.
“The project started the process in 2017 (with design and environmental reviews) before the Planning Commission approved it in December 2020,” Mills said. “Bridge will submit tax credit and bond allocation requests next month … and construction is expected to start in summer 2022.”
Rent will run between $600 and $1,700 depending on area median income (AMI) of each resident. Mills said seven units each are allocated for 30% and 50% of AMI and 55 residences for 60%.
Summerhill will manage the market-rate units, while Bridge Housing will operate the affordable units, she explained.
Jeff Williams, of Bridge Housing, said his company has two other developments the company manages in Carlsbad.
Bridge Housing owns the 334-unit Villa Loma project and 92 units at Poinsettia Station Apartments.
Bridge Housing intends to secure tax-exempt bonds and tax credit equity to finance the majority of the project’s cost to improve its competitiveness for bond and tax credit financing, according to the staff report.
Per the estimates, state and federal tax credits would account for $15.3 million along with a permanent loan of $7 million for the bulk of the funding.
The $3.1 million, though, will come from the Housing Trust Fund, which has a current balance of $13.6 million.
“Our mission is to provide housing, services and opportunities for residents of all income levels,” Williams said. “We do that by building on our record.”
The average cost per unit, though, is about $442,000, while city staff cited a Terner Center Report of the cost-per-unit for affordable units in the state is at $480,000, an increase of nearly $70,000 since 2008.
Another benefit of the 81 units is pushing the city closer toward its required affordable housing allotment under the Regional Housing Needs Assessment.
The RHNA numbers set by the county is 3,873 units for Carlsbad and more than 2,000 must meet very low to low-income residences.
The site of the project is 1967 N. Vulcan Avenue in the northernmost part of Leucadia near La Costa Avenue. The intersection of Vulcan and La Costa is a major concern to residents who oppose the development.
Wermers said the updated project plans now include changes to Vulcan Avenue that are meant to make the area safer for pedestrians and bicyclists.
“When we do this it also promotes vehicle safety,” Wermers said.
Wermers also made a commitment to pay his company’s fair share in whatever changes the city decides to make at the Vulcan and La Costa intersection.
“Whatever you guys decide, we want to pay our fair share,” Wermers added.
There was more support for the newly redesigned project, some pointing to the need for low-income housing in the area and the project will boast 12 units designated as low-income.
“We need more roofs over our heads. This housing project is the perfect one to bookend Vulcan Avenue and Leucadia,” resident Kevin Daniels said. “I can’t express this enough, this project is a perfect fit.”
The rapidly-increasing home prices are exacerbating the problem too – especially for existing homeowners who had hoped to move up. If you paid $500,000 for your house and now it’s worth $1,000,000, you need to spend $1,500,000 on the upgrade just to make it worth it. But the gap isn’t between $1.0 and $1.5, it’s the whopping million dollars between the previously-comfortable $500,000 and the new price of $1,500,000. Even if you are over 55 and can take your old property taxes with you, the new mortgage amount will be double the previous amount AND last for another 30 years. It’s why more and more of the current homeowners are staying put, which is limiting the inventory now, and in the future.
It’s why I said on the TV show that the current market insanity is likely to continue.
With a finite number of homes and 1,700 new millionaires being created every day in America (we are now up to 18,000,000 millionaires!), the affluent have commandeered the local market. Apparently, they don’t mind paying these prices, and will throw in another $100,000 or so to win the home, if needed.
We hear regular calls for government to ease up on zoning requirements, but more action is needed because we are out of land. Bill Davidson, the most prolific home builder in the history of San Diego County, talked about the shortage back in 2012:
On the TV show, I suggested redeveloping the MCAS Miramar or getting the City of Carlsbad to free up some of the dedicated open space to create larger opportunities for builders, because we need thousands of more homes, not dozens, to balance the market and slow down the pricing.
But those ideas have no chance of happening.
It would take a monumental shift in priorities for our society to consider those. If the government were to propose redevelopment on a grand scale, it would take dozens of years to come to fruition. The Kearny Mesa project is a good example, but it will only add 26,000 homes over the next 30 years which probably won’t be enough to slow down pricing – and no single-family residences are planned there.
