NAR (National Association of Realtors) reported existing home sales spiked 4.4% during this past March. Homes are selling off the market at a whirlwind pace. Many economists have been predicting this “spring revival” or as we like to call it on The Santa Clarita Diet, “Spring Into Action!,” since the beginning of 2017. This buying spree is credited to the hearty buyers who seem not to be bothered by the low inventory. This spike only continues to confirm the latest real estate trend: The housing market is booming!
Reason Behind the Spike
Some economists and real estate analysts are attributing the primary reason behind the spike, due to bolstered ‘consumer confidence.’ The national median existing-home price for all housing types in March rose 6.8% points, which marks the 61st consecutive month of year-over-year gains. The resilience of the ‘consumer confidence’ is on display in spite rising mortgage interest rates and low inventory. Average time properties sold during the month of March was 34 days (CA was 33.5). February, the average was 45 days. First-time home buyers comprised of the 32% of sales nationwide. This is up from last year. According to NAR President William E. Brown, realtors from across various markets are seeing interest from 1st-time homebuyers more so this year than last.
State & Regional
Here in California, and locally there has been an elevated flurry of market activity, with increases for open houses, presentations, for the 3rd consecutive month. Although, existing-home sales in the West Region decreased 1.6 percent overall it still up 5.2% from a year ago. The median price in the West Region was $347,500, up 8.0 percent from March 2016. The brightest spot for California and the entire West Region? Southern California! Southern California region led in closed escrow sales, and pending sales, where surrounding counties decreased (Orange County fell by 3.6%, and 8.0% in San Bernardino County). Here are some additional real estate health statistics for Southern California (provided by REALTOR Market Pulse Survey):
- Share of homes selling above asking price rose to 39% from 34% a year ago.
- Share of properties selling below asking price dipped to 32% from 33% last year.
- Nearly 74% of properties for sale received multiple offers during this past month which is up from 50% in 2016.
- Average median price for an existing single-family home was $517,020. 2016 March was $484,120.
- Average price per sq. ft. for existing single-family home statewide was $252. Last year was $232.
- Average 30-year, fixed mortgage interest rate was 4.2%. In February of this year it was 4.17%.
Now is The Time!
With the overall real estate market in a healthy state, its a good time to participate during this boom to sell or buy a home! If you are in search of a new home you can check out the following listings, and links, as well as sign-up for alerts to be notified of new homes entering the market on my home page (The listings are faster than Zillow’s!):
For any guidance whether you are buying or listing to sell you can email me or contact me at: 818.259.0060 or 661.993.3400.