November home prices up 8.9% in sluggish month
CARLSBAD, CA-Nov. 13, 2015:RC Roofing Company roofers re-roofed a house in Carlsbad on Friday, November 13, 2015. Median home prices across San Diego County rose 2.5 percent to $468,100 in November. JOHN GIBBINS / San Diego Union-Tribune) — John Gibbins
San Diego County home prices picked up in November despite sluggish sales, real estate data firm CoreLogic reported Wednesday.
The median home price in the county rose 8.9 percent in the last 12 months to $468,100, CoreLogic’s November data shows. The month-to-month increase was 2.5 percent. For the month, 2,740 homes and condos sold in San Diego County, up 3.6 percent from a year ago. But the sales pace dropped 18.4 percent from October.
While it wasn’t the slowest November in terms of sales, it ranks as the ninth lowest for the month in 28 years. Since 1988, November has averaged 3,465 home sales — 725 more than this November.
That month-to-month sales decline, said Andrew LePage, CoreLogic research analyst, was likely due to low inventory and lack of affordability.
Chris Anderson, president of the Greater San Diego Association of Realtors, said the county has about 2 1/2 months of inventory right now. “A healthy market is five to six months supply,” she said.
There were slightly more than 7,000 homes on the market during the November sales period, about 1,000 less than the average for the last five years, Multiple Listing Service data shows.
The last time the market hit six months of housing supply was February 2011 with 12,107 homes available.
Homes in inland North County, including Escondido, Rancho Santa Fe and Vista, rose the most year-over-year at 17 percent. It was followed by East County, including El Cajon, Lemon Grove and Santee, with 10.2 percent gains.
The biggest gains occurred in Coronado, 48.5 percent; Ocean Beach, 38.4 percent; and south Escondido, 37.9 percent.
The most expensive place to live was Rancho Santa Fe with a median sale price of $2.6 million. Coronado was $1.5 million; Del Mar, $1.2 million; and La Jolla, $1.2 million.
The area with the cheapest median home price, with at least 10 home sales, was Logan Heights at $286,250. City Heights was $302,500; National City, $324,500; and Golden Hill, $338,000.
In the last 12 months, Ventura County median sale prices rose the most in the Southern California market at 10.9 percent. It was followed by San Bernardino at 9.3 percent, San Diego at 8.9 percent, Los Angeles at 7.6 percent, Orange County at 6.8 percent and Riverside at 4.4 percent.
The quick rise in home prices had stoked some fears of a housing bubble, but a study released last week by real estate website Zillow had most analysts agreeing San Diego was not in a bubble.
A bubble assumes housing prices are very overvalued and will eventually come crashing down. Real estate blogger Rich Toscano, who predicted the last housing crash, agrees with the analysis, stating valuations are only 19 percent over historic median levels — nowhere near the 75 percent reached in 2005.
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