December 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market Update

December 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market Update… 2017 ended on a high note for Almaden Valley real estate. The inventory of single family homes has been tight all throughout 2017, and our December numbers demonstrate the general trend we saw this past year: low inventory and brisk sales. Of course, we expect to see activity drop to yearly lows in December due to the holidays, and 2017 was no different. The number of homes offered on the market dropped dramatically as the last month of the year rolled past, from 15 in November to 9 in December. The number of homes that sold dropped from 25 to 21 and the number under contract from 23 to 18  during the same time frame.

However, when we compare December 2017 with December 2016, we get a pretty good indication of just how active the market was last year. There were over 18% more homes for sale in 2016, yet the number of single family homes under contract was 20% higher this past year, and the number sold was over 10% higher. Less inventory plus higher sales is a pretty solid indicator that Almaden Valley real estate remains in a strong seller’s market, which generally translates into stable to increasing prices. And, this is indeed what has played out. December price per square foot was $670, a whopping $74 higher than November’s $586 and a decidedly healthy increase over the $614 we saw December 2016. In fact, December’s price per square foot is the highest we’ve seen it in over five years.

Is the timing right for you? Give me a call!

December 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market Update

Almaden Valley Home Prices Reach New High

Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season and a great time ringing in the New Year.  But don’t put away those champagne glasses just yet.  We have more to celebrate as Almaden Valley home prices have once again reached a new record high!

I have included a couple of graphs showing trends for Almaden Single Family Homes since 2008.  Data was obtained from MLSListings Inc.  The first graph shows that the Median Sales Price reached a new high for the year in 2017 of $1,462,500, up 6.9% from 2016.  While this figure and the graph incorporate all sales throughout the year, the Median Sales Price for December 2017 was a whopping $1,547,250, up 17.9% from $1,312,500 in December 2016.  In fact, we had an amazing 4th Quarter as many buyers rushed to beat the signing in of the new tax law and the threat of rising interest rates.  October 2017 was up 13.4% from October 2016, and November was up 10.2%.  However, some months in 2017 saw a price decline from the prior year.

The second graph shows the number of new listings compared to the number sold.  As we closed 2017 just about all the inventory was gobbled up, and by the beginning of 2018 there were only 8 single family homes on the market in Almaden.

We had the good fortune this week of having Oscar Wei, Senior Economist from California Association of Realtors, speak at our office meeting.  He forecasts that we will continue to see prices increase at least through this year.  Zillow is a bit less optimistic and forecasts a slight decrease for Almaden Valley home prices over the next year.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me directly and I’ll be glad to help you out!

 

 

 

November 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market Update

November 2017 Almaden Valley real estate market update… Almaden Valley real estate is experiencing the expected seasonal lull. The numbers of single family homes on the market, under contract and sold are down from October. Price per square foot dropped as well, from $619 in October to $590 in November, indicating that demand has softened, something we entirely expect to see this time of year as both buyers and sellers ease back from the market for the holidays.

When we compare November 2016 with November 2017, we can see that overall demand is strengthening. The number of active single family listings on the market in November 2016 was 29, as compared to 15 in November 2017. This gives us a pretty strong indication that inventory is tight. Price per square foot is up 4.6% this year at $590, compared to $564 last year. Although the number of homes that sold remained virtually unchanged during this timeframe, the number of homes under contract was dramatically higher this year (24 as compared to 19 the same time last year) despite fewer homes being on the market.

We should start seeing more buyers and sellers entering the market starting in January, but we’ve now entered what is likely to be the slowest time of the market. Prices are generally lower during the holidays than other times of the year, due to the slowdown in buyer activity. Now is a great time for buyers who are willing to sacrifice a bit of selection for favorable prices. If you’d like to know how you can take advantage of the holiday lull for YOUR home purchase, email, text or call me and let me show you how!

November 2017 Almaden Valley real estate market

September 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market Update

Data for September 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market indicates that we are well into the annual holiday cooling cycle. The number of single family homes offered for sale, under contract, and sold have all dropped from August to September, which is quite normal for this time of year. When we compare last month to the same time last year, we see a rather dramatic difference in these categories. For last month, we saw 23 single family homes for sale, 20 under contract, and 25 sold. In September 2016, these numbers were 44, 27 and 35 respectively. This disparity is quite likely due to the fact that inventory in 2017 has barely met demand. In fact, when we look at the average price per square foot, the $628 we saw this past month is significantly higher than the $575 we saw September 2016, which is a pretty clear indication that buyer activity has been strong.

