Home and condominium activity in the Santa Clarita Valley during August followed a pattern seen in other communities in the Southland with sales down compared to a year ago while posting month-to-month gains from this July, the Southland Regional Association of Realtors reported on Thursday, Sept. 15.
A total of 244 single-family homes changed owners in August, off 1.7 percent from August 2015 yet up 4.3 percent from July 2016.
Similarly, 98 condominiums closed escrow, off 19.0 percent from 12 months ago, but up 4.3 percent from this July. Sales peaked this June when 265 homes and 127 condominiums sold.
“There are still plenty of people who want to buy a home, especially here in Santa Clarita,” said M. Dean Vincent, president of the Santa Clarita Valley Division of the Southland Regional Association of Realtors. “Yet like other regions, rising prices, while beneficial for sellers, pose affordability issues for buyers.
“The very tight inventory pushes prices higher,” he said, “but the pace of price increases will continue to slow until more people can afford to buy.”
The median price of homes sold last month was $539,000, the Association reported. That was up 3.1 from a year ago, yet off 3.8 percent from this July, which at $560,000 was the highest median price since September 2007. The record high median home price of $643,000 was set in April 2006.
The median price of condominiums that closed escrow during August was $347,500, which was 6.9 percent higher than August 2015 and 5.0 percent ahead of this July. The highest condo median reported since the market downturn was in May with a median of $349,500, which was 12.5 percent below the record high of $397,000 set in January 2006.
“Sellers are in a good position, though the lack of inventory for a replacement home keeps many from listing their home for sale, and there are plenty of buyers who are very interested in buying in Santa Clarita,” said Jim Link, the Association’s chief executive officer, “but as prices inch higher and inventory stays low, we’ll see an even tighter market.
“To win a home, buyers will need to make a decision the moment their Realtor finds a suitable candidate,” he said.
There were 623 active listings at the end of August, which was down 7.7 percent from 12 months ago. At the current pace of sales, that represents a low 1.8-month supply.
Pending escrows, a measure of future sales activity, increased compared to a year ago by 2.0 percent with 357 open escrows.
The Southland Regional Association of Realtors® is a local trade association with more than 9,500 members serving the San Fernando and Santa Clarita Valleys. SRAR is one of the largest local associations in the nation.