According to the California Association of Realtors there were 431,800 single family homes sold during the month of August. This figure is -3.8% from July of 2015 but is +9.3% from August of last year.
One of the market indicators that tell us how the market is doing is the “sales to list price ratio.” This Sales To List Ratio is approximately 98% in all parts of California except the Bay Area. In the San Francisco Bay area the Sales to List Ratio was 103.4% in August 2015 and last month even higher at 104%. This means that if a home was on the market for $100,000, it sold over the asking price in the San Francisco bay area for $104,000 in July and $103,400 in August 2015. Everywhere else in California it would have sold for $98,000.
On a national level, sales were also down in August 2015. Sales of existing homes, condos, townhouses, were down 4.8% from July 2015.
According to Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the national Association of Realtors, “Sales activity was down in many parts of the country last month — especially in the South and West — as the persistent summer theme of tight inventory levels likely deterred some buyers. The good news for the housing market is that price appreciation the last two months has started to moderate from the unhealthier rate of growth seen earlier this year.”
The FED is expected to raise interest rates later this year in December. This could have a negative effect on the housing market in general because a buyers mortgage payment would go up with the higher interest rate. As a result, buyers may have a more difficult time qualifying for a loan with prices going higher and interest rates higher.