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County Treasurer Hopes Home Sales Bring Further Uptick In Tax Revenues

County Treasurer Hopes Home Sales Bring Further Uptick In Tax Revenues
Treasurer Dan McAllister tells association of realtors short supply and rising prices are good for county coffers.

Reviews of home sales lately show an improving housing market, and San Diego County Treasurer-Tax Collector Dan McAllister said that will mean a bigger bottom line for local government.

McAllister discussed trends in home sales and home prices at a meeting of the San Diego Association of Realtors.

Dataquick real estate analysts say the median home price in San Diego was up five percent in July, compared to the previous year. That made the median price $342,000.

McAllister said those numbers are a reflection of supply and demand.

"There are only a third as many property listings this year at this time, than there were last year," he said. "So there's been a huge decline in the supply, and that's helping to drive prices up."

McAllister said the housing bust brought years of falling property tax revenues, due to property value reassessments. This cost the county $50 million in tax revenues in 2009, and $48 million in 2010.

But that trend turned around in 2011.

"Last year we saw a trend up $66 million over the previous year. So we're not back to ground zero yet, but the direction is the right direction," said McAllister.

The short supply of home for sale has meant buyers have gotten into bidding wars for desirable homes. That will change if rising prices convince more people to put their homes on the market.