Any other new projects will face intense opposition.
The NAVWAR site off the I-5 freeway would seem like an ideal redevelopment project, and it could provide housing right where it’s needed. But the opposition is fierce – consider this attorney’s opinion:
Unless we have a game-changing shift in our community’s mindset about redeveloping the infill sites, the hordes of affluent people will dominate the home-buying – and keep pricing at these levels or higher.
Oh but wait Jim, how about those boomers – half of which haven’t retired yet? Will the boomers who are still working be more likely to need the dough, AND be young enough to endure a move out-of-state?
Maybe, but their kids and grandkids will be lined up to inherit the house, and with that being the only feasible way for them to stay in San Diego, the boomers will find a way to age-in-place instead.
Home buyers deserve to have their own representation.
The broker cooperation system which allows every agent to share their inventory with all other buyers via the MLS has worked well for 100+ years. But it has been under attack for years, and it may not survive the tight-inventory era where sellers and listing agents want to minimize or eliminate buyer-agents altogether.
An agent sent this in today:
Do you know that Lennar is no longer paying agents a commission or referral fee?
I have been working with a client for almost a year. She wouldn’t have known about the Lennar at Treviso community without me bringing her there. I registered her as my client and when her name got called on the list, they told her they’re no longer cooperating with agents and if she tried to include me she’d lose the house. Thank you Lennar for putting my client is a horrible position. Hey builders. Don’t ostracize the brokerage community! The market may be busy now but when the tides turn, you’re going to need us again. This is bad business.
I know for a fact that Lennar isn’t paying commissions on any of their SD communities currently.
I agree that it’s bad business to have an agent sign in their buyer as required to receive the commission, but then rescind their offer of compensation when the buyer steps up to purchase. But nobody cares about buyer-agents, and the abuse will continue. Lower or no commission being offered, no clarity on how multiple offers get handled (other than the usual “I just let the sellers decide”, which is a lie), and no easy path to show and sell.
What is the result of buyer-agents being snuffed out?
Buyers don’t recognize the need for getting good help.
An apprentice from a realtor team will suck them in with the promise of getting them an ‘off-market deal’, but then get sold a 1,200sf two-story house in a gang-infested area for 10% to 20% over value (true story).
We should probably just drop the seller-paid commissions – though they should have the right to offer a bounty – and have buyers pay their own agents. Those who value good help will seek out the best agents, and those who don’t will get what they get and wind up with regrets.
For months the talking heads have cited the ultra-low rates, the shortage of new homes being built, stock market, millennials, covid, etc. as reasons why the real estate market has exploded.
Let’s add a few no-so-obvious reasons.
Did we fully recover from the last downturn? We know that because Bernanke and the banks unilaterally changed the rules to rescue the MBS investors, we never hit the true bottom. The short-sales muddied the water further because there were so many that were never exposed to the open market and sold instead at artificially-low prices by unscrupulous realtors. In 2010-2014, we saw it here on the blog where many commenters expected the downturn to last for at least a few more years, and even the Frenzy of 2013 didn’t convince everyone we were out of the woods. Low (but not ultra-low) rates made it interesting, but there wasn’t enough confidence for buyers to flood the streets desperating seeking a home to buy – though in hindsight, they probably wish they did.
The lower-end inventory has been decimated by rental conversions and aging-in-place. Because the rents have exploded, any of those homeowners who didn’t have to sell their existing home had to consider hoarding their prized possession that was probably the best investment they ever made and turn it into a rental instead. The high costs of senior care is causing many if not most to age-in-place, and besides, one of the kids or grandkids can take over and assume the low tax basis. While pricing is flying on the lower-end today, it’s a recent occurrence that the appreciation has been 2% to 3% per month. If there had been more listings in recent years, we would have had prices rising faster, sooner. In the chart above, the rest of the categories look fairly uniform – it’s the lower-end that has changed drastically and having the most impact on the frenzy upstream.
