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The San Carlos Real Estate Week in Review: 2/1/2016.

The San Carlos Week in Review is the only in depth weekly recap of the San Carlos real estate market, and it’s available every week on the White Oaks Blog.

Chuck’s Sales

Focus = Results. If you hope to succeed in this ultra-competitive real estate market, it’s imperative that you enlist the help of an experienced Realtor who is laser-focused on the local real estate market, and who thoroughly understands the micro-economic nuances of each neighborhood.   The stakes are simply too high …

$2M Home Sales in San Carlos – An Update.

The number of homes to sell at or above $2,000,000 in San Carlos has been increasing every year since 2012 as the economy continues to improve. Already, the number of homes to sell for over $2M in 2015 has exceeded the total in all of 2014.

Map of San Carlos Regions

The Realtor Zones. When it comes to residential real estate, the City of San Carlos is divided up into 6 different real estate “zones”: Alder Manor (Area 350), Beverly Terrace (351), El Sereno Corte (352), Howard Park (353), Clearfield Park (354), and Cordes (355). When a home is for sale …

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San Carlos January 2016 Listing Recap.

January

January Listings.

It may be hard to believe, but January 2016 is already in our rear-view mirror. It seems like only yesterday that I was taking the Christmas lights down off the house (there’s more truth to that than I should admit.) Anyhow, as we head into February, I thought it would be instrumental to take a look at the single-family residence listings that hit the market in January, and compare those statistics to the same period of the past few years. In a market where homes are selling so quickly, there’s never an opportunity to establish any real level of inventory. That makes it difficult to get a accurate read if we’re actually getting a steady stream of new listings, or if we’re still in the downward slide that has been plaguing the market for the past four years.

The chart below shows the number of new single family residence listings that hit the market in January of 2016, and compares them to the same period during the previous few years. This statistic is one that we will track, update, and talk about quite often on the blog because there is probably not a single stat that has more of an impact on the local real estate market than this.

As listings go, so goes the market.

 

New Listings YTD Jan-16

 

San Carlos notched 19 new single-family listings in January, which was down slightly from January of 2015, and about on par with the same period during 2012-2014. The post recession years of 2010-2011 saw a huge bump in new listings, as one might expect during a time when distressed sales had played a much more significant part of the market.

It’s a little too early in the year to draw any decisive conclusions from these numbers. January’s totals simply do not dictate where a year is going to go. A prime example of that was just last year, when I distinctly remember noting how 2015 got off to the fastest start in 4 years — only to see it peter out later in the year and finish with the lowest number of new listings of any year in the entire decade. Trust that we will refresh the chart above every month, and see how 2016 is really shaping up.

What about list prices?  As you may have guessed, the average asking price for a home in San Carlos is on the rise. In January of 2016, the average listing price for those 19 homes was $1,564,688 — or an 11% increase of from the  $1,410,359 average list price that we saw at this time last year. This should come as no surprise to home buyers, as sellers continue to push the barrier to entry to San Carlos just that much higher.

What Lies Ahead?

As I mentioned earlier, the numbers are simply too close together and statistically too small to tell us very much this early in the year. What we do know is that the economy is a bit more rocky now than it was in early 2015. The volatility of the stock market and concerns about the global economy are leading some experts to believe that the market may be starting to level off. This may be enough of a motivation to get some more sellers to actually sell, which is something this market desperately needs right now.
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Welcome to to the White Oaks Blog — the most widely read blog dedicated to the San Carlos real estate market! Have blog updates sent to you automatically by subscribing for free by clicking here. Be sure to follow the White Oaks Blog on Facebook at https://Facebook.com/WhiteOaksBlog , and on Twitter @WhiteOaksBlog.
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The San Carlos Real Estate Week in Review: 2/1/2016.

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The Scoop.

January of 2016 is now in the books, and the San Carlos residential real estate market is off to a pretty decent start. The number of listings so far this year is roughly on par with 2015, which actually started off quite strong before it lost its steam (much more on that later this week.)

