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As I mentioned in my story Monday, home sales in the region are continuing to heat up, according to new numbers released yesterday by MDA DataQuick.

Last month, 3,375 homes sold in the county — up from 3,020 homes in March, and up 20.1 percent from the 2,809 homes sold in April 2008.

The number of new homes sold dropped 45.8 percent from 334 sales in April 2008 to 181 last month. That drop was offset by increases in both resale houses and resale condos.

The 2,207 resale houses sold last month was a 29.3 percent increase from April 2008. And resale condo sales jumped 28.5 percent year-over-year, with 987 sold last month.

Of those resales, 47.3 percent had been foreclosed on in the past 12 months. That’s up from 35.1 percent last April.

The San Diego County data reflected the trends across six Southern California counties, according to numbers released this morning. April was the 10th consecutive month of year-over-year increases in home sales, as “first-time buyers and investors continued to target distressed inland properties,” according to the DataQuick press release.

DataQuick’s “Southland” analysis includes San Diego, Orange, Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Riverside and Ventura counties. Homes sold last month that had been foreclosed on in the past year counted for 53.6 percent of all resales across the six-county region.

More on the Southland:

It was the seventh consecutive month in which post-foreclosure properties made up more than half of all resales.

The deep discounts associated with foreclosures have created stiff competition for builders, who last month sold the lowest number of newly constructed homes for an April since at least 1988.

DataQuick analysts found that the sales activity was nearly all in inland communities where foreclosures have already wrought steep price drops.

In coastal areas, as well as older and high-end neighborhoods, however, the sales count was much lower. This is partially because jumbo loans — the bigger mortgages needed to purchase such homes — have become much more difficult to obtain and carry higher interest rates than they did before the credit crunch hit in August 2007.

Before August 2007, nearly 40 percent of the home sales in the six-county region were financed using jumbo loans, which were loans then defined as more than $417,000. Last month, only 10.9 percent of buyers in that region used jumbo loans, which are now defined as more than about $550,000.

KELLY BENNETT

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