Throughout the country and here in San Diego, new home construction is enjoying a notable recovery – one that industry experts attribute to increasing real estate demand and shrinking inventory. According to CNN Money, housing construction starts went up by 6.9% in June, bringing the annual rate to a four-year high of 760,000. In the face of low housing prices, eager buyers are finding fewer sellers prepared to put their homes on the market in move-in condition. Therefore, as Redfin founder Glen Kelman tells CNN, those with the means to do so are turning to new construction as a means to getting the homes they want.
Second-homes and summer vacation properties don’t tend to sell if the general housing market is in decline. However, according to a recent Investors Business Daily report, rising real estate optimism is spreading over to second home sales – and that spells good news for San Diego beach real estate. The Los Angeles Times reports new market gains as of May 2012, with California home sales jumping 9.3% from April. In addition, mid- to high-end coastal markets continued to gain traction. Representatives from the National Association of Realtors note a related rise in second-home sales in select parts of the state, with high-end properties driving the bulk of buyer activity. Here in San Diego, that translates into improved residential and vacation home sales throughout our local beach communities – timeless destinations renowned for sun, surf, sand and vibrant local culture.
GOP frontrunner Mitt Romney is perhaps the most famous individual to take refuge in a San Diego coastal home – but he is hardly alone in his enthusiasm for seaside California real estate. Like Romney, many people choose Southern California as a premier destination for retirement and vacation homes; and now, according to the latest numbers as reported by CBS News, such homes are a prime force behind rising real estate prices throughout the state.
After months of frustrating decline, median California home values achieved a welcome gain this spring in the form of a 0.8% increase over last year’s numbers, according to reports from the Los Angeles Times. The boost bumped the state’s median home price to $251,000, signifying a 5% increase since February 2012 and the market’s first year-over-year gain since September 2010. Industry experts acknowledge that the improvement is a small one. However, if the trend continues, some believe that this month’s numbers may signal a more comprehensive market recovery in the months and years ahead.
Has the housing market finally bottomed out? According to a recent piece for CNN Money, home prices may be at rock bottom – for real this time. And this means that, as the recovery effort gains momentum, so too will prices for prospective buyers. These days, many people debate the relative advantages of renting vs. buying a home: but now, with 98 of the country’s top 100 markets favoring buying over renting in terms of long-term affordability, the time is ripe for San Diego residents to sink their teeth into the real estate market – and snag the home of their dreams before prices and mortgage rates begin to rise.
Over the last few months, prospective homebuyers throughout the country have enjoyed record low mortgage interest rates and reduced property values – factors combining to create the best buyer’s market in years and, according to a recent report for Bloomberg Businessweek, a long-awaited boost in nationwide home resales as well. As of January 2012, the index of pending home sales improved by 2%; and while some economists see this as a sign of burgeoning consumer confidence, there are still many buyers waiting for even lower prices and a decisive “bottoming-out” of the market before moving forward with a real estate purchase.