April Home Sales Down Statewide, But Prices Up Realtors Say

S&P Index Shows Continued Rise In Home Prices

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Closed escrow sales of existing, single-family detached homes in California dipped slightly in April compared with March, the California Association of Realtors said today.

April's seasonally adjusted sales of 396,760 housing units was down 0.1% from the 397,210 sold in March, and down a significant 4.8% from April 2018, when 416,750 units were sold.

Sales remained below the 400,000 level for the ninth consecutive month and have fallen on a year-over-year basis for a full year.

“Weak buyer demand, largely prompted by elevated home prices, is playing a role in the softening housing market,” CAR. President Jared Martin said. “However, with low interest rates, cooling competition and an increase in homes to choose from, buyers can take advantage of a more balanced housing market.”

Even as demand weakened and home sales stumbled, the statewide median home price set another record high in April, hitting $602,920 and surpassing the previous high of $602,760 set last summer.

April's price was up 6.5 percent from $565,880 in March and up 3.2 percent from a revised $584,460 in April 2018. The year-over-year price growth rate was the strongest since October 2018.

In Metro Los Angeles, the median price was $536,450 in April, up from $517,000 in March and $515,000 in April 2018.

In Orange County, the price was $825,000 in April, jumping from $809,500 in March and $818,000 in April of last year.

“While we started off the spring homebuying season on a down note, home sales in the upcoming months may fare better than the top-level numbers suggest,” CAR Chief Economist Leslie Appleton-Young said. “The year-over-year sales decrease was the smallest in nine months, and pending home sales increased for the second straight month after declining for more than two years.”

Photo: Getty Images

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