Tag Archives: Homes in Orange County

Orange County Housing Report June 7th, 2017

Orange County Housing Report: Time to Sharpen Your Pencil

To be successful during the Summer Market, it all boils down to price.

 

Achieving the Objective in Selling: Many sellers are pushing the envelope in terms of price and are risking not finding success and wasting valuable market time.

The transition from the Spring Market to the Summer Market is underway. Seemingly, everybody has become accustomed to multiple offers within days of placing the FOR SALE sign in the yard. With so many offers to purchase a home, a bidding war often arises. Reports of record prices swirl around neighborhoods. Many homeowners are tempted to join the fray.

Yet, the market has already started to shift. There aren’t as many multiple offers. Sellers who have stretched their asking prices above the most recent comparable pending and closed sales are sitting on the market without success.  Can the shift between the Spring and Summer Markets really be that significant? The answer is a resounding YES.
It is not like the market suddenly transitioned into a buyer’s market. It’s more about supply and demand and carefully pricing a home. Housing is drifting away from a hot seller’s market and moving towards a slight seller’s market. The supply of homes on the market has been on the rise throughout the Spring Market. It has increased by nearly 1,300 homes since the end of February, a 29% rise.

Orange County Housing Report

 

The inventory will continue to grow until it peaks around mid-August. More homes will come on the market at a similar pace to the spring, yet many unsuccessful homeowners will accumulate on the active listing inventory. The inventory swells due to this accumulation of unsuccessful sellers. This occurs in every price range, not just the luxury end. In fact, during the Summer Market of 2016, homes between $500,000 and $750,000 had the largest increase compared to any other price range, growing by 18%. The second largest, a 13% increase occurred for homes priced between $750,000 and $1 million.

Demand, the number of homes placed into escrow within the prior month, rocketed upward since the beginning of the year and continued to rise until it reached a peak for 2017 at the beginning of May. During the Spring Market, it increased from 2,651 at the end of February until the May peak of 3,012 pending sales, a rise of 361, or 14%. Since reaching the peak, demand has actually dropped by 4% and sits at 2,904 homes today.

Due to all of the distractions of summer, demand slowly drops. It’s still the second hottest season of the year behind spring, but the shift can be felt within the real estate trenches. The housing market is simply not as robust. It is no longer at a fever pitch that produces instantaneous throngs of potential buyers the moment a home comes on the market.

Orange County Housing Report

The bottom line: as the supply of homes increases throughout the summer months, it is met with slowly dissipating demand. As the supply increases and demand decreases, price becomes a lot more important in order for sellers to find success. Push the envelope on pricing and homes will sit. Buyers know that home values have been on the rise for years now, but that does not mean they want to stretch much above the most recent comparable closed sale.

Right now is the time of the year when sellers really need to have a reality check, or they risk not achieving their objective in selling their homes. Are they pushing the envelope by stretching the asking price too far above comparable sales? Or, are they priced realistically, close to their home’s Fair Market Value? In order to zero in on the Fair Market Value, it is imperative that a home is compared to the most recent pending and closed sales. Comparing prices is extremely important, but so is the condition, upgrades, location, lot size, and all of the other nuances that go into making a home more or less desirable.

For sellers who are overpriced, the longer they wait to correct their price, valuable market time will have transpired. Since demand slowly drops through the summer months, the deeper a seller gets into the Summer Market, the harder it will be to find success. The reason for the drop, buyers with families typically want to move by the end of summer prior to the kids going back to school at the end of August. In order to close a sale by then, the window of opportunity to place a home into escrow is now through the first few weeks of July.

The moral of the story: it is time for sellers to sharpen their pencils and properly price their homes in order to achieve their objective in selling.

Active Inventory: The active inventory increased by 2% in the past couple of weeks.

The active listing inventory added an additional 134 homes in the past two weeks, a 2% increase, and now sits at 5,757. We can expect the inventory to continue to rise throughout the Summer Market until it reaches a peak somewhere around mid-August. From there, the market will transition into the Autumn Market, from mid-August through Thanksgiving, with fewer homes coming on the market with both the spring and summer in the rear view mirror.

Within the last month, 8% fewer homes came on the market compared to last year. As a result, the active inventory has been off compared to last year. Last year at this time, there were 6,603 homes on the market, 15% more than today.

Demand:  The demand dropped by 10 pending sales in the past couple of weeks.

The number of homes placed into escrow within the prior month dropped by 10 pending sales in the past two weeks and now totals 2,904. Demand is off the most in the entry-level market, homes priced below $500,000. With 23% fewer homes that have been placed on the market so far this year below $500,000, demand is now off by 22%. This market has been underperforming all year due to a real lack of inventory.

We can expect demand to continue to drop slightly from now through the end of the Summer Market.

Last year at this time, there were 118 more pending sales totaling 3,022, or 4% more. The expected market time increased from 58 to 59 days in the past couple of weeks. Last year it was at 66 days.

Luxury EndLuxury demand dropped by 5% in the past couple of weeks while the inventory grew by 1%.

In the past two weeks, demand for homes above $1.25 million decreased from 369 to 351 pending sales, a 5% drop. Since the start of May, luxury demand has dropped by 15%. The luxury home inventory increased from 1,965 homes to 1,981, up 1%.  Similar to the rest of the market, demand is dropping for luxury homes while the luxury inventory continues to grow. There is already plenty of seller competition in the upper ranges.