The builders never got the memo about open bidding. Still to this day, it is first-come, first serve. Pardee is down to their last 20-30 houses ever in Carmel Valley, they were taken over by Tri-Pointe, and they have nothing left to lose. You know there has to be 50-100 people waiting on their buyers’ list yet they only release 2-4 homes per phase. Toll Brothers sold two of their models for $4,000,000+, yet Pardee is keeping their production homes attractive priced in the mid-$2,000,000s. If they just opened up the bidding at each release to ALL the buyers on the list, they would pick up an extra $500,000 easily – just because if you are number 50+ on the list, you’re not going to get another chance. But they don’t do it, which is keeping a lid on pricing. Because most everyone is buying their forever home, there won’t be enough turnover in the next few years to generate the momentum needed to find the real top-dollar value.
There are three examples of what has been undercutting the trajectory of home pricing.
When we have BOTH sales and pricing on the rise exponentially like we do now, it demonstrates what is possible when you take off the inhibitors. We are probably running a little hot today – can we be so undervalued that this frenzy could keep going for months or years?
Perhaps – especially if there are new market factors we haven’t considered before!
Jim the Realtor is legit - I interviewed three brokers; he said list price should be $100,000 higher than the other two brokers; listed it with him and had all cash (no financing) offer in two days, five day contingency period, closing in two weeks - and it closed at his recommended list price. I could not recommend anyone more than I recommend Jim the Realtor.
When we moved to San Diego in 2005 we rented a big house on Mt. Soledad (La Jolla) with 180 degree ocean views for the same payment as a mortgage on a dump in Chula Vista. Clearly something was wrong. Yet, the media was full of the usual happy-talk nonsense, so I was glad to find Jim's blog. I've followed his honest assessments and data since.
We decided to sell and move to AZ at Thanksgiving. Dec. 1st we met with Jim to sell our home. We closed today (29 days later). Jim orchestrated a feeding frenzy -- we had 25 showings in 2-1/2 days, multiple offers, and sold for well over asking price. I'd say he earned his commission! We have owned and sold homes in 5 different States always using experienced, productive, full-time realtors. Jim outshines them all.
You don't decide to sell and close 29 days later over Christmas (with COVID lockdown) without some miracles. Donna was amazing at performing lots of those miracles and ensuring that everything was done right and on time. They are a terrific team with a very responsive and professional network.
Where do we begin..2020 has been a year for everyone. When COVID hit and shut down both my husband and my businesses, we were left with a mortgage and very little income coming in. We were stressed, scared and felt stuck. We made the hard decision to sell our home and move out of state. We contacted the Klinges' and spent a good hour going over what we hoped we could accomplish. Jim and Donna came over with comps in hand and suggestions on improvements to get our house ready for the market. It was overwhelming to think about, but Donna was there and one step ahead in every scenario. Basically we just approved what they suggested and Donna handled literally everything. We placed our house on the market and within the first day we had multiple offers well above asking price! We couldn't believe it. We were overjoyed! Jim countered the offers to weed through them, and everyone came back with way more. It was amazing, and we are ?? sure it was because of the staging and repairs the Klinges suggested we do.
Due to unforeseen dishonesty from the buyers lender, we hit a big hurdle when trying to close. We had already moved out of state and were shocked when three days before closing the lender dropped a bombshell on the buyers and us. However, Jim and Donna handled it like veterans, not afraid to play hard ball and represent their clients. After a few phone calls with us, and several between Donna and the lender, they had a plan B-Z to make sure we were taken care of. In the end we closed with even more money than we ever thought possible and with very little work from us. The Klinges handled this entire "2020" worthy event with the utmost professionalism and did everything in their power to not only make this as smooth as possible for us, but we also walked away with more money from the sale of the house than we ever hoped for. After working with Jim and Donna, you don't ever use anyone else. They are hands down the best team to represent you in any scenario.
Working with Klinge Realty Group was a great experience! They are very responsive, professional and knowledgable about the real estate market! I would definitely recommend Klinge Realty Group.
