Southern California Real Estate Update - February 2014

     

house chartDQnews.com released their monthly Southern California real estate report and February was a good month. In Los Angeles County, single family home prices are up 21% from last year. Condos are up 30%, which isn't surprising (click here to see why). Certain zip codes in Torrance even exceed those numbers; especially in Old Torrance.

Old Torrance (90501), home to some of the oldest residences in the city, saw 14 sales at an average of 41.2% higher than February 2013. According to this statistic, a home might have sold around $350,000 in 2013 and will now sell close to $490,000. That's a HUGE difference. Granted, areas close to Downtown Torrance in the historical districts likely skew the dramatic price increase, as it's a highly sought after area and still somewhat affordable (for Torrance). Neighborhoods farther inland are most likely not selling at the same rate of increase.

9 condos in 90501 sold in February at an average price increase of 111.7% from February 2013. I repeat, 111.7%. Before jumping out of your seat to put a 'for sale' sign up in front of your condo, it's important to look at the past few months. The January report stated that condo prices in 90501 were down 15.2% from January 2013. I looked back at Fall/Winter 2013 reports as well and this pattern of positive/negative price changes continued.

So how should we interpret this? We should just take it with a grain of salt. The percentage comes from comparing February 2014 prices to February 2013 prices. I looked back and February 2013 only had 3 condos sell. These 3 could have been short sales, foreclosures, and/or fixer-uppers. If we learned anything from our high school science and economy classes, we know that a sample of 3 is not enough to form any valid conclusion from. We get a much better idea from a larger number of sales.

What we can take from this recent report, is that Old Torrance is doing well compared to years past. To see how other zip codes in Torrance did, as well as other LA and So Cal cities, click here.

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Jennifer Shenbaum

About The Author

Jennifer Shenbaum is a real estate investor based in Southern California. She is a veteran of the housing market crash of 2007. Best of all, she offers free remodeling ideas to all who ask.