August Market Trends
The south peninsula neighborhoods of Los Altos, Mountain View, Palo Alto, and Menlo Park all ended August with record low levels of homes for sale. This capped a summer of low inventory, which is quite unusual as the number of homes for sale usually peaks in July. I anticipate the number of homes for sale to stay low until there is a financial event that signals the market is likely to change, as it did in the years 2000 and 2008. Such an event is likely to happen in the next year or two as the current real estate cycle will celebrate its ninth anniversary this fall.
Vacating, sprucing up, and staging a home before selling it is very inconvenient for a homeowner. However, properly prepared and staged homes sell for more money- often 3-5 times the cost of the renovation and staging. Here are several of the reasons why vacant and staged homes sell for the most money:
- Buyers in Silicon Valley are “time bankrupt,” not monetarily bankrupt. They need to see your home early or late in the day when they have a few spare minutes of time.
- It takes time to fall in love- potential buyers linger longer in a vacant/staged home.
- Potential buyers look more thoroughly at a vacant/staged home.
- Staged homes with “model home” furnishings are emotionally appealing to potential buyers.
- Staged furnishings help to balance any negatives the home may have.
In the charts below, you’ll find 15 years of data for annual market activity and median sales price for Palo Alto, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Menlo Park and Mountain View. You can’t find this level of historical data all in one place anywhere else, so if you have any questions or wish to get more info about your community, don’t hesitate to contact me.