Jim and Donna Klinge made the sale of our condo extraordinarily easy. They know the market and gave us sound advice backed by details and very considerable experience, reflected both in the initial pricing and subsequent negotiations. They work together as a team and are always available to talk. We had a few challenges with our property and they were able to coordinate the resolution to everything, including items that I would not think would ordinarily be their responsibility to handle. They made the whole process effortless on our part. They are folks with high integrity and we cannot recommend them highly enough.
Review for Member: Donna Klinge
I cannot believe there are no reviews of Donna yet, ugh!! She is the secret sauce of the Jim Klinge/Donna Klinge combo! I will touch on Jim here, but Donna is why I'm so totally loyal to these two (no offense to Jim :)).
I consider myself a rather savvy buyer/seller. I've bought/sold 7 times in about 15 years. On the buy side, Jim is the PERFECT combo of: completely digitally savvy (he will pull data all day long until you feel comfortable with your chosen house, area, school district, anticipated appreciation rate...anything!), he's super well respected and known in the area by other agents, an amazingly cool but strategic negotiator, is totally devoid of desperation for a sale/commission, and more.
Then once you get into contract phase, Donna literally handles every last and final detail in a concierge-like manner -- totally shielding you from the daily back and forth, noodling and annoyances of the buyer's requests. She solves it ALL; it's miraculous what that woman accomplishes over and above what is even expected in a buy/sell transaction.
On the sell side, Jim and Donna do the same, but even moreso. Donna in particular truly takes everything off your plate: she'll manage getting the house painted, the carpets replaced, she'll go on site (as she Jim both did for me when selling our rental properties) to work with the renters and make sure the house is ready to show -- freeing me to have to take time off of work to do so. They work with A+ integrity, too, so you know you are serving all parties fairly and lawfully throughout.
A home purchase/sale is the most considered you'll ever make. HIRE A SAVVY AGENT, not a friend!, and get what you need out of the transaction. Jim and Donna are our agents for life.
Jim and Donna Klinge are by far the most professional, personable and responsive realtors I have ever worked with. They provide VIP concierge level service in every area of the process of selling your home. My home was marketed so successfully that we received an offer the day after our first and only open house. Thanks to Jim's pricing and negotiating, our house is now the highest sold in our community. Jim's vast experience means he has worked with several realtors and knows the market all over north county. Donna is AMAZING in processing everything in the transaction. She scheduled trades people to work on the house in preparation for the sale as well as the repairs needed before closing. She communicated clearly every step of the way about what would be happening. She took the weight off my shoulders for the whole process. I will always use Jim and Donna for my future real estate needs and I whole heartedly recommend them to anyone buying or selling a home.
Jim and the team at Klinge Reality are without a doubt the best in the business! Not only was Jim helpful and extremely knowledgeable, he was patient and determined to help me find my first home. Jim and his team have been in the business for many years, and it shows. Jim is a wealth of knowledge and was my biggest proponent despite the temperature of the competitive market. I ended up getting the perfect property in my dream neighborhood all thanks to Jim. From the day my offer was accepted, Donna was a real lifesaver. She was extremely helpful, responsive, and knowledgeable when it came to every minute detail, and held my hand through the process. As a first time home buyer I had no idea what the process would entail, but Donna curtailed every concern I came across and made the escrow process feel seamless. Jim and Donna provided me the best home buying experience, and I am very grateful for all they did for me. It was truly a pleasure to work with Jim and Donna and I am already looking forward to the next time we work together!
Review for Member: Richard Morgan
Richard is an amazing realtor! He has high integrity and genuinely cares about his clients and their needs. Richard paid close attention to what I was seeking in a home and was very patient in our search to find it. I would highly recommend Richard and will use him for future transactions. Truly a different kind of realtor experience!
Could not be happier with my experience with Jim and his team. He helped me sell a very unique and challenging property. Throughout the entire process he was always available, honest, transparent, trustworthy, and always put my interests as a seller first. A (rare) true professional! During close of escrow Jim went above and beyond to complete the deal. It would not have been possible without his experience, fantastic team, and pure dedication. Highly recommended!
Thanks Jim and Donna Klinge!