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By Andrew Khouri
June 17, 2015

Southern California home prices rose slightly in May, while sales jumped during the busy spring buying season.

The median sales price for the six-county Southland was $426,000, up 2.2% from a year earlier, CoreLogic said Wednesday. It was the smallest gain in three years, according to the real estate information firm.

That small increase represents a market where buyers have difficulty bidding homes up to ever-higher prices, CoreLogic analyst Andrew LePage said.

But the nature of the median price — the point where half the homes sold for more and half for less — also played a role in the 2.2% increase.

A greater share of homes sold in more affordable areas last month than a year earlier, LePage said.

Sales are improving, however, following a lethargic 2014. Buyers scooped up 21,644 new and resale houses and condominiums last month, nearly 5% higher than a year earlier. It was the third straight month that sales increased.

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