While inventory is low, demand for Escondido is spurring development and new communities are underway. Hope still reigns for first time buyers in Escondido as the city is promulgating a first time buyer’s assistance program.
— Realtor Del Phillips
The economy is looking up for many and according to the Case-Shiller index tracking resales of single family homes, this trend is being reflected in home prices.
Nationally, prices are up 5 percent in the last 12 months, but in popular San Diego, that number is even higher. At a rise of 6.3 percent our fair city is still way under the leaders – Portland (up a staggering 12.3 percent) and her sister Seattle up over 10 percent.
The reason for the rise? A generally upbeat and positive economic climate plus low mortgage interest rates and lower unemployment, at least in these leading markets.
So where does a budget conscious prospective homeowner turn for value?
The answer may be found in the northern suburb of Escondido with an average sales price of $415,000. With the San Diego median inching up to half a million (currently $490,000) there’s a saving to be found in this community for both families and retirees.
Located 30 miles northeast of downtown San Diego, the city is located in a shallow valley surrounded by rocky hills. It is home to the San Diego Zoo’s Safari Park and the California Center for the Arts, and is a draw to tourists for its many local eateries and attractions. Festivals such as the “Cruisin’ Grand” featuring snazzy and retro automobiles and the “Grand Avenue Festival, held both fall and spring, lure visitors.
Although inventory is low, demand for Escondido is spurring development and new communities are underway. These include Pradera with 70 new homes, Harmony Grove Villages named Seabreeze, Andalucia and Canteridge.
As demand for the area increases, prices are likely to rise. Though Escondido East still boasts that median of $415,000, prices in other sectors are on the rise. In the 92029 area the median has now topped $700,000.
Hope still reigns for first time buyers in Escondido as the city is promulgating a first time buyer’s assistance program. Home buyers may qualify if they meet the three criteria: not having owned a home in the three prior tax years, possessing credit worthiness sufficient to satisfy a mortgagee and meeting the income limits: $68,000 for a family of four.
Applicants may find difficulty in finding a home less than the maximum allowable purchase price of $404,000 but if they do, and meet the qualification requirements, they will be eligible for an up to 5 percent loan to apply toward their down payment or closing costs. The loan repayment will be deferred until such time as they sell, refinance, incur additional liens or move.
With low interest rates still available and home prices on the rise in desirable cities nationwide, it may be time for homeowners to jump on the bandwagon and search for homes in nearby suburbs like Escondido.
Smart communities like these looking to attract millennials who have the income and credit to afford loans but lack necessary cash, are wisely coming up with programs such as these to make home ownership possible. Every little bit surely helps.
Del Phillips is a California licensed real estate agent. He is a member of the National, California and San Diego Association of Realtors. You can reach Del at Ascent Real Estate at 619-298-6666 or at Del@DelPhillips.com. DRE LIC. #01267333.