Happy Summer from Karen Spechler

Happy Summer Everyone! The seller’s market is continuing! We continue to have very low inventory in both homes and condominiums with multiple offers on 25% of home and 29% on condos. The average over asking price for homes that sold was about 3.5 to 4%!

The inventory in homes is down about 9% with new listings about the same as last year. Currently we have 322 homes on the market which is right about where we were in November. In the first 5 months of 2013 we never went above 300. The median price, as you see below has risen 15.8% over this time last year. The other number that has shot way up is that sellers are getting 98.5% of their last list price and this includes all the upper end homes too.

In condominiums, there are only 52 for sale from Carpinteria to Goleta and including ALL price ranges. The active listings are down 20% and new listings are about half of what they were last June. The median sales price and the number of solds are both up 21%, which is similar to our numbers in 2000 to 2005 when the market was just cranking.

One change is the interest rates which have risen about 1% since the low. This does change affordability for the low end buyers. Most lenders I talk to think that this huge jump was the market overreacting to Bernake. They all think it will come back down some but not to the all time lows we enjoyed. The rates are still low compared to what we used to be happy with!

For all those Zillow lovers who like to look up values please don’t get too attached to what it says. I tested them by looking up a complex of 18 identically sized units. Zillow’s prices ranged from $390,000 to $650,000, a spread of 67%. Most had not turned over in the past 15 years or more. The best advice is to call your realtor for information on your property value and hopefully that person will be me!