Archive for the 'For Sellers' Category
Here’s our summary of the 2009 Palo Alto and Los Altos residential real estate market. In it we explain how the 4th quarter saved the year from being a complete disaster.
It only took a slight improvement in consumer confidence to bring back multiple offers and over-bidding in the under-$1.5m market. The $1.5m to $2.5m started to thaw, too. Over $2.5m? Buyers are still tentative. Read the rest of this entry »
Los Altos and Palo Alto real estate markets have been mostly free so far of the foreclosure problems plaguing other areas. There is the occasional foreclosure, but not enough to affect the market.
Why? It’s basic supply and demand. The supply had been 20-25% below normal for the last 3 years per MLS listings stats. We believe that a big part of why this occurred is because homeowners in Los Altos and Palo Alto “gave up” on selling in 2009 early in the year when the economic news was so dismal.
A strong 4th quarter of 2009 saved the year from being a truly dismal one for home sellers.
By the end of the first half of ’09, the number of homes on the market had increased by 40% from the same period a year earlier while sales volume was down by 20%. Median sales prices had dropped by 15-20% from the previous year and were falling.
But, by the beginning of the 4th quarter the trend reversed.
There were 34 homes for sale in all of Los Altos as of Monday 1/4/10. At one time during 2009 there were over 140!
Is this the start of an unusual new trend or just the seasonal time of the year?
At the beginning of 2009 there were 50 homes for sale in Los Altos so the inventory is lower this January. However, the 10 year average of year ending inventory is about 25-30 homes. In “hot market” years, year-end inventory is lower than 25-30, and in “slow market” years it is higher. Conclusion- no indication of a new trend.
So What is Our Forecast for 2010?
The last 3 years have seen a below normal number new listings (@400-430 versus @500-550 in earlier years)come to market. Therefore, we expect this year to be at or above the normal range.
If you are selling a home in Los Altos we recommend you do it sooner than later this year. If you are buying a home in Los Altos and are Read the rest of this entry »
State Law Requires Reduced Water Consumption
All cities are required to enact new regulations by Sunday to reduce water consumption or follow a new state law. Will large, green lawns become a luxury of a bygone era?
Palo Alto has proposed a new ordinance requiring any new commercial property with 1,500 sf or more or new residential home with 2,500 sf or more of “watering area” to get a building license or landscape permit.
How Will Requiring Permits Reduce Water Consumption?
It is unclear how cities will limit potential landscape water consumption when issuing permits(or do they just want more revenue?!). Palo Alto is proposing limited watering hours to between 6 pm and 10 am, as well as banning lawns on substantially sloped lots.