The San Diego real estate market

September 30, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: California 
Seal of San Diego County, California
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The San Diego real estate market, a component of the larger Southern California housing market, has started to show signs of weakness after recovering for several months straight. According to a September 20, 2010 report from the San Diego Union Tribune, “San Diego County foreclosures and defaults rose from July to August, but analysts said it is too early to tell if this marks the start of the long-expected burst of distressed sales as so many homeowners run out of options. According to MDA DataQuick, August foreclosures totaled 1,026, up 15.4 percent from 889 in July, and notices of default rose 19.5 percent from July’s, 1,664 to August’s 1,988. Some experts, pointing to lower figures a year ago, said the August report from MDA DataQuick shows that lenders are not eager to evict owners and resell the properties. Instead, they are quietly letting owners get by with continued delinquencies on their monthly payments and hoping things will improve. “Bankers are incentivized to just extend and pretend,” said Sean O’Toole, CEO of ForeclosureRadar.com, Discovery Bay company that analyzes foreclosure data. Defaults were down 25.2 percent from year-ago levels of 2,658 and foreclosures were down 14 percent from 1,193 over the same period. DataQuick analyst Andrew LePage said the uptick in August reflected the large decline in sales this summer, after the popular federal tax rebate ended for home buyers. With demand down, lenders then increased their default and foreclosure actions.”

The number of San Diego homes for sale which were actually sold decreased from year-ago levels, partially because of the expiration of federal housing tax credit. A September 14, 2010 report from KPBS News noted that “Home sales in San Diego County have dropped from August 2009 to August of this year. The San Diego Association of Realtors report for existing homes in the county shows sales down 8 percent from August 2009 and the average sales price down nearly 4 percent. Mark Marquez, president of the Realtors Association, said the average sales price for homes last month was $262,000. Marquez said while homes in the entry level have been selling, the sales pace for higher-priced homes was slower in August. “As you escalate in price point it does soften a little bit, meaning there’s more inventory,” said Marquez. In the near term, he expects most of the sales volume to be generated from homes priced at $500,000 or lower.”

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The Aptos real estate market

September 29, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: California 
Seal of Santa Cruz County, California
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The Aptos real estate market, a section of the larger Santa Cruz County housing market, has remained relatively static throughout the last several tracking periods. It appears that the federal housing tax credit might have temporarily stabilized the market, which now appears to be trending into negative territory thanks partially to a high unemployment rate. According to a September 17, 2010 report from the Santa Cruz Sentinel, “Santa Cruz County unemployment dipped in August to 11 percent, down from 11.3 percent last month, but up from a year ago, when it was 10.2 percent. The reason: Not job growth, but a smaller labor force. The jobless rate remained steady nationwide at 9.5 percent and inched up to 12.4 percent in California. “Californians are continuing to suffer from slow job growth, and things will only improve when there is strong hiring in the private sector,” Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said. Most private-sector industries in Santa Cruz County have a long way to go to recover jobs lost since last August. Real estate, rental and leasing are down from 1,400 jobs a year ago to 1,200. Membership at the Santa Cruz Association of Realtors is 1,227, down from 1,283 a year ago, according to executive director Kathy Hartman.”

One large block of properties – an apartment complex in Santa Cruz County as opposed to an Auburn home for sale – was finally purchased in the beginning of September. It was not significant because of the sale, but because it sold over the asking price, which might indicate some nascent strength in the market. According to a September 3, 2010 article from the Santa Cruz Sentinel, “Tropicana Apartments, a 37-unit apartment complex in Live Oak, sold Tuesday for $4.125 million, $130,000 over the original asking price. The property, which went on the market in July, generated 13 bids, several of which were cash and over the original asking price. The deal closed in an unusually short 30-day escrow as a wholly cash deal. The buyer is a local family investment team that owns similar property in the county, according to Mike Bloch, an agent with Santa Cruz-based Lifestyles Real Estate who co-represented the seller with Andy Kay, also of Lifestyles Real Estate.”

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