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California real estate

California – The Recession’s in the Rear-View Mirror

In 2006 – when California was enjoying the fruits of a housing boom – nearly 14 million Golden State residents had a job. Four years later, more than 1.3 million of those people were out of work. As you can imagine, buying new homes wasn’t at the forefront of people’s minds. Heck, paying for the homes they had was enough of a struggle!

Adding to California’s housing problems back then? The construction industry was absolutely gutted. In fact, nearly half of the construction jobs in California were eliminated in 2010, so even the people who wanted to buy new homes didn’t have a whole lot to choose from!

But times are starting to change.

While the Golden State’s housing market isn’t anywhere near as prosperous as it was during the boom days, it is back on the right track. And, the closer you get to the beach, the better things are.

Take San Diego, for example. Median sales prices there jumped almost 20% during 2012, and realtors around California say they expect additional gains in 2013.

One of the biggest changes the San Diego market has seen has been a significant decrease in the number of distressed homes. Even at the beginning of 2012, foreclosures and short sales made up a large chunk of the market. But as 2012 came to a close, buyers were opting for more luxury homes – with higher price tags than the foreclosures that are sold at bottom-basement prices.

In Orange County (where Los Angeles is located), all-out bidding wars became big news at the end of 2012. In fact, bidding wars over the homes for sale there became so common that they actually caused the median sales price to jump 12% by year’s end. Realtors in California were blown away by the demand and proclaimed that December 2012 broke local sales records!

Homeowners who were on the fence before couldn’t help but take notice, so expect more homes for sale to pop up around the Los Angeles metro in 2013.

Further to the north, San Francisco has always had the reputation of being a “tough” housing market. With sky-high prices, buying here has always been difficult (which is why places like Oakland and San Jose are so appealing to buyers). But an influx of new jobs in 2012 led to new life for San Francisco’s housing market. The homes for sale here got snapped up by new additions to San Francisco’s ever-growing tech industry – and sellers loved it!

Since there’s every indication that those tech companies are going to keep expanding in 2013, look for realtors in San Francisco to stay busy.

The only problem?

Even after the recession, California is still one of the most expensive places to call home. So, it’s going to take you awhile to save up. In the meantime, you’re going to have to find affordable apartments to rent while you get your down payment squared away.

Living in California

The Beach Boys “wished they all could be California girls”, and it’s easy to see why! California is full of sun and fun!

Although, thanks to its size, all of California isn’t as warm as you might think. Down south, you’ll find warm summers and mild winters. But further to the north, the summertime temperatures struggle to get out of the 60’s. The temperatures tend to be more extreme away from the coast, where you don’t have the benefit of sea breezes.

Before you head out west, here are some of California’s fast facts:

  • What is the population of California?
  • The population of California is 38,041,430
  • What is the capital of California?
  • The capital of California is Sacramento
  • What is the largest city in California?
  • The largest city in California is Los Angeles

If you dream of living among the glitz and glamour, then a move to Los Angeles is a must. There, you’ll be able to stroll along Hollywood’s Walk of Fame anytime you want and eat at some of the world’s trendiest restaurants (where you’re sure to bump into a star or two). The nightlife here is some of the best in the world, too!

If a relaxed beach life is more your thing, try San Diego. Along with a beautiful coastline, you’ll also get to live right along the Mexican border, so you’ll get to enjoy a Mexican influence – including some tasty treats! The kids will love spending their weekends at the world-famous San Diego Zoo and Sea World.

If you dream of thriving in the tech industry, there’s no better place to do it than in northern California. The Silicon Valley is the birthplace of Google, Apple, and before that, the dot com bubble. When you’re not working, the San Francisco area is only a short drive to the wine country in Napa Valley – perfect for some adult fun! Or, you can stay closer to town and enjoy some quiet time hiking through the Redwoods in Muir Woods.

Whether you live north or south, your new California lifestyle will be packed full of fun!

This is the Census data for California

Population

Total population estimate for California (July 1) 2012
38,041,430
Total population change for California- April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012
2.1%

Age

Percentage of the population that's under 5 years old in California, 2011
6.7%
Percentage of the population that's under 18 years years old in California, 2011
24.6%
Percentage of the population that's 65 years and over California, 2011
11.7%

Gender

Percentage of the population that are females in California, 2011
50.3%

Race breakdown for California in percentages

White alone, 2011
74.0%
Black alone, 2011
6.6%
American Indian and Alaska Native alone,2011
1.7%
Asian alone, percent, 2011
13.6%
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander alone, 2011
0.5%
Two or more races, 2011
3.6%
Hispanic or Latino Origin, 2011
38.1%
Not Hispanic, White alone, 2011
39.7%

A little more about the residents of California

Percentage of residents who lived in the same house 1 year ago, 2007-2011
84.2%
Percent of residents who are foreign born 2007-2011
27.2%
Percent speaking a language other than English at home, 2007-2011
43.2%

Education

Percent high school graduates or higher for residents 25 years old and over in California, 2007-2011
80.8%
Percent with a bachelor's degree or higher for residents 25 years old and over in California, 2007-2011
30.2%

Veterans

Total number of Veterans living in California 2007-2011
1,997,566

Communting

The average travel time to work for workers in California (16 years and over not working at home), 2007-2011
27.0 mins

Real estate stats in California

Housing unit estimates, 2011
13,720,462
Owner-occupied housing units - percent of total occupied housing units, 2007-2011
56.7%
Housing units by units in structure - multi-dwelling structure, percent, 2007-2011
30.8%
Median value of specified owner-occupied housing units, 2007-2011
$421,600.00
Households, 2007-2011
12,433,172
Average household size, 2007-2011
2.91

Income

Per capita income for California in the past 12 months (in 2011 inflation-adjusted dollars), 2007-2011
$29,634.00
Median household income in California, 2007-2011
$61,632.00
Percentage of people living in poverty in California 2007-2011
14.4%

Business and commerce info for California

Private nonfarm establishments, 2010
849,875
Private nonfarm employment for pay period including March 12, 2010
12,536,402
Private nonfarm employment for pay period including March 12, 2010, percent change, 2000-2010
-2.7%
Total number of businesses in California, 2007
3,425,510
Percentage of Black-owned businesses in California, 2007
4.0%
Percentage of American Indian- and Alaska Native-owned businesses in California , 2007
1.3%
Percentage of Asian-owned businesses in California, 2007
14.9%
Percentage of Native Hawaiian- and Other Pacific Islander-owned businesses in California, 2007
0.3%
Percentage of Hispanic-owned businesses in California, 2007
16.5%
Percentage of Women-owned businesses in California, 2007
30.3%

Land size and population

Size of California in Square Miles, 2010
155,779.22 mi²
Population per square mile in California, 2010
239.1

California real estate

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