According to Coldwell Banker Real Estate's 2012 Home Listing survey of prices for four-bedroom, two-bath houses in 2,500 markets across the country, the most expensive cities are in the Bay Area, specifically Silicon Valley. Only #2 ranked Newport Beach in Orange County, CA was outside the region.
No. 1: Los Altos: $1.7 million
No. 2: Newport Beach: $1.68 million
No. 3: Saratoga: $1.58 million
No. 4: Menlo Park: $1.5 million
No. 5: Palo Alto: $1.495 million
No. 6: Los Gatos: 1.44 million
Silicon Valley real estate reporter, Nathan Donato-Weinstein provides the good news for current homeowners - and not-so-good news for those who may wish to buy single-family homes for growing families in the San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara metro area. In fact, the same applies for purchasing any type of home in America.
"The median value of all owner-occupied houses, apartments and condominiums in (this) metro area was $618,100 in 2011, according to On Numbers, which uses data from the U.S. Census Bureau's 2011 American Community Survey."
Don't expect to find much cheaper homes elsewhere in the Bay Area. According to Donato-Weinstein's colleague, G. Scott Thomas "(t)hat's $57,000 ahead of the runner-up, nearby San Francisco-Oakland."
In fact, six of the ten priciest metro areas are in California. Thomas lists 109 metro areas for median values of owner-occupied units in 2011.