Jeff Collins at the Orange County Register recently reported that by the end of 2012, prices for O.C. homes had climbed to levels not realized in nearly five years. Houses and condos surged to $470,000 in December, which was an increase of nearly 18% since the same time period in 2011, and the highest level since June 2008. Almost 35,000 homes were purchased in 2012, the most since 2006, with the number of properties sold in December, a traditionally slow month, 20% greater than December of 2011. Interest rates remaining at historic lows and a generally more positive outlook on the economy and real estate in general fueled the interest.
The California Association of Realtors reported that existing Orange County single-family homes sold at median price levels of over $580,000 in December — over 20% higher year over year. It was the highest median for single-family properties since March of 2008. The overall sales gain was almost 25%. Some more specific details from the reports indicated a drop in the number of foreclosures and short sales, which helped fuel demand and spark multiple bids in virtually every price range. Huntington Beach specifically saw an increase of 7% in per square foot for detached homes, which was one of the largest increases in any region.
The renewed optimism, diminished inventory and increased demand point to a surging real estate market. And with interest rates projections remaining at historic lows for 2013, the demand will only continue to increase, along with prices. This speaks to the need for a real estate partner, an expert in the local marketplace.
I’ve been helping people purchase homes in Huntington Beach for many years and I am more than eager to help you negotiate these rapidly changing waters. Just give me a call today to begin the process.