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Daily Business Report — June 16, 2010

County Home Sales on the Rise

San Diego County home sales in May rose moderately from sales in April but rose by 19.6 percent from May of last year, according to MDA DataQuick, a San Diego real estate information service. Home sales for the month totaled 3,879 compared to 3,292 in April and 3,242 in May 2009.

The median selling price in May was $340,000, a 15.3 percent increase from the $295,000 median in May of last year. The median in April was $325,250.

MDA DataQuick said home sales in all of Southern California (San Diego, Los Angeles, Riverside, Ventura, San Bernardino and Orange Counties) rose last month in all but the lowest price catetories. It said buyers took advantage of tax credits and low mortgage rates.

The median price paid topped $300,000 for the first time in 20 months, largely because the ultra bargains have been drying up in the low-cost inland areas while sales have increased in the pricier coastal neighborhoods.

A total of 22,270 new and resale houses and condos closed escrow in Southern California last month. That was up 9.7 percent from 20,299 in April, and up 7.2 percent from 20,775 in May 2009.

The combination of tax incentives and low mortgage rates helped stoke sales in mid- to high-end areas, where distress has increased over the last year and sellers have become more motivated and realistic. Last month 21.6 percent of all sales were for $500,000 or more, compared with 19.3 percent in April and 17.4 percent a year ago. ZIP codes in the top one-third of the Southland housing market, based on historical prices, accounted for 30.9 percent of existing single-family house sales last month, up from 28.6 percent in April and 25.3 percent a year ago.

Meantime, sales have fallen in many affordable inland communities. In May, ZIP codes in the bottom one-third of the market, based on their historical prices, saw resales of single-family houses drop 3.9 percent from April and drop 16.2 percent from a year earlier. Part of the decline reflects the dwindling foreclosure inventory, which had been the major draw for first-time buyers and investors. In the upper one-third of the market by price, May resales climbed 10.8 percent from April and rose 21.7 percent from last year.

The median paid for a Southland home rose to $305,000 last month, up 7.0 percent from $285,000 in April, and up 22.5 percent from $249,000 in May 2009. The May 2009 median was just $2,000 higher than the median’s post-housing-boom low of $247,000 in April 2009.

John Walsh, president of MDA DataQuick, warned that May’s increases were largely driven by government stimulus. “In the second half of the year the market will have to stand on its own again, barring new forms of government involvement,” said Walsh. “Prices will be tested if there’s any sudden move by lenders to release a flood of distressed properties.”

Foreclosure resales accounted for 33.9 percent of the resale market last month, down from 36.4 percent in April and 49.8 percent a year earlier.

Shopping Center Sells for $19.8 Million

The Shops at San Miguel Ranch

The Shops at San Miguel Ranch, a 103,548-square-foot shopping center in Chula Vista, has been sold for $19.8 million — one of the largest retail sales this year in the county. The center, located at 2350 Proctor Valley Road, is 76.8 percent leased. Tenants include Albertsons, Starbucks and First Bank. Pete Bethea, Rob Ippolito, Jesse Lowe and David Bradley of Cushman & Wakefield negotiated the lender sale for Jefferson Pilot Investments Inc. The buyer, MGP IX REIT, LLC, represented itself. The shopping center was developed in 2007 by McMillin Commercial.

Church Property Sold for $6.5 Million

Grace International Churches & Ministries Inc. has purchased a 22,981-square foot church property in Oceanside for $6.5 million. The property, located at 1602 South El Camino Real, includes a book store, kitchen, fellowship hall, administrative offices, classrooms and sanctuary seating for 1,000. Eric Knowles of CB Richard Ellis represented both Grace International Churches & Ministries and the seller, Evangelical Christian Credit Union.

New Leases

Graybill Medical Group Inc. has signed a 10-year lease at North County Corporate Center, a Class A office building in San Marcos. The lease for the 5,863-square-foot property has a total value of more than $1.8 million. Gary Williams and Chris Williams represented the lessor, Twin Oaks Associates LLC and the lessee was represented by Deanna Dubs of Dubs and Co. Inc.

***

Stone Flats Inc., a fast food restaurant chain, has leased 2,785 square feet of retail space at SR Ranch Shopping Center, 9844 Hibert St., in San Diego 92131. The five-year lease is valued at $563,127.
 
Reg Kobzi of CB Richard Ellis represented the lessor, Scripps Windmill – D.Q. LLC. Coldwell Banker Commercial represented Stone Flats.

