Let the good times average out nicely

Random Walk, by Rob Peebles ...Take California home prices, the turbo charger on the newfangled engine. In fact, take the number of homes in California that sold for more than $1 million last year, and this is what you get: You get 48,666 million dollar homes. That’s 47% more million dollar homes sold in 2005 than in 2004, according to the Los Angeles Times.  For the record, 48,666 million dollar transactions comes to 1 in 13 California home sales achieving status as a million dollar deal. That’s a nice ratio. And that ratio compares to “just” 1 in 20 in 2004. And that compares to 1 in 2, which is the ratio of Californians who want to quit their jobs to become real estate agents once they do the math on the commission involved in a million dollar transaction. According to DataQuick’s numbers quoted in the article, a million dollars in California will get you four bedrooms and 2,480 square feet, assuming you spring for the median million dollar home. Now 2,480 square feet is a fine sized home, but it wasn’t that long ago that for a million bucks you could get another couple of thousand feet and a butler.  The LA Times notes that there were 2,902 condo sales in the $1 million or more category last year, up a smart 73% from 2004. Sure, California real estate is hot, but homes are hot nationwide. Apparently there are one million homes around the country now worth at least $1 million. That compares to only 350,000 as recently as 2000.

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