May So. California Home Sales Highest in 4 Years
DQNews -- "Southern California May home sales rose in all but the lowest price categories as buyers took advantage of tax credits and low mortgage rates. The median price paid topped $300,000 for the first time in 20 months, largely because the ultra bargains have been drying up in the low-cost inland areas while sales have increased in the pricier coastal neighborhoods."
Other highlights include:
1. A total of 22,270 new and resale houses and condos closed escrow in Los Angeles, Riverside, San Diego, Ventura, San Bernardino and Orange counties last month. That was up 9.7 percent from 20,299 in April, and up 7.2 percent from 20,775 in May 2009 (see chart above).
2. May sales were the highest for that month since May 2006, but they still fell 15.0 percent short of the average number sold in May since 1988, when DataQuick’s statistics begin. The 9.7 percent increase in sales between April and May compares with an average change of 6 percent since 1988.
3. Foreclosure resales accounted for 33.9 percent of the resale market last month, down from 36.4 percent in April and 49.8 percent a year earlier.
4. The median paid for a Southland home rose to $305,000 last month, up 7.0 percent from $285,000 in April, and up 22.5 percent from $249,000 in May 2009. The May 2009 median was just $2,000 higher than the median’s post-housing-boom low of $247,000 in April 2009.
“The important thing to remember, though, is that what we saw in May was partly driven by government stimulus,” said MDA DataQuick President John Walsh. “In the second half of the year the market will have to stand on its own again, barring new forms of government involvement."
WASHINGTON -- "The home-buyer tax credit deadline would be extended three months following a vote this afternoon in the Senate. Senators voted 60 to 37 to approve the extension for the credit, which has a current deadline of June 30 to close a purchase. The credit provision is part of a larger jobs and tax package that both chambers must still vote on before it becomes law."