Buyers are still finding that there’s not much to choose from in this market, and we’re starting off the week with only 9 homes for sale in the entire city.  Most of the listings that went pending last week did so after only about a week on the market — most with multiple offers. Several of these homes will post surprising sales numbers (both positive and not so positive) when they ultimately close later this month, so stay tuned.

Here’s last week’s numbers:

The Numbers.

Below is a high-level view of the market performance for single-family residences in San Carlos. This data is for the 7-day period ending Sunday 1/31/2016:

San Carlos Housing Data 1/31/16 Prior Week
Closed Sales for the Week: 0 1
Average Sold Price: $0 $1,595,000
Average $/Sq Foot (Sold) $0 $1,029
Average Sold as Percentage Of List Price: 0% 114%
Average DOM of Closed Sales 0 8
Total # of Homes Pending Sale: 17 11
No. of New Listings: 3 6
Total # of Active Listings: 9 12
Average Price of Active Listings: $1,516,853 $1,472,431
Average DOM of Active Listings: 22 14
Average $/Sq Foot (List) $801 $856
Active-Pending Ratio: 0.53 : 1 1.1 : 1

>>> Click Here to Read the Full Post
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Welcome to to the White Oaks Blog — the most widely read blog dedicated to the San Carlos real estate market! Have blog updates sent to you automatically by subscribing for free by clicking here. Be sure to follow the White Oaks Blog on Facebook at https://Facebook.com/WhiteOaksBlog , and on Twitter @WhiteOaksBlog.
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The Motivation Behind the Off-Market Listing.

off-market

The post I wrote earlier this week about the pre-market opportunity in San Carlos certainly churned up a lot of questions and discussion about off-market listings, and why anyone would ever consider selling their house off the MLS in an environment like we are experiencing right now all over the Peninsula. It’s a subject that we’ve tackled on the blog numerous times over the past few years, but it’s worth revisiting it.

First of all, conventional wisdom states that you’ll expose your home to the greatest number of buyers if you list it on the Multiple Listing Service. That much is a no-brainer. But exposing your home to the greatest number of buyers doesn’t necessarily guarantee that your home will sell as quickly or for the highest price than not going the conventional path. That paradox alone enough to get some home sellers thinking about whether to list their home on the MLS, or to sell it off market.

But if I had to pick the top three reasons why someone might decide to sell their home early or off-market, here are the top 3:

Convenience.

If you’ve ever tried to market your home while you are still living in it, then you already know that it can be a giant pain in the rear. It’s imperative that you keep your home in “show” condition 24/7 while the house is on the market, and you have to contend with the random, frequent, and sometimes unplanned showing requests. This inconvenience is compounded exponentially if you have young children at home. And then there’s the issue of having to disappear for the better part of an entire weekend to accommodate the open house.

Some sellers simply aren’t up those challenges. If they can get an offer that meets or exceeds their expectations (more on that below), they’re sometimes willing to take the risk of not exposing their home to all potential buyers in the area in order to get it sold as quickly as possible, and with the least amount of disruption.

Privacy.

Privacy is a key reason why home sellers decide to skip putting their home on the MLS. I can tell you first hand that the majority of people who come through an open house (particularly on the first weekend) are neighbors and lookiloos who have no intention of purchasing this house, or any house. As a listing agent, I’m perfectly OK with that, since it gives me the opportunity to chat with neighbors, and meet potential future clients. But some homeowners simply don’t want open their private lives to the whole neighborhood.

Sometimes homeowners are simply going through a really tough time, and they don’t want their neighbors and friends to know that they’re selling until the last possible moment. Situations like divorce, financial distress, or family problems are compelling enough to value privacy over the potential benefits of marketing their home openly.

The “Premium” Factor.

