A low inventory of single-family homes is still making an impact on the local real estate market, resulting in multiple offers and buyers snatching up homes quickly while interest rates are low.
There were 135 single-family homes on the market last month, compared to 201 homes for sale in March 2011, according to the Burbank Assn. of Realtors.
The number of homes sold and the median price stayed relatively steady last month. Thirty-eight homes sold in March, a dip from 40 sold during the same period last year. The median price was $480,000, a $1,500 increase from last year.
The inventory of condominiums didn't change much, going from 48 in March 2011 to 45 last month.
The median price for condos dropped, though, from $319,000 in March of last year, to $274,000 last month.
Seven condos were sold in March, a dip from eight in March 2011.
Christopher Rizzotti, president of the Burbank Assn. of Realtors, said that among the declining number of homes on the market, most are selling in the $400,000 to $500,000 range.
“Because of the low inventory, it's created a frenzy for buyers who are trying to lock in at great interest rates,” said Rizzotti, co-owner of Rizzotti Real Estate in Burbank. “Everything we're involved with right now is multiple offers.”
As summer approaches, he expects more homes will be put on the market, making it a better time for sellers.
He added that the real economic shift that will improve the real estate market will be lower unemployment figures. Once the hiring picture improves, “we're going to see our real estate market really take off,” he said.
The local market has held up relatively well compared to other areas, Rizzotti added, pointing to the low ratio of bank-owned properties and short sales, where a lender lets a homeowner sell a house for less than they owe on the mortgage.
In March, only six single-family homes sold were bank-owned, which made up only about 16% of total sales, according to the latest stats. That's down from 13 bank-owned homes sold in March 2011, which made up 32.5% of total sales.