Orange County housing transitioning from single-family homes to high-density condos


For the last few decades, Orange County transitioned from a bedroom community of LA commuters to an economic powerhouse in its own right. The housing market evolved from a series of large-lot subdivisions to a few remaining master planned communities and a number of infill parcels. As demand increased, so did density.

Rising rents stimulated demand in the multi-family market, and over the last several years, apartment development dominated the market.

The number of high-density housing units in Orange County is remarkable. Nearly half of the new supply will be over 30 units per acre, which means podium construction.


Other observations from the Orange County report

Based on their activity, it’s clear that investors, developers, and builders expect home sales and rental absorption to increase over the next several years.

  • Total lot sales is up 47% year-over-year. In the trailing twelve months from Q4 2015 to Q3 2016, 7,476 units sold as compared to 5,070 from Q4 2014 to Q3 2015.
  • Total dollar volume is up 60% year-over-year. In the trailing twelve months from Q4 2015 to Q3 2016, $1.54 billion worth of units sold as compared to $967 million from Q4 2014 to Q3 2015.
  • Investor lot purchases are up 581% and total investor dollar volume is up 407% year-over-year.
  • Land developer lot purchases are up 75% and total land developer dollar volume is up 51% year-over-year.
  • Public builder lot purchases are up 54% and total public builder dollar volume is up 89% year-over-year.
  • Private builders face an increasingly challenging environment. Private builder lot purchases are up only 5% while total private builder dollar volume is down 13% year-over-year.

Market InSite’s Residential Land Sales Metrics & Analysis Report (Click Here) provides an exclusive look at this difficult-to-find data.

If you would like to learn more about these reports, contact Larry Roberts at, or call 949-656-8011.