How Close Are Bay Area Home Prices to Precrisis Peaks?

While April median home prices across California and the Bay Area returned to levels not seen since late 2007, they remain well short of prerecession peaks.money fence_sm

But a different story emerges when comparing historical and recent median prices in our individual Bay Area counties. Indeed, some counties have actually surpassed their precrisis price highs, others are nearly there, and still others have a longer road to recovery.

Whether you’re buying or selling a home in the Bay Area, staying informed on both current and past prices can help you decide when to act. Here’s an analysis, based on California Association of Realtors data, that compares April median single-family home prices across Bay Area counties with their historical highs.

Alameda County – At $718,580 the median price in Alameda County is just 0.5 percent short of its all-time high. The Alameda County median peaked in May 2007 at $722,044.

Contra Costa County – Housing prices in Contra Costa County have been rising steadily since January and reached $755,950 in April. The current median price is 18 percent lower than it was in June 2006, when it topped out at $923,855.

Marin County – Marin is one of just two Bay Area counties where the median home price was higher than the $1 million mark in April. Still, at $1,007,580, the current median is 12 percent below its historical high of $1,149,390, set in June of 2007.

Napa County – The median price in Napa County declined from March to April to land at $523, 150. In August 2006, prices in the county hit $729,166, 28 percent above current levels.

San Francisco County – San Francisco home prices actually reached all-time highs in February 2014 but have since slightly cooled to $940,570. San Francisco is one of two local markets where prices have now surpassed their prerecession highs, currently 0.9 percent higher than they were in May 2007.

San Mateo County – San Mateo County bested its previous peak median in March before falling to $1,001,000 in April. The county median is now 2 percent below its October 2007 precrisis pinnacle of $1,020,000.

Santa Clara County – The median price in Santa Clara County reached $900,000 for the first time ever in April, buoying the market 5 percent above its previous all-time high of $865,000, achieved in October 2007.

Solano County – Despite steady growth over the past three months, the median home price in Solano County  — $315,150 in April — is still 36 percent less than its historical peak of $492,799, set in June 2006.

Sonoma County – Sonoma County prices have been hovering in the mid- to high-$400,000 range for the past year and closed April at $475,260. Home prices in the county were 27 percent below their January 2006 highs of $650,326.

(Photo: Flickr/Tax Credits)

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