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Marin Home Sales Decline in January, But Prices Rise

Despite a sales slowdown in January, the regional housing market continues to rebound, and prices continue to climb.

Low inventory caused Marin's housing market to lose some of its holiday season robustness in January, but prices continued to outpace those from a year prior, a real estate information service reported.

The median home price rose by more than 20 percent in Marin County from January 2012 to January 2013, DataQuick reported. The median home price for the county last month was $640,000, up from $523,000 in January 2012.

The number of home sales in Marin County actually declined when comparing January 2012 to last month: 181 homes sold in Janary 2013, down slightly from 191 a year ago.

As of Feb. 26, the number of homes sold in the past 30 days in Novato was 28 — 22 single-family units and six condominiums, according to the real estate website Zillow.com. Over the past 90 days, it was 152 homes, including 115 single-family units.

Throughout the nine-county Bay Area tracked by DataQuick, home prices and the volume of sales completed in January were the in six years and the tenth straight year-over-year increase in the median sale price.

The median price paid for a home in the Bay Area was $415,000 in January. That was down 6.3 percent from $442,750 in December, and up 27.3 percent from $326,000 in January a year ago, according to DataQuick.

DataQuick President John Walsh said in a statement that underlying Bay Area market trends like a still-dysfunctional mortgage market indicate that the market is still far from normal.

"That said, the market imbalances are moving toward normalcy, with baby steps,” he said.

Bay Area Housing Stats for January Sales Volume Median Price County Jan 2012 Jan 2013 % Change Jan 2012 Jan 2013 % Change Alameda 1,097 1,196 9% $295,000 $385,000 30.5% Contra Costa 1,115 1,165 4.5% $235,000 $301,500 28.3% Marin 191 181 -5.2% $523,000 $640,000 22.4% Napa 93 108 16.1% $332,500 $380,000 14.3% Santa Clara 1,183 1,115 -5.7% $418,000 $550,000 31.6% San Francisco 308 394 27.9% $602,500 $699,000 16% San Mateo 412 421 2.2% $465,000 $600,500 29.1% Solano 508 523 3.0% $179,500 $219,000 21.8% Sonoma 423 398 -5.9% $285,000 $340,000 19.3% Bay Area 5,330 5,501 3.2% $326,000 $415,000 27.3%

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