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California 2015 February Home Prices Up 6.5% Year Over Year

March 2015 - An estimated 25,585 new and existing houses and condos sold in California in February 2015. That was up 1.0 percent month over month from 25,325 sales in January 2015 and down 0.4 percent year over year from 25,680 sales in February 2014. 

February home sales have varied from a low of 20,513 sales in 2008 to a high of 48,409 sales in 2004. The February 2015 sales were the lowest for that month since 2008, and they were 18.7 percent lower than the February average of 31,454 sales since 1988, when CoreLogic DataQuick data began. 

The median price paid for a home in California in February 2015 was $378,000, up 0.5 percent month over month from $376,000 in January 2015 and up 6.5 percent year over year from $355,000 in February 2014. 

February 2015 marked the 36th consecutive month in which the state's median sale price increased on a year-over-year basis. The peak year-over-year price gain during that period was 29.2 percent in July 2013. Since then price gains have trended lower and since July 2014 the year-over-year increases have been single-digit – between about 6 percent and 7 percent from October 2014 through February 2015. 

The February 2015 median sale price was 21.9 percent lower than California’s peak median price of $484,000, reached in March/April/May 2007. 

Of the existing homes sold statewide in February 2015, 6.8 percent were properties that had been foreclosed on during the previous 12 months. That was up from a revised 6.7 percent in January 2015 and down from 8.0 percent in February 2014. Statewide foreclosure resales peaked at 58.8 percent in February 2009. 

Short sales made up an estimated 6.2 percent of homes that resold in February 2015, down slightly month over month from 6.7 percent in January 2015 and down year over year from 9.0 percent in February 2014. Short sales are transactions in which the sale price fell short of what was owed on the property. 

The typical monthly mortgage payment for California homebuyers in February 2015 was $1,394, up from $1,379 in January 2015 and down from $1,405 in February 2014. Adjusted for inflation, the February 2015 typical payment was 39.7 percent below the typical payment in the spring of 1989, which was the peak of the prior real estate cycle. It was 51.1 percent below the current cycle's peak in June 2006 and 51.2 percent above the January 2012 trough of the current cycle. 

Source: CoreLogic DataQuick; DQNews.com

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