‘Deceleration’ at +24.9% YoY compared to when our market was just ramping up for the year-end frenzy of 2020? I’ll take it!
San Diego Non-Seasonally-Adjusted CSI changes
“If I had to choose only one word to describe September 2021?s housing price data, the word would be ‘deceleration,’ says Craig Lazzara, managing director at S&P Dow Jones Indices. “Housing prices continued to show remarkable strength in September, though the pace of price increases declined slightly.”
Extremely tight inventory, as well as heavy investor activity in the housing market, is keeping prices elevated. While the gains are falling, it is unlikely that prices will drop dramatically as they did during the housing crash. The fundamentals of supply and demand still favor an expensive market.
“The market has cooled since the beginning of the year, when dozens of competing bids, contingency waivers and price escalation clauses made home shopping a struggle, especially for first-time buyers. A growing number of homeowners are preparing to list in the next six months, hinting at an uncharacteristically active winter season,” said George Ratiu, manager of economic research at Realtor.com.
Before buying a second home, it’s smart to know how owning a second property could impact your taxes. There are many second home tax benefits to consider, but they’ll vary based on how the IRS classifies the property — as a second home, an investment property, or a little of both. Here are the main differences:
A second home:
Is occupied by the owner at least 14 days out of the year
Is rented to others 14 days or fewer out of the year
An investment property:
Is occupied by the owner fewer than 14 days out of the year
Is rented to others more than 14 days out of the year
A mixed-use property:
Is occupied by the owner more than 14 days out of the year
Is rented to others more than 14 days out of the year
Second home tax benefits
As long as you occupy your second home for more than 14 days a year, you may qualify for these second home tax breaks:
Mortgage interest deduction
Single filers and married couples filing jointly can deduct mortgage interest up to a total of $750,000 from all properties they own, including a principal residence and their second homes. This is subject to change in 2025, when the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is scheduled to expire. At that time it is expected that the $1 million limit will return.
Property tax deduction
You can deduct property taxes on all the properties you own, with a maximum deduction of up to $10,000 per tax return, or $5,000 if married filing separately. Keep in mind that this is included in the deduction for state and local income taxes (SALT), so you might reach that $10,000 quickly with your principal residence and be unable to deduct property taxes from a second home.
The active listings are plummeting, but the pendings will not be deterred!
We are setting up for an very active spring selling season, whether we have inventory or not. I actually hope we don’t get a surge of new listings, and it forces the industry to adopt the auction format sooner.
Excerpts from this article about real estate soliciting – it’s going to get crazier! Hat tip to just some guy:
Jennifer Folden-Nissen’s three-bedroom, Victorian-style house in Duluth, Ga., isn’t for sale. But that hasn’t stopped a guy calling himself Henry from phoning her at least once a week. She says the pitch is always the same: “I want to buy your house. I’m willing to pay cash. Today.”
She says it’s sort of like having to deal with an insistent car salesman. “I just let him leave voicemails,” she says. But even those are pushy. “Call me back, call me back, call me back, call me right now — I’m out front of your house.”
Folden-Nissen works at the local fire department, and she’d call home and ask her husband to see if the guy was outside. But nobody ever was. Then she started to get postcards from the same guy — with no stamp, so apparently hand-delivered — with photos of her own home on them.
“It was a little freaky because some of it was just like, OK, is the guy really outside?” she says. “And why is he taking pictures of my house if I haven’t given him the time of day?”
“They have just gotten increasingly worse in the past six months, six or seven calls every day,” says Lauren Barber, who lives in Columbus, Ohio.
“If you know anything about Columbus, it’s growing and it’s hot,” she says. “People want to live here.” Barber bought her house about 10 years ago for $155,000. She says now it’s worth more than twice that.
Investors can go on the internet and buy lists of phone numbers for people whose homes have risen in value, maybe more than the owners’ realize.
Barber works in human resources, so she says she has to answer her phone. “It could be one of our employees calling me with a question.” She says she tries to block the homebuyer calls, but they always seem to somehow call from a different local-looking number.
She says one of them even called her mother’s house, on purpose, to ask if Barber would sell.
“Like, really, you’re going to call my mom and ask her if I’m going to sell my house to you? It was just the most absurd and amazing thing,” she says. “But I told you no. Stop calling me. Don’t bother my mom.”
During the inspection of the fixer in Olde Carlsbad, it was determined that further investigation was warranted due to the slope in the floor.
A geologic engineer came out with his fancy altimeter and found that there was a 5-inch difference between the foundation height from one side of the house to the other.
Here’s how it looked. When you have seen me do this, I have set the ball down and let it go where it goes. In this case, the buyer rolled the ball in one direction, only to have it make a U-turn and go the other way…..and it picked up speed:
In the course of the discussion, I asked, “What is the worst you have seen?”
The engineer said, “A nine-inch differential.”
I said, “Ok, so this is kinda in the middle”.
To which I added a solution. Install the popular wood-tile, and have the installer add some extra mortar to help make up the difference. It doesn’t have to get to zero – if it was down to 2-3 inches it wouldn’t be as noticeable.
The buyers asked for a $50,000 reduction in price, and the seller agreed. It could have been worse – cancelling this sale and finding a new buyer who would pay more than $1,050,000 seemed unlikely.