There is a belief among some sellers and agents that home buyers may be willing to pay a premium to purchase a home before it hits the market, thus enabling the buyer to avoid the anxiety of the multiple-offer circus that is certain to ensue if the home is listed on the MLS. I’ve seen numerous instances where the seller’s belief turned out to be well founded, as they were able to secure an astounding price for their property by allowing someone to have an early shot at it.

There’s an old saying in the business that goes something like this “Your first offer is often your best offer.” If you subscribe to that belief, then the person who is willing to hustle to get their offer in before anyone else can see the house or respond in due time may indeed be your best buyer — regardless of whether the home was listed on the MLS or not.

I have seen many instances where a seller shuns an aggressive pre-emptive offer in favor of testing the market, only to eventually sell the house for less than that original offer.  Believe me, it happens.

Listing Agent Motivation?

An interesting sentiment that I often hear is that it’s the listing agent who pushes to sell the house off market, as if there’s some sort of benefit to them to not market the home on the MLS. I honestly cannot think of a single reason that a listing agent would want to do this.

There’s no more powerful and relevant advertising vehicle for a real estate agent than to have their name prominently displayed on a “for-sale” sign in front of a beautiful house that neighbors get to drive by hundreds of times while the home is on the market.  Talk about legitimacy in the minds of the public! The listings that I had over the past two years on Rosewood Avenue, Saint Francis Way, Cedar Street, Brittan Avenue, and Timothy Drive did far more to promote my brand than any amount of paid advertising could ever provide.

What about potential financial gains? Selling a home off-market for an agent is only nominally less expensive for a real estate agent than it would be for fully marketing the home on the MLS. Most of the costliest marketing tasks (photography, fliers, home preparation) are required regardless of how the home is sold, so there’s no real financial benefit to the listing agent to pushing the house off-market….. Unless they plan on trying to “double-end” the deal by representing both the buyer and the seller in the transaction and thereby doubling the commission — a situation that is ripe with risk for that agent.

Bottom Line.

For some sellers, deciding to forgo putting their home on the market and instead opting to sell it discretely and privately simply makes more sense for one or more of the reasons that we outlined above. It’s the very reason why this stealth market continues to exist and thrive every year, despite the predominance of multiple-offers and overbids for homes that are listed on the MLS.
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Welcome to to the White Oaks Blog — the most widely read blog dedicated to the San Carlos real estate market! Have blog updates sent to you automatically by subscribing for free by clicking here. Be sure to follow the White Oaks Blog on Facebook at https://Facebook.com/WhiteOaksBlog , and on Twitter @WhiteOaksBlog.
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The San Carlos Real Estate Week in Review: 1/25/2016.

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The Scoop.

We are heading into the last week of January, and the San Carlos real estate market is tracking pretty closely to where we were at this point last year. Last January there were 23 new single family listings to hit them market. So far in 2016, we’ve had 16 single-family homes make their debut with another full week left to go.

While that may sound like good news on the surface, that statistic is a bit of a double-edged sword. While we are essentially keeping pace with last year, it’s important to remember that 2015 produced the lowest number of listings in San Carlos in at least the last decade. This is a statistic that we will track frequently on the blog this year, as it’s a critical indicator on where our local real estate market is heading.

It’s also interesting to note that the average price for a single-family home that sold in San Carlos in January of 2015 was slightly over $1.3M. That figure has already topped just over $1.6M for the homes that have sold thus far this year, or a jump of 23%… 

Whether that’s good news or bad news probably depends on if you’re a home buyer or a home seller.

Here’s last week’s numbers:

The Numbers.