For homes priced between $1.25 million and $1.5 million, the expected market time increased from 90 to 108 days. For homes priced between $1.5 million to $2 million, the expected market time decreased from 162 to 144 days. In addition, for homes priced above $2 million, the expected market time increased from 235 days to 256 days. At 256 days, a seller would be looking at placing their home into escrow around mid-February of next year.

Orange County Housing Report

 

Orange County Housing Market Summary:

  • The active listing inventory increased by 134 homes, or 2%, in the past couple of weeks, and now totals 5,757. Last year, there were 6,603 homes on the market, 846 more than today.
  • There are 35% fewer homes on the market below $500,000 today compared to last year at this time and demand is down by 22%. Fewer and fewer homes and condominiums are now priced below $500,000. This price range is slowly disappearing.
  • Demand, the number of pending sales over the prior month, dropped by 10 pending sales in the past couple of weeks and now totals 2,904. The average pending price is $842,204.
  • The average list price for all of Orange County remained at $1.6 million. This number is high due to the mix of homes in the luxury ranges that sit on the market and do not move as quickly as the lower end.
  • The homes priced below $750,000, the market is HOT with an expected market time of just 38 days. This range represents 38% of the active inventory and 60% of demand.
  • For homes priced between $750,000 and $1 million, the expected market time is 54 days, a hot seller’s market (less than 60 days). This range represents 18% of the active inventory and 21% of demand.
  • Homes priced between $1 million to $1.25 million, the expected market time is at 71 days, a seller’s market.
  • Luxury homes priced between $1.25 million and $1.5 million, the expected market time increased from 90 to 108 days. For homes priced between $1.5 million to $2 million, the expected market time decreased from 162 to 144 days. For luxury homes priced above $2 million, the expected market time increased from 235 to 256 days.
  • The luxury end, all homes above $1.25 million, accounts for 35% of the inventory and only 12% of demand.
  • The expected market time for all homes in Orange County increased from 58 days to 59 in the past couple of weeks, a solid seller’s market (less than 60 days), but about to transition into a normal seller’s market (60 to 90 days). From here, we can expect the market time to slowly rise throughout the Summer Market, moving from a seller’s market to a slight seller’s market.
  • Distressed homes, both short sales and foreclosures combined, make up only 1.3% of all listings and 1.9% of demand. There are only 32 foreclosures and 44 short sales available to purchase today in all of Orange County, that’s 76 total distressed homes on the active market, 8 more than two weeks ago. Last year there were 148 total distressed sales, 95% more than today.
  • There were 3,143 closed sales in May, an 18% increase over April 2017 and a 4% increase over May 2016. The sales to list price ratio was 97.8% for all of Orange County. Foreclosures accounted for just 1.1% of all closed sales and short sales accounted for 1.7%. That means that nearly 97.2% of all sales were good old fashioned equity sellers.

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

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This Month in Real Estate – April 2017

This Month in Real Estate – April 2017

Check out the National Numbers for April, 2017

 

This Month in Real Estate – March 2017

This Month in Real Estate – March 2017

Check out the National Number for March, 2017

 

Orange County Housing Report February 28th, 2017

Orange County Housing Report: OC Housing is Sizzling

With a very limited inventory, the Orange County housing market is extremely hot and values are on the rise.

Find out more in this Orange County Housing Report for February 28th, 2017.

Hot Housing Market: Everything on the market below $1 million is selling like hotcakes, and below $750,000 is nothing short of nuts.

The current Orange County housing market is scorching hot and has not been this good since July 2013. Once again, buyers are tripping over themselves to purchase. Homes that hit the market Orange County Housing Reportare fetching multiple offers within the first couple of days. Some buyers are writing offers on homes unseen. Others are waiving the appraisal contingency (still mandatory if they are getting a loan; so, if the appraisal comes in low, the buyer will have to bring in more money in order to close). When a home is priced at or close to its Fair Market Value, the purchase price is often higher than the asking price.

We are back to the bidding war days. When 10 offers to purchase are generated, there is only one victor. Nine buyers walk away and have to continue the pursuit of their dream home. This market can be extremely frustrating for a buyer. After a couple of failed attempts, many buyers sharpen their pencils and are willing to stretch in price even if it means paying more than the most recent comparable pending or closed sale. That is the nature of a housing market with very little inventory and very high demand.

The expected market time (the amount of time it would take for a newly listed home today to be placed into escrow) for all of Orange County is now at 50 days. When the expected market time drops below 60 days, the market is considered a solid seller’s market with steady price appreciation. Last year, Orange County was only below the 60-day threshold for about eight weeks, from mid-March through mid-May and never dropped below 55 days. It appears as if 2017 is going to be much hotter than the last few years.

When the expected market time dips below 30 days, the market shifts to a sizzling hot seller’s market with rapid price appreciation. In the past decade, the overall housing market has never reached this level, but many price ranges have. That is the case today as well. Not all of Orange County is considered “hot;” however, condominiums and detached homes priced below $500,000 are sizzling. This range represents 15% of the active listing inventory and 29% of demand.

