Sun Shining on San Diego Real Estate Market

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Home prices in San Diego are recovering from their lows--and it is now one of the healthier markets in the U.S. Could improved news for other real estate markets be far behind?

San Diego Real Estate Market

... the San Diego housing market is likely to fare better than most and may be a bellwether for the rest of the country.

The San Diego real estate market is likely years away from the lofty home price levels of 2005-2006. But 15 months of steady increases and a 9.3 percent spike in year-over-year prices puts San Diego in second place for the Case-Shiller July Housing Index. That puts San Diego second only to San Francisco, which had an 11.2 percent increase for the same period.

Why is San Diego faring so much better than other parts of the country--especially with an unemployment rate of over 10 percent?

There are several possibilities, said Mike Murphy a Realtor and Certified Distressed Property Expert with San Diego Previews Real Estate. He cites:

     1. Increased affordability for buyers coupled with low mortgage rates. FHA and VA loans are now common.
     2. Baby Boomers who want to retire near beaches in San Diego's balmy climate.
     3. Investors who can now come close to break-even on their real estate investments. These buyers are helping to congest the sub-$400,000 market and contribute to price increases.
     4. An Increase in the number of people who telecommute or travel for a living and have the option of living in locations of their choice.    
     5. Foreign home buyers and investors who believe the San Diego market has likely bottomed out and want to secure their own place in the sun and near the sand.

"Shadow inventory, short sales and pending foreclosures in San Diego remain a concern for many, but those real estate bargains are often met with multiple offers and frustrated buyers who move from one property to the next," said Murphy. "There may be dips in the market," he said, " but the San Diego housing market is likely to fare better than most and may a bellwether for the rest of the country."

San Diego Previews Real Estate was selected by readers of the San Diego Union Tribune as one of the Top Ten Real Estate Brokerages in San Diego for 2010.

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Roberta Murphy
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