October 2013 San Diego Real Estate Market Update

Experts Optimistic Over US Real Estate Future, Despite Potential Governmental Default

According to data from the National Association of Realtors, the United States housing market may be seeing slowed growth, but is still making positive headway as the economic recovery continues. As inventory levels rise across the country, slowing the double-digit growth that many areas have seen over the past year, August brought the 28th consecutive month of increases in year-over-year pending home sales. To combat naysayers who claimed that the market growth was simply a correction of low, post-recession prices, the rise in contracts on homes proves that even with an increased inventory level, more and more consumers are expressing confidence in the market once again by buying.

In fact, the market is moving along with so much power that David Crowe, the chief economist for the National Association of Home Builders, recently went on record saying that he anticipates growth to continue through 2014 and become even stronger in 2015. Even with the gains we've seen so far this year, the Consumer Sentiment Index from the University of Michigan shows that the percentage of Americans who feel that now is a great time to buy real estate is comparable to the levels seen around the previous housing boom.

All of this promising news comes as the US is on the edge of a financial default. If a national budget is not adopted by October 17th, and the federal government is unable to pay its debts on time, the results could be damaging to all aspects of real estate. With interest rates recently on the rise, a default could likely continue to push them higher, making the cost of home ownership significantly more for many Americans. Gary Thomas, president of the NAR, recently met with Senate members to urge lawmakers to solve the budget issue and prevent damage to the recovery we've seen in recent history. Other experts, such as the chief economist for Moody's Analytics have also warned against the after-effects of a default on the national economy and housing markets.

San Diego Home Values Continue To Rise As More Inventory Comes To Market

Across the county, the number of homes for sale increased in September, although not at the rate which we've seen over the past few months. Single-family homes for sale have been making their way to the market in increasing numbers since January when the average was just 2,796. Last month, the San Diego Association of Realtors reported that figure at 4,543. Since January, we've seen inventory levels rise 62.5%, although the increase from August to September was only 2.4%.

Despite the number of sold listings declining from August to September, the median sales price of San Diego real estate has increased. Last month, the median price of a single-family home was $486,500 – a figure nearly $100,000 more than we were seeing at the beginning of the year.

Across San Diego County, experts are optimistic on future growth, although they warn consumers not to expect 20%+ growth over the next couple of years as we have seen in many areas throughout 2013. With interest rates a full point over their levels six months ago, continued real estate growth and home purchases are expected in 2014, albeit as a slower pace as investor activity slows and traditional core homeowners began to dominate the buyer's market once again.

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