The San Carlos Real Estate Week in Review: 2-11-12.

February 13, 2012


San Carlos Real Estate Summary.

The active-to-pending ratio is one of several metrics that I use to measure the relative strength of a real estate market.  Simply put, it's just number of active listings divided by the number of pending sales.   In a slow market, one could expect to see that number between 4-5, which shows that there's a glut of inventory.   In a healthy market like we saw in 2011, that number hovered around 2 — this indicates that homes are selling quickly, but there's a steady supply of new listings to feed the pipeline.

For the past several weeks in San Carlos, the active-pending ratio has been in the tank, as you can see in the table below. It's not that often that this ratio falls below 1 — meaning that there more homes pending sale than for sale — but that's exactly the situation we've been in since about the beginning of the year.  (To be fair, it's important to note that a full 1/3 of these pending sales are actually short sales, which generally take  longer than normal sales to close.  This pulls the ratio a bit lower.)

But when you combine an abnormally low ratio with an inventory hovering in the mid-20's, it's clear that the growth of the market is being starved.   Here are the numbers for this week…

By The Numbers.

Below is a high-level snapshot of the market performance for single-family residences in San Carlos. This data is for the week ending 2-11-2012:

San Carlos Housing Data 2-11-12 Prior Week
Closed Sales for the Week:
5 4
Average Sold Price
$848,100 $728,875 (+16.3%)
Average $/Sq Foot
$487 $482
Sold Price vs Orig List (%) 91% 96%
Average DOM of Closed Sales 73 42
Inventory of Active Listings:
26 24 (+8.3%)
Average Price of Active Listings: $1,031,255 $1,006,203 (+2.5%)
Average DOM of Active Listings: 95 117
No. of Homes Pending Sale: 32 33
Active-Pending Ratio:
0.8 : 1 0.7 : 1

The San Carlos Open House Page.

If you're looking at open houses this weekend in San Carlos here's the only link you'll need: The San Carlos Open House Page. With one click, you'll get a “live” list of all the homes and condos that will be open this weekend in San Carlos! It's updated continuously from the MLS, so bookmark this link and you'll never have to wander around town looking for open houses again.

Single-Family Homes SOLD in San Carlos:

1905 Cedar Street, San Carlos

1905 Cedar Street, San Carlos

Below is a list of the single-family home contracts that closed escrow this past week in San Carlos. Click on the address of each to see the complete details.

Address Sold Price Orig. List Difference DOM
1905 Cedar Street
$1,105,000 $1,299,950 -$194,950 (-15%)
899 Crestview Drive $1,055,000 $998,000 +$57,000 (+5.7%)
891 Sunset Drive
$1,035,000 $1,200,000 -$165,000 (-13.8%)
130 Oakview Drive
$610,500 $586,000 +$24,500 (+4.2%)
309 Old County Road
$435,000 $460,698 -$25,698 (-5.6%)

(Click the “Homes Sold” sign below see all of the homes that have sold in San Carlos in the past 3 months.)

Homes Sold in San Carlos

Homes Sold in San Carlos


Single-Family Homes Pending Sale in San Carlos:

The following homes went “Pending Sale” this week. Click on the address of any of these homes for additional info:

Address DOM (days) List Price
41 Pine Avenue
20 $1,099,000
428 Sycamore Street
6 $880,000
12 Robin Way
208 $849,000
959 Holly Street
270 $469,888

(Click the “Homes Pending Sale” sign below to see ALL the homes that are Pending Sale in San Carlos.)

Homes Pending Sale in San Carlos


New Single-Family Home Listings in San Carlos:

159 Hilltop Drive, San Carlos

159 Hilltop Drive, San Carlos

Below are the new listings that hit the market this past week in San Carlos. Simply click on the address of each home to get the complete details.

