Archive for July 29th, 2009

Market Statistics for Sonoma County

Yesterday we got our Q2 statistics newsletter into the mail.  It was a struggle with paper jams with both printers but getting this information out to our sphere is an important part of our service.   We want everyone to be aware of what is going on in Sonoma County Real Estate.  The year to year median sales price in Q2 dropped 23% for all of Sonoma County with Sebastopol falling only 10% over the same time period.  Remember that the median represents that point where half of the houses sold for less and half sold for more.  Many people read this number and think that each house dropped in value by this percentage which is a misconception.  Yes, prices have gone down but more importantly, lower priced homes are selling more quickly than higher priced homes.

As mentioned in the New York Times today, people who never thought that they would own a home are purchasing their dream properties.  The $8,000 incentive for first time home buyers has spurred on the homes under $350,000.  This segment of the market is seeing multiple offers on well priced homes.  It is rare to see a sale without the inclusion of a bank on the selling side – whether the property is bank owned or selling for less than the current indebtedness.  That appears to be a continuing fact as we look to the future.

The good news in the statistics is that on a month to month basis things seem to be improving with both greater numbers of properties selling with a higher median sales price.  That has led some economists to optimistically say that we are past the bottom of the market.  I say that we are in a wait and see period.  With many notices of default still being recorded at the county and jobs still being lost, it is unclear as to how prices can recover quickly.  Fewer homes are on the market right now and that does create a demand.  As more properties go into foreclosure, the banks can control the number of properties on the market which helps keep the prices up.  This winter will be critical for the real estate recovery.  If sales falter, we could be in another downward trend.  Based upon the current activity with buyers, my prediction is that we will see sales increase in West Sonoma County as the year draws to an end. 

If you are not on our mailing list for the Quarterly Sonoma County Real Estate Statistics, drop me an email with you address and I will make sure that you get them.  My CA DRE# is 01359647.


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