Orange County Housing Report

 

Condominiums priced between $500,000 and $750,000, and detached homes priced between $500,000 and $1 million, are considered “solid” seller’s markets with expected market times between 30 and 60 days. They represent 24% of the current active inventory and 36% of demand. Both condominiums and detached homes priced between $500,000 and $750,000 are knocking on the door of a sizzling hot seller’s market with expected market times just above the 30-day threshold. That price range is starting to feel very hot and could easily drop below 30-days in the coming weeks.

Condominiums priced between $750,000 and $1 million and detached homes priced between $1 million and $1.5 million are currently experiencing a slight seller’s market, between 60 and 90 days. They represent 18% of the active listing inventory and 12% of demand. A slight seller’s market is characterized by slow, methodical price appreciation.

The market does not lean in the seller’s favor for detached homes priced above $1.5 million and condominiums priced above $1 million. The higher the price, the slower the market. They represent 30% of the inventory and only 9% of demand.

Buyers and sellers alike need to understand the market that they are working with in order to approach it with proper expectations. A buyer looking to purchase a $650,000 home is going to encounter a much different market than a buyer looking to purchase a $2 million home. Similarly, a condominium seller at $450,000 is going to experience a much different market than a condominium seller at $800,000.

A warning for buyers: do not expect the market dynamics to change much in the coming months. Even when more homes come on the market during the spring, there will be an increase in buyer activity as well.

A warning for sellers: do not stretch the asking price much at all. Overpriced, overzealous list prices result in wasted market time and do not generate offers. Pricing at or close to the Fair Market Value is the wisest formula for success.

Active Inventory: Within the past couple of weeks, the active inventory only increased by 12 homes.

Since January 1st, the active inventory has only grown by 389 homes. Within the past couple of weeks, it remained almost the same, growing by only 12 homes, a 0% increase, and now sits at 4,460. Once again, nearly everything that is coming on the market at or close to its Fair Market Value is being placed into escrow almost immediately.

Part of the issue is that, so far this year, 8% fewer homes have come on the market compared to last year at this time. The combination of a limited supply of homes coming on the market and ferocious demand has created the current sizzling hot Orange County housing market. More and more homeowners will come onto the market this spring through mid-August.

Last year at this time, there were 5,271 homes on the market, 15% more. Two years ago, there were 973 more homes on the market, or 18% more.

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

Demand:  Demand is HOT, increasing by 10% in the past two weeks.

The only thing holding back current demand is the lack of supply of homes. There are simply not enough new sellers coming on the market. Even with very few choices right now, buyers are pouncing on everything new that hits the market that is reasonably priced and in decent condition.

Demand, the number of homes placed into escrow within the prior month, increased by 248 pending sales in the past couple of weeks, or 10%, and now totals 2,651. With an increase in demand and an inventory that remained the same, the expected market time dropped from 56 days to 50 days, a solid seller’s market.

Last year at this time, there were 2,584 total sales, 67 fewer than today, or 3% less.

Luxury EndThe luxury market is starting to heat up a bit.

Demand is up for Orange County’s luxury home market with 73 additional pending sales compared to last year at this time, 19% higher. The luxury inventory is up by only 3 homes, nearly identical. The overall expected market time for all homes priced above $1 million is 122 days compared to 144 days last year.

In the past two weeks, demand for homes above $1 million increased from 412 to 465 pending sales, a 13% rise, its highest level since the end of August. The luxury home inventory increased from 1,834 homes to 1,891, its highest level since the start of December 2016.  The expected market time decreased in the past couple of weeks from 134 to 122 days.

For homes priced between $1 million to $1.5 million, the expected market time in the past couple of weeks decreased from 80 days to 76 days. For homes priced between $1.5 million to $2 million, the expected market time decreased from 153 to 129 days. For homes priced above $2 million, the expected market time dropped from 252 days to 227 days. At 227 days, a seller would be looking at placing their home in escrow around mid-October.

Orange County Housing Report

 

Orange County Housing Market Summary:

  • The active listing inventory increased by 12 homes in the past couple of weeks, a 0% rise, and now totals 4,460. There are 8% fewer homes that have come on the market this year compared to 2016. The inventory should start to rise in March and peak in mid-August.
  • There are 44% fewer homes on the market below $500,000 compared to last year at this time and demand is down by 7%. Fewer and fewer homes and condominiums can now be found priced below $500,000. This price range is slowly vanishing.
  • Demand, the number of pending sales over the prior month, increased by 10% in the past couple of weeks, adding an additional 248 and now totals 2,651. Today’s demand is 3% higher than last year when it totaled 2,584. The average pending price is $835,152.
  • The average list price for all of Orange County is $1.6 million, identical to two weeks ago. This number is high due to the mix of homes in the luxury ranges that sit on the market.
  • For homes priced below $750,000, the market is HOT with an expected market time of just 34 days. This range represents 39% of the active inventory and 65% of demand.
  • For homes priced between $750,000 and $1 million, the expected market time is 54 days, a seller’s market (less than 60 days). This range represents 19% of the active inventory and 18% of demand.
  • For luxury homes priced between $1 million to $1.5 million, the expected market time is at 76 days, dropping by 4 in the past couple of weeks. For homes priced between $1.5 million to $2 million, the expected market time decreased from 153 to 129 days. For luxury homes priced above $2 million, the expected market time decreased from 252 to 227 days.
  • The luxury end, all homes above $1 million, accounts for 42% of the inventory and only 17% of demand.
  • The expected market time for all homes in Orange County dropped in the past couple of weeks from 56 to 50, a solid seller’s market (less than 60 days).
  • Distressed homes, both short sales and foreclosures combined, make up only 1.9% of all listings and 3.2% of demand. There are only 18 foreclosures and 67 short sales available to purchase today in all of Orange County, that’s 85 total distressed homes on the active market, 18 fewer than two weeks ago, a drop of 17% and its lowest level since the start of the Great Recession 10 years ago. Last year there were 152 total distressed sales, 79% more.
  • There were 1,905 closed sales in January, a 33% drop from December, but more than the 1,859 closed sales posted in January 2016. The sales to list price ratio was 97.3% for all of Orange County. Foreclosures accounted for just 0.9% of all closed sales and short sales accounted for 2.3%. That means that 96.8% of all sales were good ol’ fashioned equity sellers.

