Linda Barnes, a Realtor with Keller Williams in Burbank, said that although prices are still well over last year’s levels, they have started to plateau.
“We saw in the beginning of the year, prices were really going up. Now, we’re seeing they’re just holding their own, they’re leveling out,” she said.
The median price of a single-family home was $598,750 in June and $595,000 in July, which means it didn’t budge last month, according to Benz’s figures.
Barnes said part of the slowdown was due to federal interest rates starting to rise slightly and more homes coming on the market, even if levels remained low compared to August 2012.
“Any time you get a change in interest rates, you see that,” she said. “And inventory is much higher now than it was.”
Benz’s statistics show that 114 single-family homes were for sale last month, a 35% decline from 175 in August 2012. In a month-to-month comparison, though, there were between 80 and 110 homes for sale each month during the first half of the year.
There were 42 condos for sale, a drop of roughly 37% from 66 a year ago.
Distressed homes and condos continued a months-long decline, making up a smaller slice of the market than before. Fourteen of them sold last month, making up around 19% of total sales, compared to 25 in August 2012.
This time last year, distressed properties made up around 61% of all home and condo sales.
Distressed sales include bank-owned properties and short sales, in which lenders let homeowners sell their homes for less than they owe on their mortgages, and generally sell for less than the average market value.
Barnes said that distressed home sales are declining because the overall economy is improving and the market is returning to normalcy after the drastic shocks it faced the past few years.
“That [housing] part of the economy is just doing better, there just are less of them,” she said.
Follow Daniel Siegal on Google+ and on Twitter: @Daniel_Siegal.
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