The East Bay housing market is pulling out of the “holiday inventory slump”, but is gearing up for the annual “after Super Bowl” jump as sellers start preparing for the spring home market. Sellers have historically found that if they put their homes on the market before March, they have a better chance of getting traffic and offers from the pent up demand of buyers looking for available inventory after a shortage that began in late November.
Take a look at the Altos Research data for Oakland to see that inventory was on the decline starting in the fall.
Even with the decline of inventory, the sales prices have remained basically flat over the last few months. According to Trulia, the average sales price in Berkeley is at $1,000,500 with an 8% increase in prices year over year. In Oakland, the median sales price is $625,000, a 14% year over year gain. The Altos Research chart shows that inventory in Oakland has dropped, but days on the market are rising during the last few months, as more desirable properties quickly left the market, while other properties have stayed on the market longer, looking for buyers. In fact, 482 homes are currently in the pre-foreclosure, auction, or bank-owned stages of the foreclosure process.
Here is how the Berkeley market is behaving according to the Altos Research data that tracks real time data:
Again, you can see that Berkeley inventory has been steadily declining since November.
With so few homes on the market in Berkeley, the price fluctuated with the sale of lower end homes, but the median price has held at $1 million.
In looking at the surrounding cities of El Cerrito, Albany, Piedmont and Emeryville, which on average, realized a 15% increase in values, year over year, the entire region has relatively low inventory as we head out of the holidays and into the spring market.
In general, our ears on the street are hearing that there is going to be a shift in the market as sellers are considering leaving the East Bay, which will free up inventory for buyers. Check out our blog post next week as we dive into the factors that we believe will bring a change to the 2017 spring market.