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

 

Orange County Housing Report February 14th, 2017

Orange County Housing Report:  The Seller Drought Continues

The eight-year seller drought is a relentless trend that has significantly contributed to Orange County’s hot market.

Read more in this Orange County Housing Report February 14th, 2017.

Lack of Sellers: Fewer homeowners have opted to sell for years now in spite of massive appreciation and excellent conditions to sell.   Orange County Housing Report

The storyline in this Orange County Housing Report  for February 14th, 2017,  has remained the same for years now, there simply are not enough homeowners electing to sell their homes and make a move. It’s not just a local phenomenon, nor a Southern California phenomenon; it’s a national issue that has been juicing the 5-year seller’s market. Lack of supply, that’s the story. Ask any buyer or any REALTOR® what is the biggest challenge in today’s housing market and the instant response would unanimously be “there aren’t enough homes on the market.”

It makes perfect sense that homeowners were not in a rush to sell from 2008 through 2011. Those were the years where home values took a pounding and homeowners watched their equity vanish seemingly overnight. However, since 2012, those same homeowners watched their equity return nearly as fast as it disappeared. The relentless appreciation has continued and resulted in a record high median sales price. Orange County is back to where it was prior to the Great Recession, yet sellers have still not returned in the same numbers.

From 2000 to 2007, there were an average of 1,500 additional homeowners opting to sell every single month compared to the past five years. That’s an additional 18,000 homes per year. More homes on the market would be a welcome relief to today’s frustrated buyers.

Based upon 2016 closed sales, the turnover rate for the Orange County housing stock is once every 21 years. That’s an improvement over 2015’s once every 23 years and 2014’s once every 24 years, but not by much. The markets with the best rates can be found in areas with relatively newer homes (Laguna Woods being the only exception): Talega, Newport Coast, Coto de Caza, Foothill Ranch, and Rancho Santa Margarita. And, the top turnover rate can be found in Ladera Ranch and Rancho Mission Viejo, once every 10 years.

Orange County Housing Report

 

The lowest turnover rates can be found in more established cities: Fountain Valley, Los Alamitos, Seal Beach, Villa Park, and Westminster. The lowest rate in Orange County can be found in La Palma where homeowners are moving once every 41 years.

SO, what gives? Why aren’t homeowners moving like they did before? Some think it is because too many millennials are delaying the purchase of their first home and are shacking up with their parents. Others think it is because financing is too tight and that Dodd-Frank regulations are hurting housing. Both issues would have a negative effect on demand; however, housing does not have a problem with demand.

One of the key issues that has impacted the Orange County housing market has been the lack of affordable new housing. Today’s builders have been focusing on catering towards the higher end. The Orange County new home market used to create a lot more local real estate activity as many local homeowners bought new and had to sell their existing homes first. With the county running out of vacant land, this will be an ongoing issue.

Many homeowners are not moving because owning a home long term is now in vogue. The Great Recession rattled our collective psyche and people came out of it changed, looking at homeownership differently. Many are looking to hang onto their homes and dig in their roots, similar to the Midwest philosophy.

Still, the biggest factor preventing many would be sellers from placing their homes on the market is the fear that there will be nothing to buy after successfully selling their homes. This is one of the most prevalent, undermining market forces. Essentially, the low inventory is preventing homeowners from entering the fray. Collectively, they would significantly increase the inventory if they all gave it a shot and marketed their homes subject to finding a replacement property. A seller can accept an offer to purchase their home with the condition that they would be able to find a replacement property within a specific time period, 30-days being most common. If they are unable to find a replacement home within the given time period, then the contract is cancelled or additional time may be negotiated.

Another way around this dilemma is the dreaded “double move” where a homeowner sells their home, moves into a monthly rental, and then takes their time to isolate the most ideal home for their family. There are plenty of moving companies that actually cater to this scenario and can crate and store whatever will not be used at the short term rental.

A lack of inventory coupled with a low housing turnover is a persistent trend that is not going to change in the near future. Buyers, sellers, and homeowners with any desire to make a move need to realistically approach the market and plan accordingly.

Active Inventory: Within the past couple of weeks, the active inventory only increased by 3%.

Since January 1st, the active inventory has only grown by 377 homes. Within the past couple of weeks it added 128, or 3%, and now sits at 4,448. Part of the issue is that almost everything that has come on the market priced close to its Fair Market Value has flown off the market almost as quickly as the FOR SALE sign goes in the ground, especially homes priced below $1 million. Another issue is that, so far this year, 6% fewer homes have come on the market compared to last year at this time. There are more homeowners who are opting not to sell this year even though the conditions are perfect with a very low supply and ferocious demand.

