Home prices across the Santa Clarita Valley were the strongest they’ve been in nearly three years, and they returned to pre-recession levels for the month of March, according to a report Thursday from the Southland Regional Association of Realtors.
The typical single-family home changed hands for $420,000 last month, up sharply from February’s $379,000 and from the $378,100 median reported in March 2012.
The last time the median single-family home price hit $420,000 was in July 2010, and the last time the SCV saw a better month of March, price-wise, was in 2008, prior to the recession.
March condominium prices matched February’s $220,000, the best they’ve been since May 2011.
More homes closed escrow in March, as well, compared to the previous month and the previous March – 200 single-family homes (versus 180 a year earlier) and 95 condos (versus 67).
“The depth of pent-up demand for housing in our community is evident in the rise in prices and continuing increases in sales, even in the face of an incredibly limited inventory of homes for sale,” said Bob Khalsa, president of SRAR’s Santa Clarita Valley Division. “Home prices in all price ranges clearly are on their way up. There are multiple buyers for almost every property, yet nowhere near the supply needed to satisfy demand.”
Homeowners aren’t selling, and that has translated into a record-low supply of homes for sale, SRAR officials said. There were just 312 active listings at the end of March – a 1.1-month supply of homes at the current pace of sales. A 6-month supply is reflective of a healthy market; by comparison, during the healthy year of 2007 there were 2,200 homes, on average, listed for sale at any given time.
“The lack of listings clearly adds upward pressure on prices, which benefits underwater homeowners who have loans larger than the current resale value of their home,” said SRAR CEO Jim Link. “Yet too few listings also skews the market, which may hinder a broader economic recovery and undermine the long-term stability of the housing market.”