Monday, July 25, 2005

State Home Prices Up 16%

Median price of a home in California at $542,720 in June, up 16 percent from year ago; sales increase 3.6 percent

LOS ANGELES (July 25) – The median price of an existing home in California in June increased 16 percent and sales increased 3.6 percent compared with the same period a year ago, the California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.) reported today.

“Fixed mortgage interest rates have fallen compared with a year ago, and remain below 6 percent” said C.A.R. President Jim Hamilton. “This continues to propel both sales and the median price of a home as consumers gauge current market conditions against future interest rate increases.”

Closed escrow sales of existing, single-family detached homes in California totaled 656,310 in June at a seasonally adjusted annualized rate, according to information collected by C.A.R. from more than 90 local REALTOR® associations statewide. Statewide home resale activity increased 3.6 percent from the 633,660 sales pace recorded in June 2004.

The statewide sales figure represents what the total number of homes sold during 2005 would be if sales maintained the June pace throughout the year. It is adjusted to account for seasonal factors that typically influence home sales.

The median price of an existing, single-family detached home in California during June 2005 was $542,720, a 16 percent increase over the revised $468,050 median for June 2004, C.A.R. reported. The June 2005 median price increased 3.8 percent compared with May’s revised $522,900 median price.

“Inventory levels in recent months were nearly double that of a year ago,” said C.A.R. Vice President and Chief Economist Leslie Appleton-Young. “This has contributed to the increased pace of home sales in the presence of continued strong demand for housing in California.”

Highlights of C.A.R.’s resale housing figures for June 2005:

. C.A.R.’s Unsold Inventory Index for existing, single-family detached homes in June 2005 was 2.7 months, compared with 1.7 months (revised) for the same period a year ago. The index indicates the number of months needed to deplete the supply of homes on the market at the current sales rate.

. Thirty-year fixed mortgage interest rates averaged 5.58 percent during June 2005, compared with 6.29 percent in June 2004, according to Freddie Mac. Adjustable mortgage interest rates averaged 4.24 percent in June 2005 compared with 4.10 percent in June 2004.

. The median number of days it took to sell a single-family home was 27 days in June 2005, compared with 23 days (revised) for the same period a year ago.

. Statewide, the 10 cities and communities with the highest median home prices in California during June 2005 were: Manhattan Beach, $1,570,000; Malibu, $1,550,000; Laguna Beach, $1,537,500; Los Altos, $1,424,000; La Canada Flintridge, $1,395,000; Palos Verdes Estates, $1,360,000; Saratoga, $1,350,000; Newport Beach, $1,300,000; Coronado, $1,275,000; Hermosa Beach, $1,249,500.

. Statewide, the 10 cities and communities with the greatest median home price increases in June 2005 compared with the same period a year ago were: Twentynine Palms, 81.2 percent; Sanger, 72.5 percent; Reedley, 66.1 percent; La Canada Flintridge, 61.3 percent; Desert Hot Springs, 57.6 percent; Barstow, 53.8 percent; Selma, 53.3 percent; Visalia, 49.4 percent; Norco, 48.5 percent; Benicia, 48.3 percent.

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