Orange County Housing Report

 

More and more homeowners will come onto the market from now through the end of summer. The first wave starts now, around mid-February. Many of these sellers will move swiftly into escrow. The next wave is the official beginning of the Spring Market, mid-March. This wave will stretch all the way through mid-August.

Last year at this time there were 4,973 homes on the market, 12% more. Two years ago there were 1,001 more homes on the market, or 23% more.

Demand:  Demand is HOT, increasing 25% in the past two weeks.

This is typically when demand starts to take off. As the housing market moves closer to the best time of the year in terms of real estate activity, the Spring Market, demand continues to climb. Even though there are few choices right now, buyers are pouncing on any fresh inventory that is reasonably priced.

Demand, the number of homes placed into escrow within the prior month, increased by 473 pending sales in the past couple of weeks, or 25%, and now totals 2,403. As a result of the giant rise in demand and only a slight rise in the inventory, the expected market time dropped from 67 days to 56 days, a seller’s market. This is the first time it has dipped below the 60-day mark at this point of the year since 2013 (34 days).

Last year at this time there were 2,342 total sales, 61 fewer than today, or 3% less.

Luxury EndBoth the luxury inventory and luxury demand are on the rise.

Demand is up for Orange County’s luxury home market with 55 additional pending sales compared to last year at this time, 15% higher. The luxury inventory is up by 81 homes, 5% more. Most of the spike in demand is isolated to the $1 million to $1.5 million price range.

For homes priced between $1 million to $1.5 million, the inventory is down by 12 homes compared to last year, and demand is up by 42 pending sales. Yet, above $1.5 million, the inventory is up by 81 homes, and demand is up by only 13.

In the past two weeks, demand for homes above $1 million increased from 325 to 412 pending sales, a 27% rise, its highest level since the beginning of October. The luxury home inventory increased from 1,744 homes to 1,834, its highest level since mid-December.  The expected market time decreased in the past couple of weeks from 165 to 134 days.

For homes priced between $1 million to $1.5 million, the expected market time in the past couple of weeks decreased from 98 days to 80 days. For homes priced between $1.5 million to $2 million, the expected market time decreased from 195 to 153 days. For homes priced above $2 million, the expected market time dropped from 277 days to 252 days. At 252 days, a seller would be looking at placing their home in escrow around the end of October.

Orange County Housing Report

 

Orange County Housing Market Summary:

  • The active listing inventory increased by 128 homes in the past couple of weeks, a 3% rise, and now totals 4,448. There are 6% fewer homes that have come on the market this year compared to 2016. The inventory should increase from here, peaking in mid-August.
  • There are 32% fewer homes on the market below $500,000 compared to last year at this time and demand is down by 9%. Fewer and fewer homes and condominiums can now be found priced below $500,000. It is the price range that is slowly vanishing.
  • Demand, the number of pending sales over the prior month, skyrocketed by 25% in the past couple of weeks, adding an additional 473 and now totals 2,403. Today’s demand is 3% higher than last year when it totaled 2,342. The average pending price is $818,494.
  • The average list price for all of Orange County is $1.6 million, identical to two weeks ago. This number is high due to the mix of homes in the luxury ranges that sit on the market.
  • For homes priced below $750,000, the market is HOT with an expected market time of just 35 days. This range represents 41% of the active inventory and 65% of demand.
  • For homes priced between $750,000 and $1 million, the expected market time is 54 days, a seller’s market (less than 60 days). This range represents 18% of the active inventory and 18% of demand.
  • For luxury homes priced between $1 million to $1.5 million, the expected market time is at 80 days, dropping by 18 in the past couple of weeks. For homes priced between $1.5 million to $2 million, the expected market time decreased from 195 to 153 days. For luxury homes priced above $2 million, the expected market time decreased from 277 to 252 days.
  • The luxury end, all homes above $1 million, accounts for 41% of the inventory and only 17% of demand.
  • The expected market time for all homes in Orange County dropped in the past couple of weeks from 67 to 56, a seller’s market (less than 60 days).
  • Distressed homes, both short sales and foreclosures combined, make up only 2.3% of all listings and 3.3% of demand. There are 34 foreclosures and 69 short sales available to purchase today in all of Orange County, that’s 103 total distressed homes on the active market, 12 more than two weeks ago. Last year there were 148 total distressed sales, 44% more.
  • There were 1,905 closed sales in January, a 33% drop from December, but more than the 1,859 closed sales posted in January 2016. The sales to list price ratio was 97.3% for all of Orange County. Foreclosures accounted for just 0.9% of all closed sales and short sales accounted for 2.3%. That means that 96.8% of all sales were good ol’ fashioned equity sellers.

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

This Month in Real Estate – February 2017

This Month in Real Estate – February 2017

Check out the National Numbers for February, 2017

 

Orange County Housing Report January 31st, 2017

Orange County Housing Report:  Surf’s Up!!!

For sellers, the conditions are perfect and there is no need to wait until the Spring Market to sell.

Read more in this Orange County Housing Report for January 30th, 2017.

