Hilltop Home Sales Outpace Oceanfront Properties For Calif. Luxury Buyers

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Wildfires and storm runoffs apparently aren’t enough to keep California luxury home buyers from heading for the hills.

The California Association of Realtors said Thursday a recent survey showed buyers preferred hilltop homes over oceanfront properties four to one in 2013, with only 10 percent of million-dollar-home buyers opting to purchase a home on the water.

By contrast, 41 percent of buyers polled in the “2013 Luxury Real Estate Consumer Survey” who bought homes for more than $1 million said they purchased a home with a hilltop view, according to the survey. Hilltop homes outranked oceanfront homes and ocean-view homes combined, which made up 38 percent luxury purchased.

It’s a trend that could be tied in part to buyers’ ability to avoid financing: 35 percent of all luxury home buyers were able to pay cash for their properties, compared with 27 percent of traditional buyers and 11 percent of first-time buyers, the survey found.

Luxury home buyers who participated in the survey rated the difficulty of acquiring financing at 3.7 on a scale of 1 to 10, compared with 8.6 for traditional buyers, according to the survey.

Irvine-based RealtyTrac released a report this week which found the share of all-cash sales reached a new high in the first quarter of 2014, even as the share of institutional investor purchases dropped to the lowest level since the first quarter of 2012.

(©2014 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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.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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