Redfin: Bay Area’s housing supply remains tight, as prices (mostly) rise yet again

The housing supply is low. But buyers — an insatiable lot — need houses, so competition keeps pushing prices up.

That was the story nationally in November, according to today’s report from Redfin, which shows similar patterns playing out across the Bay Area.

U.S. home prices rose 7.7 percent year-over-year in November, while the number of homes for sale dipped 9.7 percent, continuing a 14-month stretch of declines. That said, sales bounced back from a sluggish October — they grew by 20.1 percent, the largest year-over-year gain since July 2015.

The Redfin report covers the entire residential real estate market: old and new homes, single-family houses, condos, townhomes, duplexes and 4-unit sales.

Here are some key numbers for the Bay Area:

In the San Jose metro area (defined as Santa Clara and San Benito counties), the median price rose 4.2 percent from the year before to $875,000. New listings tumbled 8.5 percent, yet sales rose 22.9 percent.

In the Oakland metro area (Alameda and Contra Costa counties) the median price climbed 7.8 percent to $635,000; again, that’s on a year-over-year basis. New listings eked out a small gain of 2.3 percent and sales rose 19.5 percent from the year before.

The story was a little different in the San Francisco metro area (which includes the city and San Mateo County). There, the median price was $1.1 million, a 2.2 percent decline from November 2015. New listings were down 20.9 percent and sales rose 16.5 percent.

Nela Richardson, Redfin’s chief economist, summed up the nation’s November market like this: “Last year we saw a temporary slump in November sales as new mortgage industry regulations went into effect and delayed some closings. Now, those regulatory hurdles have largely been resolved, but the market is by no means back to normal.”

She added that “the Federal Reserve’s decision to raise rates is unlikely to significantly dampen homebuyer enthusiasm as we enter 2017. We’re still expecting another year of rising prices and modestly growing home sales.”

Photo by Paul Sakuma/AP


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