Hot Housing Market: With a very low supply and incredibly HOT demand, the conditions are perfect for selling.  Orange County Housing Report

Living in Southern California, “surf’s up” is a phrase used to describe when the waves at the beach are worth surfing. In describing the Orange County housing market and whether or not right now is a good time to sell a home, yes, “surf’s up!” If you are a homeowner who wants to sell, but you are waiting for the “Spring Market” because that’s when the conditions are “the best” for selling a home, there’s actually no need to wait. So, grab your surfboard, contact a professional REALTOR®, jump in the water, and start paddling to the swells… Surf’s Up!

After a slow start to housing due to very few homeowners placing their homes on the market at the beginning of the month, everything that is coming on the market now is flying off the market almost as quick as the “FOR SALE” sign is placed in the front yard. The only complaint in the real estate trenches is that there are simply not enough homes on the market right now.

Everything priced below $1.5 million is experiencing a HOT market, and it’s scorching below $750,000. The market run has officially hit the five-year mark, and this is the second best start behind the blazing hot 2013 market. Why are the conditions so favorable compared to the last few years? Current demand is extremely strong and the active inventory is at exceptionally anemic levels. Compared to last year, there are 11% fewer homes on the market right now, and 19% fewer than 2015; yet, demand (new pending sales over the prior month) is almost identical to 2016. And, today’s demand has been muffled with fewer homes coming on the market so far this year.

The expected market time (the time it would take to list a home today and then place it into escrow) dropped from 84 days two weeks ago to 67 days today. This is because the supply of homes actually dropped slightly while demand, new pending sales, exploded.

Orange County Housing Report

 

The only thing keeping demand from being even higher today is the lack of inventory. Sellers who are opting to sell now, versus waiting until later in the spring, are totally taking advantage of a market ripe for the pickings. As long as a home is priced closed to its Fair Market Value and is in good condition, it will fly off the market with multiple offers. Carefully pricing will result in selling at, or even higher, than the asking price. Stretching the price too much will result in wasting the most valuable market time, the first few weeks after coming on the market.

For those opting to “wait until the spring,” there will undoubtedly be more buyers looking to purchase, but there will also be an enormous increase in the number of sellers. With increased demand comes increased supply. Who knows what the market will be like in 90-days. With the new presidential administration, it is hard to predict where housing will be a few months from now. One thing is 100% certain, right now the conditions are perfect for selling. Cowabunga dude, surf’s up!!! 

Active Inventory: Due to a spike in demand and fewer homes coming on the market, the inventory actually dropped a bit in the past two weeks.

Since January 1st, there have been 6% fewer homes that were placed on the market compared to last year at this time. Remarkably, there were 7% fewer homes last year compared to 2015. So, this year there are even more homeowners who are opting not to sell even though the conditions are perfect.

In the past two weeks, the active listing inventory has shed 56 homes, or 1%, and now totals 4,320. This is typically the time of year when more homes are finally coming on the market. The holidays are officially way behind us; it is time to for homeowners to shake off the holiday buzz and not opt to wait until the Spring Market, taking advantage of current wave of pent up demand. The lack of new sellers hitting the market could be due to a “wait and see” attitude regarding the new Trump administration. Regardless, there will be a significant increase in supply in February. Stay tuned…

Last year at this time there were 4,841 homes on the market, 12% more. Two years ago there were 1,011 more homes on the market, or 23% more.

Orange County Housing Report

 

Demand:  Demand skyrocketed in the past couple of weeks.

As is typical for this time of the year, buyers are chomping at the bit and are eager to move on from the doldrums of the Holiday Market that brings very few choices and not a lot of fresh inventory. Buyers know that is about to change, even though it has been slow going for January.

Demand, the number of homes placed into escrow within the prior month, increased by 368 pending sales in the past couple of weeks, or 24%, and now totals 1,930. Finally, the resilient Orange County housing engine is revving its supercharged engine and will continue to skyrocket as more inventory hits the market.

Last year at this time there were 6 more pending sales compared to today, totaling 1,936. The big difference this year, the near identical demand is being done with fewer homes on the market.

Luxury EndDemand is way up, while the luxury inventory is only up slightly.

Demand is up for Orange County’s luxury home market with 46 additional pending sales compared to last year at this time; however, there is more competition. The luxury inventory is up by 65 homes. That extra competition translates to more seller who are not successful on a monthly basis. Also, a lot of the luxury activity is taking place within the $1 million to $1.5 million price range.

For homes priced between $1 million to $1.5 million, the inventory is down by 26 homes compared to last year, and demand is up by 33 pending sales. Yet, above $1.5 million, the inventory is up by 91 homes, and demand is up by only 13.

In the past two weeks, demand for homes above $1 million increased from 245 to 325 pending sales, a 33% rise, its highest level since mid-December. The luxury home inventory increased from 1,705 homes to 1,744, its highest level since mid-December as well.  The expected market time decreased in the past couple of weeks from 209 to 165 days.

For homes priced between $1 million to $1.5 million, the expected market time in the past couple of weeks decreased from 147 days to 98 days. For homes priced between $1.5 million to $2 million, the expected market time increased from 169 to 195 days. For homes priced above $2 million, the expected market time dropped from 370 days to 277 days. At 277 days, a seller would be looking at placing their home in escrow around the beginning of November.

