Author: Carrie B. Reyes

July 2012 home sales: a slipping trend?

39,507 homes were sold in July 2012, down 3.7% from June, yet up 14% from one year earlier. This is the second consecutive month of declining home sales, however sales volume is higher than it was last summer, which was mostly low and flat. Here are some other key factors controlling California’s housing market: Absentee homebuyers, to hold or to fold Absentee homebuyers (a group generally composed of speculators, buy-to-let investors and renovation contractors) accounted for 27% of Southern California (SoCal) July sales, remaining level with June 2012, near the record high of 30% set in February 2012. Absentee buyers made up 23% of Bay Area homebuyers in July, remaining level with June and up from 21% one year earlier. Sales of single family residences (SFRs) to owner-occupant homebuyers, the core demographic for a sustainable recovery, remained low. first tuesday forecasts that sales volume and prices will not rise beyond the rate of inflation until 2016. As absentee buyers of the speculator/flipping variety realize this, many will fold and leave the market. The inventory they leave behind will be consumed primarily by the low-level demand of occupying homebuyers. Jumbo loans Jumbo loans (loans over the old conforming limit of $417,000) accounted for 20% of July 2012 sales in SoCal, remaining level with the prior month and up from 18% one year earlier. Jumbos made up 39% of Bay Area...

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