SoCal home sale prices keep rising

Median price for a property across region rose 12% last month, the 3rd straight monthly increase

TRD LOS ANGELES /
Sep.September 24, 2020 01:00 PM
(iStock)
(iStock)

August was a very strong month for the SoCal residential market. Home sales were up and so were the prices buyers paid.

The median sales price across the six counties of Southern California was $600,000 last month, a 12 percent increase year-over-year and the largest jump since 2014, according to the Los Angeles Times.

That makes August the third consecutive month that home sale prices across SoCal set an all-time high. The month also saw a 2.4 percent increase in the number of sales. Sales were also up nationwide.

The pace of sales and pricing may seem strange amid the global economic crisis, but a few reasons explain the phenomenon. For one, buyers want larger homes and properties, which could be pushing up the median price. The Covid-19 shutdown in the spring that mostly prevented buyers and sellers from doing business also created pent-up demand, industry pros said.

And historically low mortgage rates may also be motivating buyers. Nationally, mortgage applications are surging.

National Association of Realtors economist Jordan Levine said that the pandemic has had an uneven impact on Americans — those with higher incomes aren’t hit, so they can continue eyeing or buying pricey new homes.

Around 22 percent of all sales in Southern California were for homes above $1 million, up from 16 percent in August 2019. The share of homes sold below $500,000 fell from 46 percent to 38 percent.

“People who are shopping down at the bottom end of the market are more likely to have suffered job loss or had a family member lose income that precludes buying a home,” Levine said. “That being said, we are also seeing honest-to-goodness price growth. [LAT] — Dennis Lynch


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