Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Southern California homes sales rose more than expected last month. However, that is not an indication that the housing slump is over.
SAN DIEGO Last month, 3,444 homes changed hands in San Diego County. That's up about 12 percent from May. San Diego based Dataquick tracks the real-estate industry. The company's numbers show the increase is twice what's considered a normal jump from May to June.
"Sales were up relatively strongly from May," said Andrew LaPage of San Diego based Dataquick. "They were still down 14 percent from a year ago, with the caveat there being that a year ago was pumped up with those home-buyer tax credits. And that sort of reflected the final rush to take advantage of those."
The numbers could be showing a market that is stabilizing.
"Even though the picture hasn't changed a lot in the last couple of months, at least we've got the facts here," said LaPage. "We know the market is not in a nosedive mode anymore. Sure, there's price erosion here and there, but the big picture is prices look to be fairly steady over the last few months."
Half of all properties sold in May were considered distressed sales. That involves selling a home for less than what is owed on the mortgage or selling a home involved in the foreclosure process. The distressed sales are below the peak set in the midst of the slump, but well above historical averages.