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After four consecutive record years, home sales may slightly ease, but should remain close to record levels in 2005. Activity should remain strong and even though sales are predicted to decline about 2.5 percent, they would still be the second highest year on record, for both existing and new home sales. David Lereah, National Association of Realtor's Chief Economist, said,"The housing sector is operating at a higher plateau. Some ebb and flow is normal....Even so, homes sales will stay well above what was considered to be a healty level in the late 1990's. The population has grown, household formation is strong and demographics tell us this trend will continue."


More than 50 low-income households in San Diego County that otherwise would not be able to afford a home will now get financial assistance, thanks to an award of $2.5 million from the state. In San Diego County, the winning recipients of funds were the cities of San Diego and Vista. Approximately 14 low-income families will become homeowners in San Diego as well as 13 households in Vista. Households receive a deferred loan that does not have to be repaid for 30 years, unless the house is sold. In San Diego County, individual loans to prospective home buyers can be as high as $72,000.

Real Estate Book

If you or someone you know would like to earn high profits on your invested dollars but without property management headaches, consult the new book, "Profit by Investing in Real Estate Tax Liens" by Larry B. Loftis. This book explains all of the benefits of investing in property tax liens and tax deeds.

San Diego condominiums

In San Diego, where the median price of a detached home remains so high, more people are looking into condominium purchases. Two trends stand out as buyers rush to purchase condos,a relatively less-expensive option as opposed to detached homes: Condos are appreciating faster than detached homes and many apartment owners are converting their units at record rates to take advantage of the growing interest. As of November 2004, the median price of a condo was $375,000 - a 30.7 percent increase from a year earlier, according to the San Diego Association of Realtors. Detached homes appreciated 23.9 percent to $545,000 during the same period.

Providing momentum in the apartment and apartment con­version market is the shrinking supply of available condos and the sky high cost of land which curtails condominium construction. New construction permits for condos were down nearly 57 per­cent in the third quarter of 2004 over the previous year. Buyers in the third quarter of 2004 purchased 373 apartment buildings containing 7,261 units - the highest level since 1986, according to reports. George Carlson, Vice President of Burnham Real Estate, says, 'The majority of these projects are planned for conversion to condos to help provide a more affordable housing alternative."

Developers now conduct in-house sales for most converted units. However, real estate professionals can guarantee to be more involved in condo sales over the next several years, especially when resales reach the market.




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