Bay Area Housing Market Still Weak – Short Sales Account For Half Of Transactions

MDA DataQuick reported Thursday that Silicon Valley’s housing market continued to be weak in February, with resale home transactions in Santa Clara County practically flat; the median home price is at $495,000, down 3% from February of last year.

The report is reflective of sales trends throughout the Bay Area, where sales dropped 0.4% from last year, and the median home price dropped 4.1% to $355,000.

Distress sales — foreclosures and “short sales” for less than the value of the mortgage on a home — were just over half of transactions in the Bay Area, DataQuick reported. Cash buyers accounted for 30.9 percent of Bay Area home sold, the highest level since DataQuick began keeping track of the market in 1988.

Please Note: DataQuick’s report is based on transactions reported to county governments.

DataQuick’s president, John Walsh, warns the public not to rely on the report as an indicator of what the market’s strength will be for the rest of the year. If the economy continues to improve, Walsh says, the market could bounce back in the spring and summer.

John Walsh notes, however, that “sales over the past two months certainly underscore the market’s reliance on investor and cash purchases at a time many potential buyers hesitated to act.”


bay area housing market february 2011

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