No one would call the current status of the California real estate market good, but it is showing improvements. The median price of southern California is still a 35.8% drop from last year. However, California real estate is slowly making a comeback. From January of this year through December, qualified first time home buyers will get a tax credit of $8,000 or 10% of the cost (the lesser of the two) of the home. This tax credit can also be used to contribute to the down payment, which is a primary reason the sales of homes have increased for the third consecutive month. Low mortgage rates and reasonable home prices are also strong contributors to the increase in sales. Fortunately, Marin County is taking advantge these temporary benefits.
Compared to the other counties of California, Marin is showing that it can stay active in these slow times. There were 187 homes sold in May of this year compared to the 103 sold in January. These improvements aren't tremendous, but noticeable. Potential buyers are realizing that these Marin prices will not last for long, and it shows with 27% of all listings pending. The market today may not be favorable, but it is optimistic.