Our sale closed on Tuesday, a couple of days after this closed nearby:
Going into Thanksgiving. let’s summarize the current market conditions…….
San Diego’s -51.5% (above) is still #1 on Bill’s list of local housing markets for the largest decline in active inventory in October. The active inventory reflects the velocity of new listings coming to market to replace those going pending every month.
When the active inventory is in decline, it means the supply isn’t keeping up with demand!
How do the raw number of October listings compare to last year?
San Diego’s decline is #1 again:
But how do those October listings compare to previous years? Wasn’t the end of 2020 the hottest market of all-time? It turns out that new-listings count last October looked a lot like the previous ones, and this year is the most unusual in recent memory:
Yet sales have barely felt the dropoff of supply. The -4.7% YoY drop in sales is a flesh wound, relatively, when you consider that we had more sales than new listings:
Where do people go who have the money to live anywhere? San Diego!
Everybody wants to live here, and nobody wants to leave!
Our market should thrive for years, and could end up being the most expensive real estate in the country.
Because I wanted to make the competitive bidding all about price, I was willing to live with the other terms in each buyer’s offer.
The winners included a $50,000 good-faith deposit in their full-price offer – which was a little light. Typically, the deposit is 3%, which would have been $101,850. But every buyer can blow out of escrow during their contingency period, regardless of their deposit amount, and once they do release all contingencies, they must be satisfied enough that they intend to close.
I’m not going to give them a reason to walk away from $50,000, so it would take a catastrophic event for them to cancel after releasing all contingencies. Would they walk away from $50,000, but not $101,850? It’s possible, but if it’s a catastrophic event, then the extra $50,000 probably wouldn’t matter.
When you treat people right, they don’t cancel.
We spent the six weeks preparing the home to be spectacular, which included repairing the water leak that happened right as we got started. The master shower faucet leaked inside the wall, and it went straight down to the family room fireplace and TV niche. We had our mold remediation guy handle the re-construction, plus did a mold test that came back clear. Everything gets disclosed to the buyers, so you might as well do it right the first time.
The buyers reviewed the information, and were satisfied.
When you treat people right, they don’t cancel.
The house is 18 years old. When the seller bought it, the home inspection noted that the HVAC was nearing the end of its useful life, and that there were several fogged windows. We expected that the home inspection by these buyers would reveal the same.
Buyer’s remorse is real, and it gets magnified in a bidding war. When paying above the list price, it is natural for buyers to want to claw back some of it. We expect it, and are prepared for it.
The previous seller gave us a credit for the fogged windows, so it was just a matter of getting them done, and we knew the approximate cost of a new furnace and air conditioner.
We discussed whether we should replace the HVAC and windows in advance, but decided against it – and left them for the buyers to claw-back instead. Once requested, we were happy to oblige – unlike most agents who want to start World War 3 over every repair request.
On February 27, 2019, our seller purchased 1463 Paseo de las Flores for $1,950,000. At the time, it was one of the top four highest-priced sales EVER in Encinitas Ranch, with two of the higher sales being $1,970,000 and $1,975,000 (plus a $2,100,000 back in 2005).
I have always kept an eye on a house further down the fairway because its first owner was Jill Kammerude, a close friend and fellow realtor. We had shared her Padres season tickets from 1998 to 2009 when she unfortunately passed away.
Her 4,612sf house on the golf course had sold again on April 8th of this year for $2,405,000:
I had been to this house a few times, and though it had more of the older look, it was comparable to the home we sold on Paseo de las Flores. I sent the link to my client, and congratulated him on picking up a cool $500,000 in appreciation in just two years.
I asked if he would consider moving, to which he said, ‘Maybe’.
We began talking regularly about where to move, taxes, repairs, etc., and in mid-September he committed to selling. We began our 6-week tune-up, and on October 21st, we hit the open market listed for $3,395,000, because there had been a flurry of $3,000,000+ sales nearby.
I told the story previously……that I had received two solid cash offers during the open house, and was telling attendees that I was going to sell it that day. Both buyers were anxious, so once I left the open house, it was time to determine the winner.
I do take pride in utilizing sophisticated high-tech tools, and this day was no exception.
I pulled out my Super-Duper Bidding-War Bonanza sheet, and went to work:
I went back and forth between the agents on the phone, telling them the price to beat – and they filed the bids above. Buyer #1 delivered the knockout blow with their $3,760,000, and we had a winner – and Buyer #2 went right over to Lynwood and bought it instead.
How I handled the communication was critical – it takes more than a fancy notepad.
In particular, because we did the bidding verbally on the phone, I had to get the buyers to commit to their price in writing before they cooled off – which I did, and it closed today for $3,760,000.
Keeping the buyers happy for a month, helping the seller move, and delivering the house in excellent condition was all part of the process too. Thank you Donna!
It would have been easy to discard the first cash offer of $3,395,000 because the buyers saw the house via FaceTime, and instead taken the $3,500,000 cash offer from the buyer who saw it in person. Almost all other agents would have done so. But with me at the helm, my seller made an extra $260,000.
It sold for $700,000 more than the model-match that sold on October 25th, one block over.
It sold for $992,100 more than the zestimate!
It sold for $1,360,000 more than its approximate value in April, which is a 56% pop in six months!
It sold for $1,810,000 more than the seller paid, which is a 93% return in 32 months!