San Francisco Bay Area Real Estate Median Sale Price Tops Year Ago Level For First Time Since ‘07

November 20, 2009 Real Estate News No Comments
San Francisco Bay Area Real Estate Median Sale Price Tops Year Ago Level For First Time Since ‘07

Here is some real estate news that came out today about the Bay Area’s housing market.  It has continued to ease back toward normalcy in October as fewer distressed properties sold and $500,000-plus sales accounted for a greater share of transactions than a year ago. The result: The nine-county region posted a modest year-over-year gain in its median sale price – the first in nearly two years.

The median price paid for all new and resale houses and condos that closed escrow rose to $390,000, up 6.8 percent from $365,000 in September and up 4 percent from $375,000 in October 2008. The last time the median sale price rose on a year-over-year basis was in November 2007, when it gained 1.5 percent, according to MDA DataQuick of San Diego.

Last month’s median was the highest since it was $395,000 in July this year, but it was 41.4 percent below the $665,000 peak reached in June and July of 2007.

In addition to the Bay Area overall, three counties – Santa Clara, Marin and Sonoma – saw their median sale prices rise year-over-year last month. The last time that more than one county posted an annual gain in the median was November 2007. Also last month, Alameda, Santa Clara, San Francisco and the nine-county region overall posted single-digit annual gains in their median price paid for a specific home-type: resale single-family detached houses.  This is the key home type in cities such as Atherton and Menlo Park.

A total of 7,933 new and resale houses and condos closed escrow in the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area last month. That was up 0.7 percent from 7,879 in September and up 4.2 percent from 7,613 in October 2008.

Last month’s sales were 10.2 percent below the October sales average of 8,833 since 1988, when DataQuick’s stats begin. October sales have ranged from a low of 5,486 in 2007 to a high of 13,392 in 2003. The average change in sales between September and October since 1988 is a gain of 0.9 percent.

Sales in the region’s higher-cost counties – Marin, San Francisco, Santa Clara and San Mateo – represented 42.2 percent of October sales, up from 35.3 percent a year ago, when more sales were concentrated in the lower-cost inland areas rife with deeply discounted foreclosures.  Areas such as Palo Alto, Los Altos and Los Altos Hills are prime reasons for the increases.  Sales over $500,000 made up 36 percent of all sales last month, up from 34.9 percent a year ago and a low this year of 22.7 percent in January.

October’s overall increase in sales from September and a year ago came even as fewer foreclosed properties sold.   It was the lowest since foreclosure resales were 29.9 percent of all resales in June 2008. Foreclosure resales peaked at 52 percent of Bay Area resales in February this year.

The declining inventory of lower-cost foreclosures has been key to stabilizing the housing market, along with the federal government’s efforts to boost housing demand through lower mortgage rates, tax incentives and plentiful, low-down-payment FHA financing.

Mortgages above $417,000 – formerly the definition of a jumbo loan – made up 30.1 percent of all home purchase loans last month. That was up from 29.6 percent in September and 25.9 percent a year ago. More than 60 percent of Bay Area purchase loans were over $417,000 before the August 2007 credit crunch hit.

Sales Volume Median Price
All homes Oct-08 Oct-09 %Chng Oct-08 Oct-09 %Chng
Alameda 1,544 1,555 0.7% $369,500 $369,000 -0.1%
Contra Costa 1,888 1,679 -11.1% $285,000 $280,000 -1.8%
Marin 220 264 20.0% $599,750 $648,000 8.0%
Napa 135 121 -10.4% $400,000 $360,000 -10.0%
Santa Clara 1,520 1,944 27.9% $477,000 $500,000 4.8%
San Francisco 414 553 33.6% $699,000 $690,824 -1.2%
San Mateo 530 586 10.6% $605,000 $580,000 -4.1%
Solano 745 681 -8.6% $240,000 $195,000 -18.8%
Sonoma 617 550 -10.9% $330,000 $331,000 0.3%
Bay Area 7,613 7,933 4.2% $375,000 $390,000 4.0%

First Time Homebuyers Tax Credit Expanded and Extended

November 9, 2009 Real Estate News No Comments
First Time Homebuyers Tax Credit Expanded and Extended
Potential home buyers just got some good news..more money and time is coming their way. Just on Friday, President Obama signed into law a bill that extends the First Time Home Buyers tax credit, which is also being expanded to include benefits for homebuyers who aren’t on the first time around buying a home.Here’s a chart that gives you an idea who can get what.
Tax Credit Rules

Feature Original Program Extension
Deadline Must fund by Nov. 30, 2009 (WFHM deadline was Oct. 30) The measure is written differently so that a sales contract must be in place by April 30, 2010 but homeowners have an additional 60 days to close.
Dollar Amount and Eligibility Up to $8,000 for first-time home buyers (or 10 percent of the purchase price of the residence) if purchased Jan. 1 Dec. 1, 2009

A FTHB was defined as someone who had not owned a home during the previous three years
Up to $8,000 for first-time home buyers


$6,500 for current homeowners who have lived in their current residence for 5 consecutive years and are purchasing their next property
Income Cap $75,000 (individual)

$150,000 (married couples)
$125,000 (individual)

$225,000 (married couples)
Increases in the cap make the measure available to a broader group of customers.
Purchase Price N/A $800,000 or less
Repayment requirement Must live in home for 3 years or be required to repay the credit Same
Documentation to be used Documentation requirements and WFHM process still TBD.

My Contact Information

Gary Kurtz
BRE# 01710776

Kathy Kurtz
BRE# 01876966

HOM Sotheby's International Realty
1200 Newport Center Drive, # 100
Newport Beach, CA 92660

949.565.5201 (cell)
949.478.7769 (office)
650.796.5507 (Silicon Valley #)

Contact me now with any questions:

Kurtz Real Estate Group

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