New home sales volume in the county slipped 1.4 percent in 1999, a real estate information service reported.
Peter Dennehy, managing director of the Meyers Group of Irvine, said earlier this month that 8,294 new residences were sold last year, down from 8,413 units in 1998. However, while the overall number of sales was down, the single-family detached home sales rose slightly to 7,235 units , an increase of 0.1 percent over the 7,228 sold in 1998, he said. Attached home sales totaled just 1,072 units, a decrease of 9.5 percent from the 1998 sales level of 1,185.
Dennehy said the 1999 attached sales totals were the lowest since the Meyers Group began collecting data in the county in the 1980s.
“Sales momentum slowed down somewhat in 1999 due to higher home prices and interest rates,” Dennehy said. “South County really took off in 1999, with 1,999 new units sold, up 20.8 percent from 1998.”
At the end of 1999, the median new detached home price reached $289,015 , an 11.2 percent increase over year-end 1998’s figure of $259,990, he added. The median price of attached homes climbed 9.2 percent to $191,990 from $175,990.
Meanwhile, two new home builders said they have acquired land for developments.
Barratt American Inc., a subsidiary of Barratt Development PLC of Britain, bought a 26-acre parcel in Carmel Valley from home builder D.R. Horton for about $29 million. Barratt plans to build a 149-home high-end neighborhood that is expected to reach the market late this year.
Michael D. Pattinson, president, said the acquisition is part of an expansion of activity by Barratt in San Diego and other areas.
“Barratt is optimistic regarding the Southern California new home market over the next several years and is moving aggressively to obtain property in the more desirable residential locales,” Pattinson said.
Barratt’s development, tentatively named Torrey Del Mar, will be part of a planned community near the 7100 block of Black Mountain Road. He said prices for the 2,500- to 3,000-square-foot houses will range from the mid-$400,000s to the mid-$500,000s.
San Diego-based Brehm Cos. purchased 128 acres of land in the city of Temecula for $20 million, said Horace Hogan, president of the local builder.
The site purchase marks a major expansion into a new market by the company, Hogan said.
“This is our first real estate transaction outside of San Diego County, and our largest land purchase to date,” Hogan said.
The company’s crews have started grading at the project, which is called Vintage Reserve. It will feature homes priced from under $200,000 to nearly $300,000.
In addition to Vintage Reserve, Brehm is also developing the final four neighborhoods of Aviara in Carlsbad.