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San Marino bucks the housing bust

While the top 20 most expensive Southern California communities have struggled to varying degrees during the housing downturn, San Marino alone has avoided a drop in annual median home prices.

The San Gabriel city recorded its peak annual price last year at $1,524,000, according to statistics from MDA DataQuick. Meanwhile, Malibu is down more than 28% from it's 2007 high point.

San Marino has superior schools and a housing stock of stately mansions, but what seems to be making the difference is a steady influx of Asian buyers and investors keeping competition alive and values buoyant, real estate experts say.

-- Lauren Beale

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