Orange County Housing Report

 

Orange County Housing Market Summary:

  • The active listing inventory dropped by 56 homes in the past couple of weeks, a 1% drop, and now totals 4,320. The drop was unprecedented for this time of the year and is most likely due to fewer homes coming on the market so far in 2017, down 6% from last year. The inventory should increase from here, peaking sometime during the summer.
  • There are 32% fewer homes on the market below $500,000 compared to last year at this time and demand is down by 16%. Fewer and fewer homes and condominiums can now be found priced below $500,000. It is the price range that is slowly disappearing.
  • Demand, the number of pending sales over the prior month, skyrocketed by 24% in the past couple of weeks, adding an additional 368 and now totals 1,930. Today’s demand is almost identical to last year when there were just 6 additional pending sales. The average pending price is $871,107.
  • The average list price for all of Orange County is $1.6 million, identical to two weeks ago. This number is so high due to the mix of homes in the luxury ranges that sit on the market.
  • For homes priced below $750,000, the market is HOT with an expected market time of just 42 days. This range represents 42% of the active inventory and 67% of demand.
  • For homes priced between $750,000 and $1 million, the expected market time is 73 days, a slight seller’s market (between 60 and 90 days). This range represents 18% of the active inventory and 16% of demand.
  • For luxury homes priced between $1 million to $1.5 million, the expected market time is at 98 days, dropping by 49 in the past couple of weeks. For homes priced between $1.5 million to $2 million, the expected market time increased from 169 to 195 days. For luxury homes priced above $2 million, the expected market time decreased from 370 to 277 days.
  • The luxury end, all homes above $1 million, accounts for 40% of the inventory and only 17% of demand.
  • The expected market time for all homes in Orange County drastically dropped in the past couple of weeks from 84 to 67, a slight seller’s market (between 60 and 90 days).
  • Distressed homes, both short sales and foreclosures combined, make up only 2.1% of all listings and 3.9% of demand. There are 38 foreclosures and 53 short sales available to purchase today in all of Orange County, that’s 91 total distressed homes on the active market, 21 fewer than two weeks ago and the lowest total since prior to the Great Recession. Last year there were 159 total distressed sales, 74% more.
  • There were 2,474 closed sales in December, a 1% increase from November, and nearly identical to the 2,746 sales that closed in December 2015. The sales to list price ratio was 97.3% for all of Orange County. Foreclosures accounted for just 1.25% of all closed sales and short sales accounted for 1.25% as well. That means that 97.5% of all sales were good ol’ fashioned equity sellers.

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report January 17th, 2017

Orange County Housing Report: Hello, Hello, Hello

Ever since the market took off five years ago, there have not been enough homes on the market.

Read more in this Orange County Housing Report for January 17th, 2017.

Active Inventory: The 2017 housing market is starting with very few homes on the market.     Orange County Housing Report

Fewer homeowners have opted to place FOR SALE signs in their front yards for years now. That has been the main theme of the Orange County housing market since it started the recovery five years ago; and, if the start to 2017 is an indicator of what is to come, this year is not going to be any different.

The annual average inventory dating back to 2005 is 9,237 homes on the market. Over the past five years straight, it has fallen considerably short. As a result, the annual inventory height has come up significantly short of the 10,820 home average as well. Take a look at last year, for example, where the inventory averaged only 5,965 homes on the market and reached a height of 7,329. There simply were not enough homes for sale to satiate demand. That’s the story dating back to 2012.

To keep it simple, the inventory needs to be above the 8,000 threshold for a sustainable amount of time for the market to tilt towards the buyer’s favor. Yet, the last time that occurred was in 2011. In the past five years, the active inventory has only eclipsed the 8,000 mark once for four weeks during the summer of 2014, not long enough to make a significant impact on housing.

This year, the Orange County housing market started the year with an inventory of 4,071, the second lowest start to a year behind 2013’s anemic 3,161 homes. The 2017 start is down 7% compared to last year.

Orange County Housing Report

One of the main reasons that there is not enough inventory is because of a changed mindset in Orange County since the Great Recession. Homeowners are simply not opting to sell their homes at the rate that they did prior to the recession. In vogue is not moving. With this mindset, homeowners are remodeling their homes instead of jumping from home to home.

Another reason the inventory is extremely low to start the year is that many “would be” sellers are waiting for the Spring Market, notoriously the best time of the year to sell in terms of activity. While that may seem like a logical choice, the facts don’t completely back it up in the lower ranges, below $750,000. The expected market time, from putting a sign in the ground to going into escrow, is at 60-days or less. That is a hot market and the year has only begun. There’s not a lot of competing sellers on the market today in the lower ranges. Later in the spring, there will be more buyers, but there will also be a lot more sellers. This is an advantageous time to place a home on the market with plenty of pent up demand.

A home that is in good condition, nicely appointed, and priced at or close to a home’s Fair Market Value, will fly off the market with multiple offers. This value can be obtained by diligently researching the most recent comparable pending and closed sales, comparing location, upgrades, lot size, etcetera. Listing at or close to the Fair Market Value does not mean tacking on an additional $10,000, $15,000, or $20,000. In this market, a seller does not need to leave extra room for negotiating. When a home is priced right, it tends to capture close to the asking prices. Intentionally overpricing just to test the market, or tack on extra dollars to leave room for negotiations, will only result in the need to adjust the asking price down the road, squandering away the most valuable market time, the first few weeks after initially coming on the market.

The current market is not as hot as it was in 2012 and 2013 when values were skyrocketing upwards and the expected market time for the lower ranges was at about 30 days. Today’s market is appreciation, but at a much slower rate, about 5% over the course of a year. That means that it takes 365 days to increase 5%. That does not mean pricing a home 5% above the most recent comparable sale will result in success. It will take a year to get there. In order to find success today and net the highest amount possible, the bottom line is this: it is ALL about PRICING right initially. If a home is overpriced, the market will speak loud and clear; it will sit with no success in spite of the sizzling temperature of housing.

Since the first of the year, the active listing inventory has increased by 305 homes and now totals 4,376. Last year at this time there were 200 more homes on the market, 5% more. The expected market time for all of Orange County is 84 days, a slight seller’s market, meaning that homes are appreciating very little right now. The expected market time last year was at 86 days, very similar to today.

Orange County Housing Report

 

Demand:  Since January 1st, demand has actually dropped slightly.

Most likely due to an extreme shortage of inventory, demand, the number of homes placed into escrow within the prior month, dropped by 66 pending sales since January 1st, or 4%, and now totals 1,562. The robust Orange County housing engine is having trouble starting the year because of an extreme lack of new, fresh inventory. There are 7% fewer homes to come on the market for the first 12 days of the year compared to 2016.

As everybody collectively moves past the holidays and New Year’s resolutions drop by the wayside, more homes will ultimately come on the market and demand will rise. The first boost in both supply and demand will occur after the presidential inauguration; and, the second will occur after the Super Bowl. By then, housing will be revving its engine and accelerating into the Spring Market. In the middle of Spring, demand for housing will be nearly double where it is today and a lot more homes will be coming on the market daily as well.

Last year at this time there were 31 more pending sales totaling 1,593.

Luxury EndDemand is up, but so is the luxury inventory.

Demand is up for Orange County’s luxury home market, 22 additional pending sales compared to last year at this time; however, there is a lot more competition. The luxury inventory is up by 127 homes. That extra competition translates to more seller who are not successful on a monthly basis.

For homes priced between $1 million to $1.5 million, the inventory is up by 21 homes compared to last year, and demand is up by 8 pending sales. Yet, above $1.5 million, the inventory is up by 106 homes, and demand is up by only 14.

In the past two weeks, demand for homes above $1 million decreased from 261 to 245 pending sales, a 6% drop, and its lowest level since one year ago when it totaled 223. The luxury home inventory is nearly the same after dropping from 1,708 homes to 1,705, its lowest level since the end of January of last year.  The expected market time increased in the past couple of weeks from 196 days to 209.

For homes priced between $1 million to $1.5 million, the expected market time in the past couple of weeks increased from 132 days to 147 days. For homes priced between $1.5 million to $2 million, the expected market time remained the same at 169 days. For homes priced above $2 million, the expected market time rose from 345 days to 370 days. At 370 days, a seller is looking at placing their home in escrow around the end of January of next year.

Orange County Housing Report

 

Orange County Housing Market Summary:

  • The active listing inventory increased by 7% since January 1st, adding an additional 305 homes and now totals 4,376. It’s the first increase since July 2016. The inventory will continue to increase from here, peaking sometime during the summer.
  • There are 25% fewer homes on the market below $500,000 compared to last year at this time and demand is down by 13%. Fewer and fewer homes and condominiums can now be found priced below $500,000.
  • Demand, the number of pending sales over the prior month, decreased by 4%, or 66, since January 1st and now totals 1,562. Today’s demand is 2% fewer than last year. The average pending price is $794,770.
  • The average list price for all of Orange County is $1.6 million, dropping from $1.7 million at the end of December.
  • For homes priced below $750,000, the market is HOT with an expected market time of just 55 days. This range represents 45% of the active inventory and 69% of demand.
  • For homes priced between $750,000 and $1 million, the expected market time is 90 days, an equilibrium market that does not favor sellers or buyers (between 90 and 120 days). This range represents 17% of the active inventory and 16% of demand.
  • For luxury homes priced between $1 million to $1.5 million, the expected market time is at 147 days, increased by 15 in the past couple of weeks. For homes priced between $1.5 million to $2 million, the expected market time remained the same at 169 days. For luxury homes priced above $2 million, the expected market time increased from 345 days to 370 days.
  • The luxury end, all homes above $1 million, accounts for 39% of the inventory and only 15% of demand.
  • The expected market time for all homes in Orange County increased in the past couple of weeks from 75 days to 84, a slight seller’s market (between 60 and 90 days).
  • Distressed homes, both short sales and foreclosures combined, make up only 2.6% of all listings and 3.6% of demand. There are 42 foreclosures and 70 short sales available to purchase today in all of Orange County, that’s 112 total distressed homes on the active market, 5 fewer than two weeks ago and the lowest total since prior to the Great Recession. Last year there were 153 total distressed sales, 37% more.
  • There were 2,474 closed sales in December, a 1% increase from November, and nearly identical to the 2,746 sales that closed in December 2015. The sales to list price ratio was 97.3% for all of Orange County. Foreclosures accounted for just 1.25% of all closed sales and short sales accounted for 1.25% as well. That means that 97.5% of all sales were good ol’ fashioned equity sellers.

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

 

Orange County Housing Report

 

Orange County Housing Report