Whether you are buying or selling in Orange County, you need to work with someone who has their fingers on the pulse of the region. They can tell you the hottest markets, the areas with the best pricing and the neighborhoods where everyone wants to live. A local real estate agent can help you put in the first and best offer on a home or be strategic about selling your property. They can assist you in moving to the next phase of your life with positive results.
It’s All About Location in South Orange County
If it’s your goal to move to the exciting and beautiful region of South Orange County, you’ll discover many cities to choose from. Each one has something unique to offer, whether you are looking for jobs, good schools, or beautiful scenery. The key is to understand what is available in each of the locations and find homes that fit your needs. Working with a local real estate agent who works and lives in this area can enhance your search.
The following power point presentation tells you a little about some of the most popular places in South Orange County. Learn about each one and decide where you want to focus your home search.
What South Orange County Has to Offer
Stretching from the Santa Ana Mountains down to the Pacific Ocean, South Orange County offers a unique setting for those who wish to relocate to this affluent area. Populated by newer developments and large estates, South County is bordered by San Diego County to the south and features a community college district with campuses in Mission Viejo, Tustin and Irvine.
Premium real estate is found in many areas of South OC, including Laguna Hills, Laguna Beach, and Newport Beach. Other communities in this region are ideal options for busy professionals, young couples and families and retirees who want to enjoy life more. Each community is unique, offering something special for the residents. Buyers looking to purchase in this area can visit Aliso Viejo, Rancho Santa Margarita, Mission Viejo, Dana Point, San Clemente and San Juan Capistrano.
While the south is more populated than the north portion of the county, the density is sparser. This area features gently rolling hills and sloping valleys with plenty of activities for outdoors people. No matter which part of the county you choose to live in, you will find a variety of activities such as festivals and special celebrations as well as numerous attractions to visit.
Current South OC Real Estate and Outlook
Real estate in South Orange County has been hot with pricing continually rising. Developers have found this to be prime real estate market for rentals as well as purchases. Permits were issued for 38,000 new multi-family units for all of Southern California in 2015. This is the highest number since the recession began. Even with the planned construction, new developments cannot keep up with the need for rental housing.
The USC Casden Multifamily Forecast predicts that rental rates will rise by 9.4 percent by 2018 from the 2015 prices. The cause for this issue in rental housing is the growth of the population and employment. Demand is increasing at a faster rate than inventory.
Luxury apartments are a large portion of the new construction happening in South OC. Rental rates are highest for the Newport Beach-Laguna Niguel area with Irvine not far behind.
For buyers and sellers, the market for homes priced under $750,000 is hot with low inventory fueling the price wars many properties become involved in. Sales are also up for homes above this price point even though the bidding wars are not as extensive.
Why Buy in South OC Now
When you hear about the low inventory and rising prices of South OC real estate, you may be hesitant to buy now. However, now is a good time to invest in this area even with the demand for homes. Here are a few reasons why:
- The economy is growing. Orange County is showing solid growth in consumer spending and other criteria that are used to indicate economic activity.
- More jobs are available. Unemployment is down and more people are working. New businesses are moving to the area, which will lead to more jobs.
- Mortgage rates are still low. While prices are increasing, interest rates are not. This makes buying now a sensible option as you increase equity in your home faster.
- Rent increases have averaged higher than home pricing increases. Buying still makes more sense than renting even with the rising prices.
- Increased buyer demand. Many first-time buyers have been unable to qualify for mortgages. As the largest generation in history has now reached renting and home-buying age, they will spur the growth of sales for the coming years, which ensures a purchase today is a solid investment in the future.
While South Orange County doesn’t have the cheapest housing options, this is a solid region to consider purchasing your first or next home. Many communities offer the life people dream about with temperate climates, ocean views, unique homes, ample career options and the opportunity to enjoy life.