Bloomberg News

San Francisco Bay Area Home Prices Drop After Jumbo Limits Cut

November 17, 2011

Nov. 16 (Bloomberg) -- San Francisco Bay Area home prices fell 8.6 percent last month from a year earlier as limits on mortgages backed by the federal government were reduced, DataQuick said today.

The median paid in the nine-county region declined to $350,000 from $383,000 in October 2010, according to the San Diego-based research firm. Prices dropped 4.1 percent from $365,000 in September. The decrease was largely due to the expiration of so-called conforming loan limits on Oct. 1, DataQuick President John Walsh said in a statement.

“This may well be a short-term pause while the market recalibrates changes in loan thresholds,” he said.

Legislation pending in Congress may restore the old limit of $729,750, which applied to most Bay Area counties and was cut to $625,500. In Solano County it dropped to $400,200 from $557,500, and in Sonoma it fell to $520,950 from $662,500, DataQuick said.

The number of houses and condominiums sold in the Bay Area totaled 6,444 last month, down 4.5 percent from September and up 5.3 percent from October 2010. Homes that sold for $500,000 or more accounted for 30 percent of deals, down from 34 percent in September and 37 percent in October 2010, DataQuick said.

--Editors: Daniel Taub, Christine Maurus

To contact the reporter on this story: Dan Levy in San Francisco at dlevy13@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Kara Wetzel at kwetzel@bloomberg.net


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