Sales of single-family homes and condominiums in California were down 4.2 percent in August compared with July and 13.5 percent compared with August 2013, according to a new report from PropertyRadar.
On a regional basis, over the past 12 months, sales were down 15.7 percent in the Bay Area, 16.7 percent in Southern California, and 18.8 percent in the Central Valley.
According to the report, the rapid disappearance of distressed properties available for sale has been a key factor depressing sales. In August 2013, 24 percent of sales were distressed properties, in August 2014 distressed property sales comprised only 16.7 percent of the total. In August 2011, 54.7 percent of sales were distressed property sales.
The August 2014 median price of a California home was $390,000, unchanged from July. On a year-ago basis, median home prices gained 8.3 percent, the slowest monthly gain since June 2012. Month-over-month price variations are impacted heavily by the sales of non-distressed properties, which in August comprised 83.3 percent of total sales. The median price of non-distressed homes fell 0.5 percent for the month while the median price of distressed homes gained 2.8 percent. The lack of movement in median prices this past month was due mostly to a shift from less expensive to more expensive homes, not a change in underlying home values.