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The San Carlos Real Estate 2015 Year in Review: Part III

part 3

Another year has drawn to a close in the San Carlos residential real estate market, and like every year in the past decade, there are lots of numbers to look at and lots of stories to tell. In this multi-part series on the White Oaks Blog, we’ll take an in-depth look at some of those numbers and stories that drove our local market in 2015.

In Part II yesterday, we discussed how the record low level of new listings in San Carlos was a major factor in driving the average home sale price to record heights in 2015. In our final installment below, we’ll take a look at what’s potentially in store for the San Carlos real estate market in 2016.

More of the Same?

One of the wonderful things that happens every January is that we get to look ahead and try to *predict* what’s going to happen to the real estate market in the coming year. Nobody that I know in this business (myself included) predicted that the average price of a single-family home in San Carlos would experience double-digit growth for 4 consecutive years starting in 2011, and that by 2016 the average price for a home in San Carlos would top $1.6M. It seems that every year we think the market is going to level off a bit, it storms out of the gates in January and blows the lid off of everyone’s expectations.

So what will happen in 2016 if prices continue to grow at the same rate they did in 2015?  Well, try this on for size:

  • The average price for a home in San Carlos would then be about $1,920,457.
  • The average price for a 3BR home (the staple of the San Carlos housing inventory) anywhere in San Carlos will hit $1,689,514.
  • The average price of a condo or townhouse in San Carlos would then top $1,055,000.

Whoa…

So, is that going to happen in 2016? I’ve learned my lesson to not make bold predictions either way in this market, but here are some of the key influences that will come into play in the new year.

Market Influences in 2016.

2016 will be unique from past years because some of the underlying forces that directly influence the market are changing.  It will be interesting to see what impact, if any, these have on our local micro-real estate market.  Here are a few:

  1. Interest Rates.   For the first time in a decade, the Federal Reserve has actually raised the prime lending rate incrementally, and left the door open to doing it again in 2016 if necessary. What has been the impact so far? Almost negligible. The mortgage interest rates took a temporary blip upward shortly after the announcement, but they settled right back down to the same level shortly thereafter. The impact of future increases will be more significant for those home buyers who are borrowing the full 80% of their purchase.  But for now, it’s business as usual.
  2. Technology Job Market.  San Carlos is just like other communities along the Peninsula in that many of its residents are either directly or indirectly involved in technology and biotech careers. As those job markets go, so follows the real estate market locally. It appears that the big companies such as Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, Genentech, and Gilead still have far more job openings than they do candidates. What you may see happen in 2016 is the normal Darwin effect on startups as they go back for subsequent rounds of financing. Just like any other technology boom, not all of these companies will make it to the top, and I believe this is the year you may see some startups either get absorbed, or simply not make the next cut. That may trim the buyer pool slightly.
  3. China. It has been well documented how much of an impact foreign investment has had in the past 5 years on the local real estate market. But only a few communities truly reaped a direct benefit from this — Palo Alto, Atherton, Woodside, and Hillsborough to name a few. People often incorrectly link the flow of foreign investment to the San Carlos real estate market, but that’s a stretch. San Carlos is what I refer to as “the upper-middle working class of Silicon Valley”.  The typical make-up of a San Carlos home is two incomes, usually at least one directly involved in technology.  It’s not a community where foreign investors are looking to park their money, often buying up property sight-unseen.  So as this flow of foreign investment money slowed significantly last year and was felt hard in the expensive neighborhoods, it had no effect on our local market. That’s simply not where our buyer pool comes from. However, if a slowing economy in China indicative of a broader technology slowdown (point #2 above)…that’s a much different story.
  4. Election Year. I hear a lot of talk about how Presidential election years serve to temper the real estate market. I don’t buy it. Just look at the chart in Part I of this series, and you’ll see that the Presidential election of 2012 had no impact on the meteoric growth in the market.
  5. Stock Market. The funds that most home buyers will use to purchase a home this coming year– whether it’s the down payment or the entire payment — is currently held as some sort of equity while they look to find the right home. A significant swing either way in the stock market will indeed have a direct impact on their buying power, and so far in 2016 the market has been quite volatile in just the first few trading sessions. This could come into significant play in 2016.

So what’s in store for the San Carlos housing market in 2016? Unfortunately for prospective buyers, I think prices will continue to rise. There just hasn’t been enough change in the forces that shaped the 2015 housing market to dictate a leveling off or even a downturn in housing prices. How much the market will grow is anyone’s guess, and it will be largely on the back of the buying population to determine how much is ultimately too much.

