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Home sales down, median prices grow in California

Median prices were up, but sales down, in California during April.

Median prices were up, but sales down, in California during April.

According to recent information released by the California Association of Realtors, the state's real estate market experienced fluctuation during April, as overall sales declined, but average home prices grew.

During April, home sales were at a seasonally adjusted annual pace of 499,830, which represents a 2.9 percent month-over-month decline. However, the figure is up 5 percent year-over-year. Furthermore, if April's sales figures continue at that pace throughout the rest of the year, the state's sales total would meet forecasters' expectations for 2011.

"An improving economy, coupled with the steady pace of distressed sales in the market and the typical seasonal pattern in the median home price, suggests the statewide median price has reached its low point for this year and is unlikely to hit the bottom reached in February 2009," said C.A.R. president Beth Peerce.

While home sales were down, the state's median price increased by 2.5 percent month-over-month, settling at $293,570. The average is down from April 2010, though, when those moving paid a median price of $307,000.

The optimism in California's real estate market is welcome, as home starts were down during April nationally, according to the Commerce Department.