Market Watch - Recap of North Bay and SF Markets

North Bay – The Previews® luxury market has slowed considerably with 54 properties available over $4 million and only 4 pending in Marin County, reports our Greenbrae manager.  The properties still receiving good offers and sometimes multiple are in the under $1 million range.  The lack of inventory in that range continues as we move closer to the holidays.  Agents are seeing more price reductions and negotiating over inspection repairs than we have all year.  The feeling is people are holding off listing their homes due to the upcoming election. Our Novato manager reports sales are steady but listing activity has slowed. Inventory is still challenging and limited. Agents saw less than a dozen new homes com on Novato tour this week. In the luxury market, one million-dollar home in Novato received six offers. According to our Santa Rosa Bicentennial office manager, there has been an uptick in activity in the last few weeks. Multiple offers on properly priced homes are on the rise again. September’s inventory was at 2.2 month’s supply, which was a 9% rise from the August levels, but still 16% below last year at this time. Total property sales are running 5.5% behind last year, but if inventory continues to rise the market may be able to close that gap. Open home reports vary anywhere from 20 to 60 visitors in a three hour period so buyers are still very active. The inventory of properties over $1,500,000 sits at 8.5 month’s supply. There has been a downward trend for the year as properties are being bought faster than they are replaced. Our Santa Rosa Mission office manager sees unique market conditions with still limited inventory, a declining number of offers and buyer price fatigue. Our Sebastopol manager says listings are down 30% from this time last year but sales are up 20%, which means inventory is slim to none. Properties are noticeably priced more aggressively than last month. Sellers are more realistic on pricing strategy. Most-asked question agents get from clients: Will the election affect the housing market? The Southern Marin market is steady with about 40% of the total inventory under contract for all of Marin and 30% under contract in Southern Marin, where the average listing is much higher. Agents are seeing fewer multiple offers and overbids. The luxury market has slowed down as expected, however sales are still occurring. Some 12% of the inventory over $3 million is under contract and almost 20% of the inventory over $2 million is under contract.

San Francisco – Change is in the air and it may be the uncertainty created by the general election environment, our Lakeside manager says. The market is proceeding but with caution. Our Lombard manager notes the number of condo and home sales doubled last week, bringing the month’s supply back to normal ­- a much higher inventory than a year ago. Again, homes continue selling over asking while at least half of condos are trading at or under asking. Broker and open traffic remain robust, but the number of eventual offers are significantly reduced YOY. Proper pricing is more critical than ever.