ALAMEDA CA MARKET REPORT
This chart shows a very pronounced change in median prices (listed and sold) starting in third quarter 2008, the year that marked the real estate downturn.
For sale median prices came down by 20%, and this is nearly reflected in the median sold prices that came down by 16%
What's interesting to note is that in previous years, the median list price was always higher than median sold price -- sellers were still unrealistic about the value of their homes, and priced them like we were still in the boom years. Then by Q3 2010, reality set in. They began to price their homes aggressively and competitively --- and look what happened! Median sold price was higher than median list price! By Q3 2011, prices were on target.
This paints a picture for potential buyers who may still be wondering about how much markets have tumbled.
For example, if a property sold in 2008 and is in now in distress and is for sale, the buyer may be able to estimate a fair market value today by taking the previous sold price and reducing it by 16%. In Alameda CA there is a house that sold for $617K in 2007 and is being sold as a foreclosure (REO). It's probably worth around $456K today -- and potential buyers should craft their offer at around this price.
This is not a standard procedure. It could be a short cut, but one must still do a comparable market analysis to determine a realistic, competitive offer at, or close to market value.