Median price of Sacramento-area home sales jumps 32 percent

Published: Thursday, Apr. 11, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 6B
Last Modified: Thursday, Apr. 11, 2013 - 7:55 am

The median price of homes sold in March was 32 percent higher than the same month last year, the highest it's been since 2008, the Sacramento Association of Realtors reported Wednesday.

The median price of homes sold in Sacramento County and the city of West Sacramento increased from $165,900 in March 2012 to $218,750 last month, the group said in a news release.

The scant supply of homes for sale is largely responsible for the spike. Active listings of homes for sale in March increased by nearly 4 percent from February, going from 1,072 units to 1,114 units. But sales volume also increased.

The result was that the inventory of homes for sale – measured by the time it would take to sell all homes on the market – decreased.

Inventory went from 0.9 months in February to 0.8 months in March. The historically low supply has shut out first-time buyers as investors have gone on a buying spree.

The Realtors' statistics involve only homes listed through agents with the Multiple Listing Service.

Of the sales in March, 63 percent were traditional equity sales. That's the highest figure since the Realtors' group started keeping track five years ago and a reversal from last year, when the majority of sales were foreclosures or short sales.

The boost in conventional sales, " shows a trend of homeowners jumping back into the market," said SAR President Chris Little.

Call The Bee's Hudson Sangree, (916) 321-1191.

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