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Right now, Escondido’s homes are most affordable

In the classic musical “Brigadoon,” visitors cross over a magical barrier into a realm where time has stopped, and the people living there are from centuries past.  Escondido is kind of like that when it comes to home prices.

In January, Escondido led the zip codes in San Diego County with the most single-family home sales with 40 sales according to the Greater San Diego Association of Realtors. January home sales fell off, while prices remained stable.  Escondido led the County in home sales during what is usually one of the slowest months for sales in the region.

The housing statistics were compiled through the Multiple Listing Service by the Association.

Morgan Brown, of Morgan Brown Real Estate Inc., in Escondido, thinks he knows the reason. “Because it’s one of the last affordable places,” he told The Times-Advocate.  “As soon as you cross into Escondido from Poway or Encinitas the prices are half what they are. It’s the last bastion of affordability.  In the Country Club area you can actually find a house for $600,000. The same house would be $1 million in Poway.”

Bob Hunsaker, broker at Krueger Realty, told TA: “It’s one of the few remaining places in the County with ‘affordable’ homes for sale. Prices are still climbing though so that will begin pinching off.”

Dallas Woodring, of Woodring Real Estate in Escondido, agrees. “We are more affordable,” he said. “We have more entry level homes. At this point it’s around $400,000. We still have that kind of inventory. For $550,000 or $600,000 you can still get a nice home. That would be my take on it.”

According to the Association, resale home transactions in San Diego County fell significantly in January from December – not uncommon for the first month of a new year.

The rush to close on home sales by December 31 may have factored into the drop of 25% in single-family home sales, and 20% for attached properties (condominiums and townhomes) last month. Compared to January of last year, sold listings were down 10% for single-family homes, and 2% for condos and townhomes.

The median price of resale single-family homes in January dipped 2% month over month, to $595,000, but that’s up 7% from a year ago. The median price for attached properties was $409,000, up slightly from December, and 9% higher than January of last year. Properties were closing escrow during January in an average of only 33 days.

“January is usually one of the slowest months of the year for home sales,” said SDAR President Steve Fraioli. “Still, we’re looking at a good number of pending sales and new listings coming onto the market, so we are optimistic as we head toward a busier spring home-hunting season.” In January, the zip codes in San Diego County with the most single-family home sales were: • 92027 (Escondido East) with 40 • 92057 (Oceanside North) with 37 • 92021 (El Cajon) with 33 • 92028 (Fallbrook) with 33 • 92056 (Oceanside East) with 33

The most expensive single-family property sold in San Diego County in January was a remodeled 1965 home on Ocean Boulevard in Coronado with 80 feet of beach frontage, 5,300 square feet, 6 bedrooms, 5 baths, and a sale price was $7.5 million.

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