The economy may not be recovering as fast as previously hoped, but it's getting there, according to a new report and forecast released Thursday.
The report, authored by Beacon Economics in partnership with University of California Riverside's business administration, shows over 30,000 new jobs being added in Riverside and San Bernardino counties since 2009. 17,000 jobs were added in the last year alone.
Home prices are also on the rise, up 23 percent from the market low in 2009, and almost 6 percent from 2011.
The report also shows construction picking up, with homes spending less time on the market.
Ann Richie is the Vice President of the California Desert Association of Realtors, and she told us, "We've transitioned from a buyers market to a sellers market. As prices have begun to rise, we're seeing buyers kind of get off the fence, and home in all price points are beginning to sell. Some of them are having multiple offers."
And it appears consumers are more willing to open their wallets for things like new cars. They're also willing to eat out more and stay in hotels.
James Canfield is Executive Director of the Palm Springs Bureau of Tourism, who says the quick recovery for tourism in the valley is a big boost for the local economy. "Obviously the more visitors we have, the more jobs there are, the more demand there are for services. And, we see that as kind of a multiplier across all levels of our economy so it's very important to us."
Riverside and San Bernardino counties are not recovering as quickly as the rest of the state, but businesses say things are still getting better.
Joy Meredith is President of Main Street Palm Springs and a local business owner. "One of the things that I do notice just this year in my own store is that the average sale is up. So that's a very good thing because that's telling me that people are feeling more confident about the economy and that this year they're going to try and show the love a little bit more with some bigger gifts," Meredith said.
The article with a link to the full report pdf can be found here.