Here's the report.
Southland home sales edged higher last month, bolstered by late-closing summer transactions, low mortgage rates and buyers hoping to take advantage of a soon-to-expire tax credit. The region’s median sale price remained lower than in September 2008 but, for the first time in years, several counties logged year-over-year gains in the median price paid for resale houses, a real estate information service reported.
Last month 21,539 new and resale houses and condos sold in Los Angeles, Riverside, San Diego, Ventura, San Bernardino and Orange counties. That was up 0.2 percent from 21,502 in August and up 5.1 percent from 20,497 a year earlier, according to MDA DataQuick of San Diego.
September marked the 15th month in a row with a year-over-year sales gain, although last month’s was the smallest of those increases. Sales for the month of September have averaged 24,873, ranging from a low of 12,455 in September 2007 to a high of 37,771 in 2003, based on DataQuick’s statistics, which go back to 1988. Last month’s sales were the highest for a September since 2006, when 24,195 sold.
The small uptick in September sales from August was atypical. On average, sales have fallen 9.5 percent between those two months.(of course it went down last month which isn't normal either).
“There were more than just normal, seasonal forces at work in these September sales numbers. More attempts at short sales, which typically take longer, and new appraisal rules no doubt delayed some deals this summer, causing them to close in September rather than August. September probably also got a boost from people opting to buy sooner rather than later to take advantage of the federal tax credit for first-time buyers, which is set to expire next month,” said John Walsh, MDA DataQuick president.
The median price paid for a Southland home was $275,000 last month, the same as in August but down 10.9 percent from $308,500 in September 2008. It was the median’s smallest year-over-year decline for any month since November 2007, when it dipped 10.3 percent from a year earlier.
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I noticed a glimmer of hope for the buyers out there. In the last vew weeks the inventory has been creeping up. It's still 10K below where it was a few months ago but in the last 3 weeks it's gone up 2500. Median asking price is falling again. It had been bouncing up and down all summer but in the last couple of weeks its really dropped especially at the high end. I wouldn't make too much of that thought as it has fluctuated quite a bit in the last few months. But for the last 3 or 4 weeks the price is trending down and the inventory is trending up!