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REAL ESTATE INDUSTRY NEWS
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O.C.'s median home price rises 2.8 percent to $514,180

However, sales plummet 12.6 percent from the same time last year, says C.A.R.

BY Logan ChurmPublished: August 24, 2010 02:48 PM

Courtesy of Fotolia
Orange County's median home price rose to $514,180 in July, up 2.8 percent from the same time last year. The number fell 0.7 percent from June, according to a new report from the California Association of Realtors, which relies on MLS information for its data.

Statewide, the median home price jumped 10.4 percent to $314, 850, compared to the same time last year. The price rose less than 1 percent from June.

Meanwhile, Orange County sales plummeted 12.6 in July, compared to the same time last year. They also fell 14.5 percent from June.

The downward trend was seen across the state, which reported a 20.8 percent drop in home sales from July 2009. Sales also slipped 10.9 percent from June.

"July’s sales decrease was not unexpected, given the strong sales activity we saw in May when buyers took advantage of expiring federal and state home buyer tax credits,” said C.A.R. President Steve Goddard. “Even without tax incentives, buyers waiting on the sidelines should take advantage of historically low interest rates and current home prices,” he said.

For the remainder of the year, slower sales could negatively impact the median home price, added C.A.R. Vice President and Chief Economist Leslie Appleton-Young.

"We will likely see a slowdown in price appreciation for the remainder of the year as weaker sales will drive inventory higher," she said.

In a separate report conducted by C.A.R. and DataQuick, which uses county records data for its stats, Orange County's median home price saw a 6.9 percent gain in July, compared to the same month in 2009. The number rose to $449,000.

Additionally, Newport Beach ranked among the top 10 priciest cities in the state, with a median cost of $1.1 million. Lake Forest landed among the top 10 cities with the greatest median price increases, compared to a year ago. The region saw a 24.3 percent uptick.

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