Trovillion, Inveiss & Demakis Adds Partners

The San Diego law firm of Trovillion, Inveiss & Demakis has added Eldon Floyd and Kristine Aaron-Jacobi as partners. Aaron-Jacobi graduated from the Thomas Jefferson School of Law in 1993.  She was admitted to practice before the State Bar of California the same year and was admitted to the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal and the District Court, Southern District of California. Floyd also received his law degree from Thomas Jefferson School of Law in 1993. He specializes in workers compensation.

Law Enforcement Forum Set for June 22

Local law enforcement officials will take part in a June 22 forum on the state of the region’s public safety — a program sponsored by the San Diego County Taxpayers Association. The luncheon program opens with registration at 11 a.m. and the program and lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Holiday Inn on the Bay, 1355 West Harbor Drive, in Downtown. The panelists will be District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis, Sheriff Bill Gore, San Diego Police Chief William Lansdowne and Sally Cox, executive director of San Diego County Crime Stoppers. Gene Cubbison of NBC San Diego is the moderator. The cost is $35 for association members, $45 for nonmembers. To register online, visit sdcta.org.

Free Home-Buying Seminar Scheduled for July 13

Point Loma Credit Union will hold a free home buying seminar on July 13 to help first-time buyers learn about market conditions, available loan options and other details on what to expect in buying a home. It will be held at 5:30 p.m. in PLCU’s Kearny Mesa branch, 9420 Farnham St., San Diego. Light refreshments will be served. The seminar is open to members and nonmembers of the credit union. For reservations, call PLCU at (858) 495-3400.

Blending Art and Fashion

Fashion Careers College and the Timken Museum of Art will host the third annual “Art of Fashion” on Aug. 28 at 6 p.m. at the museum in Balboa Park. Sixteen of the masterpieces in the Timken’s permanent collection will be interpreted as clothing designed by students and graduates of Fashion Careers College. Models wearing the clothing will stand next to the works of art “en tableaux.” Anita Crider is event chair. Patricia O’Connor, CEO and founder of Fashion Careers College, is fashion chair. Zandra Rhodes is honorary chair. Tickets are $125 for “Art of Fashion” only and $150 for the fashion show and an after party. For more information, call the Timken Museum at (619) 239-5548, Ext. 100.

SCORE San Diego Small Business Workshops

June 18 – Tax Considerations for Small Business – 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. at SCORE Entrepreneur Center (550 West C St., #550, San Diego 92101; pre-paid registration $29, $39 at the door).

June 19 – How to Start and Manage Your Own Business – 9 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. at Point Loma Nazarene University in Mission Valley (4007 Camino del Rio South, San Diego 92108; pre-paid registration $69, $79 at the door).

June 22 – Legal Issues for Small Business: Contracts and Leases – Carlsbad – 9 a.m. to noon at National University (705 Palomar Airport Road, Carlsbad 92011; pre-paid registration $49, $59 at the door).

June 23 – Business Plan 201: How to Write a Winning Business Plan – 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Point Loma Nazarene University in Mission Valley (4007 Camino del Rio South, San Diego 92108; pre-paid registration $99, $109 at the door).

June 23 – Financing Your Business – Carlsbad – 9:30 a.m. to noon at National University (705 Palomar Airport Road, Carlsbad 92011; pre-paid registration $29, $39 at the door)

June 23 – Good Governance for Nonprofits – 9 to 11:30 a.m. at The San Diego Foundation – Liberty Station (2508 Historic Decatur Road, #200, San Diego 92106; pre-paid registration $39, $49 at the door).

June 24 – Small Business Marketing – 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Point Loma Nazarene University in Mission Valley (4007 Camino del Rio South, San Diego 92108; pre-paid registration $69, $79 at the door).

June 25 – Insurance: What You Need to Know to Protect You and Your Business – Carlsbad – 9 a.m. to noon at National University (705 Palomar Airport Road, Carlsbad 92011; pre-paid registration $49, $59 at the door).

The Daily Business Report is produced by REP Publishing Inc., publisher of San Diego Metropolitan Magazine, the North Park News, Kensington News and the West Coast Craftsman. (619) 906-4104.

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We Want Your Opinions on San Diego’s Big Issues In the coming months, Probosky Research (one of California’s leading opinion research firms) will continue its partnership with SD METRO to survey San Diego residents about topics of interest to our readers. We’d like to throw open the door for suggestions for topics. What do you want to know? What do you think you know, but aren’t sure? What are you certain you know, but want to prove it beyond doubt? Ideally, we’d like to see questions that have to do with public policy.

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