As the real estate market continues bouncing along the bottom, the Bay Area saw more homes change hands in March compared with a year ago, while the median price stayed flat, according to a real estate report released Thursday.
“I think 2012 is the year where we’ll find a rock-solid bottom to the market if current trends hold, such as a strengthening economy and no big surge in distressed properties,” said Andrew LePage, an analyst with San Diego’s DataQuick, which released the report. “In areas like Silicon Valley with strong job growth you could argue that we’re past the bottom, but that’s not true elsewhere. The data are still choppy; we’ll know when the market really turns the corner if we have month after month of year-over-year price gains.”
A total of 7,694 new and resale houses and condos sold in the nine-county region in March, up 9.1 percent from a year earlier, according to DataQuick. For existing single-family homes, the total was 5,376 sold, a 3.6 increase from the prior year.
For all homes, the median price, which closely reflects the mixture of homes sold (more high-end homes lead to a higher median, for instance), was $358,000, a notch below $360,000 in March 2011. For existing homes, the median was $390,000, down 1.5 percent from a year earlier. The median has steadily declined compared with the prior year every month since October 2010, but DataQuick said last month’s was the smallest decline so far.Read more…