Portland Region June Home Sales

Portland-area June home sales were the highest for that month in five years, rising above a year earlier for the 12th consecutive month. The median price paid for homes in the five-county region rose year-over-year for the fourth consecutive month as foreclosure resales nearly dropped in half compared with their share of the resale market a year ago, a real estate information service reported.

A total of 3,198 new and resale houses and condos closed escrow during June in the five-county Portland-Vancouver-Beaverton metro area. Sales rose 11.9 percent from the prior month and rose 14.8 percent from a year earlier, according to San Diego-based DataQuick. The firm tracks real estate trends nationally via public property records.

A sales gain between May and June is normal for the season, with the increase averaging 9.5 percent since 1994, when DataQuick's complete Portland-area statistics begin.

This June's sales were still low in a historical context, falling 23.9 percent short of the average sales tally for all months of June since 1994.

The Portland metro area statistics in this report and in the table below reflect sales in Clackamas, Multnomah, Washington and Yamhill counties in Oregon and Clark County in Washington.

The median price paid for all new and resale houses and condos that closed escrow in the Portland region during June was $230,000, up 2.9 percent from the prior month and up 7.0 percent from a year earlier. It was the median's fifth consecutive month-to-month gain and the fourth consecutive year-over-year increase. June's $230,000 median was the highest for any month since November 2010, when it was also $230,000.

June's median was 20.4 percent lower than the peak $289,000 median in October 2007, and it was 17.9 percent higher than the post-peak trough of $195,000 in January this year.

Another price measure analysts track, the median paid per square foot for resale single-family detached houses, held at $136 in June. That was the same as the month before and was up 3.8 percent from a year earlier. June's figure was 29.5 percent below the June 2007 peak of $193.

Among the Portland region's counties, the median paid per square foot in June for resale detached houses rose 3.1 percent from a year ago in Clackamas County, while the median rose 10.1 percent year-over-year in Multnomah County. The price paid per square foot gained 3.0 percent year-over-year in Washington County, fell 4.3 percent in Yamhill County, and edged up 1.8 percent in Clark County, Washington.

Sales of distressed properties - the combination of foreclosure resales and short sales - accounted for roughly 30 percent of the resale market in June. That's down from around 34 percent the month before and about 37 percent a year earlier.

Foreclosure resales - homes foreclosed on in the prior 12 months - made up 15.4 percent of June resales, down from 19.6 percent in May and down from 27.7 percent a year earlier.

Short sales - transactions where the sale price fell short of what was owed on the property - accounted for an estimated 14.4 percent of the June resale market. That was up from 14.1 percent the month before and up from 12.1 percent a year earlier.

Meanwhile, lenders foreclosed on 335 single-family houses and condo units in the five-county Portland area during June, down 12.1 percent from the month before and down 6.7 percent from a year earlier. During the first six months of this year, foreclosures totaled 1,525, down 10.7 percent from the same period last year. The foreclosure figures are based on the number of Trustees Deeds filed with county recorder offices. The document signals that a home was lost to foreclosure.

Many foreclosed properties are bought by investors and first-time buyers.

Absentee buyers, which are mainly investors and vacation-home buyers, accounted for 27.7 percent of total June home sales, down from 28.3 percent the month before and 18.9 percent a year earlier. (The absentee data series goes back to 2000). Absentee buyers paid a median $202,230 in June, up 21.1 percent from a year earlier.

Among these investors are many buyers who pay cash - a group that accounted for 25.0 percent of all Portland-area homes sold in June. That was up from 24.0 percent the month before and down from 25.2 percent a year earlier. Cash buyers paid a median $179,748 in June, up 7.6 percent from a year earlier.

Government-insured FHA loans, a popular, low-down-payment option for many first-time buyers, represented 22.3 percent of all home purchase loans used in the Portland area in June. It was the lowest level since June 2008, when the FHA rate was 19.5 percent of purchase loans. This June's figure was down from 24.0 percent the month before and down from 30.7 percent a year ago. The peak for FHA use during the current housing cycle was 42.3 percent in November 2009.

Portland-Vancouver-Beaverton, OR-WA MSA*

Number of sales Jun-11 May-12 Jun-12 YOY % chng
Resale houses 314 335 359 14.30%
Resale condos 229 249 277 21.00%
New homes 2,243 2,274 2,562 14.20%
All homes 2,786 2,858 3,198 14.80%
         
Median sale price Jun-11 May-12 Jun-12 YOY % chng
Resale houses $245,000 $250,000 $249,970 2.00%
Resale condos $121,500 $134,492 $130,000 7.00%
New homes $216,500 $227,900 $233,875 8.00%
All homes $215,000 $223,622 $230,000 7.00%

*Data reflect sales in Clackamas, Multnomah, Washington and Yamhill counties in Oregon and Clark County in Washington.

Media calls: Andrew LePage (916) 456-7157

Source: DataQuick; DQNews.com

Copyright 2012 DataQuick. All rights reserved.