firstname.lastname@example.org | May 18, 2019 | 0
Home prices at highest level in a decade, sales at fastest pace since 2004
By Ron Trujilloemail@example.com
Despite a dramatic decline of inventory, home sales increased at the fastest pace in almost four years in June, and home prices reached the highest level in a decade.
Existing home sales topped an annual rate of 400,000 for the 15th-consecutive month in June, with a 3.3% increase compared to May – and up 2.4% from June 2016, according to the California Association of Realtors.
The better-than-expected sales come as active listings fell to the lowest level in two years, and off 13.5% from a year ago. With an abundance of buyers and a critical shortage of inventory, the average home sold in 22.4 days, the fastest pace since May 2004.
“A lack of available homes for sale continues to be the largest single factor influencing California’s housing market,” says CAR president Geoff McIntosh. “With active listings 13.5% lower than last June, we’ve now experienced a full two years in which active listings have fallen on a year-over-year basis and the lowest inventory level this year. Would-be sellers aren’t listing their homes as many of them would also face an inventory challenge if they were to turn around and buy another property.”
The median-home price was above $500,000 for the fourth-consecutive month, and the highest level since June 2007. June’s median-home price was $555,150, a 0.9% increase from May and 7.0% higher than June 2016.
“While June home sales improved at a healthy pace, the growth in sales was primarily in the mid- to higher-end price ranges,” says Leslie Appleton-Young, senior vice president and chief economist for CAR. “In fact, sales in the lower price ranges were down significantly as a tight supply of affordable homes continues to plague the market and impede the sales of starter homes. This factor has disproportionately pushed prices higher at the lower end of the market, leading to eroding affordability that either prevents or delays first-time buyers from getting on the housing ladder.”
The Bay Area boats the most expensive markets, with San Francisco County topping the list at $1.47 million, followed by San Mateo County at $1.43 million. Marin and Santa Clara counties followed at $1.27 million and $1.18 million, respectively.
Del Norte County was the most affordable at $165,000, or almost $400,000 less than the statewide median average price.
You can check county-by-county home sales and prices on the CAR website.