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San Diego Real Estate Market Update

What does data suggest is happening in the San Diego real estate market? What do the latest figures mean for those buying, selling and investing in real estate in San Diego County?

Many are finding the most recent Southern California real estate statistics more than a little confusing. San Diego County, in particular, has been on fire. However, data and reports by national media suggests growth has dropped back a gear since last year when some homes where receiving 90 plus offers. So what do the numbers really look like? Where are they headed and what best course of action is indicated? Staying up to date can give real estate investors an advantage in a market as complex as San Diego’s.

The Freeze That Iced the Housing Market?

Bloomberg recently ran a report following January’s figures, pointing to a number of factors that have led to a slight dip in numbers. On a national level, this could be primarily blamed on the severe weather other regions have faced. Some point to higher rates and fewer foreclosures. However, there are two solid reasons that don’t have to rely on speculation.

Supply has come more in line with demand after a distinct void for years. While healthy and a good sign, and which means a more sustainable recovery, it also means more normal sales volume figures. Secondly, expect figures to turn up predictably as we get deeper into the 1st quarter.

Housing Inventory

According to the National Association of Realtors, San Diego entered into 2014 as one of the most expensive destinations in the country. Graphs show sales tracking along in direct correlation to the listings curve since October. Less listings = fewer sales. Still, over 1,760 residential units changed hands in San Diego in January 2014. As we see more foreclosures come online and equity rising, we’ll see more listings and more sales fueling continued, steady growth.

San Diego Home Prices

San Diego home prices may not be quite on par with their previous highs yet, meaning more room for growth and profit, but they are up substantially. The numbers show the median single family home price rising from just $390k in January 2013 to $473,500 in January 2014, a number which would probably show substantially higher if it wasn’t for so many distressed sales still being cycled through the market. Still, a lift of almost $100k in 12 months isn’t too shabby.

Days on market has risen slightly, probably due to the holidays. At just 55 days average time on the market for attached units and 61 for detached, homes are still selling three times faster than normal.

The one number consistently rising is interest rates, which stood a little over 1% over last January and aren’t expected to come down any time soon.

According to RealtyTrac, foreclosure activity in San Diego County is about three times as active as Imperial, but half that of San Bernadino and Riverside; showing strength, but plenty of opportunity for investment. In fact, contrary to many claims that foreclosures and bargains have dried up, RealtyTrac shows pre-foreclosures up almost 100% year-over-year in January.

In Summary

Rates are heading up, San Diego home prices are heading up and there are still deals to be found. Sellers may not see overnight windfalls of cash by waiting, but buyers and real estate investors are clearly best served by making their moves right now.

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