SCV sees condo median price record high

The Santa Clarita Valley hit a record high of $415,000 in median condominium prices in June from a year ago, according to recent data from the Southland Regional Association of Realtors. 

The report, released Thursday, indicated a 6.4% price increase, breaking the previous record of $410,000 that was set in April 2018. 

Single-family homes sold in June had median pricing — or half sold for less and half sold for more — of $605,000. 

That figure was 0.8% below a year ago and lower than the May 2018 median price at $615,000, which is the highest in this real estate boom cycle, according to the association. 

The local record high for a single-family median price remains at $643,000, which was set in April 2006. 

“Somehow prices keep getting pushed higher, although we’re at the point where the pool of buyers who can afford these prices keeps getting smaller and smaller,” Amanda Etcheverry, the 2019 chair of the Santa Clarita Division of the association, said in a prepared statement. “The inventory continues to expand, but at a much slower pace and not nearly fast enough or large enough to ease pressure off prices.” 

Even with low-interest rates, rising prices and a tight inventory translate to fewer sales, she added.

A total of 237 single-family homes changed owners during June, which indicated a drop of 41 sales or nearly 15% from a year ago and followed two consecutive months of sales gains, according to the report. 

The association also assisted 73 condominium closed escrows, a number that was 29% lower than a year ago.  

“Low interest rates continue to fuel buyer interest and demand, stretching housing dollars farther,” said Tim Johnson, the association’s CEO, “yet low interest rates also enable sellers to boost their asking price. Bottom line, for now, is that an increase in active inventory may be the best way to neutralize or slow price hikes, yet listing gains now are coming in slow motion.” 

Inventory came close to a record low in December 2017 and has been trending upward since, though the pace of increases has slowed dramatically this year, opening in January with a 58% increase over the prior year, then steadily falling to June’s supply increase of 8.4%.

At the end of June, there were 656 active listings, which represented a 2.1-month supply at the current pace of sales. A five-month supply is regarded as an indicator of a market favoring neither buyers nor sellers, according to the association.  

Pending escrows, a measure of future activity, numbered 341 at the end of June, up by nearly 4% from the prior year. Of the 310 home and condo sales in June, 98.4% were standard sales involving traditional buyers and sellers. 

There were zero distressed condo sales during June and only two foreclosure-related home sales and one home short sale, where the lender agrees to a purchase price lower than an outstanding loan balance. 

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