Sales of existing homes in California in June fell 24.7 percent from a year ago, but median prices still eked out a slight gain for the year.

Existing, single-family detached homes sold at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 364,284, compared to 483,690 homes per year last June, the California Association of Realtors reported.

The median sales price was $594,260, up 3.2 percent from for June 2006, and an increase of .2 percent over May’s $592,780 median price. Unsold inventory stood at 10.1 months, compared with 6.1 months for the same period a year ago.

“With just over a 10-month supply of homes for sale on the market, we expect further softness in prices in the coming months,” said CAR’s chief economist, Leslie Appleton-Young. The San Francisco Bay Area continues to see “leaner inventory levels” than Southern California and the state as a whole, Appleton-Young said in a statement.

CAR President Colleen Badagliacco said first-time buyers face tighter mortgage underwriting standards, and that affordability has not improved significantly despite price declines in most regions of the state,

 “However, well-maintained homes with curb appeal that are priced for today’s market continue to sell. It’s often a matter of counseling buyers and sellers to set realistic expectations on both sides of the transaction,” Badagliacco said.

Data collected by CAR and DataQuick Information Systems showed an increase in median home prices over the last year in 28 percent, of 375 cities and communities.

The 10 California cities and communities with the greatest median home price increases in June 2007 compared to a year ago were: Menlo Park, 41.5 percent; Palos Verdes Estates, 25.9 percent; La Canada-Flintridge, 21.7 percent; Arcadia, 21.1 percent; Newport Beach, 20.1 percent; Santa Monica, 18.7 percent; Moorpark, 16.1 percent; Chino Hills, 12.6 percent; Saratoga, 11.9 percent; Los Angeles, 11.7 percent.

Statewide, the 10 cities and communities with the highest median home prices in California during June 2007 were: Laguna Beach, $1,700,000; Burlingame, $1,637,500; Los Altos, $1,635,000; Newport Beach, $1,615,000; Palos Verdes Estates, $1,542,000; Saratoga, $1,465,000; La Canada-Flintridge, $1,400,000; Mill Valley, $1,395,000; Manhattan Beach, $1,300,000; Hermosa Beach, $1,205,000.

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