Realtors Tag

October Sonoma County Real Estate Sales Snapshot

This week I received this quick sales snapshot from Rick Laws, my broker at Coldwell Banker.   It provides a 13 month overview of Sonoma County residential sales activity at all price ranges and in all locations county wide.  Sales activity and area trends vary widely by price and location but this is a quick view based upon MLS data pulled by Brokermetrics. In about a week I will have more detailed information available covering the various price points and separating out condo activity. Sonoma County Real Estate Market Dynamics October 2008                                 Oct 07        Oct 08         # Units Change       % Change Under contract       227              604                        377                      166% Sold                       227              488                         261                     115% New listings            530               551                           28                       5% The biggest takeaway here is that this is the first time in over two years that the number of newly opened escrows has exceeded the number of new listings.   Despite everything that happened in the financial markets in October, the number of newly opened escrows was up 166% and hit its highest point year over year.  In addition, the number of closed escrows reached a new high for the year.  We all know that not every opened escrow will close-but the number of newly ratified sales continues its upward trend, and bucks the national trend. The tail wagging the dog in this market continues to be the REO (bank-owned) home at the low end with an increasingly high volume of sales under $500,000 for both single family homes and condos.  Sales through October seem to be driven (this is anecdotal) equally by first time buyers or owner occupants and  real estate investors....

The Best of Healdsburg and Sonoma County–visit our Open House on the web

My wonderful client Jill is an excellent horsewoman. She and I met riding on Fred MacMurray's beautiful Twin Valleys ranch on the border of Healdsburg and Forestville. It is only fitting that her wonderful classic Healdsburg bungalow be the subject for an innovative open house this Sunday from 1-4 PM. Jill get's what were doing so she was very excited to allow Trulia and me to set up a live webcast on Trulia's blog for the first open house at her home at 414 Piper Street. Only concern she had that it would be like the Truman Show. We thought this home and its fantastic close to the Healdsburg plaza location would appeal to the type of people who would be watching the Trulia blog who may be frequent visitors to Sonoma County and appreciate the finer things that a community such as Healdsburg has to offer. While Healdsburg is about 80 minutes north of the Golden Gate Bridge, it is a very sophisticated community with country charm. Since the early 80's when I used to visit good friends Joan and Larry Franceshchina, I fell in love with the wine country of Sonoma and eventually made a home here. Since 414 Piper Street would make a great weekend getaway or fantastic tele-commute location I thought it would be a great fit for the folks on Trulia to see and appreciate. So tune in Sunday from 1 to 4 pm or thereabouts. Maybe you will fall in love with 414 Piper Street, Healdsburg. FYI, this property has an excellent walk score of 83, meaning many amenities and services are available with a block or three or four. Just park your car and enjoy....

Sonoma County Market Dynamics for May 2008: Demand up, Supply of New listings down 14%

Ok so I admit that there is more to being successful in buying and selling real estate (as a realtor or an actual buyer or seller) than knowing market statistics. But the dynamics of this real estate market are changing so rapidly, and the various locations and price points add multiple additional layers of complexity, so that it bears spending some time looking at the numbers. Most of us also like to see if the trends on aggregate bear out our senses as we live and breathe in this market every day. So any of my clients or friends who ask me "How's the market?" knows that I can wax poetic on the subject. Tongue slightly in cheek. ;) Anyway, my broker Rick Laws, just released May's sales statistic for Sonoma County to us this morning and the sales up-tick we noted previously appears to be continuing or even accelerating. Add that to the big news that the number of new listings is actually down 14%. This is for all residential sales in Sonoma County at all price points. I have asked Rick for some additional breakdowns. This is a rough pass of the data because as Rick says, some of the sales reporting for last month can be a little late and dribble in over the first 10 days of the month, which is when he normally compiles the stats that you see in the Press Democrat. Closed sales are up slightly over last year at this time. But even more interestingly, newly opened escrows (sales under contract but due to close in 1 to 2 months) are up 68 percent this year over last. Even if some fall out of escrow, that is a significant boost to a trend we first noted here in early March. Even more interestingly, new listings are down 14% over last year. So where do you think the market is heading?Please click on the image above for a larger view.     ...

Entry Level Sonoma County Real Estate Market Hopping!

Please click on the image above to see one that is actually readable! The trend we first noted in February is continuing in Sonoma County Real Estate Sales, led by our entry level market of homes under $500,000. Not only is the number of new CLOSED sales up to the highest point in over two years, the number of newly opened escrows (UNDER CONTRACT above) is increasing even more rapidly, on pace to close next month. Many of these homes are bank-owned (REO's) or short sales and the buyers consist of investors and first time buyers or folks who are down-sizing. The number of newly opened escrows in this category is up 274% over last year at this time. While buyers think they can offer considerably lower than asking, that is not necessarily true. I just opened escrow for a client in this price range and we were able to get a great property that had been on the market for some time (not a foreclosure) and ridden the price trend down. The perils of overpricing in this case benefited my buyer who is in contract to purchase this home for 33% less than the original asking price, and 15% under the most recent price. But the REO's are now priced to sell for the most part and attracting multiple offers. One of the best deals I saw in Montgomery Village last week at under $320,000 had four offers within a few days of coming on the market and still the bank had not selected which cherry offer to pick. But even if this property sells for slightly over asking, it is a great solid home (in need of much TLC) on a prime street and lot with surrounding homes that will love to see this one fixed up! Perhaps the big thud we heard in Sonoma County last winter was the sound of the market hitting bottom. We shall see. More stats and opinions to come on other segments of the Sonoma County Real Estate market this week....

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