Below is a high-level view of the market performance for single-family residences in San Carlos. This data is for the 7-day period ending Sunday 1/24/2016:

San Carlos Housing Data 1/24/16 Prior Week
Closed Sales for the Week: 1 7
Average Sold Price: $1,595,000 $1,633,710
Average $/Sq Foot (Sold) $1,029 $905
Average Sold as Percentage Of List Price: 114% 111%
Average DOM of Closed Sales 8 19
Total # of Homes Pending Sale: 11 9
No. of New Listings: 6 4
Total # of Active Listings: 12 9
Average Price of Active Listings: $1,472,431 $1,434,648
Average DOM of Active Listings: 14 15
Average $/Sq Foot (List) $856 $757
Active-Pending Ratio: 1.1 : 1 1 : 1

>>> Click Here to Read the Full Post
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Welcome to to the White Oaks Blog — the most widely read blog dedicated to the San Carlos real estate market! Have blog updates sent to you automatically by subscribing for free by clicking here. Be sure to follow the White Oaks Blog on Facebook at https://Facebook.com/WhiteOaksBlog , and on Twitter @WhiteOaksBlog.
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Wanted: San Carlos Buyer for Unique Pre-Market Opportunity.

Off-market

Off-market and pre-market listings have always been a part of the San Carlos real estate landscape. While these types of transactions still make up a small portion of the total home sales transactions that are completed in San Carlos, they’re nevertheless a very important part of the inventory mix — especially in a town where there are only a dozen homes for sale at any given time.

One of the great things about being part of Dwell Realtors is that I’m exposed to a lot of pre-market and off-market opportunities in San Carlos, partly because of the volume of business that our brokerage does in this city (more on that statistic later this week), and also because I constantly have my finger on the pulse of the local real estate market. It’s just one of many benefits that we bring to our clients as the premier San Carlos real estate office.

On that note, I have a unique pre-market situation that may be of interest to you. A long-time family friend has decided to sell their San Carlos home, and has given me the opportunity to bring a buyer in and sell it before they go on the market in the next 7-10 days.  The home itself is a 3BR/2BA home in the flats of San Carlos, and within the San Carlos school boundaries — over 1,300 square feet on a spacious lot that is over 6,000 square feet.  The asking price when it goes to market will be about $1,550,000. It is nicely updated, and even has room for expansion.

If you’re a buyer who is just entering the market and this sounds like it may be of interest, please reach out to me as soon as possible.  Please note: It’s imperative that you are NOT already working with another real estate agent, and this is absolutely not a solicitation for you to change agents if you are already working with one. I cannot engage with you if you’re already working with another Realtor.

But if you (or someone you know) are looking to get into San Carlos, this may be a golden opportunity to land a great San Carlos home before it hits the market.
_____________________________________________________________________________

Welcome to to the White Oaks Blog — the most widely read blog dedicated to the San Carlos real estate market! Have blog updates sent to you automatically by subscribing for free by clicking here. Be sure to follow the White Oaks Blog on Facebook at https://Facebook.com/WhiteOaksBlog , and on Twitter @WhiteOaksBlog.
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The San Carlos Real Estate Week in Review: 1/18/2016.

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The Scoop.

January 2016 is continuing at a very brisk pace in the San Carlos real estate market. It was very encouraging to see four more solid new listings to hit the market this past week, since the pace of new listings is normally a bit slower in early-mid January. The recent stock market volatility and the economic uncertainty certainly has some sellers thinking about selling sooner rather than later this year, as concerns about housing prices become more real.

That being said, the sale that closed this week at 2525 Nanette Drive ($601,000 above the asking price) demonstrates that there is still a strong appetite for homes with some sort of “X-Factor” — in the case of Nanette, it was the lot size and the bay views.  But it will be interesting to see moving forward in this volatile market just how strong that appetite remains.

Here’s last week’s numbers:

The Numbers.

