Hacienda Real Estate Blog

Market Watch Spring 2009
April 20th, 2009 9:15 PM
Now that the flowers are blooming, properties are beginning to come on to the market. Often I hear that "there sure are a lot of properties on the market" and the truth is that inventories of homes are still lower than most other times in past years. For example, in Lamorinda, the current inventory of homes and condos is about 240 units. I am constantly reciting the fact that in 1995, which was not bad market, but simply a more normal market, unit inventory in Lamorinda was nearly 400 units in the summer of 1995. However some of the same fundamentals exist in today's market. Buyers are in control overall, and properties that are not priced correctly, properties that are need of a lot of work (and not priced to reflect the needed work) or properties that have inherent weaknesses such as a poor location like a busy street, soils issues, power lines, foundation issues, etc. have had extreme difficulty selling.  Buyers are back to taking their time selecting a property to purchase and the market has cooperated by homes still being there to bid on if they hesitate. The best properties are the ones getting transactions and owners that price their homes to reflect the current market conditions seem to do fine. Fortunately, homes in Lamorinda are not hit as hard as other areas and since property is really a unique product, homes in the same area can have varying results.  Buyers generally seem to want homes that are updated and of course the better the property condition the more desirable the property usually is to the overall market. I have always kept close watch on market inventories over the years. Lamorinda inventory is about 240, as mentioned earlier. Walnut Creek inventory is about the same at 240. When times were hot and properties sold like hotcakes, inventory was about 100 units or under in Walnut Creek, about 100 to 150 units in Lamorinda. Danville inventory was about 150 when things were hot, today Danville's inventory is in the mid 200's.  Alamo is in the 80's, and this is pretty much the same number of homes as in recent years. Alamo inventory was less, when things were really hot in 2005, but their market, particularly the high end, has slowed considerably.  The quality of your real estate has the biggest impact on value. If you own a well located property on a lot with flat useable yard and have updated your kitchen, master bathroom and have used quality materials, you will create a condition where the supply of homes becomes less significant as your competition becomes fairly small. As always, pricing is everything, and we have many examples of nice properties that are very over priced and are sitting on the market. If you'd like a free opinion of your home's value, email me and I'll be happy help.

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Posted by Michael Miller on April 20th, 2009 9:15 PMPost a Comment

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