Existing single-family home sales in the Santa Clarita Valley during April increased even as the median price of homes was the highest since February 2008, the Southland Regional Association of Realtors reported on Friday, May 23.
The median price of $485,000 was up 16.9 percent over a year ago and 5.0 percent higher than this March. While bouncing up and down, the single-family median price has been trending higher ever since hitting bottom in November 2011 at $340,000.
“As distressed sales and bargain-price properties disappear from the market home price increases are moderating,” said Nancy Starczyk, president of the Santa Clarita Valley Division of the Southland Regional Association of Realtors. “The median has jumped 42.6 percent from its record low of April 2006, but was 24.6 percent below the record high of April 2006, and that’s a good thing.
“There are fewer multiple offers popping up,” Starczyk said, “and more instances where sellers see little or no activity if the asking price is too high.”
The median price of condominiums sold was $265,500, up 10.2 percent over a year ago. The condo median peaked in July at $300,000 and has been drifting lower ever since. While up 56.2 percent from the record low of $170,000 set in July 2012, the condo median was 33.1 percent below the record high of $397,000 reported in January 2006.
A total of 210 single-family homes changed owners during April, up 56.7 percent from March. It also was less than 1 percent higher than a year ago April, which defies trends seen throughout much of California as sales totals came in below April 2013.
Condominium sales of 88 transactions were up 4.8 percent from March and 18.5 percent below April 2013. It was the highest condo sales total so far this year.
“Santa Clarita is slightly outperforming other regions partly because the local new home market is gaining momentum, which typically triggers activity in the resale market,” said Jim Link, the Association’s chief executive officer. “Inventory is still tight, but rising resale prices have yielded a more balanced housing market where neither buyers nor sellers hold a particular advantage.”
There were 583 active listings at the end of April throughout the Santa Clarita Valley. That was up 72.5 percent over a year ago. At the current pace of sales that represents a 2.0-month supply, up from last year’s 1.1-month supply, but well short of the desired 6-month inventory needed for a balanced market to emerge.
Distressed property sales increased slight over March totals. Of the 298 residential closed escrows during April, 4.4 percent were foreclosure-related Real Estate Owned properties, and 8.1 percent were short sales, where lenders agree to a sale price less than the balance due on the existing home loan. Traditional standard sales captured 86.2 percent of total resale activity.
Pending escrows, a measure of future sales activity, were up 14.8 percent compared to April 2013.
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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