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California housing positioned for strong 2016

New report shows pending home sales increase in December

Hollywood Los Angeles

A new report from the California Association of Realtors shows that California pending home sales continued to progress through 2015 with solid gains, which will position the market for a modest increase in home sales in 2016.

California pending home sales remained strong in December on an annual basis, with CAR's pending home sales index increasing 8.3% from 71.9 in December 2014 to 77.9 in December 2015, based on signed contracts.

According to the CAR report, the annual increase was the smallest since January 2015.

On a monthly basis, California pending home sales fell from November, primarily due to seasonal factors. The PHSI decreased 22.4 percent from an index of 100.4 in November to 77.9 in December.

In the San Francisco Bay area, pending home sales fell 36.4% from November to reach an index of 81.7 in December, down from November’s 128.4 and up 12.4% from December 2014’s 72.7 index.

According to the CAR report, 18 of the 44 counties that C.A.R. reports showed month-to-month decreases in their share of distressed sales, with San Mateo having the smallest share of distressed sales at 1.7%, followed by Santa Clara (1.8%), and Marin (2.2%). Tehama had the highest share of distressed sales at 20.4%, followed by Siskiyou (18.8%), and Lake (15.6%).

According to a survey of California Realtors, respondents reported that listing appointments remained stable, while floor calls and open house traffic were down, mostly due to seasonal factors.

The Realtors stated that they were also optimistic about next year’s California housing market, with a vast majority (89%), expecting similar or better market conditions in 2016, the highest share since spring of 2015.  

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