Thursday, July 24, 2008

Foreclosures Rake Through California Markets

In the San Francisco Bay Area, there's nearly one foreclosure for every home sold. In Southern California, foreclosures account for more than 40 percent of all sales. Even Silicon Valley is suffering.

by Broderick Perkins
© 2008 DeadlineNews.Com

Unauthorized use of this story is a copyright violation -- a federal crime

Deadline Newsroom - California's housing market remains grim.

For the first time in more than four years, the median price of homes in the San Francisco Bay Area fell below the half million dollar mark.

The market's median price first reached $500,000 in May of 2004 and prices peaked at $665,000 in June and July of last year.

This year, the June $485,000 median price includes all homes, new, resales and condos and represents a 27 percent drop in prices from a year ago, again, when the market was at its price peak, according to La Jolla, CA based DataQuick Information Services.

What's depressing prices in the Bay Area? The same conditions that have spread throughout the Golden State.

Sellers are lowering prices, there is more sales activity in less-expensive, more affordable areas and lenders unloading foreclosures is really taking a toll on California.

In the nine-county Bay Area just over 7,000 homes sold in June, during the same period about 6,000 homes went into default.

Foreclosure conditions are worse in the southern end of the state. DataQuick also said more than 40 percent of all sales in June in Southern California were foreclosed properties. Just one year ago only 7 percent of all sales in the region were foreclosures.

Buyers are, however, taking advantage of bargains in California's over built inland regions where many areas have suffered home price declines of 30 percent or more.

Even in Silicon Valley, one of California's least hardest hit areas, home prices in large swaths of ZIP Codes have fallen from 20 to 40 percent. Also in Silicon Valley, homes in one east side ZIP Code are experiencing price declines as large as 50 percent, according to DataQuick.

Virtually every county in the state shows home price declines ranging from 7.7 percent in San Francisco County to more than 45 percent in San Benito County.

© 2008 DeadlineNews.Com

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Broderick Perkins, an award-winning consumer journalist of 30 years, is publisher and executive editor of San Jose, CA-based DeadlineNews Group -- DeadlineNews.Com, a real estate news and consulting service and Web site and the new Deadline Newsroom, DeadlineNews.Com's news back shop. In both cases, it's where all the news really hits home.

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