Archive for the 'Market updates' Category
Why? Because there is almost NO inventory available for all the home-buyers out there. You can see on this map that Sonoma County communities such as Healdsburg and the Valley of the Moon corridor are at the higher end of these ranges. Newly pending sales are at a many year high now, and inventory in Sonoma County may be reaching an all time low. More about this in future posts.
In May I posted a lot about Sonoma County homes sales statistics. Now it is June 1 and I was curious to see what the May sales figures had to say.
Last year at this time there were 3,043 homes for sale in Sonoma County.
As of May 31, 2012 there are only 1,902 (!) homes for sale here, a 37% drop in inventory.
Last year 434 homes sales were completed in the month of May.
This year, 524 home sales were completed, an increase of 21%. This supply and demand chart is one of the most telling for market statistics. As the supply curve drops it begins to converge with the demand curve, which has been steadily rising.
When the curve converges that means prices may rise.
I recently attended a gathering of about 200 realtors for a business planning conference in San Diego. The consensus there was that prices are coming up. Most analysts predict a modest increase of 3-5% nationwide. Prices seem to be rising in some of the hardest hit markets such as Las Vegas and Florida. Many Bay Area markets are sizzling hot and overbids are rampant.
The Sonoma County home sales numbers seem to confirm this trend. What do you think?
Here is the detailed set of tables and charts looking at the sales statistics for million dollar plus homes and ranches in Sonoma County. It would be difficult to break this data down and look at trends in the rate of sales in different communities such as Healdsburg or Sonoma since the sample size is so small. That is why we so often look at the county as a whole. Typically the most desirable locations will see the quickest rebound and highest activity. Good sales activity doesn’t mean sellers can overprice their properties and hope to be successful, but they can be more positive about bringing well-presented and well-priced properties to market, because the buyers are out there.
Trends of note–the number of expired listings has declined steadily over the last year. During the depths of the market downturn many properties were pulled off the market when they didn’t sell. A lower rate of expired listings is obviously coupled with a higher rate of newly open contracts and closed sales. While we may have had some price declines in this segment as recently as 2011, all the signs point to stabilizing prices and possible modest price appreciation in the years ahead. All data is pulled from the BAREIS Multiple Listing Association. That is, it is provided by the various brokerages in the county from their actual listing sales data.
It is no longer just the entry level homes that are selling like hot cakes in Sonoma County. This spring there has been a decided improvement in the market for homes price over a million dollars, with inventory down 25% and the rate of CLOSED sales up 67% when compared to the April 2010. The chart below shows the progression over the last two years. Typically when the supply curve and the demand curve start to converge, there is upwards pressure on prices.This data is based upon the sales records from the BAREIS MLS (Bay Area Real Estate Information Services Multiple Listings Service–you can see why we abbreviate it!). CAVEAT: Since the sample size of homes in this price range, one million and up, which would be considered the beginning of our upper end market, it is a bit difficult to draw conclusions, particularly regarding prices, as one $6 million or $12 million dollar sale will really affect price trends. Nevertheless, there is much higher activity in these price ranges, with many all cash purchases. I heard of one six point two million dollar country property in Dry Creek Valley, Healdsburg that went in to escrow almost immediately after coming on the market, with an all cash buyer.
Yesterday I published a post about the dramatic increase in country property newly pending sales compared to the depths of the recession in 2009. Here is a link to the complete report. Enjoy! PLease feel free to comment or send questions. I’d love to hear from you.
Following (or leading?) the general pickup in the real estate market both locally here in Sonoma County, and nationwide, country properties are strong. Newly pending sales of properties on 2 acres or more in Sonoma County are at more than the three year high, up 238% !! over the same time in 2009. In fact, February 2009 was the bottom for the median sales price in the county, and the chart belo0w conveniently looks at the sales of country property throughout Sonoma County during that time. All sales that are opened don’t necessarily close–there could be property “issues” or financing “issues.” Still the number is a good leading indicator of market activity. The jump in sales of country properties is SIGNIFICANTLY higher than the jump in sales of all single-family residences.
Contrast this with the overall rate of newly signed contracts for all single-family residences in Sonoma County. Compared to SFD’s, country property sales really took a dive when the market did the same, while sales in 2009 were focused on inexpensive single family homes and condos. The change in rate of sales for all single family homes (including country properties) has increased, but risen only 21% from the trough year in 2009.
So what does this mean? In short, if you have a nice country property to sell in Sonoma County and have been on the sidelines, this spring and summer might be the right time for you to sell. Inventory is becoming more balanced between buyers and sellers, and there is strong demand. I believe that will only continue to grow, as Sonoma County’s lifestyle and close proximity to San Francisco make it such a desirable place to live. Please give me a call or drop me an email if you would like to learn more!
Weighing against new construction are ever escalating contruction and building costs, along with city and county regulations. For a post on Sonoma County’s Permit and Resources Department (PRMD) click here. In Sonoma County as well we are seeing an increased impact on building concerning endangered or threatened species such as the California tiger salamander, the Pritkin marsh lily and the bank swallow.
Again, a caution in that the sample sizes here are so small that it is difficult to draw conclusions from them. I really am including these for reference purposes. Please let me know if you have any questions.
The unit sales in the coastal market are in the single digits, not including Sea Ranch to the north. So, the statistical value is week. The coastal market was very hot this last winter, which is one of the most beautiful seasons on the coast. We can be socked in with tule fog inland and it will be bright and sunny out in Bodega Bay, as I discovered last winter when I was showing property from Dillon Beach to Gualala. Even with the small sample size, the behavior of the real estate market in coastal Sonoma this winter was an early clue to the heat of the overall Sonoma County real estate market this spring.
Same message, rising sales and declining inventory.
Petaluma is one of the larger towns in Sonoma County, and it is bordered by Penngrove on the northeast corner. This area is closest to Marin County to the south and the commute locations of the Bay Area, so it tends to be more influenced by those factors and a bit more expensive than the rest of the corridor along highway 101 going north further in to Sonoma County. It is no surprise that home inventorys are down 39 percent from April 2010, and that there are only 1.9 months supply of homes for sale at the current rate. Here are the sales reports for the last two years for Petaluma (east and west) and Penngrove.
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