People who are in the business of selling and buying new homes and condominiums can take heart from a key index which reported that home prices in San Diego County dropped slightly in July after reaching an all-time peak in June.

“Sellers are being more realistic, buyers have a better position at the bargaining table,” said Andrew LePage, an analyst with the research firm CoreLogic.

The median price in July 2019 dropped back to $580,000 — identical to what it was a year ago but a $10,000 decline from the median price in June 2019, according to CoreLogic.

That may explain an uptick in the number of homes sold in July 2019, although falling interest rates were a contributing factor.

Countywide, the number of single-family homes, townhomes and condominiums sold was 9.4 percent higher than it was in June, with 3,988 homes sold in July compared with 3,644 in June.

“The all-time high for the overall median sales price for all houses and condos, new and resale sold in the county was $584,500 in August 2018,” Le Page said.

In Southern California as a whole, the median sales price was down ever-so-slightly in July at $540,000 compared with $541,750 in June.

The rise in the number of home sales “is no surprise given the significant drop in mortgage rates in recent months, combined with a healthy job market, income growth and a rise in inventory,” LePage said. “The flattening of price growth and lower mortgage rates can make a meaningful difference for some.”

Lower Interest Rates

Freddie Mac is predicting that interest rates will hover around 3.6 percent after reaching 4.5 percent a year ago.

The lower interest rates have made homes more affordable to some buyers, with typical monthly mortgage payments down by nearly 7 percent from last year, LePage said.

“For many buyers, you’re in a better position this year than you were last year.

He predicted that with more people entering the market, the number of home sales is likely to continue rising.

Measuring only single-family home resales made by its members, the Greater San Diego Association of Realtors reported that the number of homes sold in July rose 2.5% over June.

The association pegged the median price of resale homes in July at $655,000, a 2% drop from June.

For the year so far, the association said resale home prices were 2.3% higher than they were a year ago.

Strong Sales in Fallbrook, Rancho Bernardo

“The inventory of homes for sale across the county just can’t seem to jump-start, although some neighborhoods have been consistently strong,” said association President Kevin Burke.

Neighborhoods in Fallbrook and Rancho Bernardo had the most sales in July, according to the association.

The most expensive single-family home sold in July was a 51-year-old home in the Beach Colony of Del Mar that went for $15.4 million.