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LA’s Real Estate – Sky Rocketing Housing Prices
2016 was a great year for real estate sales in California and you’re likely wondering when it might be the right time to invest in an income property or buy a home, or sell your current home in LA. The question is whether buyers will be brave enough to launch in 2017.
Looks like more buyers, real estate investors are hopeful they can find the right property in the right city or zip code. 405,530 single-family homes were sold in California in December 2016 which was up 9.6% from November and up 10.7% from December 2014. We’re still waiting for the December LA County stats however, we can expect similar rises in LA.
In it’s last forecast report, CAR admits that it erred in its forecast due to a flat US economy, underestimating the lack of home supply, and uncertainty about the election. These may have all been political issues that skewed their forecast.
No one’s certain what Trump might do in 2017, however more pundits are coming around to say his policies may have a very good impact. We should keep in mind that only 30% of Californians own a home so the door is wide open for opportunity and new sales, particularly with first time buyers. The problem is that homeowners don’t want to sell.
The Telling Stats about LA’s Forecast
If buyer’s are hoping for bargains in the next 4 years, they’re unlikely to find them. Despite a dip in September, prices for homes and condos are up $24k to $30k from one year ago. Are the Asian and Persian buyers pulling out of LA? The Trump instability and trade issue might be a pause before even more money pours into the reviving American economy. Make American Great Again, also creates excellent investment opportunities in California, paying out in $US.
- jobs being repatriated back to the US from Mexico and China
- employment already good and rising
- the end of Obamacare?
- the end of Dodd-Frank restrictions on lending
- general Federal easing of real estate development expected
- it will take some time for mortgage rates to rise
- still isn’t enough housing to house LA’s growing population (recession)
It’s the Los Angeles housing forecast that is perhaps one of the most interesting forecasts for the US for the next few years. California’s housing developers are hard pressed to build homes to house the population. We can speculate that homes will rise in price for the next 4 years. It’s not easy to predict though when people are talking real estate bubbles, NAFTA cancellations, Brexit, skyrocketing prices, vacillating oil prices, reduced immigration, and presidential elections.
Overall, the Los Angeles forecast was very good for sellers with plenty of demand and with the average price of a home hitting $690,000 last summer. Affordability is dropping though and only 30% of LA county residents own a home.
Given the nasty commutes Los Angeles workers are enduring, this housing crisis should be a top priority for the California state governor.
A few pundits are suggesting homeowners need to build granny flats in everyone’s back yard. Political battles are forming over the effect of regulations on LA’s and California’s home construction. Who will win? Will they battle Trump head to head to stop new development?
LA has some Hot Communities – Here’s the Hottest Zip Codes
Some realtors speculate the LA’s market is understandable by niche such as the luxury niche. Some types of properties have consistently high demand and prices regardless of the economy. If Trump does heat up the US economy, we can expect these hot luxury neighbourhoods and pricey zip codes to appreciate even faster.
LA Curbed’s list of hot zip codes: Los Angeles’s 90012 zip code is shaping up to be the 2nd fastest growing area in the nation at 8.8% growth, 2nd behind only Gilbert AZ. The 90012 zip code includes Chinatown, the Civic Center, Elysian Park, Victor Heights, parts of the Arts District and Bunker Hill, and most of Little Tokyo.
Here’s the LA Times hot zip code list:
Santa Monica 90402 – Average home price: $3,237,500
Hermosa Beach 9025 – Average home price: $1,693,500
Lincoln Heights/Montecito 90031 – Average home price $458,500 +14.6%
City Terrace 90063 – Average home price: $320,000 +18.5%
Marina Del Rey 90292 – Average home price: $2,157,500 +23%
Manhattan Beach 90266 – Average home price: $2,100,000 +10%
Compton – 90220 – Average home price: $285,000 +9.8%
Playa Del Rey 90293 – Average home price: $1,517,500 +26.5%
Toluca Lake Studio City 91602 – Average home price: $1,022,500
Read more on the best zip codes in the US for investors and homebuyers.
LA Home Prices Fully Recovered?
The Los Angeles home price graph below courtesy of Zillow shows how prices have almost returned to pre-recession values and are beginning to level off. To forecast prices and demand for the LA region, we’d have to examine the cause of the moderation and if it’s a fact. Here’s LA’s hottest zip codes.
