berkeley real estate: Hot Spring Market in the San Francisco East Bay: New Records Being Set - 04/21/13 06:22 AM
Sellers are benefiting from a perfect storm of economic factors right now. Increased confidence, low interest rates and historically low inventory are driving prices on some of the early spring offerings very substantially over list, to some truly staggering prices. We started with high prices in 2012, and prices have jumped higher and more steeply this first quarter.
New records for lowest amount of inventory. We currently have in our six-city local region (Albany, Berkeley, El Cerrito, Kensington, Oakland and Piedmont) enough inventory to last only two weeks! Oakland just lead the nation in the steepest decline in inventory from this time … (4 comments)

berkeley real estate: East Bay Market Update--Low Inventory & High Demand: Rising Prices - 11/12/12 02:25 PM
Here’s the quick summary of the basic question: what has happened in our East Bay Area real estate market in the past year. A year ago all the talk was about buyers sitting on the fence. Buyer apathy and lack of willingness to make a decision changed quickly to motivation. The change occurred quickly at the beginning of 2012 in SF, two months later in the East Bay, mid-March, specifically. Rates had been great last year. Yes, they’re even better now, but that wasn’t the big difference. Issues of confidence were huge: buyers needed to see that the bottom had been reached before they were … (5 comments)

berkeley real estate: Walkability Wins as Most Desired Feature in San Francisco Bay Area - 07/28/12 06:04 AM
I recently had the opportunity to share current real estate market updates with colleagues from San Francisco, Sonoma and Marin Counties. We had gathered as a group of Realtors particularly interested in “green” and sustainable practices, to share our stories with Build it Green, a local non-profit that encourages green building practices. We learned that our markets share some key aspects:
Multiple offers are being received on the most desirable properties There is lots of cash in these areas, and it’s coming from young couples, downsizing boomers and investors (more about that in a GreenBungalows article) An increase in off-market sales occurred in all … (7 comments)

berkeley real estate: Multiple Offers Have Become Commonplace! Buyers: Plan Your Strategy! - 06/07/12 03:11 AM
Since mid-March of this year multiple offers have become a common occurrence in this part of the San Francisco Bay Area's East Bay's real estate market. In most of Berkeley, Albany, Rockridge and other desirable neighborhoods, offers from two to 24 have been received on properties. Some of these offers have been astonishing--not just in the amount offered, but in the strength of the terms. So here is my number one tip for buyers to keep in mind when faced with competition, starting with context:
Multiple offers are an economic reaction to low supply and high demand. Rather than being discouraged … (2 comments)

berkeley real estate: What are the 2012 Buyers Looking for in the East Bay? - 02/26/12 10:12 AM
Last year, even with gorgeous interest rates and discounted prices, it was tough to get home buyers off the fence. Getting a “bargain” became more importaa bit more willing to paynt than getting a good home. If the first two months of 2012 are a true indication, buyers this year seem to acknowledge that these phenomenal rates won't last forever and nor will these low prices. Buyers seem ready to buy this year!
It seems the majority of buyers, especially the younger professionals, want to be near amenities: cafes, restaurants, bookstores, transportation. Mostly coffee! I so wish I’d patented my “latté … (2 comments)

berkeley real estate: Ultra Charming New Listing in North Berkeley Hills, Berkeley CA - 01/28/12 09:25 AM
I am delighted to present a wonderful home not far from my house in North Berkeley. Right now there is a regatta in the San Francisco Bay, and you can watch that from the living room of this new listing at 923 Creston Road in Berkeley, CA.
 
You will find the utmost of charm, calm and quietude in this split-level North Berkeley hills home! Only a few minutes to Monterey Market or the Gourmet Ghetto, and yet you feel as if you're a million miles away from the cares of everyday life once you arrive on coveted Creston Road. San … (0 comments)

berkeley real estate: Spacious Queen Anne Duplex near Berkeley's UC Campus - 12/03/11 06:30 PM
Spacious Duplex near UC Berkeley campus … (1 comments)

berkeley real estate: A Christmas snapshot of the Berkeley, CA housing market - 12/25/10 09:38 AM
You've all seen the headlines:  Plunging Prices, Stagnant Sales, Foreclosures lurking. The Berkeley, CA area market has remained stronger than most during this market correction. But this past month most of the extended Berkeley area has seen very limited activity. In the past three weeks less than one property has closed per day in Berkeley, CA. Of those 20 sales, 6 closed above list, 8 closed at list, and only one was more than 10% below. Thirteen of those sales were between $200K and $510K, with high price at $1,175K (two of those). Sold prices are more than $100K below last December, … (0 comments)

berkeley real estate: A milestone: 33-1/3! - 12/05/10 10:13 AM
When I was 33 years, three months and the appropriate number of days old, I held a party for myself with invitations done on round paper disks, with the details included like songs on a record. You know, those big black vinyl things. . .OK, I'm really showing my age! Well today, before submitting this post, I noted that I had earned 33,332 points with Active Rain! So here's to reaching a third of 100K in this great on-line real estate community. And appropriately enough, just this morning I had an email from a prospective buyer who had found me here … (4 comments)

berkeley real estate: As Spring begins, so does the North Berkeley Real Estate Market - 03/21/10 04:56 PM
For the past week in Berkeley, CA we've had gorgeous spring weather. Starting with the narcissus, we've had a progression of beautiful things in bloom: camellias, magnolias, daffodils, freesias and now tulips, cyclamen and a deep blue California native ceanothus. It's thrilling to hear the buzz of bees gorging themselves on pollen as they move through the blue blossoms.

