Los Angeles County’s housing market started 2021 with sales 14.3% above January 2020 as prices rose 6.7% in 12 pandemic-scarred months.

The buying binge came as historically cheap interest rates and limited inventory made life difficult for house hunters seeking new or larger living spaces. DQNews/CoreLogic’s report on closed transactions in Los Angeles County from January shows …

Sales: 5,705 homes sold, existing and new — up 14.3% in a year.

Past 12 months? 72,041 Los Angeles County sales — down -3.2% off the previous 12 months and -7.5% off the average since 2010.

Past year’s share of overall Southern California sales? 30.6% vs. 33.4% average since 2010.

Prices: The countywide median of $690,000 median was up 12.6% over 12 months. Over 10 years, gains averaged 8.7% annually.

Record high? $715,000 set in September. Since the Great Recession? Up 25% vs. the late 2000’s bubble-era high.

Too hot? Check “Bubble Watch” columns by clicking here.

Here’s a look into key slices of Los Angeles market in January …

Existing single-family houses: 3,906 sold, up 12.9% in a year. Median of $750,000 — a 15.7% increase over 12 months.

Existing condos: 1,538 sales, up 18.7% over 12 months. Median of $560,000 — a 9.8% increase in a year.

Newly built: Builders sold 261 new homes, up 12.0% in a year. Median of $742,500 — a 16.6% increase over 12 months.

Builder share: 4.6% of sales vs. 4.7% a year earlier. Los Angeles County builders’ slice of the market ranks No. 5 among SoCal’s six counties.

Price rank: How Los Angeles County’s median compared to Southern California’s five other counties: No. 2 overall; No. 2 for single-family resales; No. 1 for condo resales; and No. 2 for new homes.

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How cheap is money? Rates on a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage averaged 2.73% in the three months ending in January vs. 3.68% a year earlier. That translates to house hunters having 13% more buying power.

At these rates, a buyer with 20% down would pay $2,248 a month on the $690,000 median sale vs. $2,252 on last year’s $613,000 median. So during the past year, the typical house payment is -0.2% cheaper.

How thin is supply? SoCal’s for-sale inventory was just over 17,000 in early February, according to Reports On Housing. That’s a little more than half of the listings vs. a year earlier.

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Around Southern California, according to DQNews’ latest report on closed sales in …

Six-county region: 17,352 sold, up 13.5%. over 12 months. Median price was $599,500 — a 13% increase.

Orange County: 2,587 sold, up 22%. Median? $799,000 — a 7% increase.

Riverside County: 3,059 sales, up 10.1%. Median? $455,364 — a 17% increase.

San Bernardino County: 2,608 sold, up 20.7%. Median? $402,500 (record high) — a 12% increase.

San Diego County: 2,647 sales, up 1.8%. Median? $640,000 — a 9% increase.

Ventura County: 746 sold, up 16%. Median? $655,000 — a 11% increase.

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Source:: Los Angeles Daily News


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