Median Sales Price Continues Its Upward Trend In San Francisco’s Housing Market

SAN FRANCISCO, CA, May 17, 2010 – Healthy sales activity, driven by low mortgage rates, tax

incentives, and attractive pricing continued to reduce the market’s for-sale housing inventory in

San Francisco in April, according to the most recent Market Focus report issued jointly by Rosen

Consulting Group and the San Francisco Association of REALTORS®.

The report indicates that the median sales price for both single-family homes and

condominiums trended upward in April, driven by increasing price stability at the low-end of

the market and a rise in the number of completed transactions for higher-priced properties.

But, while increased competition for some homes allowed sellers to achieve more than the

asking price, the report observes, prices in today’s market are still significantly less than prices

seen at the height of the housing boom.

Economic factors are cited as the principal reason for the improvement in San Francisco’s

housing market: “Despite fluctuations in the stock market and growing uncertainty surrounding

the financial solvency of some European nations and the potential effect on global credit

markets, as well as U.S. exports, the national and regional economy continues to gradually

recover from the most recent recession. The pace of job losses has retracted in recent months

and should continue, driving expectations for eventual job growth by the end of the year. The

more positive outlook on the economy and the housing market among consumers and

potential homebuyers, particularly in comparison to one year ago, should sustain home buying

activity going forward.”

According to John Lee, president of the San Francisco Association of REALTORS®, “The pent up

demand for single-family homes and condominiums in San Francisco and a general

improvement in the local economy has driven buyers back into the housing market. And, the

increased competition for housing has brought the return of a phenomenon not seen for

awhile—multiple offers, at least for the more desirable properties.”

“As sellers gain more leverage in negotiations,” Lee believes, ”sellers who have been waiting for

more favorable market conditions will be prompted to place their homes on the market.”

In April 2010, the median single-family home price rose to $788,750, increasing by 11.6% from

the same month the previous year. During the month, 188 single family home sales were

completed, a 27% increase from April 2009, while pending home sales reached 284 sales, a 33%

increase during the period.

The median condominium sales price rose 3.0% from April 2009, rising to $680,000. While sales

activity has increased across all price points, condominium buying activity is still heavily

concentrated in more moderately-priced segments of the market.

Lee believes that while rising interest rates may test the market’s resilience later this year, “The

more positive outlook for the economy, as well as the housing market, should sustain home

buying activity going forward.”

Real estate data in Market Focus is provided by Terradatum. Market Focus is written by the

Rosen Consulting Group.