Below is a high-level view of the market performance for single-family residences in San Carlos. This data is for the 7-day period ending Sunday 1/18/2016:

San Carlos Housing Data 1/18/16 Prior Week
Closed Sales for the Week: 7 1
Average Sold Price: $1,633,710 $1,450,000
Average $/Sq Foot (Sold) $905 $1,198
Average Sold as Percentage Of List Price: 111% 104%
Average DOM of Closed Sales 19 11
Total # of Homes Pending Sale: 9 15
No. of New Listings: 4 5
Total # of Active Listings: 9 7
Average Price of Active Listings: $1,434,648 $1,430,128
Average DOM of Active Listings: 15 14
Average $/Sq Foot (List) $757 $717
Active-Pending Ratio: 1 : 1 0.54 : 1

>>> Click Here to Read the Full Post
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Welcome to to the White Oaks Blog — the most widely read blog dedicated to the San Carlos real estate market! Have blog updates sent to you automatically by subscribing for free by clicking here. Be sure to follow the White Oaks Blog on Facebook at https://Facebook.com/WhiteOaksBlog , and on Twitter @WhiteOaksBlog.
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$2,000,000 Home Sales Hit a Record Level in San Carlos in 2015.

2M

Strength at the High End.

In last week’s 2015 Real Estate Year in Review, we took a close look at the meteoric growth in home prices in San Carlos in 2015, and noted that the combination of strong demand and limited inventory pushed the average sales price of a single family home in San Carlos hit an all time high of over $1,665,000 last year.

Those very same market conditions had a huge impact the “high end” of the San Carlos real estate market — those homes over $2,000,000 — and even cracked into new, uncharted territory of the $3M range.

Below is a chart that you should be pretty familiar with, since I have refreshed it several times over the past year.  It shows the number of single-family homes to sell in San Carlos for over $2,000,000 by year:

 

Home Sales in San Carlos >$2,000,000 (source: MLS)

>>> Click Here to Read the Full Post
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Welcome to to the White Oaks Blog — the most widely read blog dedicated to the San Carlos real estate market! Have blog updates sent to you automatically by subscribing for free by clicking here. Be sure to follow the White Oaks Blog on Facebook at https://Facebook.com/WhiteOaksBlog , and on Twitter @WhiteOaksBlog.
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The San Carlos Real Estate Week in Review: 1/11/2016.

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The Scoop.

As I predicted last week in the 2015 Real Estate Year in Review, the 2016 market in San Carlos came charging right out of the gate in our first full week of the new year. There were 5 new listings to hit the market, which is a much quicker start than what we experienced at this time last year. Two of these new listings — 2015 Eaton Avenue and 2079 Alma Street — will give us a very good indication how hungry the market is for “premier addresses” in San Carlos. I have a feeling there is still some upside in this market for properties on premier streets such as these. We will know soon enough.

Later this week on the site, we will recap the numbers on the higher-end of the market in San Carlos — those homes that sold for $2M or higher in 2015. You already know that we easily exceeded the total for 2014. The only question is by how much.

Here’s the first update of 2016:

The Numbers.

Below is a high-level view of the market performance for single-family residences in San Carlos. This data is for the 7-day period ending Sunday 1/11/2016:

San Carlos Housing Data 1/11/16 Prior Week
Closed Sales for the Week: 1 2
Average Sold Price: $1,450,000 $1,750,000
Average $/Sq Foot (Sold) $1,198 $944
Average Sold as Percentage Of List Price: 104% 96%
Average DOM of Closed Sales 11 32
No. of Homes Pending Sale: 15 15
No. of New Listings: 5 0
Total # of Active Listings: 7 2
Average Price of Active Listings: $1,430,128 $1,449,500
Average DOM of Active Listings: 14 23
Average $/Sq Foot (List) $717 $468
Active-Pending Ratio: 0.54 : 1 0.13 : 1

>>> Click Here to Read the Full Post
_____________________________________________________________________________

Welcome to to the White Oaks Blog — the most widely read blog dedicated to the San Carlos real estate market! Have blog updates sent to you automatically by subscribing for free by clicking here. Be sure to follow the White Oaks Blog on Facebook at https://Facebook.com/WhiteOaksBlog , and on Twitter @WhiteOaksBlog.
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Chuck Gillooley
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Dwell Realtors, Inc.

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