The Aptos real estate market

September 29, 2010 by
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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