The price per square foot did drop from August’s high of $667, but we anticipate pricing to cool this time of year as well. Generally speaking, the holidays are usually a good time to buy, as many buyers drop out of the market until the new year, prices drop, and sellers can become more eager to make a sale before the end of the year. This year, though, it seems like buyers may not see quite the decrease in competition that they usually experience. Good deals can still be had, but data indicates that buyer interest is still keen despite the upcoming holidays.

If you’d like more information about current market trends or are thinking about buying or selling a home in the Almaden Valley, give me a call!

September 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market

How Does Your Garden Grow?

garden growHow Does Your Garden Grow?

Imagine yourself in a bountiful spring garden surrounded by tulips, hyacinths, daffodils, crocuses and beautiful blossoms in a riot of colors and hues. But how do you bring this spring wonderland to your own front yard and backyard? The answer is, by starting now.

For many of us, gardening projects end in the summer. Yet, fall planting is crucial to a good harvest in spring, be it flowers or vegetables. Here’s how to go about creating a beautiful spring garden.

Picking bulbs for spring blossoms: Right now, garden stores and nurseries are stocked up on bulbs and seeds for planting. Tulips, hyacinths, crocuses, daffodils, irises are some varieties which are sure to give you a blooming garden come spring.

Spring veggie patch: For a vegetable harvest in spring, choose vegetables which can withstand the winter chill and frost. Carrots, cabbages, turnips, broccoli, celery, parsnips, radishes, kale, and brussels sprouts are among the varieties which are most hardy.

Planting time: Plant the bulbs after summer but before the ground gets frosty. October is usually a good time for fall planting, but here in the Bay area, it is safe to plant till early November.

Where to plant: Choose an area in your yard which is sunny and has good drainage. Prepare the soil with compost and fertilize after planting the bulbs.

Mulch: Be sure to spread a layer of mulch. This keeps keep the moisture in and prevents frost from settling on the bulbs in the winter.

For more information, visit https://www.almanac.com/gardening.
For hardiness zones, check out this excellent resource on fall planting of bulbs: https://www.almanac.com/sites/default/files/d6/fall_planted_bulbs.jpg

July 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market Update

July 2017 Almaden Valley real estate market update… July figures of the Almaden Valley real estate market are in, and if historic figures are any indication we should have reached the low point of the annual summer doldrums. We would not be surprised to see a slight autumn rally and then the holiday season slow-down that happens every year.

There is one anomaly this year, and that is the number of single family homes offered on the market on any given month has been lower than the number of sold homes for most of the year. There are many possible reasons for this. One is that many homes are not listed on the MLS until they are sold. In other words, many Realtors are getting homes sold before they can put them on the MLS. Generally speaking, this type of sale  indicates a strong demand for homes. The data from last month would seem to bear this out. When we look at the number of single family homes on the market in July 2017 compared to last year, we see an over 64% lower number of homes this year yet the number of homes that sold are down only a bit less than 6%. Inventory is at some of the lowest rates that we’ve seen in years.

In addition, the price per square foot increased a rather hefty 9.4% from June 2017 and at $627/sqft is among the highest rate we’ve seen.

Overall, it would appear that the Almaden Valley single family market is favoring sellers. Would you like to know the value of your home? Call me for comps, or do it yourself with my home valuation tool ChalkBug.com!

July 2017 Almaden Valley real estate market

June 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market Update

June 2017 Almaden Valley real estate market update… As summer temperatures rise, the Almaden Valley single home real estate market cools a bit in a seasonal pattern we observe pretty much every year. Kids are out of school, summer vacations are planned and the sale and purchase of homes seems to be the farthest thing from many people’s minds. It would not surprise me in the least to see the market taking a summer nap until fall approaches.

Meantime, if you’ve been thinking about selling your home and wonder what it might be worth on the market these days, take a look at our proprietary easy-to-use home valuation tool ChalkBug and then give me a call!

