LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Home sales in Los Angeles County jumped by 11.9 percent in June compared to a year ago, while prices rose by 2.2 percent, according to real estate firm DataQuick.

Orange County showed the same upward trend, hitting almost 14 percent.

Los Angeles realtor Nick Mercado has seen the ups and downs in the real estate market. He said it’s clear the market is back on the upswing.

“It feels like 2005/2006. Things are happening again,” he said.

Factors such as a real estate recovery fueled by low interest rates, a shrinking supply of affordable homes and fewer foreclosed homes on the market have helped fuel bidding wars on properties.

According to DataQuick, the areas that saw the most growth were Fontana, Riverside, Corona, Irvine, Palmdale, and Long Beach.

The numbers were echoed by the California Association of Realtors, which released figures showing that sales in the Los Angeles metropolitan area rose by 5.8 percent last month, compared with June 2011. Los Angeles-area home prices also increased by 7.9 percent in June over the same month last year, according to CAR.

CAR noted home sales dipped 4.7 percent between May and June in the L.A. metropolitan area, but home prices statewide have reached their highest level since August 2010.

DataQuick reported that 7,619 homes changed hands in Los Angeles County last month, compared to 6,809 in June 2011. The median price of a home in Los Angeles County in June was $325,000, up from $318,000 in June 2011.

In Orange County, 3,351 homes were sold in June, up 13.7 percent from June 2011, when 2,947 were sold. The median home price was $453,000 last month, up 1.8 percent from $445,000 in June 2011, according to DataQuick.

DataQuick reports total of 22,075 new and resale houses and condos sold in Los Angeles, Riverside, San Diego, Ventura, San Bernardino and Orange counties in June. That tally was down 0.5 percent from 22,192 in May, and up 7.5 percent from 20,532 in June 2011.

The median price for a Southern California home was $300,000 last month, up 1.7 percent from $295,000 in May and up 5.3 percent from $285,000 in June 2011.

“The June numbers look pretty good at first glance, but they’re more mixed when you scratch beneath the surface,” said John Walsh, DataQuick president. “Yes, the median sale price rose again, but it’s clear this has a lot to do with changes in the types of homes selling, rather than across-the-board price appreciation. Fewer of the homes selling now are foreclosures, while more are nice houses in mid- to higher-end neighborhoods.”

(©2012 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)


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