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San Diego County Median Sales Price, History

While we’re talking about the median sales price of detached-homes in San Diego County, let’s review the last ten years. There usually is some dropoff towards the end of the year:

The last frenzy in 2013 saw the median sales price increase 26% between January and September.

The Greatest Frenzy of All-Time started with closings in May, 2020 that had a median sales price of $660,000. It peaked in June/July at $875,000, which is a 33% increase and lasted five more months than in 2013. I’m happy with it, the fun was great while it lasted, and now here we are.

Well, at least until 2022.

There was some hesitancy in the market at the end of 2013, but it took off again in 2014.

Look at the difference though (the graph is interactive).

The increase was only +7% between September, 2013 and June, 2014 before it decelerated again – and the median sales price in November was back to where it was in the previous September!

Sellers should appreciate the big boost we’ve had, and the uncertainty of the future.  Don’t attempt to time the market for max return – it’s great where it is today.

Showings Are Down

Home buyers don’t have much – if any – control over the process, which leads to frustration and disappointment. They don’t have any way to cause more homes to list for sale, and the only way to eliminate the competition is to out-bid them, which can be even more harrowing.

One solution is for buyers to expand their parameters, but that’s not easy and can lead to another ailment that a client described yesterday as “frozen in indecision”.

Just when you want to give up……it looks like others might have beaten you to it!

Showings throughout the state are lower than they were during the first week of January!

It’s been mentioned that not every agent uses this service, but it is such a large sample size that the trend should be a decent indicator of buyer sentiment – they’re exhausted.

Sure, active listings are half of what they were at this time last year, but the showings are 260% different!

Just like with selling, when is the best time to be a buyer? When no one else is!

We already know what’s going to happen with sales in 2022 – they will be the same as this year, with a possible adjustment of +/- 10%.

But the rest of 2021 could get wacky!

It looks like the competition is dwindling, and any seller who comes to market around the holidays has to be motivated!  Buyers – stay in the hunt!

Publicizing The Listing Agent

The old rule was that any agent could advertise any MLS listing via the IDX, as long as the listing agent’s name and brokerage was displayed. But now you have to include their contact information too. He sounds confident because this is clearly a shot at Zillow but the unintended consequences from directing the consumer to the listing agent is promoting single agency which will eventually eliminate broker cooperation as we know it.

The discouragement of buyers getting their own representation from a buyer-agent is part of the dumbing-down of the business.  Sellers and listing agents prefer buyers who just pay whatever it takes and don’t ask questions, and when the History of the 2020-2021 Frenzy is written, it should include that it was fueled in part by crazy buyers getting no good help. 


In an emailed statement, a Zillow spokesperson said, “As part of our switch to IDX feeds and becoming CRMLS participants earlier this year, we agreed to comply with all CRMLS rules and regulations, which includes adhering to listing credit and display rules — such as the updates that went into effect this month.

“One of our core values is to empower consumers and increase transparency in real estate, which includes efforts to give shoppers the information they need to connect with listing agents. For more than a decade, our philosophy of ‘turning on the lights’ for consumers has meant that we’ve consistently displayed listing agents’ names and contact information, something not done on all IDX sites today.”

Get Good Help!

Why Sell Your Home Now

School is back in session and the holidays are right around the corner – it’s the time of year that potential home sellers start looking forward to the next selling season, instead of moving in September/October.

Are you thinking of waiting until 2022? Here are my reasons for selling now, instead of later:

1. The Shine Is Off The Frenzy.  Those who are pulling back on their enthusiasm:

JBREC – Two of three buyer categories are down slightly (above chart).

CoreLogic – they only predicted a gain of +9.1% in San Diego pricing over next 12 months, which is way less than the +23.7% since last July. Don’t be surprised if +9% becomes the new +3% of predictions – it’s a lot higher than the previous safe bets without being double-digit.

Zillow Offers – backtracking 5% on price commitments made 2-3 weeks ago.

Navy Fed – suspended the issuing of home-equity loans ‘temporarily’.

Refi appraisals – heard of several appraisals coming in low as market softness creeps into their minds.

2. Interest rates – They have nowhere to go but up, and it’s just a matter of when. Once they start, home buyers will want something in return from sellers.

3. Boomer liquidations – There probably won’t be a mass exodus, but all you need is 2-3 on your street.

4. Fewer Fix-Ups – The current inventory is so thin, sellers are getting away with murder now. If there was an index that measured how close sellers got to selling ‘as-is’, we’d be setting records today.

5. Safe – You know what you can get today, and let’s admit – it’s a lot higher than it used to be. Cashing out now instead of risking any of the above getting worse in 2022 is the safe bet. How much are you hoping to hold out for next year? Another 2% or 3%?

