Houses being built at a slower pace

The Tri-Cities have been known for constructing their own trends when it comes to the housing market.

But now, KEPR discovered a slowdown in rapid addition of new homes around the area.

It's no big surprise Pasco has seen a drop in the number of building permits for new homes. Developers suggested this would happen when the city added fees to offset the impact of all the new families putting a strain on the Pasco School District.

"There's no one reason, there is a combination of reasons and it's too early to tell on the impact fees - pardon the pun - what kind of impact it's going to have on the housing market," said realtor Paul Roy.

Through August of this year -- only 240 building permits have been issued -- compared to nearly 500 in all of last year. Kennewick is on pace to come in roughly the same as last year -- while Richland and West Richland are pacing slightly more than last year.

But this would only bring West Richland in line with permits issued in years past, but this does not have realtors worried.

"If we are slightly down compared to last year no panic, no reason to think because of all the other things that are positive to believe there is a concern," said Roy.

One of those positives have been a drop in the number of foreclosures. 2012 is on pace to have the fewest number of foreclosures in the last decade. That gives confidence to homeowners and builders.

One local builder explains that even with the decline in housing permits for some cities, business is steady.

"There's work, there's homes to build, but it's not the amount of homes it was before," said local builder Brett Lott.

The decline in homes from a year ago is not only hitting the economy, but those that drive it.

"So it takes a toll on all of us builders, you bet," said Lott.