Market Trends

Whether you are a first time buyer or seller, or have been through multiple transactions, you might be surprised by how quickly the real estate market changes in Los Altos, Palo Alto and surrounding communities. You need comprehensive historical data, current market analysis, and extensive insight to stay informed and succeed in these real estate markets.
As a service to his clients, Jeff Stricker provides his personal market analysis and commentary on local real estate trends.

  • Third Quarter Market Snapshot October 5, 2018 by jstricker

    Transitioning Market- Will It Lead to Falling Prices?

    Local real estate markets have been transitioning during Q3 from overheated to more balanced markets. The third quarter ended with very weak September sales statistics for most communities, signaling a weakening market instead of the typical strong fall market (September to November).

    What does a transitioning real estate market look like? Traits of a transitional market include:

    1. Higher inventory of homes for sale in local markets.
    2. Fewer closed sales per month in most markets.
    3. Markets for high-priced homes (over $5 million) and outlying areas slowing more quickly.
    4. Homebuyers don’t feel pressured to buy, and are more selective about homes.

    Regarding the last point, issues like high asking prices, poor condition, or noisy/busy locations matter to buyers again.

    Where is the local real estate market heading?

    We believe (but of course don’t know) that home prices have peaked for the current market cycle, and likely will begin declining sometime in 2019.  If you are planning to sell your home in 2019, you should plan to do so as early in the year as possible to avoid declining home prices.  Now is the time to begin preparing your home for sale, so it can be sold quickly when you are ready to move in 2019.  Call us at 650-823-8057 or email us at jstricker@apr.com for more local market insight, complimentary advice on what to do to maximize your home’s sales price, and reliable contractor resources.

     


  • August Market Trends September 17, 2018 by jstricker

    Local Real Estate Market Has Changed

    I expressed concerns last month that the local real estate market may be changing, and that I would let you know if the August results strengthened as they usually do compared to the slower summer months.  The local real estate market did not strengthen significantly in August, as the number of homes sold were down and month-end inventory was up year-over-year.  Issues like overpricing, location, and condition matter again to buyers, so homes with those problems are not selling quickly.  Unlike earlier this year, buyers no longer have the same sense of urgency to buy a home quickly before prices go up.  However, I am not quite ready to state that the rising market cycle has officially ended.  Multiple offers are still happening for the best properties.

    Look for my third quarter report in early October for a detailed status update on the local market conditions.  If you would like a no-obligation consultation on current market values and key sales factors in your neighborhood, please call or email me.  I look forward to helping you!


    In the charts below, you’ll find 15 years of data for annual market activity and median sales price for Los Altos, Palo Alto, 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.

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  • Jeff’s Mid-Year Real Estate Market Snapshot July 27, 2018 by jstricker

    Peninsula Market Slows During Q2-And That’s Normal!

    The super-hot Peninsula real estate market cooled slightly in Q2.  As a result, the number of homes sold during the first half of 2018 in most communities was flat or down (see stats table below).  However, the number of multiple offers and percentage paid over-the-asking price remains high, indicating the market is still strong- just not as strong as Q1’18.  Additionally, the median price of most homes on the Peninsula experienced double-digit gains on a year-over-year basis.

    The current drop in the number of home sales does not mean the real estate cycle is beginning to change.  The market usually slows down in June when children get out of school and families vacation during late June and July.  The market usually picks back up in August, and remains strong until the end of October.  But will the market strengthen in August this year?  

    By every metric, the current hot real estate market cycle is mature.  For example, it has been 10 years since the last market cycle ended in 2008, average and median prices have more than doubled, and affordability is nearing lows that appear at the end of a cycle.  However, we believe the market will hold until next year.  The factors we consider: the stock market corrected in Q1 without going into free fall, local and national economies are strong, and the inventory of homes for sale remains near all-time lows (15 homes for sale in Los Altos as we write you).  Until something occurs (like the fall elections) to change one or more of these factors, the local real estate market will remain strong.

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  • Second Quarter 2018 Market Trends July 27, 2018 by jstricker

    Peninsula Market Slows During Q2-And That’s Normal!

    The super-hot Peninsula real estate market cooled slightly in Q2. As a result, the number of homes sold during the second quarter of 2018 in most communities was flat or down (see charts below). However, the number of multiple offers and percentage paid over-the-asking price remains high, indicating the market is still strong- just not as strong as Q1’18. Additionally, the median price of most homes on the Peninsula experienced double-digit gains on a year-over-year basis.

    The current drop in the number of home sales does not mean the real estate cycle is beginning to change. The market usually slows down in June when children get out of school and families vacation during late June and July. The market usually picks back up in August, and remains strong until the end of October. But will the market strengthen in August this year? I think it will- watch my third quarter report for an update.


    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.

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  • February Market Trends March 9, 2018 by jstricker

    Did the Stock Market Correction Impact Local Real Estate Markets?

    Everyone knew the recent 10% correction in the stock market was coming. It was long overdue, but most stock investors took it in stride. Yet some investors reacted as if it was the beginning of the end. Local real estate markets reacted similarly. Some prospective buyers in the market, especially high-end or investor buyers, immediately put their home search on hold. However, most home buyers took the stock market dip in stride, and continued forward with their quest to buy a home. Not only did strong local real estate markets remain hot in February, prices jumped significantly as the spring market moved into high gear.

    I have written that, based on history, local real estate markets are expected to be in the late stages of the 10-year real estate market cycle. The recent stock market correction will likely extend the current hot market phase of the cycle until after the fall elections. Prices in both the stock and real estate markets will “melt up” and hit their cyclical peak before the next price correction begins.  For a no-obligation consultation on current market values and key sales factors in your neighborhood, please call or email me.  I look forward to helping you!


    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.


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  • February Market Trends March 7, 2017 by

    Hot Real Estate Market Enters March Like a Lion…Will It Continue?

    The strong 2017 local real estate market continued during February. In most areas, the number of homes sold, number of homes sold over asking price, and amount paid over asking price were all up from January – indicating home prices are rising. Will the hot market continue in March and April? It’s all about the inventory! March and April are consistently the months when most homes come to market each year. I will be watching closely to determine if current demand is strong enough to absorb the additional inventory as it comes to market. My belief (as predicted in January) is that demand will keep the number of homes available for sale low, and that the strong market and rising prices will continue at least until the summer.

    A beautiful spring with lots of flowers is coming soon- get out and enjoy it!


    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.

    Los Altos Median Price (more…)

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