When is the best time to sell? When everyone else isn’t!

More One-Story Premium

Over the last six months in Encinitas:

There were 183 sales of two-story homes, and they averaged $744/sf.

The 98 sales of one-story homes averaged $952/sf, or a 28% premium!

Let’s also note the price discovery here.

The sellers and agent were smart to lower the price early and often to keep the urgency alive.  There was nothing wrong here that price wouldn’t fix, so they did three reductions in less than a month:

Easier to Go Up Than Down On Price

This is a repeat of the 2br house featured on my tour a few weeks ago, with the resulting sales price.

The agent admitted they priced this 2br house low on purpose to attract a crowd, and it worked. The list price was $699,000, and it sold for $1,100,000 cash. Meanwhile, the two other listings around the corner priced at $1,149,000 and $1,200,000 are still unsold.

Sellers are resistant to price attractively, but look how well it works when you Get Good Help!

Sold for 57% above list!

https://www.compass.com/listing/2725-glasgow-drive-carlsbad-ca-92010/842339809239950025/

We Must Have More Frenzy

I said the other day that it will become hard to sell.  But wait – isn’t the demand overwhelming?  Yes, but it’s a price thing.

It will be harder to sell…..at your price.

Think of the pressure on sellers now.

It was bad enough when the seller’s ego had to endure the actual or perceived pressure from friends and family about getting your price. It was probably more subconscious, than conscious, and nobody really had to say a word.

Sellers just think that their family, friends, and neighbors are all watching, and they want to show them.  As a result, once a home goes on the open market, the seller’s ego wants all the money.

But then over the last year, sellers have been in this bonanza zone where bidding wars erupted out of nowhere and sellers got more money than they ever thought was possible. Way more than their ego needed, and sellers couldn’t wait to tell everyone how great it turned out.

But as the frenzy settles down, will sellers be able to cope without a tale to tell? Will their ego survive not having a bidding war?

In their mind, their opinion of their home’s value is built on top of the frenzy sales, plus a little extra.

Are sellers motivated enough to price sharply from the beginning, and/or lower their price early and often when it counts?

Probably not.

Hence, the frenzy environment has to continue, just so sales will happen.

Agents who have been in the business for 12 years or less only know a strong sellers’ market.  They will continue to offer half-baked listings with 60-80 photos, no video, and a crazy price – and expect buyers to pay it.  Throughout their history, buyers always have.

Sellers will now expect 5% over comps AND a bidding war to push it higher!  Anything to the contrary will not go over well, and sellers and listing agents will be slow to react.

First you’ll see listings not selling, and inventory starting to stack up.  Then sales won’t be as brisk as they have been over the last year.

Sales will suffer, before pricing does.

Keep an eye on sales.  They are your leading indicator.

This is how the frenzy will end, it’s just a matter of when.

America’s Frenzy

https://twitter.com/RickPalaciosJr/status/1428727747711361025

The Big Reshuffle is backlogged!

As people wait to relocate throughout the country, it really boils down to how patient you are.

If you want and need to move today, then join the fight.  The key is to find suitable answers on the buy side, and these are the choices:

  1. Sell and rentback for 30-60 days. It’s a gamble, and you will probably be under pressure to pay more than you’d like on the buy side, or be forced to….
  2. Sell and rent a different home. This gives you much more flexibility and patience to buy the right house, at the right price.
  3. Buy first, then sell.  Need ample horsepower, and/or a bridge loan.
  4. Sell your home contingent upon finding a home to buy. Getting the buyer of your home to hang around while you shop for a new home won’t be easy, and may require a discount. But it’s the safest way to make sure you don’t have to move unless you find the right home, at the right price. A good option for sellers when there are homes available for sale that you would buy today.

Those with more patience may decide to wait it out, in hopes of it getting better, later.  But there will always be some juggling of the choices above.

Whatever you do, don’t wait until we pull into Plateau City, when it becomes hard to sell, AND hard to buy.

Rural Yet Close

Check out our new listing of this 2018 multi-gen beauty in Bonsall yet only 15 minutes from the coast!

Perfect for multi-gen, this upgraded gem features the primary bedroom suite downstairs with light-and-bright bath and large walk-in closet, plus three bedrooms with their own bonus TV room upstairs! High ceilings, downstairs den, ample storage and low-maintenance yard.  The home backs up to dedicated open space with generous views of the natural preserve! Walk to highly-regarded Bonsall Elementary School just a few minutes away. Wow!

https://www.compass.com/listing/31534-calle-de-las-rosas-bonsall-ca-92003/852373146571679593/

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