Last year, home prices in LA rose 7.8%. That’s a fairly strong ascent to just snap out of, so we’re left wondering what really is the outlook is for the 2017 to 2020 period? With prices high and rising, it makes sense that the number of buyers will dwindle (prefering to rent) and a leveling off would occur. It seems however, this is more a guess by forecasters not really backed up by a solid consideration of all the factors that will be in play during the next 4 years – defeated regulations, growing economy, and reduced immigration.
Is there a Housing Bubble Market?
Here’s the thing. According to a Harvard real estate guru, bubbles don’t burst until demand dries up — an increase in unsold inventory.
Do you honestly think there will be no demand for coastal California property, especially Los Angeles county or Orange county? As you’ll see from the data in this post below, there is huge demand for property. Supply is the problem.
Economic Factors that affect Home Prices in LA
13 factors that affect the #LosAngeles housing forecast. #LA #homesforsale #condos #luxuryhomes… Click To Tweet
Housing Demand – High overall demand – “all cash bidding wars” in some cases
Housing Supply – Throttled, supply is far from what’s needed
Mortgage Rates – Continuing Low, especially in light of global economic slackening
Down Payment and mortgage rules – Banks are withdrawing FHA loans however some are offering downpayments as low as 3%
Regional Employment – Very low and remaining low
Buyer Income – low and not rising much
Home Prices – High and rising – out of reach for many buyers – many consider LA homes grossly over-priced
Demographics – Millennials coming into family and home buying years and LA millennials have had the lowest rate of home buying (pent up demand)
Number of Renters – increasing fast
New Home Construction: slow (100k to 140k per year)
Economic-Foreign Trade – Trump expected to reduce US deficit
Election Year – Voters uncertain of what Trump will create
Taxes on Sale of Home – Tax situation is great for sellers
This intriguing graphic courtesy of http://journal.firsttuesday.us/ reveals that home sales in Los Angeles is actually well down from historical levels. The likely reason for that is lower income buyers simply have even less income to buy and of course the high prices. Home ownership is lowest in California.
A complete recovery of around 110,000 annual home sales will likely occur in 2019-2020, as end user demand in Los Angeles County is buttressed by a Great Confluence of Baby Boomers (Boomers) and first-time buyers who are lured by further employment (needed to accommodate population growth of roughly 1% annually since the beginning of the Great Recession).
That’s a forecast growth of about 20,000 homes per year over current current 2016 levels.
Another interesting stat provided by firsttuesday is the very low rate of home ownership and how much it’s plummeted. It’s on the uprise now, and you’re left wondering whether Trump’s renewed emphasis of America First will encourage the growth of home ownership?
LA Economic Forecast – Very Rosy
The forecast for economic growth for the Los Angeles is optimistic at this point. Visit http://laedc.org/2015/09/30/new-2016-2020-economic-forecast-published-93015/ for the most recent info and their forecast up to 2020.
This Stat from CAR shows homes have been on a rollercoaster ride of sorts yet, 2016’s expected resale volume is still well down from 2011 and 2012’s highs. If incomes should rise in the LA area, it could have the effect of stimulating new housing construction and increase sales of homes. With the number renters skyrocketing, there’s a huge pool of potential buyers.
Home reSales Forecasts 2016f
This graphic reveals the exceptionally high cost of renting in Los Angeles compared with other major centers. The housing availability problem isn’t isolated to California or LA, it’s a US wide issue. The high housing costs in the coastal California areas however may prevent many skilled workers from migrating to LA to work. Startups for instance may be forced to leave San Francisco, Bay Area and LA because of the cost. San Diego County may be a better option for the short term.
This is a short term forecast from LA realtor James Campbell, who believes prices will drop?!
What can we conclude from the above data? That LA’s market for realtors is very promising, yet just as it is in San Francisco, Toronto and Vancouver, finding sellers and convincing them to sell will be a key challenge. Digital marketing efforts could be vital to any realtor hoping to maximize demand and achieve highest price for their clients. Is this the right year to buy rental income property? Find out which are the best investments in 2017 including investing in real estate.
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