Stay tuned to the White Oaks Blog in 2016 as we track and analyze the market every week. In this market, being informed is being armed.

 
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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 2015 Year in Review: Part II

Part II

Another year has drawn to a close in the San Carlos residential real estate market, and like every year in the past decade, there are lots of numbers to look at and lots of stories to tell. In this multi-part series on the White Oaks Blog, we’ll take an in-depth look at some of those numbers and stories that drove our local market in 2015.

In Part I yesterday, we took a close look at the record-shattering average sales prices that were achieved in 2015. In Part II below, we’ll investigate one of the key factors behind this continued meteoric climb in home prices.

Inventory.

If there was one pervasive characteristic to the real estate market in San Carlos last year (aside from high prices) it was that there never seemed to be that much inventory to choose from, and whatever inventory there was sure didn’t seem to stay on the market very long. That wasn’t just your imagination – the numbers definitely back up that perception.

The first chart below shows a side-by-side view of the number of new listings for all units (single family residences and condos/townhomes) that were put on the market San Carlos in 2015, and compares it to the past 7 years:

 

New Listings in San Carlos

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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 2015 Year in Review: Part I

report

Another year has drawn to a close in the San Carlos residential real estate market, and like every year in the past decade, there are lots of numbers to look at and lots of stories to tell. In this multi-part series on the White Oaks Blog, we’ll take an in-depth look at some of those numbers and stories that drove our local market in 2015.

In part I below, we’ll take a look at the record sales prices that were set for single-family residences, townhouses, and condos in San Carlos in 2015.

Record Home Prices.

After several years of seemingly unabated growth in home sales prices, 2015 actually started out with some skepticism that this growth could continue. Many agents and home buyers wondered how the market could sustain the double-digit growth and not price itself completely out of the reach of the very buyers who were trying to get in. Well, that skepticism was dashed pretty early on in 2015 as prices continued to climb at an alarming rate, fueled by historically low interest rates, a booming stock market, and historically low levels of home inventory. The stage was set early on for yet another record breaking year.

The first chart below shows a side-by-side view of the average sales price for all units (single family residences and condos/townhomes) sold in San Carlos in 2015:

 

San Carlos Average Sales Prices

San Carlos Average Sales Prices

 
>>> 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: 1/4/2016.

2016 Calendar

The Scoop.

Happy New Year San Carlos! I hope everyone had a safe and memorable holiday season. 2015 was record year in many areas – housing climbed to its highest level on record, while gas prices dropped to their lowest levels in a decade. Interest rates stayed at rock-bottom levels for what could be the last year for awhile.

The San Carlos housing market set all kinds of records too — some high, and some low. We will cover these in detail this week on the blog in a series of articles that will dig a little deeper into a few of these key areas. Suffice it to say that it was another chart-popping year.

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 1/4/2016:

San Carlos Housing Data 1/4/16 Prior Week
Closed Sales for the Week: 2 4
Average Sold Price: $1,750,000 $1,697,500
Average $/Sq Foot (Sold) $944 $1,054
Average Sold as Percentage Of List Price: 96% 103%
Average DOM of Closed Sales 32 10
No. of Homes Pending Sale: 15 17
No. of New Listings: 0 0
Total # of Active Listings: 2 2
Average Price of Active Listings: $1,449,500 $1,449,500
Average DOM of Active Listings: 30 23
Average $/Sq Foot (List) $468 $468
Active-Pending Ratio: 0.13 : 1 0.12 : 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 San Carlos Real Estate Week in Review: 12-27-15.

Happy-New-Year-2016

The Scoop.

It’s almost hard to believe, but we’re heading into the the last week of what has been a truly remarkable 2015 in the world of real estate in San Carlos. Over the course of the next 2 weeks, we will look in depth into a few of the forces and key statistics that played crucial roles in pushing the market to new heights (and new lows in some cases) in 2015.

On the subject of new lows, there has been a literal “house cleaning” of the available inventory of homes for sale in San Carlos this past week. Entering today, there are only 2 homes for sale in the entire city —  including townhouses and condos — which is easily the lowest number in the entire year. But home buyers should take solace in the fact that the market in 2016 should charge right of the gates early in January.

