Sales during November of existing single-family homes in the Santa Clarita Valley continued to run counter to regional and statewide trends, posting a 15.8 increase over year ago totals, the Southland Regional Association of Realtors reported Tuesday, Dec. 30.
A total of 198 homes changed owners, up 27 percent from the 171 sales of November 2013 and 7 sales, or 3.7 percent, ahead of this October’s total of 191 closed escrows.
Realtors also helped consumers close escrow on 62 condominium sales, although that figure was down 35.4 percent from a year ago.
“While other regions of the state report sluggish sales, a typical yearend trend, Santa Clarita seems to be closing on a strong note,” said Nancy Starczyk, president of the Santa Clarita Division of the Southland Regional Association of Realtors. “It’s a phenomenon we’ve experienced the last several years, with even December showing strong activity.”
Starczyk attributed the healthy home sales numbers to the vibrancy of the local economy and the overall desirability of the community as a place to live and raise a family. A tight inventory and issues with home owner associations failing to meet federal standards that give prospective buyers access low down payment loans appear to be limit condo sales.
The median price of the condominiums that changed owners came in at $295,000, which was unchanged from a year ago, but up 2.1 percent from this October. It was the highest condo median reported this year and just below the recession high of $300,000 registered in July 2013.
The median home price came in at $484,100, up 8.8 percent over a year ago November. The highest median home price registered so far in the economic recovery was $490,000, which came in August and again in September.
Jim Link, the Association’s chief executive officer, expects to see the steady recovery of the housing market continue through 2015, with sales up slightly along with moderate increases in median prices of under 10 percent.
“Santa Clarita seems to be ahead of the curve. It is a newer, healthy community with a strong economy that fuels demand for homes,” Link said. “Plus, new construction generally benefits the home resale market.”
There were 565 active listings on the Association-run Multiple Listing Service at the end of November. That was up 6.4 percent over November 2013 and represented a 2.2-month supply at the current pace of sales. November 2013 had a 2.0-month supply. A 6-month supply desired.
Standard sales involving traditional buyers and sellers accounted for 88.8 percent of total combined residential resale activity in November. That means distressed sales accounted for a mere 10 percent of activity. Short payoffs, where the lender allows the sale of a home at a price lower than the outstanding loan balance, captured 6.6 percent of total sales while foreclosure-related sales were a mere 3.5 percent of the total.
The Southland Regional Association of Realtors® is a local trade association with more than 9,100 members serving the San Fernando and Santa Clarita Valleys. SRAR is one of the largest local associations in the nation.