California Home Prices Up
*California’s median home price marked a full year of annual price gains, propelled by strong sales of higher-priced homes in February, while a lack of inventory constrained total home sales for the month, the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (C.A.R.) reported this week. Making sense of the story Sales in February were down 0.9 percent from a revised 420,270 in January and down 5.9 percent from a revised 442,660 in February 2012. The statewide sales figure represents what would be the total number of homes sold during 2013 if sales maintained the February pace throughout the year. It is adjusted to account for seasonal factors that typically influence home sales.
*The statewide median price of an existing, single-family detached home slipped 1 percent from January’s revised median price of $337,360 to $333,880 in February. February’s price was up 24.2 percent from a revised $268,810 recorded in February 2012, marking a full year of annual price increases and the eighth consecutive month of double-digit annual gains.
*The available supply of homes for sale was essentially unchanged from January, but was down markedly from a year ago. The February Unsold Inventory Index for existing, single-family detached homes was 3.6 months in February, up from 3.5 months in January, but down from 5.4 months in February 2012. The index indicates the number of months needed to sell the supply of homes on the market at the current sales rate. A six- to seven-month supply is considered normal.
*Increased market competition has significantly driven down the time on market compared to a year ago. Homes sold more quickly in February, with the median number of days it took to sell a single-family home decreasing to 34.2 days in February, down from 36.6 days in January and down from a revised 57.4 days for the same period a year ago.
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