El Cajon California Home Sales and Median Price Post Higher in October

November 22, 2016

- Existing, single-family home sales totaled 442,970 in October on a seasonally adjusted annualized rate, up 4.1 percent from September and 8 percent from October 2015.

- October’s statewide median home price was $513,520, up 1.2 percent from September and up 7.3 percent from October 2015. 

- Statewide sales of condos and townhomes fell 6.6 percent from September and were up 2.9 percent from October a year ago.

LOS ANGELES (Nov. 16) – Bolstered by healthy sales activity in Southern California and the Central Valley, California existing home sales and median price gained ground in October on a month-to-month and year-over-year basis, the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (C.A.R.) said today.
Closed escrow sales of existing, single-family detached homes in California totaled a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 442,970 units in October, according to information collected by C.A.R. from more than 90 local REALTOR® associations and MLSs statewide. The statewide sales figure represents what would be the total number of homes sold during 2016 if sales maintained the October pace throughout the year. It is adjusted to account for seasonal factors that typically influence home sales.

The October figure was up 4.1 percent from the revised 425,680 level in September and up 8 percent compared with home sales in October 2015 of a revised 410,310. Home sales remained above the 400,000 pace for the seventh straight month, and were up year-over-year for the second consecutive month. The year-over-year increase was the largest since January, and October’s sales level was the highest since July 2013.

“With prices continuing to increase amid a low supply of homes for sale on the market, especially in the San Francisco Bay Area and coastal regions, home buyers are migrating toward lower-priced homes in more affordable inland areas,” said C.A.R. President Geoff McIntosh. “As a result, home prices at the lower end of the market have risen significantly in the past year, challenging an already depressed homeownership rate.” 

The statewide median price remained above the $500,000 mark for the seventh straight month, with little signs of slowing down. The median price of an existing, single-family detached California home was up 1.2 percent in October to $513,520 from a revised $507,260 in September. Since 2010, prices typically have declined from September to October. The monthly price gain is an indication that demand remains unseasonably strong.

October’s median price increased 7.3 percent from the revised $478,780 recorded in October 2015. The year-over-year price increase was the largest since January. The median sales price is the point at which half of homes sold for more and half sold for less; it is influenced by the types of homes selling, as well as a general change in values. The monthly price decline is primarily due to seasonal factors.

“While this month’s sales and price gains are encouraging, the market continues to experience a supply issue that won’t abate any time soon,” said C.A.R. Vice President and Chief Economist Leslie Appleton-Young. “A shortage of new listings remains a threat to home sales in the short run, and with available inventory below normal levels, the dearth of listings suggests that the market will remain tight over the near term.”

Other key points from C.A.R.’s October 2016 resale housing report include: 

• C.A.R.’s Unsold Inventory Index, which indicates the number of months needed to sell the supply of homes on the market at the current sales rate slipped to 3.4 months in October from 3.5 months in September. The index stood at 3.6 months in October 2015. 

• Statewide active listings continue to decline, falling 6.7 percent from September and 6 percent from a year ago. 

• The median number of days it took to sell a single-family home inched up from 28.9 days in September to 29.4 days in October but was down from 34.7 days in October 2015.

• C.A.R.’s sales-to-list price ratio* was 98.4 of listing prices statewide in October, 98.6 percent in September and 98.3 in October 2015.

• The average price per square foot** for an existing, single-family home statewide was $247 in October, $250 in September, and $237 in October 2015.

• San Francisco County had the highest price per square foot in October at $865/sq. ft., followed by San Mateo ($795/sq. ft.), and Marin ($659/sq. ft.). Counties with the lowest price per square foot in October included Siskiyou ($123/sq. ft.), Glenn ($125/sq. ft.), and Tehama ($126/sq. ft.). 

• Mortgage rates have already started to increase and are likely to rise higher as the Federal Reserve normalizes monetary policy. Mortgage rates edged slightly higher in October, with the 30-year, fixed-mortgage interest rate averaging 3.47 percent, up from 3.46 percent in September but down from 3.80 percent in October 2015, according to Freddie Mac. The five-year, adjustable-rate mortgage interest rates also rose in October to an average of 2.83 percent, up from 2.81 percent in September but down from 2.89 percent in October 2015.

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