Central Coast California Real Estate

Area Description

Truth to be said, Central Coast California Real Estate market is only a small fraction of the California real estate industry, but an important one. First of all, with roughly 3% of Golden State’s population and no major metropolitan area, the Central Coast is one of calmer and more serene areas in California. Then, the median real estate prices in the area are around 20% higher than the California’s average, but with the exception of Santa Barbara, it is not the area of $1,000,000+ houses. And last, but not least, located between the San Francisco Bay and Los Angeles areas, the Central Coast counties offer fabulous views and over 250-mile long coastline including the famous Santa Barbara beach. All of that, taken together, makes the Central Coast counties one of the areas of California most likely to be a destination of off-state real estate buyers.

Trends’ overview

Central coast California Real Estate market was hit by the general real estate industry slowdown just as bad as any other part of California. In 2005 and 2006, relatively high prices of properties and dwindling number of buyers caused a sharp drop in the number of sales. For now, central coast counties economy suffers from the same problems which haunt the rest of the California real estate market. Buyers feel that the property prices should go down, sellers still hope to sell their houses for premium prices. Both buyers and sellers are dug deep into their positions, waiting for the other side to make the first move.

However, there are some signs which may indicate that the recent problems are over, at least in the Central Coast California real estate market. It is too early to talk about any strong or long-term trends in the Central Coast California real estate market, but…

*while the median price of houses in California rose between April, 2006 and April, 2007 by 3.4% to $484,000, the median prices of properties in the three of four Central Coast counties (Montery County, San Benito County, and San Luis Obispo County), actually fell down by around 4%. Even in Santa Barbara County, where the median prices of properties rose, several towns noted slight real estate prices reduction (8.01% price reduction in Santa Maria is the most obvious example). While the slowdown in the California real estate industry is a fact, the Central Coast counties may be on the verge of overcoming its problems.

*while the number of sales is still falling down sharply statewide, some areas of the Central Coast report increase in existing home sales; *new home construction rate is rising. For example, in Santa Maria (the northern part of the Santa Barbara County), there are 20% more residential building permits issued in the first three months of 2007 than during the same period of 2006.

All of that may indicate that the Central Coast California Real Estate market may be among the first to recover from the real estate market problems. And, as the condition of the real estate market influences all other areas of local economy, the recovery is also likely to positively affect other local industries as well. This in turn will have a serious positive effect on all Central Coast communities, making the area even better to settle in.