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Let’s take a broader look at California’s housing market

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Posted: Thursday, May 23, 2013 7:27 am

What’s happening with the housing market statewide? Glad you asked, as it’s a good indicator of how our local market will fair over time. Here’s the most recent data regarding the state of California’s housing market. Distressed home sales continued to decline in April, as previously underwater homes rose in value, and the share of REO sales registered in the single-digits for the first time in more than five years, the California Association of Realtors (C.A.R.) reported as of Wednesday.

Distressed housing market data:

  • The combined share of all distressed property sales registered its lowest level since February 2008, dropping to 24.4 percent in April, down from 27.9 percent in March and down from 45.8 percent in April 2012. The share of all distressed sales in most counties also declined significantly from the previous year, with Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Orange, San Diego, San Mateo, and Santa Clara registering in the single- or low double-digits in April.
  • The share of equity sales – or non-distressed property sales – now make up more than three-fourths of total sales, the highest share since February 2008. The share of equity sales in April increased to 75.6 percent, up from 72.1 percent in March. Equity sales made up more than half (54.2 percent) of all sales in April 2012.
  • Of the distressed properties, the share of short sales was 14.8 percent in April, down from 17.3 percent in March and down from 21.1 percent a year ago. The continued decrease of short sales is an indication of previously underwater homes moving into positive equity.
  • The share of REO sales fell to single-digits for the first time since late 2007, dropping from 10.2 percent in March to 9.2 percent in April and from 24.3 percent in April 2012.
  • The available supply of homes was relatively unchanged from March but remained tight. In April, the Unsold Inventory Index for REOs dipped from 1.8 months in March to 1.7 months in April. At 2.7 months, the supply of short sales remained unchanged in April. The April Unsold Inventory Index for equity sales was 2.9 months, down from 3 months in March.

Why look at the housing market state wide? It’s a good indicator of trends and/or predictors of what’s going to migrate to our area. Our area continues to do well and I’ll continue to keep you updated on our local housing market in future articles. I wanted to give you some accurate information regarding influential areas of California that could affect and forecast the future of our local market.

Sheri Aguilar is the president of the Lodi Association of Realtors and can be reached at Sheri@YourLocalAOR.com

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