And as our gardens have come fully into flower, so is our real estate market emerging. Unlike so many other parts of the country where the phrase "glut of inventory" defines their condition, we have had many months of very few … (1 comments)

berkeley real estate: Berkeley, CA-area 2009 market summary: Lower inventory than previous year; still lots of bids! - 02/08/10 06:42 PM
For those of us active in the real estate market in Berkeley, CA, and the adjoining communities, 2009 was frustrating. I kept telling myself it was primarily because of low inventory. With not enough properties to show our clients we had buyers who were disappointed not to be able to find the home they wanted here. Others found their desired home, only to have it elude them as one of the several other offers received was the winning bid. In a surprising number of cases in Berkeley in 2009, the winning offers were all cash (see my post below from Dec. 2009).
Some took their … (0 comments)

berkeley real estate: Why has there been such low inventory in the Berkeley area? - 01/07/10 09:58 AM
Berkeley, and the surrounding communities of Albany, Kensington as well as strong neighborhoods of Oakland such as Rockridge are experiencing the problem of low inventory, and did through most of 2009. I hear that the same condition applies to several neighborhoods in San Francisco. We're not just talking about the seasonal slowdown we would expect in the winter months.
We know that the high unemployment rate we're experiencing, especially in California, means that many home owners are concerned about whether they'll continue to have salaries to support their current mortgage. When a job could be at risk it's hardly a time … (1 comments)

berkeley real estate: Berkeley, CA Market Update: November 09 sold prices down 5% from year ago; median sold higher than median list - 12/06/09 05:33 AM
We continue to read in the national news about the "glut of inventory" that exists in many parts of the country. In my area, in the East Bay region of the San Francisco Bay Area, specifically in in Berkeley, CA, we have struggled with too little inventory all year. Last month we had 41 single family residential sales, while 42 residential properties appeared on the market. We could use more than a net of just one property! We currently have under two months' inventory on the market.
If we take a more detailed look at our market and compare to what … (0 comments)

berkeley real estate: Where has all this cash come from? - 12/02/09 02:05 PM
This has been an unusual year for our local East Bay real estate market for a number of reasons. The most-talked about, of course, are reductions in prices from the peak a couple years ago, the reduced inventory from what we consider the norm, and the existence of distressed properties in our Berkeley-area market, even though they represent only a small percentage of the total.
Buyers in Berkeley, Albany, Kensington and the Rockridge neighborhood of Oakland in particular are faced with a frustrating combination: record low interest rates and tax credits that inspire them to buy, in a market with very … (2 comments)

berkeley real estate: An autumn market update for Berkeley, CA - 11/20/09 11:16 AM
Since August there's been a tangible sense that the market was getting stronger, and not just in the immediate Berkeley area. Buyers who had the financial means to buy decided, finally, to get off the fence. Properties that had been sitting for some time went into contract as a result. We also began to see significantly more all-cash sales, and in higher price ranges. Two of the properties for which I had buyers recently had competition from all-cash buyers at the $1.0 - 1.4M range.
So far this year only one of my buyers has been fortunate enough to get their … (3 comments)

berkeley real estate: An Early Summer Snapshot of the High-End North Berkeley Market - 07/11/09 06:52 PM
I recently was on the listing side of two wonderful, "very Berkeley" Arts & Crafts homes in North Berkeley. Neither of them had classic floor plans, but both had tremendous amounts of original wood  and exceptional period details, multiple fireplaces, updated kitchens and larger than normal lot sizes. In both cases I was successful in getting our local paper to feature these homes in the Real Estate sections during their marketing period. That special marketing, an individual website for each property with lots of photos, plus my marketing to a specialized group of Arts & Crafts and period home enthusiasts, resulted … (0 comments)

berkeley real estate: What's it like to be a high-end buyer in Berkeley right now? - 07/09/09 02:32 PM
Ask my high-end buyers -- those who plan to spend more than $1.2M on their home purchase -- and they will undoubtedly comment about two problems, both of which have gotten only worse as the year has progressed.
1. Limited inventory. Berkeley's residential inventory has been roughly half of what existed in 2008. In properties listed at $1.2M and above, inventory during the past 12 months is down 12% from the previous 12 months. Interestingly though, median price has changed very little. Median price for the $1.2M and above sector in Berkeley in June 2007 was $1.389M. In June 2008 median … (0 comments)

berkeley real estate: Which California did you mean?! - 05/06/08 12:05 PM
As I read the newly released information from Zillow about property values I was once again reminded how crucial it is to be precise about what area you refer to when speaking about value trends. We start with: "California one of three states with largest losses in property values."  Then we go to the supposedly local information: "San Francisco values down 13% from last year". But read on: San Francisco, Oakland and Fremont are all defined as the same area! If you're reading this from another state you cannot fully appreciate the absurdity of this collection of different markets being lumped … (0 comments)

 
Arlene Baxter, Listing/Buying agent, Historic to Green, 2012 REALTOR of the Year, Berkeley Association Berkeley CA & environs (Red Oak Realty)

Arlene Baxter

Listing/Buying agent, Historic to Green, 2012...

Berkeley, CA

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Red Oak Realty

Address: @GreenBungalows on Twitter, Berkeley, CA, 94707

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Arlene Baxter's musings on the state of real estate in Berkeley, CA and its neighboring communities, and the joys and pleasures of this area that inspire so many fine folks to want to live here. In-depth East Bay real estate market updates, restaurant reviews, architectural appreciation and garden gandering!


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