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East Bay real estate: As home supply drops, prices keep rising — by 16 percent in Oakland

The East Bay real estate picture is almost a mirror image of Silicon Valley’s. The supply of single-family homes is down, yet competition among buyers is driving sales up and prices keep rising — at times dramatically, including by 16 percent in Oakland during the first half of the year, according to a new report.
“Nearly every home that hits the market sells, and it sells quickly,” said David Stark, a spokesman for the Bay East Association of Realtors.
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The association offered some East Bay snapshots, comparing the first six months of 2017 to the same period in 2016.
Along the 880 Corridor, the home supply was down 10 percent and sales dropped less than one 1.0 percent — the only part of the region where sales decreased. Prices, however, were up 8 percent. Looking at individual cities, Oakland experienced that 16 percent jump to $780,000, while Fremont rose 8 percent to 1,042,450.
West Contra Costa County was a pocket of relative affordability. Inventory was down 8 percent, sales were up 2 percent and prices rose 7 percent. Yet look at those prices: In San Pablo, where prices jumped 14 percent, a single-family home could still be had for a median sale price of $398,750. In Richmond, the median fell 6 percent to $415,000.
In central Contra Costa County, inventory dropped 9 percent, while sales rose 10 percent and prices increased 7 percent. In Concord, the median sale price for a single-family home rose 5 percent to $583,750, while the median leaped 9 percent in Walnut Creek to $1,092,250.
In Lamorinda, a similar pattern played out: Inventory was up 12 percent, sales were up 17 percent, prices rose 6 percent. In Lafayette, the median climbed 10 percent to $1,518,500, while in Orinda it bumped up 4 percent to $1,471,250.
Looking at the Tri-Valley, Stark noted that “even with new construction in San Ramon and Dublin, the supply of homes for sale during the first six months of 2017 dropped 12 percent,” while sales, again, rose 10 percent and prices increased 6 percent. In Dublin, there was an 8 percent rise to $1,315,444. In Pleasanton, the median for a single-family home was up 6 percent to $1,112,875.
Finally, in the Delta portion of the East Bay, inventory dropped 4 percent, sales were flat and prices rose 7 percent. Yet the Delta continued to offer affordable prices, when compared to the rest of the Bay Area: In Brentwood, the median price rose 10 percent to $527,000; in Antioch, it rose 12 percent to $412,500; and in Pittsburg it dropped 1 percent to $419,000.
Stark summarized the market like this: “Yes, there’s limited supply. Yes, prices are high. But homes are selling. As long as interest rates stay reasonable and the Bay Area economy continues to remain strong, we can anticipate similar sales and price conditions for the balance of 2017.”

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