June 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market

May 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market Update

May 2017 Almaden Valley real estate market update… The Almaden Valley real estate market shows little signs of slowing down for the summer, if last month’s data is any indication. Generally speaking, we start seeing single family inventory creep upwards during late spring/early summer, but this year we’ve seen a decided drop of almost 23% from April and 50% compared to the same time last year. Sales actually outpaced listings in May and the number of single family homes that were under contract last month increased quite notably from April.

The average price per square foot retracted slightly from April to May, from $618 to $612. However, it was an increase of a bit over 5% from May 2016 when it was about $582, which indicates a stable rate of growth.

If you’re thinking of buying or selling your home, give me a call!

May 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market

April 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market Update

April 2017 Almaden Valley real estate market update… April continued the spring upswing for Almaden Valley real estate. With the exception of the number of listings under contract, market data for single family homes was up from March. When we examine the graph below, two things stand out. One is that inventory is reaching a point where it cannot keep up with demand, and each of the past three months have ended with buyer activity almost outpacing sellers. When we note that the number of pending listings dropped from March to April, we get an indication that buyers are purchasing homes faster than sellers are putting them on the market.

Another point we notice is that although the same general pattern of pending and sold homes for the last few months is a repeat of the same time last year, the total numbers this year are much lower. Homes for sale, those in escrow and solds are down noticeably. However, average price per square foot is at a level we haven’t seen for quite a while. At $616/sqft, it is almost 9% higher than in April 2016. What we are seeing is a strong shift towards a seller’s market being fueled by tight inventory.

We are in the midst of a seasonal pattern of increased market interest this time of year, but a severely limited inventory of homes is frustrating buyers. The price per square foot increase indicates buyers are keen to buy. If you are thinking about selling, now may be the time. Give me a call or send me a message and let me show how I can help you make the most of our active market.

April 2017 Almaden Valley real estate market

Spring Cleaning Checklist for Your Home

Spring is now well and truly upon us here in the Bay Area. After the flurry of storms and a particularly wet winter, it is delightful to see hills covered with wildflowers, bare trees full of foliage and verdant green everywhere.

It is also time to get our homes in shipshape condition for the summer. Here’s a handy spring cleaning checklist for around the home and in the yard.

Spring cleaning checklist - guttersRoof, rafters and gutters Clean out leaves and twigs left by the recent storms from your gutters. Check that the downspouts are properly connected and clear. Look for any broken or missing shingles. Check the frames of any skylights. Get a roofer to fix any damages.

Air-conditioning and heating vents – This includes a change or cleaning of filters as well as the air vents. Check the outside unit to ensure it has clear drainage, and trim away any plants or bushes around it.

Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors – Check that these are working, and be sure to replace the batteries.

Carpets – The warm weather is a good time to get the carpets steam cleaned and shampooed. Make sure you choose a time with a few sunny days for the carpets to dry out.

Attics – This is a good time to venture into attics. Check for signs of seepage or mold as well as rodents and insects. If there are windows, let in the air and sunlight. Be sure to do this on a dry and sunny day.

Crawl space air vents – Take a walk around the house and check the crawl-space air vents and netting for any signs of tear or damage. If any, it is important to fix these to keep rodents and little critters out of the crawl space.

Fences and decks – After the wet and stormy winter this year, all the woodwork in the yard – from fences to decks needs special attention. Nail down loose boards, and replace broken or rotten ones. Also, promptly treat decks for any mold and mildew as these could quickly spread to the house.

Spring cleaning checklist - power washingDriveway and walkways – Power washing is a great, low-cost way to restore the driveway and walkways to a brighter, cleaner look. Fix any loose pavers or bricks and fill in the cracks. If you notice extra unevenness caused by the ground lifting in any area, it might be a good idea to call in an arborist and check if the roots of any nearby trees are the problem.

Flower beds, hedges and lawns – De-weeding in spring is very important for all areas of the garden. Treat the soil with fertilizers and spread new mulch. Spread grass seed on the lawns to spur growth in any bald patches and fertilize. Prune all trees and bushes to encourage new growth.

Sprinklers and drip irrigation systems – Test all sprinklers and drip irrigation pipes for signs of damage or leakage. Replace any broken sprinkler heads or cracked pipes promptly.

Read more about spring cleaning do’s on the following websites:

http://www.hgtv.com/design/decorating/clean-and-organize/get-your-house-ready-for-summer

http://money.usnews.com/money/personal-finance/articles/2014/05/16/12-must-do-home-maintenance-tasks-for-spring