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Get Real and Get Sold in 2009
1/2009
To understand the current status and future trends of the upper valley real estate market,two assumptions must be made: First, unlike so many other communities around the nation, including some very near, the upper valley real estate market is not in a crisis. Other terms being used to describe declining markets real estate markets include ‘blood bath’, ‘brutal’, and ‘spiraling’. The upper valley real estate market is none of those things.
The second assumption, which is more like stating the obvious, is we have been affected by the economic downturn that ushered in rare buyer’s market trend that has heels dug in.
A Polaroid snapshot of St. Helena’s 2008 real estate market, when compared to two recent Seller’s market years (2005 and 2006), reveals both assumptions:
 

I. 50% fewer homes sold in St. Helena in 2007 (67) and in 2008 (62) compared to the total homes sold in the seller’s markets of 2005 and 2006 (114 and 112 respectively).
II. It took twice the time to sell a St. Helena home in 2008 (200 days) compared to the seller’s market conditions of ‘05 and ‘06 when the average time to secure a buyer was less than 100 days.
III. The weighted average price of all SH homes sold in 2008 was $999,000. In 2007 the average was $1, 115,000. Compared to 2006, when the average sale reached an all time high of $1,841, a loss of 19.6% results.
 

These figures are not what sellers like to hear, and even harder to apply. The best possible news in the current environment of unprecedented challenges,

 
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