Socal housing rebound looks real

homesale2.jpgNot only did July homes sales increase for the seventh straight month, but the median price neared a four-year high, according to Dataquick. L.A. County sales were up 14.5 percent compared with a year earlier and down almost 7 percent from June. L.A.'s median price in July was $330,000, up 3 percent from a year earlier and 1.5 percent from the previous month. What's encouraging about the July report was increased activity in the move-up and high-end sectors - what had been the weakest portion of the market until a few months ago. This is the result of low interest rates and tight inventory. Prices are edging higher, in part because the low-end market has slowed down. From press release:

"Even adjusting for changes in market mix, there's growing evidence prices have crept up in areas where more demand has met a shrinking number of homes for sale. But we're approaching the peak of the traditional spring-summer home-buying season. Whether these trends hold into the fall and winter isn't clear. If they do, then logically the number of homes on the market would eventually rise to meet the demand. More owners will be interested in selling, knowing their homes are likely to fetch a higher price, and more people will shift from a negative to at least a slightly positive equity position, enabling them to sell. Home builders could rev up operations and lenders could push more distressed properties onto the market sooner. It would tame any price appreciation," said John Walsh, DataQuick president.

JULY HOME SALES (% change from July 2011)
Los Angeles 7,091 +14.5%
Orange 3,087 +25.7%
Riverside 3,546 +7.8%
San Bernardino 2,434 +2.4%
Ventura 865 +17.7%

JULY MEDIAN PRICE (% change from July 2011)
Los Angeles $330,000 +3.1%
Orange $450,000 +2.9%
Riverside $210,500 +10.8%
San Bernardino $165,000 +9.3%
Ventura $361,250 +0.3%

Source: DataQuick,

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Mark Lacter
Mark Lacter created the LA Biz Observed blog in 2006. He posted until the day before his death on Nov. 13, 2013.
Mark Lacter, business writer and editor was 59
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