LA home sales drop to the lowest level in 4 years

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Home sales in Los Angeles County have declined for a fourth month in a row, and the number of pending sales has dropped more than 37 percent over August numbers. That’s according to a new report from realtor John Graff, who also notes that pending sales are down a staggering 48.9 percent since September of last year. They’re now down to the lowest level since 2012.

Though sales generally tend to decline in fall, the prolonged drop that’s currently taking place has the realtor scratching his head. “Over 10 years of Los Angeles County real estate data shows no similar drop in pending home sales in terms of the breadth and depth,” Graff says.

Not surprisingly, closed sales have dropped as well; between August and September they fell off 32.7 percent.

Since more homes are languishing on the market, the city’s housing stock has increased markedly. It’s now up to five months supply, which is still a bit below the six-month marker that’s normally considered healthy, but is also nearly a two month increase over the month before.

What’s behind this precipitous decline in sales? Last month, Graff reckoned it might be an effect of subpar houses flooding the market as homeowners try to take advantage of a red hot seller’s market.

Certainly not helping things is the fact that home prices remain higher than ever, with the median sale price reaching a whopping $580,000 in September. Will we see prices drop anytime soon? Starter homebuyers certainly hope so. For now, though, it seems that sales are continuing to slump, while prices stubbornly keep on rising.

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