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Why are so many homes being built during a drought? | Why Guy

Roughly 120,000 homes need to be built each year for the next eight years to meet the growing state housing demand, especially affordable homes.

Today's Why Guy question comes in from Annette, who asks, "Just out of curiosity, why are there so many apartment, condos and homes being built when we are always in such a drought. I get it that California is growing and we need more homes. Rent or buying is just not affordable."

Annette, great question on a huge topic. Roughly 120,000 homes need to be built each year for the next eight years to meet the growing state housing demand, especially affordable homes.

But, as of Wednesday, March 9, over 85% of the state is in severe drought status, and more homes with little water is a ecological train wreck. Balancing the need for new housing with repeated droughts is the new norm, according to multiple experts. 

Dr. Tom Corringham, research economist at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, says rural and inland areas of California will suffer the biggest drought impacts with new housing.

"In some parts of the state, it is becoming increasingly difficult to get hookups for water in certain communities because of the drought conditions, Corringham said.

If houses go up, water will determine where. Desalination plants are becoming more reliable throughout the state. Corrigham offered a couple more suggestions for new housing, too. 

"New homes can also be built with less landscaping or even drought tolerant yards," Corrigham said.

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