Have a safe and happy New Year’s celebration!  Here’s the last recap of 2015:

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 12-27-2015:

San Carlos Housing Data 12-27-15 Prior Week
Closed Sales for the Week: 4 5
Average Sold Price: $1,697,500 $1,790,000
Average $/Sq Foot (Sold) $1,054 $864
Average Sold as Percentage Of List Price: 103% 101%
Average DOM of Closed Sales 10 24
No. of Homes Pending Sale: 17 17
No. of New Listings: 0 0
Total # of Active Listings: 2 5
Average Price of Active Listings: $1,449,500 $1,477,000
Average DOM of Active Listings: 23 11
Average $/Sq Foot (List) $468 $644
Active-Pending Ratio: 0.12 : 1 0.29 : 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 San Carlos Real Estate Week in Review: 12-20-15.

christmas-2015-calendar

The Scoop.

The activity in the local real estate market dropped noticeably as we head into the last two weeks of 2015.  There were no new listings of any kind in San Carlos, and the inventory of single family homes has been depleted to a total of five — and that will drop to four very soon when 2525 Nanette Drive goes pending this week.

The big news last week was that the Federal Reserve decided to inch up interest rates for the first time in nearly a decade. They have also left the door open to future incremental increases in the base rate over the next several years. It remains to be seen what effect, if any, this policy change will have on the local real estate market. The real estate market in the bay area seems to work under a different set of rules, and often simply shrugs off policy changes such as this.

Enjoy your Christmas holiday!  Here’s the recap from last week:

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 12-20-2015:

San Carlos Housing Data 12-20-15 Prior Week
Closed Sales for the Week: 5 4
Average Sold Price: $1,790,000 $1,795,000
Average $/Sq Foot (Sold) $864 $944
Average Sold as Percentage Of List Price: 101% 108%
Average DOM of Closed Sales 24 15
No. of Homes Pending Sale: 17 19
No. of New Listings: 0 7
Total # of Active Listings: 5 9
Average Price of Active Listings: $1,477,000 $1,503,222
Average DOM of Active Listings: 11 8
Average $/Sq Foot (List) $644 $764
Active-Pending Ratio: 0.29 : 1 0.47 : 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 San Carlos Real Estate Week in Review: 12-13-15.

calendar24

The Scoop.

The needled barely budged last week compared to the week prior in San Carlos, which is to be expected in a slower time of the real estate year. Inventory remains very lean, with only 9 single-family homes still on the market — and that number will likely drop this week as several of the homes on the market will be taking offers. And if you’re looking for a condo or townhouse in San Carlos, you’re going to have to be even more patient, since there is only one unit for sale in the entire city.

The four homes that sold last week fetched an impressive $944/square foot, which shows that pricing has remained solid even in the waning months of the year. It will be interesting to see if the Federal Reserve decides to raise interest rates this week, and what effect it will have on our local market.

Here’s the recap from last week:

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 12-13-2015:

San Carlos Housing Data 12-13-15 Prior Week
Closed Sales for the Week: 4 4
Average Sold Price: $1,795,000 $1,603,250
Average $/Sq Foot (Sold) $944 $876
Average Sold as Percentage Of List Price: 108% 103%
Average DOM of Closed Sales 15 13
No. of Homes Pending Sale: 19 18
No. of New Listings: 4 7
Total # of Active Listings: 9 10
Average Price of Active Listings: $1,503,222 $1,563,600
Average DOM of Active Listings: 8 23
Average $/Sq Foot (List) $764 $773
Active-Pending Ratio: 0.47 : 1 0.56 : 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 San Carlos Real Estate Week in Review: 12-6-15.

calendar2

The Scoop.

The first week of December was off like a shot, with seven new single-family home listings to hit the market in San Carlos. This brought the inventory of homes for sale back up to 10, which is still not a whole lot to choose from, but certainly better than last week. Home buyers weren’t that busy last week simply because there was so little to choose from, and consequently only one home was put into contract.

Prices on homes that closed escrow last week were much closer to their original asking price, fetching only an average of 3% over. In fact, half of the homes that sold last week didn’t even achieve their asking price, which is yet another indication that the market is simply not quite as hot as it was in the spring.

Here’s the recap from last week:

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 12-6-2015:

San Carlos Housing Data 12-6-15 Prior Week
Closed Sales for the Week: 4 2
Average Sold Price: $1,603,250 $1,455,000
Average $/Sq Foot (Sold) $876 $1,124
Average Sold as Percentage Of List Price: 103% 120%
Average DOM of Closed Sales 13 7
No. of Homes Pending Sale: 18 21
No. of New Listings: 7 0
Total # of Active Listings: 10 6
Average Price of Active Listings: $1,563,600 $1,730,667
Average DOM of Active Listings: 23 54
Average $/Sq Foot (List) $773 $853
Active-Pending Ratio: 0.56 : 1 0.29 : 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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