Tom York on Business: Believe it or Not, San Diego Still Has a Few Homes Under $150,000

Mobile home
A home in San Diego listed at under $150,000. Courtesy Point2

Believe it or not, San Diego still has a very tiny slice – and we do mean tiny — share of homes for sale priced under $150,000, according to a recent survey by Point2, an online residential real estate portal.

Point2 scoured the real estate listings of the top 50 cities in the United States and in the process found that San Diego ranked 24th on the list, with just over 1{194d821e0dc8d10be69d2d4a52551aeafc2dee4011c6c9faa8f16ae7103581f6} of the houses listed for sale priced under $150,000.

What does that buy you? An older mobile home in most cases.

San Diego was by no means alone with its miniscule single percentage point.

The study also found that in 46 of the 50 largest cities, homes under $150,000 represent less than 5{194d821e0dc8d10be69d2d4a52551aeafc2dee4011c6c9faa8f16ae7103581f6} of all single-family properties on the market.

What’s more, homes under $150,000 are all but non-existent. Which is not surprising, given the fact that home prices in many parts of coastal California have skyrocketed above $1 million.

Indeed, the Golden State serves as a case study of the diminishing modestly priced home. Irvine, Oakland and San Francisco all had zero homes priced less than $150,000 when the data was collected.

Of the four cities in California where the median price is higher than $1 million, only Fremont and San Jose have a few affordable homes for sale–1{194d821e0dc8d10be69d2d4a52551aeafc2dee4011c6c9faa8f16ae7103581f6} in Fremont and 0.3{194d821e0dc8d10be69d2d4a52551aeafc2dee4011c6c9faa8f16ae7103581f6} in San Jose.

In 25 of the cities surveyed, homes under $150,000 represent less than 1{194d821e0dc8d10be69d2d4a52551aeafc2dee4011c6c9faa8f16ae7103581f6} of all residential properties currently listed for sale.

Only two cities in the survey — Mesa, AZ, and St. Petersburg, FL have shares of affordable homes between 10{194d821e0dc8d10be69d2d4a52551aeafc2dee4011c6c9faa8f16ae7103581f6} and 15{194d821e0dc8d10be69d2d4a52551aeafc2dee4011c6c9faa8f16ae7103581f6} of inventory.

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Roger Ball of Rick Engineering Co., chairman of the board and past president, was honored with a San Diego State University Alumni Award of Distinction.

A 1974 graduate from the school’s College of Engineering, Ball spent his career at Rick, advancing from draftsman to company president by 2006, according to a publicist.

Rick is a family-owned engineering company based in Mission Valley.

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National commercial real estate broker and property manager Cushman & Wakefield has appointed Christina Roush as managing principal of the firm’s local operations. Roush, a 30-year veteran, will oversee the firm’s new regional headquarters in Del Mar, downtown, Carlsbad, and Otay Mesa, as well as a dedicated property management services office.

According to a news release, Roush is one of the first women to hold the position of market leader in the history of San Diego and the only woman to hold such role currently in the market.

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Speaking of things real estate. Data analysis and data mining startup Deckard Technologies says it has signed two new client cities in South Carolina, Mount Pleasant and Port Royal.

According to a media release, Deckard’s technology works to ensure that property owners who rent out their homes on a short-term basis remit the requisite transient occupancy taxes to local government agencies.

The firm’s Rentalscape monitoring software provides detail of STRs for town managers and councils, helping them to establish policies that better enable them to collect taxes.

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Fast-growing productivity startup  ClickUp says it has acquired tech startup Slapdash. With the acquisition, according to a news release, ClickUp says its users can connect to 40-plus productivity applications such as Slack, Salesforce and Drive from a central location. 

It looks like we’ve done pretty well jobwise in hard as well as the good times.

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San Diego ranks 64th on a list of 180 U.S. cities bouncing back the most from the dramatic economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. The list was prepared by WalletHub, a personal finance web portal.

That ranking doesn’t appear very impressive but demonstrates that we survived the impact of the coronavirus far better than other U.S. cities both large and small when it came to the strength of our workforce.

No. 10 on the list, Phoenix, for example, suffered a 40{194d821e0dc8d10be69d2d4a52551aeafc2dee4011c6c9faa8f16ae7103581f6}-plus drop in employment during the first three months of 2020 when the pandemic struck.

San Diego’s employment rate was 3.3{194d821e0dc8d10be69d2d4a52551aeafc2dee4011c6c9faa8f16ae7103581f6} as of March, a rate that was about the same as in March 2019.

The current national jobless rate is 3.6{194d821e0dc8d10be69d2d4a52551aeafc2dee4011c6c9faa8f16ae7103581f6}, which is 76{194d821e0dc8d10be69d2d4a52551aeafc2dee4011c6c9faa8f16ae7103581f6} lower than the peak of near 15{194d821e0dc8d10be69d2d4a52551aeafc2dee4011c6c9faa8f16ae7103581f6} during the height of the pandemic, but slightly above the historic low experienced before the arrival of the coronavirus. 

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San Diego biotech Genome Insight, pursuing new genetic sequence analysis and interpretation technologies, has announced $23 million in Series B funding.

The company says the money will support data production and curation pipelines that allow for scalable investigation of whole-genome sequences. Genome Insight was founded in 2020 in South Korea. Earlier this year, the company incorporated in the United States and is now headquartered in San Diego.

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The North County retail sector, which took a bit of a hit during the pandemic, appears to have life yet, especially in Carlsbad.

For example, Laguna Beach jewelry retailer gorjana  opened a new store May 2 in the Carlsbad Forum retail center.

According to a media release, Jason and Gorjana Reidel launched the business out of their apartment, driving 50,000 miles to sell jewelry on the trade-show circuit.

Other retailers opening stores in the center include AllbirdsWarby ParkerJay Bird’s Chicken and outdoor products retailer YETI, which will open its first California location at The Forum this summer. 

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East coast entrepreneurs Max Rebarber and Andrew Hollarhave have developed an interesting new app for consumers with special dietary needs but who have trouble finding the foods they can eat at the local grocery store.

Their new Fig (Food is Good) app helps consumers with dietary reequipments find their food items at local grocery stores, even those shoppers with complex or medical-related dietary needs.

The idea is venture backed, and investors Artis Ventures, San Diego-based Correlation Ventures, Gaingels, Goodwater Capital, Global Ventures and Sequoia Capital

The startup released the beta version in November. In the ensuring five months, more than 110,000 people have used the app without the team spending a dollar on advertising, according to a publicist.

The company, now with seven employees, has since moved to San Diego.

The free app is available at the App Store and Google Play.

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Finally. Locally based web technology startup Kahoona says it it has closed $4.5 million in seed financing, a deal led by Global Founders Capital, with participation from Cardumen Capital, Plug and Play and Fourth Realm as well as investments from Amazon, IronSource, NBC Universal, Verizon and SAP.

The company says it is currently hiring data scientists and developers to staff its R&D center in Tel Aviv and sales and marketing positions in its U.S. headquarters here in San Diego. 

According to a news release, the startup is creating a digital ecosystem that preserves user privacy.

Tom York is a Carlsbad-based independent journalist who specializes in writing about business and the economy. If you have news tips you’d like to share, send them to [email protected].