Orange County’s homebuying rebound continued with the busiest November in 15 years as historically low interest rates and limited inventory forced house hunters looking for more space into bidding wars.
A study by DQNews of closed transactions in Orange County from November shows …
• 3,302 homes sold, existing and new — highest November tally since 2005; up 19% in a year; and 19% above the previous five year’s average transactions. Year to date there have been 31,326 Orange County purchases — up 2% vs. 2019.
• $799,500 countywide median selling price — up 8.2% over 12 months. Record high? $800,000 set in August. Since the Great Recession, the median is up 24% vs. the bubble-era high.
November was another chapter in homebuying’s odd 2020. Swift autumn sales followed the region’s summertime homebuying reversal from what had been a pandemic-induced chill in spring. The buying binge produced Southern California’s fastest-selling November since 2006, according to the DQNews database.
Here’s a look into key slices of Orange County data for November …
Existing single-family houses: 2,050 sold, up 24.5% in a year. Median of $880,000 — a 12.8% increase over 12 months.
Existing condos: 938 sales, up 39.6% over 12 months. Median of $542,500 — a 7.4% increase in a year.
Newly built: Builders sold 314 new homes, down 29.9% in a year. Median of $962,500 — a 0.8% increase over 12 months.
Builder share: 9.5% of sales vs. 16.2% a year earlier. Orange County builders’ slice of the market ranks No. 3 among SoCal’s six counties.
Price rank: How Orange County’s median compared with Southern California’s five other counties: No. 1 overall; No. 1 for single-family resales; No. 2 for condo resales; and No. 1 for new homes.
How cheap is mortgage money? Rates on a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage averaged 2.83% in the three months ending in November vs. 3.66% a year earlier. That translates to house hunters having 11% more buying power thanks to pandemic-era policies by the Federal Reserve.
How thin is the supply? ReportsOnHousing stats show there were 36% fewer homes to buy in Southern California in early December vs. a year earlier.
Around Southern California, according to DQNews’ latest report on closed sales in November …
Six-county region: 21,777 sold, up 19% over 12 months. Median? $603,000 — a 10.8% increase.
Los Angeles County: 6,707 sold, up 13% over 12 months. Median? $700,000 — a 12.2% increase.
Riverside County: 3,894 sales, up 20.1%. Median? Record-high $455,000 — a 12.3% increase.
San Bernardino County: 2,994 sold, up 25.7%. Median? Record-tying $400,000 — a 14.3% increase.
San Diego County: 3,909 sold, up 23%. Median? Record-tying $650,000 — a 9.3% increase.
Ventura County: 971 sold, up 18.4%. Median? $663,750 — a 14.4% increase.
Source: Orange County Register