Friday, November 18, 2005

Housing Sales Fall, Prices Rise in Marin

Well, I must say that the Marin IJ is sure acting out of character with publishing this article. I interpret the IJ's reversal as coming to terms with reality; Marin is clearly in the "denial phase" and is following the trend that is being seen throughout the rest of the state.

Some choice quotes:
"Marin's median single home price popped to $914,250 in October, but the pace of sales dropped off, continuing a seven-month slowdown experts blame on rising mortgage interest rates."

"Sales, however, were down to 261 in October from 278 in September and were flat with the 260 single homes sold in October 2004."

"McLaughlin, of West Bay Properties in Corte Madera, agreed with Prentice that the market was heading for more balance after the "feeding frenzy" of February and March. Properties are staying on the market longer, the inventory is higher and price reductions are common, he said."

""It's good news for buyers - there's a lot to choose from, and if you don't make up your mind today, and come back next week, the home still might be there," McLaughlin said."

"The Marin single home prices were slightly higher than across the nine-county Bay Area, but the sales trends were the same."

"Marin buyers "have definitely backed off, almost like the herd instinct," McLaughlin. He said a check of listings for the last 30 days shows 138 new sales started in Marin - an average of about four and a half sales opening a day."

""That's very little - in a peak market, you'll see 12 to 15 sales in a given day," McLaughlin said. "Even this time of year, which can be slower, you'll normally see eight to 10 sales openings a day.""

"McLaughlin...said only about 30 percent - or 234 - of the 787 single homes listed for sale in Marin for under $1 million were in contract as of this week."

""In February and March, we might have had 500 properties listed and 300 were in contract," McLaughlin said. Of 306 new single homes and condos listed in the last 30 days, only 46 have gone into contract, he said."

""At this point, if you want to sell your house, you're going to have to chase the buyers and reduce prices," McLaughlin said. "That's unusual for Marin.""
"That's unusual for Marin"? Wait a minute. I thought we were special, immune. Every one wants to live here, right? We have "intangibles" gosh darnit!


Blogger marine_explorer said...

"At this point, if you want to sell your house, you're going to have to chase the buyers and reduce prices," McLaughlin said. "That's unusual for Marin."

I seriously have to laugh how realtors don't miss a chance to suggest Marin's a housing hedge, even during a downturn. Who ever started this lame, unexcusable myth? One could also say that Marin's Shangri-La housing market is so far out of whack, what we're seeing isn't "unusual" at all. And guess what? This is only the beginning.

Nov 18, 2005, 3:05:00 PM  

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