Housing listings averaging 5 days in Juneau

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - The topic of construction, labor, and supply shortages in relation to expanding housing in Juneau was taken up on Action Line.

    "Even though they produce on an average over 100 new units a year, it just doesn't seem to keep up," said Juneau Economic Development Council Executive Director Brian Holst on Action Line.

    He said they have heard anecdotally that companies need to that buy housing for their workers, as well as the impacts of the Airbnb, "phenomena," where people buy units to invest in.

    He talked about housing listing turnover.

    "10 years ago, when you would post a place to sell it took about 40 days on average to sell your apartment, your condominium, or your single-family home. Now, the average is five days," he said. "As soon as it's out there, somebody's ready to pick that up, which tells us clearly there's a huge amount of demand. So there's a huge challenge to get into the construction industry. We need more companies. We need more production. We need more housing built."

    Victor Banaszak of VRB construction and a member of the Southeast Alaska Building Industry Association, spoke on land availability issues in Juneau, saying the city is landlocked.

    "There isn't an unlimited supply of land, and so I would say probably along with the cost of materials doubling you know tripling in some cases, I think the bottleneck as well is the land limitation there, and so it's tough, it's really tough."

    Banaszak said there's trouble with regulations, he explained the advocacy efforts of the Association.

    "A lot of regulation, the codes are continuing and that's one of the things we do at the state and national levels. We're about advocating for the industry, but we're also advocating for our consumers because the problem is, if a whole bunch of new codes come out that add $50,000 or $100,000 to the cost of building a home, we have to pass that through. And so the consumer in other words, the person who buys the home has to pay for that and then it makes us look bad and it slows down the sales of homes and so it's a battle between safety but also realistic, you know, cost issues and so affordability so regulation does not equal affordability. In fact, it's usually the opposite."

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