In early August, we mentioned agents reporting that buyer activity – renewed interest in getting back into the market, visits to open houses, and so on – was picking up due to a number of issues: Price reductions, less competition, an increase in listings for sale, the drop in interest rates, and the dramatic recovery in stock markets. And a sizeable rebound in sales and listings going into contract did show up in August data, though volumes were still well below last year at this time.
Across the Bay Area, since spring, year-over-year, home-price appreciation rates and overbidding statistics have generally plunged, and days-on-market rapidly climbed. In the midst of the prevailing uncertainty, many sellers have pulled back on listing their homes, with the number of new listings coming on market remaining well down year over year. In August, the number of active listings for sale dropped after 6 months of steady gains, but we may see an increase in new listing activity after Labor Day.
As of early September, interest rates have increased again and stock markets declined once more: They continue to see substantial short-term volatility and it remains difficult to confidently predict their future movements and effects on real estate markets. The next major indicator of buyer and seller psychology and market dynamics will be what occurs during the next 2 months of the autumn selling season, prior to the mid-November to mid-January holiday slowdown, typically the slowest market of the year.
Our reports are not intended to convince you regarding a course of action or to predict the future, but to provide, to the best of our ability, straightforward information and good-faith analysis to assist you in making your own informed decisions. Statistics should be considered very general indicators, and all numbers should be considered approximate. How they apply to any particular property is unknown without a specific comparative market analysis.
Statistics are generalities, essentially summaries of widely disparate data generated by dozens, hundreds or thousands of unique, individual sales occurring within different time periods. They are best seen not as precise measurements, but as broad, comparative indicators, with reasonable margins of error. Anomalous fluctuations in statistics are not uncommon, especially in smaller, expensive market segments. Last period data should be considered estimates that may change with late-reported data. Different analytics programs sometimes define statistics – such as “active listings,” “days on market,” and “months supply of inventory” – differently: what is most meaningful are not specific calculations but the trends they illustrate. Most listing and sales data derives from the local or regional multi-listing service (MLS) of the area specified in the analysis, but not all listings or sales are reported to MLS and these won’t be reflected in the data. “Homes” signifies real-property, single-household housing units: houses, condos, co-ops, townhouses, duets and TICs (but not mobile homes), as applicable to each market. City/town names refer specifically to the named cities and towns, unless otherwise delineated. Multi-county metro areas will be specified as such. Data from sources deemed reliable, but may contain errors and subject to revision. All numbers to be considered approximate.
Many aspects of value cannot be adequately reflected in median and average statistics: curb appeal, age, condition, amenities, views, lot size, quality of outdoor space, “bonus” rooms, additional parking, quality of location within the neighborhood, and so on. How any of these statistics apply to any particular home is unknown without a specific comparative market analysis.
Median Sales Price is that price at which half the properties sold for more and half for less. It may be affected by seasonality, “unusual” events, or changes in inventory and buying trends, as well as by changes in fair market value. The median sales price for an area will often conceal an enormous variety of sales prices in the underlying individual sales.
Dollar per Square Foot is based upon the home’s interior living space and does not include garages, unfinished attics and basements, rooms built without permit, patios, decks or yards (though all those can add value to a home). These figures are usually derived from appraisals or tax records, but are sometimes unreliable (especially for older homes) or unreported altogether. The calculation can only be made on those home sales that reported square footage.
Compass is a real estate broker licensed by the State of California, DRE 01527235. Equal Housing Opportunity. This report has been prepared solely for information purposes. The information herein is based on or derived from information generally available to the public and/or from sources believed to be reliable. No representation or warranty can be given with respect to the accuracy or completeness of the information. Compass disclaims any and all liability relating to this report, including without limitation any express or implied representations or warranties for statements contained in, and omissions from, the report. Nothing contained herein is intended to be or should be read as any regulatory, legal, tax, accounting or other advice and Compass does not provide such advice. All opinions are subject to change without notice. Compass makes no representation regarding the accuracy of any statements regarding any references to the laws, statutes or regulations of any state are those of the author(s). Past performance is no guarantee of future results.