Bay Area median home prices, houses sold, continue
By Brent Begin, Bay City News Service
Home prices in the Bay Area last month continued to drop compared
to a year ago, a real estate information service reported today.
The median price paid in November for new and resale houses and
condominiums in the nine Bay Area counties was $616,000, down
1.4 percent from last November's median of $625,000, according
to DataQuick Information Systems.
Across the Bay Area, the number of homes sold also dropped, compared
with sales a year ago.
Sales numbers declined by between around 22 and 32 percent, according
Most of the 7,204 homes sold in November were in the more populous
counties of Alameda, Santa Clara and Contra Costa, which together
saw 4,693 sales. Fewer than 600 homes were sold in each of the
other Bay Area counties.
In November last year, 9,717 homes were sold.
"Right now it looks like the Bay Area market is settling
in on a price level that could last until spring. What happens
after that depends on broader economic factors, including interest
rates, job growth and household incomes," DataQuick President
Marshall Prentice said in a statement.
While the median price of homes sold dropped across the region,
San Francisco, Marin and Santa Clara counties continued to see
median price increases, of 0.7 percent, 4 percent and 1.8 percent
At a median of $841,000, prices remained relatively high in Marin
County, where 268 homes were sold in November, while relatively
lower-priced homes exchanged hands in Solano County, where the
median price of the 565 homes sold last month was $446,000.
According to DataQuick, indicators of market distress remain
at a moderate level, with foreclosure activity rising but within
a normal range and down-payment sizes stable.
The "typical" monthly mortgage payment in the Bay Area
in November was $2,865, the company reported. Adjusted for inflation,
payments are 12.9 percent higher than they were at the top of
the previous real estate cycle, in early 1990.
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