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Oakland Home Price Increases Blast Ahead of San Francisco's

Scott Lucas | June 18, 2014 | Story Real Estate

Oakland is so hot right now—and you don't need to be a starving artist or a regional magazine to realize that. Even homeowners are seeing evidence of the East Bay's moment in the sun.

Over the last 12 months, home prices in Oakland have increased at a much faster rate than home prices in San Francisco—way more. A study by ZipRealty found that from May 2013 to May 2014, the median home sales price in Oakland rose a whopping 23%. Over the same period of time San Francisco's home's increased in value by only—only—14%.

To be fair, Oakland still has a long way to make up before its prices match San Francisco's. The median home price in Oakland is $478,000, while the equivalent figure for San Francisco was a little north of one million dollars. If current trends were to continue indefinitely, Oakland prices would hypothetically surpass San Francisco's around 2024.

The study also looked at East Bay cities Berkeley and Alameda. The first saw its home prices decrease by 1% to a median of $801,000; while the second saw its median home sales price increase by 11% to $666,0000.

The richest zip codes in all the cities in the study except for Oakland saw their median home sales prices jump much higher than the overall numbers. For instance, the Marina, Pacific Heights, and Cow Hollow saw their median home prices jump by 109% and areas of the Berkeley hills saw theirs increase by 85%. At first glance, that could seem counterintuitive. After all, shouldn't the houses at the lower end of the market, which have more ground to increase by, see larger jumps? But there's a few factors at play there— one being that a few astronomical sales prices could drag the median way upwards. Take Cow Hollow, for instance, which has recently seen a handful of homes go for two to three million dollars, as well as one for ten million. We could also be seeing more evidence of the increasing concentration of wealth at the upper end of the market as our tech-fueled economic boom continues.

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