Southern California Real Estate Market Still Weak in March

Southern California home sales turned in another lackluster month in March, the result of a fussy mortgage market, slow job growth and a continued wait-and-see attitude among potential buyers and sellers. There were signs, however, that the market was a little less dysfunctional than in recent months, a real estate information service reported.

A total of 19,412 new and resale houses and condos sold in Los Angeles, Riverside, San Diego, Ventura, San Bernardino and Orange counties in March. That was up 35.1% from 14,369 in February, and down 5.2% from 20,476 in March 2010, according to DataQuick. The San Diego firm tracks real estate trends nationally via public property records.

Sales always increase from February to March. Last month’s sales count was 21.4% below the 24,706 average for all the months of March since 1988. Sales so far this year are 20% below the norm. During the last half of 2010 sales were 25-30% below average.

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