This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
$1 buys you full access to ALL of TheStreet's Subscription Services! Learn More

Bay Area Home Sales Up Slightly in December

LA JOLLA, Calif. ( DQNews) -- The Bay Area's housing market rounded out 2011 much the way it started it: with constricted and atypical sales activity, lots of bottom feeding, and a largely dormant mid- to move-up market. Sales were up slightly last month, while prices dropped, a real estate information service reported.

A total of 7,494 new and resale houses and condos sold in the nine-county Bay Area in December. That was up 18.6% from 6,317 in November, and up 4.4% from 7,178 in December 2010. The year-over-year increase was the sixth in a row, according to San Diego-based DataQuick.

"We'll remember 2011 as much for what didn't happen as for what did. People put discretionary buying and selling on hold, except at the very top of the market. The spectacular gains in affordability, based on the combination of lower prices and ultra-low interest rates, was largely theoretical for many people because it was so hard to get a mortgage. That, combined with negative equity and economic uncertainty, kept people away," said John Walsh, DataQuick president.

"Many of the deals that did make their way through the system were in the distressed arena - foreclosures and short sales. Much of it was deeply discounted cash purchases, disproportionately at the lower end of the price scale," he said.

The median price paid for all new and resale houses and condos sold in the Bay Area last month was $351,500. That was down 3.5% from $363,500 in November, and down 6.3% from $375,000 in December 2010. The median has declined on a year-over-year basis for the last fifteen months.

Last month distressed property sales -- the combination of foreclosure resales and "short sales" -- rose to 49.6% of the resale market. That was up from 45.9% in November and up from 48.2% from December 2010.

Last month 31.4% of Bay Area sales were for $500,000 or more, down from a revised 32% in November, and down from 35% in December 2010.

Government-insured FHA home purchase loans, a popular choice among first-time buyers, accounted for 23.4% of all Bay Area home purchase mortgages in December, up from 21% in November and up from 23.2% a year earlier.

1 of 2

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!

Markets

DOW 17,827.75 +12.81 0.07%
S&P 500 2,072.83 +5.80 0.28%
NASDAQ 4,787.3170 +29.0650 0.61%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs