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Bay Area home prices: yet another record high in November

Marisa Kendall, The Mercury News on

Published in Home and Consumer News

Dashing wannabe home-buyers' dreams yet again, the Bay Area's jaw-dropping home prices soared still higher in November -- setting a new record.

The median price for Bay Area homes last month was $787,000 -- up 1.5 percent from the month before, and up 12.6 percent from the same time last year, according to new data on new and resale houses and condos from property analytics company CoreLogic.

Meanwhile the number of sales dipped, highlighting the region's ongoing shortage of housing availability. Bay Area owners sold 7,268 new and existing homes and condos last month, down 5 percent from the previous month's total and down 2.7 percent from the same time last year.

The staggering rise in home prices is about more than just price appreciation -- it also reflects a shaking up of the market, according to CoreLogic research analyst Andrew LePage. A greater share of Bay Area sales are happening in high-end neighborhoods, which is skewing the calculation of the region's median prices.

"Tight inventory and affordability constraints have suppressed sales in lower-cost areas," LePage wrote in a news release. "The result is an upward push to the median sale price."

Homes priced at $500,000 or more accounted for a stunning 80.5 percent of all Bay Area sales in November.

New record for median home prices in Santa Clara County

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The median sale price in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties jumped 18.4 percent and 25 percent year-over-year, respectively, fueled in part by a spike in the share of sales above $800,000. In the East Bay, Alameda County saw an 11.3 percent increase compared to November of last year while Contra Costa County had a 10.6 percent increase.

The years-long upward trajectory shows little indication of slowing. Median Bay Area home prices have increased an average of 11.6 percent year over year for the past six months. November marks the 68th straight month of year-over-year price increases.

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