A total of 190 single-family homes changed owners during June in the Santa Clarita Valley, which was the second highest monthly total so far this year, yet down 9.5 percent from a year ago June, the Southland Regional Association of Realtors reported on Thursday,July 24.
Realtors expected the rebound from the sluggish first quarter to continue during the traditionally busy June and July sales season, yet the 190 closed escrows came in 9.5 percent below the 210 sales reported in April and May.
“There’s a lot of activity out there, which made me expect closed escrows to come in much higher,” said Nancy Starczyk, president of the Santa Clarita Valley Division of the Southland Regional Association of Realtors. “Even though we’re in a highly competitive transitional phase, I believe home sales will stay strong, which bodes well for the future.”
Realtors also closed escrow on 97 condominiums. That was down 6.7 percent from a year ago, but up 3.2 percent from this May, which follows the traditional pattern of sales picking up during the summer months.
Starczyk urged buyers to “act now” before rising prices make it more difficult to buy a home.
The median price of single-family homes sold last month in the Santa Clarita Valley was $481,000. That was up 11.9 percent from the figure reported 12 months ago, yet off less than 1 percent from the $485,000 median of this May and June, which was the highest median since February 2009.
The condominium median price of $290,000 was up 10.3 percent from June 2013 and 3.2 percent higher than this May.
“The market is still working out lingering issues, yet the demise of distressed properties and the steady increase in homes listed for sale by traditional owners suggest we’re moving much closer to a normal market,” said Jim Link, the Association’s chief executive officer. “I expect prices to keep moving up, but not at the double-digit pace seen last year.”
Link and Starczyk agreed that sellers need to be adjust their price expectations to today’s reality.
“Some sellers are hanging onto last year’s quick run up in resale prices,” Starczyk said. “But homes are taking longer to sell now, buyers are much more selective, and the pool of prospective buyers shrinks as prices move higher.
“The market is highly competitive,” she said, urging sellers to hire an experienced Realtor whose advice they can trust. “Pricing the property correctly is the key to a quick sale.”
The Association reported a total of 706 active home and condominium listings at the end of June throughout the Valley.
hat was up 65.0 percent from a year ago and represented a 2.5-month supply at the June pace of sales. A year ago the inventory was a mere 1.4-month supply; a 6-month supply signals a balanced market.
Distressed sales have fallen dramatically from a year ago with June’s total distressed sales of 12.2 percent off from the 30.4 percent share reported in June 2013. Real Estate Owned transactions, property acquired by lenders typically through foreclosure, fell to its lowest level on record, a mere 3.1 percent of total residential activity. Short sales captured only 9.1 percent of June sales, compared to 23.1 percent a year ago.
The Southland Regional Association of Realtors® is a local trade association with more than 8,900 members serving the San Fernando and Santa Clarita Valleys. SRAR is one of the largest local associations in the nation.
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