About a year ago many here in the blogosphere talked about housing prices returning to sane levels. Most folks back then thought that $100 s/f for homes was probably the lowest we would see in the IE. After all a year ago most homes were still priced over $200 s/f in the nicer areas and even in the outer edges of the civilized world, places like Hemet and San Jacinto prices were well over $100 s/f. I remember how exciting it was when the first homes started to show up under $100 s/f. Heck that was less than a year ago!
So how low can prices go? Well theoretically they can go to zero but as long as we have a reasonably stable economy and people want to live in SoCal that's not likely to happen. But the question remains, how low will prices go?
If anyone a year ago would have suggested that you could buy a nearly new home in the IE for $50-$60 s/f they would have been ridiculed. But today there are actually homes listed for very close to that amount. Most of them are short sales but there are a few REO properties listed that low too. Granted these are out in San Jacinto, Hemet, Perris or other far flung locations. Even so that's quite a price. That's far less than it would cost to build a similar home.
Here's the cheapest one I could find. 3072 Coffeeberry Way, San Jacinto. This home is 3693 s/f and has 5 bedrooms and 4.5 baths. It was build in 2006. I don't know what is sold for but the appraised tax value was $425K, so I assume it sold for close to that. It's currently an REO property and it's listed for $189,900 or $51 s/ft!
Not a bad looking house, especially for $51 s/f. You can live in your very own McMansion for about $1200 mo. Hell, you can almost afford that working as a greeter at WalMart. Which is handy since that's about the only kind of job in San Jacinto.