Alameda and Contra Costa County Housing Prices Defy Conservative Forecasts.

With access to the same information, many real estate news sources come to similar conclusions when forecasting the housing market. In July, a relatively common opinion was that the Bay Area was following a trend similar to that found in other parts of the United States: Housing prices were leveling out. Part of this was based on slight dips in June’s data, which suggested the beginning of a gradual “cooling” effect.

July’s report has served to challenge this prediction, however. Instead, we have seen a considerable jump in aspects of the housing market that indicate the Bay Area isn’t finished climbing.

First, the difference between the average listing price and average closing price has been widening for the past 90 days. In July, the typical home in Alameda and Contra Costa County went on the market for $529,988, but closed for $580,000—a difference of over $50,000, or 9.4%. That closing price ($580,000) is also 15% above this same time last year, and the absolute highest it’s been in the past 3 years.

Additionally, the small dip in “for sale” properties being added to the market disappeared again in July. 3,398 properties were added last month, as opposed to 3,289 in June, 3,431 in May, and 3,379 in April. The number of properties that have been sold each month has been similarly consistent.

Other aspects of the local market remain stable, as well. For example, the average house spent 25 days on the market in July. The month before that, the average was 24 days, and before that, it was 23 days. In April, it was 22 days. Even the “months supply of inventory” has hovered at the “hot seller’s market” value of 1.4 for the past 5 months, and has stayed under 2.0 since the beginning of the year.

All of these consistencies illustrate an important point about local supply: For prospective buyers, it remains frustratingly unchanging. This is something that should continue to play an important part in keeping property values high until an influx of homes enters the market and helps drive prices down—or until the demand for these homes significantly diminishes. That being said, between economic growth and housing shortages, many believe that the latter scenario is highly unlikely.

Thanks to these conditions, a large number of Bay Area homes have successfully recovered from the recession. For homeowners, this means that it’s a perfect time to put your home on the market and feel confident knowing that, with a good marketing plan and a solid sales strategy—things that Lifestyle Real Estate Services can provide you with—you can get a generous (but fair) price for your home. Why wait? Get in touch with us today!