Average Selling Price for a House in Long Beach CA in 1Q 2013

For the first quarter of 2013 (January through March) in Long Beach, the MLS shows 503 single family home sales.

The sales price ranged from $98,900 (a 432 sq.ft bank-owned house) in North Long Beach to a sale for $3.8 million for a 3600+ sq.ft house on The Peninsula.  The average selling price in Long Beach for this time period was $443,772 for a 3 bedroom, 1.75 bath house between 1400-1500 sq. ft.  All cash purchases accounted for 122 of the total, or 24% of all houses sold.
  • Of these homes, 18 out of the 503 houses sold for over $1,000,000 (a small percentage of all Long Beach houses), or 4%
  • There were 364 houses selling under $500,000, or 72% of the total
  • There were 265 houses selling under $400,000, or 53% of the total
  • There were 121 houses selling between $501,000 and $999,999, or 24% of the total.
In other words, more than half of the selling activity took place at the price range under $400,000, and 88 of those purchases were by all-cash buyers, or 33% of the total number of purchases for houses sold under $400,000.  This means 72%, the vast majority, of the all-cash activity is in the lowest price range for the city. 

This is a paradise for certain sellers, and a big challenge for buyers, especially for the 1st time buyers and/or 2nd home buyers because under $400,000 is their most affordable market.  (And even though Long Beach is very competitive due to its location, some buyers are looking further south in San Diego area for lower prices.)

Cash buyers often attempt to buy at a much lower price, thinking the seller will be thrilled with them because the transaction does not require a lender or an appraisal, but often they come in very low, or much lower than what is attractive to the seller. So those offers don't always work, at least not at first. And are some sellers being unrealistic about their asking price? In some cases, yes, depending on other factors such as condition, upgrades, permitted square footage, and nearby comparables, but that is something to determine on a case-by-case basis.  Overall, the market trends in many Long Beach zip codes is going up by as much as 20% compared to this time last year.

A buyer's best protection is to be totally pre-approved with a solid pre-approval where the lender has not only their income and debt information, but their tax returns have been thoroughly reviewed as well (if possible, submitting to underwriting in advance can give additional assurance for a pre-approval).  I'm amazed at how often I hear from a hopeful property buyer who tells me they know they're well-qualified, "getting a loan will not be a problem."  If it's not a problem, do it now.  Buyers, sellers want to find out what a good loan source has to say about your loan qualifications or that your statement shows you have all the cash ready-- your own personal opinions simply will not carry much weight when you submit an offer. It is essential to accomplish this step PRIOR to looking at properties so that the seller knows qualified buyers are viewing their home. 

Please contact me for an estimate of your buying costs--I can help you with different down payment scenarios to show you what your monthly payment could be.



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