The median price paid for a home in Southern California in March rose 8 percent from February, according to San Diego-based DataQuick. At $345,000, the median price is up from $320,000 the previous month and $280,000 a year ago; and it is the highest sales price since $348,000 in July 2008. DataQuick President John Walsh says demand for homes is rising at a time when the number of properties available is uncharacteristically low. Additionally, "the gains are especially high right now because of the change in market mix: Sales of lower-cost homes have fallen at the same time activity in the higher price ranges has risen," he explains. Sales of mid- to high-end residences are up in the six-county region this spring as the impact of foreclosures continues to abate, DataQuick also reports.