Address List Price BR/BA Sq Ft (home/lot) Listed By
59 Hilltop Drive $1,675,000 5BR/2/2.5BA 3,125/12,800 John Sieling, Today Sothebys
168 Mesa Verde Way $1,598,000 4BR/3BA 3,120/10,824 Glenn Sennett, Coldwell Banker
353 Clifton Avenue $799,000 5BR/4BA 3,350/10,000 Anthony Galli, Coldwell Banker
228 Park Avenue $749,050 3BR/1BA 1,280/4,440 David Blewett, Intero
919 Woodland Avenue $699,000 3BR/1.5BA 1,300/6,250 Gail Rossetti, Rossetti Realty
958 Holly Street $489,950 3BR/2BA 910/5,900 Eliz Biachini, Coldwell Banker

(Click the “Homes For Sale” sign below to see ALL of the homes currently for Sale in San Carlos.)

Homes for Sale in San Carlos

Homes for Sale in San Carlos


What's Open This Weekend?

Click the “Open House” sign below to see ALL of the homes and condos scheduled to be open this weekend in San Carlos.

Open House in San Carlos

Open House in San Carlos


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(The “San Carlos Week in Review” series is a summary of new listings and home sales in San Carlos for the prior week.)


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  1. SC resident on February 13, 2012 at 4:45 pm

    Again, caught a mistake with you posting negative sale as positive. You need to change the Cedar sale from green to red (-15%).

  2. Chuck Gillooley on February 13, 2012 at 5:58 pm

    I could say that it was just a test to see if anyone was paying attention, but that wouldn’t be true. Thank you for catching that.

    Do I get half-credit for getting the math correct?

  3. michael on February 14, 2012 at 10:51 pm

    Chuck, with regard to your comment about 919 Woodland and the 25 offers it may have received, you have to admit that in that neighborhood, it was clearly underpriced to grab those 25 offers. According to Zillow, and in spite of how wrong they can be, it was priced almost $60k below zestimate value. If it ends up going for $800k or more, then I would say the house was in great demand and that is a good sign.

    Look at 1905 Cedar…great house, no yard but clearly overpriced at it’s original $1,399,950. It ended up going for $1,105,000…had they priced it at $999,000, it probably would have had 25 offers as well, yet gone for about the same price that it ended up selling for.

  4. Michael on March 14, 2012 at 2:42 am

    So it was in great demand, 919 Woodland went for $841k…$142k over asking price. Frenzy pricing is taking a chance and clearly paid off this time, but had they priced this home at $899k, it would have sat a while before eventually landing at a similar price.

    However those 24 losing parties are probably very bitter at having competed for a house that was manipulated to use those people to get a higher price. Any buyer in the sub $800k category didn’t have a chance at this house but thought they did based on the $699 price tag.

    At the end of the day, this strategy is keeping our values high, so I guess i should just say thank you.

  5. San Carlos Resident on March 14, 2012 at 11:03 pm

    You have to admit that 841k for this house was steal relative to other homes on the market and its location and lot size. 841k for 5 blocks off Laurel on a quiet street with a 6250 sq ft lot is a great deak. The house needed a little work but had a lot of character and was 3 bedroom to boot. I would take that house for 841k over similarly and even higher priced homes. I think the 699k helped the homeowners get that house because if it was priced at 799k like it should have been (or higher), 841k likely doesn’t get it.

  6. Chuck Gillooley on March 14, 2012 at 11:22 pm

    Both of you bring up very good points that highlight the downside of significantly underpricing a home — first of all, it will indeed encourage a bunch of offers that have absolutely no chance of winning. So while the final offer count on this home was 28 (from what I was told), it’s fair to assume that a significant portion of these offers were nowhere near $841K. So is it better to price a home low and get 28 offers, or price it closer to its actual value, and just get the top 4-5?

    Second, to SCR’s point…there is a psychological hurdle that prevents many buyers from bidding WAY above a posted list price — regardless of where you’re starting. Why? Because there’s an inherent belief that there’s at least some validity in the listed price. Consequently, it can prevent the final price from reaching its full potential if it starts artificially low. Is $841K a bargain price? That’s hard to say – I think this house needs quite a bit of work. But it would be very interesting to see what would happen if it were put back on the market at $799K (or higher) with all of the crazy stuff that’s happening in the San Carlos market right now.

    Thanks for both of your comments…

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