Wednesday, October 5, 2016

LA County San Andreas Fault Earthquake Imminent?

200 small earthquakes hit Bombay Bay in the Salton Sea this week. This area is at the southern tip of the San Andreas Fault. There has not been a large earthquake here since 1680, or 330 years ago according to scientists who spoke to the LA Times. According to the LA Times and U.S. Geological Survey, as of Tuesday, the chances of a magnitude 7 or greater earthquake being triggered on the southern San Andreas Fault over the next seven days were as high as 1 in 100 and as low as 1 in 3,000. Without the swarm, the average chance for such an earthquake striking on any given week is 1 in 6,000. The earthquakes hit in a sparsely populated area, less than four miles from Bombay Beach in the Sonoran Desert. Historically just 12 hours after a 6.3 earthquake hit south of the Salton Sea in 1987, an even larger temblor, a 6.6, ruptured six miles away. Seismologists say the could be the first domino off on the San Andreas fault, unzipping the fault from Imperial County through Los Angeles County, spreading devastating shaking waves throughout the southern half of California in a monster 7.8 earthquake. Their ShakeOut simulation says it’s possible that hundreds of brick and concrete buildings could fall, and even a few fairly new high-rise steel buildings. The death toll could climb to 1,800 people, and such an earthquake could cause 50,000 injuries and $200 billion in damage. Let’s hope this doesn’t occur, but the next several days will tell the tale or no tale at all.

Monday, October 3, 2016

AV Sees Double-digit Home Price Gains

This is a reprint of an AV Press Article By: Jim Skeen AV Press PALMDALE - Lancaster and Palmdale neighborhoods saw double-digit home price gains in August, according to a report from CoreLogic. Lancaster's 93534 ZIP code had a median home price of $185,000 in August (57 sales), up 13.3% over the year. Lancaster's 93535 ZIP code had a median home price of $200,000 (98 sales), up 17.6%. Lancaster's 93536 ZIP code had a median price of $300,000 (122 sales), up 10.5%. Palmdale's 93550 ZIP code had a median home price of $220,000 (75 sales) in August, up 13.4% over the year. Palmdale's 93551 ZIP code had a median price of $336,000 (111 sales), up 10.2%. Palmdale's 93552 ZIP code had a median price of $259,000 (65 sales), up 19.4% over the year. Earlier this month, the Greater Antelope Valley Association of Realtors reported there were 517 homes sold in August in the region, a 4% increase over August 2015. Through August, 3,523 homes were sold in the Antelope Valley, down slightly from the 3,535 recorded at this point in 2015. The average selling price of an Antelope Valley home in August was $263,505, up 15% over August 2015. The average selling price of an Antelope Valley home so far this year is $244,038, up 10% from this point in 2015. Of the August transactions, 3% were foreclosures and 2% were short sales. In a separate report, CoreLogic reported there were 23,278 new and existing homes sold in Southern California in August, the highest tally for that month in a decade. The region's sales were up 9.5% over the year. In Los Angeles County, 7,725 new and existing homes were sold, a 5.4% year-over-year increase. The median price of a Southern California home was $465,000 in August, a 6.2% increase over the year. In the county, the median price was $530,000, a 6% increase. "Job growth, low interest rates, household formation and other factors helped drive up activity," said Andrew LePage, an analyst with CoreLogic. "The big picture is that the housing market continues to edge back toward normalcy in the wake of the worst housing bust in modern history." Existing homes in California sold at a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 420,360 units in August, down 2.2% from a year earlier, according to a report from the California Association of Realtors. August was the sixth straight month of year-over-year sales declines. The median price of an existing, single-family California home in August was $526,580, up 5.8% from August 2015. The association's Unsold Inventory Index, which indicates the number of months needed to sell the supply of homes on the market at the current sales rate dipped from 3.6 months in both July and August 2015 to 3.4 months this August. Nationally, existing homes sold at an annualized pace of 5.33 million in August, down 0.9% from July, but up 0.8% from August 2015, according to a report from the National Association of Realtors. "Healthy labor markets in most the country should be creating a sustained demand for home purchases," said Lawrence Yun, the national association's chief economist. "However, there's no question that after peaking in June, sales in a majority of the country have inched backwards because inventory isn't picking up to tame price growth and replace what's being quickly sold." Nationally, the unsold inventory is at a 4.6-month supply. A six- to seven-month supply is considered normal. The median existing-home price for all housing types in August was $240,200, up 5.1% from August 2015 ($228,500). August's price increase marks the 54th consecutive month of year-over-year gains, the association reported. Distressed sales - foreclosures and short sales - accounted for 5% of August transactions, the lowest percentage since the association began tracking that data in October 2008.