SAN DIEGO - San Diego home prices were 17 percent higher in November than they were a year ago, and that's "tremendous," according to the president of the Greater San Diego Association of Realtors.
"It's a big increase," said Donna Sanfilippo, who explained that while the median price for single family homes was up 17 percent, the increase was 27 percent for condominiums and townhomes.
It shows the real estate market is recovering, but there are still growing pains.
"The biggest thing we're experiencing is a lack of inventory," she said. "When you have less than two months' supply on the market – and we've been consistently at that for the past several months – that means some of that appreciation is multiple offer situations where it's almost a bidding war, and that's going to increase appreciation, especially in an entry-level housing market."
Buyers like Chequita Falls are finding out its becoming a seller's market.
"There's not that much out there," she said. "I started looking in August and I was really excited and thinking that it's going to come through. Now with these investors paying cash, I don't have a chance."
Falls called the investors "sharks" that hurt her chance of achieving the American dream of home ownership.
"I'm mad about it," she said. "It's sad. What happens to middle income people? We'll never be homeowners."
The median price for a single-family home in San Diego is now $408,000. In November of 2011, it was $350,000.
Sanfilippo said she believes the overall prices of homes in the San Diego area will end the year up by about 12 percent.
A real estate analyst from Riverside said he thinks next year will be a big one for California real estate. Bruce Norris predicts the median housing price will appreciate by 20 percent in 2013.