Southern California home sales hit New Year’s dip

Transactions follow seasonal pattern with 28 percent month-to-month decline, prices fall 1.2 percent

Southern California (iStock)
Southern California (iStock)

Home sales across Southern California cooled in January, with prices and sales dropping from the previous month.

The pace of closed transactions in the six-county region slowed from December, according to DQNews data cited by the Press Enterprise. The median sales price dipped to $687,000 from an all-time high of $695,000.

While pricing remained relatively firm due to a limited number of homes on the market, rising mortgage rates likely contributed to the sales chill.

The DQNews data shows 16,461 new and existing homes and condos sold in January, down 28 percent in a month and 8 percent from a year earlier. Home prices fell 1.2 percent in January, but were up 15.5 percent year-to-year.

The Press-Enterprise reported that the decline in sales reflects a seasonal trend – every January has seen a month-to-month sales dip since 1988, down by 27 percent on average over the past 34 years.

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The January sales dip showed up in both month-to-month and year-to-year comparisons in all six counties tracked by DQNews. Ventura’s sales were off 32 percent for the month and down 18 percent in a year, with varying degrees of the same pattern for San Diego (off 31 percent month, 7 percent year); Los Angeles (off 29 percent month; 6 percent year); Riverside (off 27 percent month, 2 percent year); Orange (off 26 percent month, 15 percent year); and San Bernardino (off 23 percent month, 10 percent year).

The median price for the region came to $660,500, down from December’s record high of $695,000, but still an 18 percent rise over 12 months.

[PE] – Dana Bartholomew

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