If you still think the real estate market is stuck in the doldrums, today's housing market might shock you. Even people who are trying to follow trends are unaware of just how dramatic the changes in the market have been. The key fact that buyers and sellers need to know about Sonoma County real estate is that well priced homes are being bought much faster than they are coming on the market. Much faster. Did I say much faster? If you aren't prepared to fasten your buying seat belt, you may not be ready for this market.
Let's start with a simple comparison of homes added to the market with homes removed from the market. I simplified the many status changes into two columns; new and back on market in blue represents new inventory. The magenta column represents contingent, pending, and sold homes . Some people may quibble that a "contingent sale" isn't a completed sale and may end up back in inventory. That's true. Many home sale indexes (I know, indices is proper Latin...forgive me) like Case-Schiller rely on completed sales. It's more accurate, but it also misses the market inflection points when things really start to shift. That market shift is underway right now. You can wait for Case-Schiller to tell you it's okay to get back in the market, but you are already missing the big wave.
If there's only one idea you take away from this column, it should be this:
Homes are selling faster than they are coming on the market. Inventory is shrinking.
Ask any Sonoma County real estate agent working with buyers today and they will confirm the many serious real world implications of that simple fact.
- Multiple offers
- Highest and best requests
- Failed appraisals
- Intense frustration