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A Homebuyer's Guide: 4 California Cities to Avoid in 2024


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The housing market in California is known for its high prices and limited affordability. As we enter the year 2024, it's crucial for potential homebuyers to be aware of the cities where home prices are expected to rise and those that offer more affordable options. In this article, we will discuss four California cities that buyers should avoid if they are looking for a budget-friendly real estate investment. Additionally, we will explore how seeking the help of a property tax expert can ensure a fair property tax assessment.



Redding: A City with Potential Price Gains


According to a report by real estate firm CoreLogic, Redding, a city in Northern California, is expected to experience significant price gains in 2024. The predictions suggest that home prices in Redding could rise by as much as 7.3%. Currently, the average home value in Redding is $375,981, showing a slight decrease of 0.2% over the past year1. Despite this decline, the projected price increase makes Redding a less affordable option for potential homebuyers.



San Francisco: A Persistent High-Cost Housing Market


San Francisco has long been infamous for its exorbitant real estate prices, and this trend is unlikely to change significantly in 2024. According to Redfin, San Francisco ranked among the least affordable housing markets in 2023, with homebuyers needing to spend over 80% of their income on monthly housing costs1. While Realtor.com predicts a potential decline of -5.2% in home prices this year, it may not be enough to make San Francisco an affordable choice for buyers. In fact, San Francisco ranks sixth in U.S. News' 25 Most Expensive Places to Live in the U.S. 2023-20241.



Los Angeles: Struggling with High Costs and Limited Affordability


Another city in California that presents challenges for potential homebuyers is Los Angeles. With an average home value of $918,087, which has increased by 3.5% over the past year, Los Angeles continues to struggle with a high cost of living and lack of affordable housing1. The Zebra, an insurance company, ranks Los Angeles as the sixth most expensive city to own a home in 2024, citing factors such as tight housing inventory and expensive property taxes1. These deterrence factors make Los Angeles an unfavorable option for buyers seeking affordable housing.



San Diego: A City of Growth and High Price Tags


San Diego presents an interesting mix of opportunities and challenges in the housing market. Realtor.com indicates that San Diego is expected to experience an average sales growth of 13.1% in 20241. Additionally, the city stands out for its high usage of VA loans by veteran households, with a share of 16.5%, almost double the average of the largest 100 markets1. However, the average home value in San Diego is $960,202, the highest among the cities mentioned in this article, showing an increase of 7.1% over the past year1. These high price tags may be a deterrent for many potential buyers.



Seeking Assistance from a Property Tax Expert


When considering purchasing a home, it's essential to be aware of not only the housing market trends but also the associated costs. Property taxes are a significant expense for homeowners and can vary greatly depending on the property's assessed value. Engaging the services of a property tax expert can help buyers ensure a fair property tax assessment.


A property tax expert can assist homebuyers in several ways. Firstly, they possess in-depth knowledge of the local property tax laws and regulations, allowing them to navigate the complexities of the assessment process. They can review the property's assessment and identify any discrepancies or errors that may result in an unfair tax burden. Additionally, a property tax expert can guide buyers through the process of filing an appeal if they believe their property has been overvalued.


Furthermore, a property tax expert can provide valuable insights into potential tax-saving opportunities. They can identify exemptions, deductions, or credits that buyers may be eligible for, ultimately reducing their property tax liability. By leveraging their expertise, buyers can ensure that they are not paying more than their fair share of property taxes.


In conclusion, as we navigate the housing market in 2024, potential homebuyers must be well-informed about the cities that offer affordable housing options. Redding, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Diego present unique challenges in terms of price, affordability, and market conditions. To make informed decisions, buyers should consider engaging the services of a property tax expert who can help them navigate the intricacies of property tax assessment and ensure a fair and accurate valuation.


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