Selling a Los Gatos home: how long will it take?
How long will it take to sell your Los Gatos home? If you own a house in Los Gatos, 95030 or 95032, the answer is “it depends”. Naturally part of the formula will be the condition of the property and how aggressively it’s priced. The pace also will be a function of schools and price point. Generally speaking, the lower priced single family homes tend to sell the fastest (assuming that it’s priced and marketed well and doesn’t have any “issues”). That’s true in all neighborhoods and subdivisions. (The Los Gatos Mountains area, or 95033, is a different market.)
Today, let’s take a look at the Los Gatos real estate market for home sellers by pricing tier and high school district with a view toward the number of days on the market. (You can read about the ratio of actives to solds and the absorption rate at the article linked below under Related Reading.)
We’ll begin with a look at the town as a whole. For homes actively listed and not yet sold or sale pending in town, have a look at the number of properties for sale and the days on market (“DOM”) for each price point:
The average “days on market” for all homes is 70, so you might think that this is how long it will take to get your home into contract. That’s not the case, though, as some homes never sell (even in a red hot economy like ours). Others sell really fast.
What we can see, though, is that the homes in the lowest price point haven’t been on the market long – a hint that this is the market segment that is moving.
Next, let’s have a look at the part of LG 95030 & 95032 with Los Gatos High School.
Notice that the average days on market for this group is 47, not 70. Most groups have double digit days on the market. So perhaps not flying off the market, but not bad by national standards, and certainly faster than the town as a whole. It looks like the answer to “how long will it take to sell” may be improved by being “in the schools”.
How long will it take in the areas with either Westmont High or Leigh High? Overall, a much longer “days on market” are present for the active listings with 124. But the lower prices, up to $2 million, are extremely fast with the few homes in that band only being available for about a week or less.
The actively listed properties are everything available – the good as well as the not so good. If we look at pending sales, though, we’ll get an idea on how fast buyers take the best homes out of the market. Let’s check on the homes under contract now.
What a change – instead of 70 days on the market (all current active listings that are available), instead we have just 36 days for the pendings across Los Gatos 95030 and 95032. There’s a large gap between what sellers are offering and what buyers are taking!
For Los Gatos single family homes in the Los Gatos Saratoga Joint Union High School District, here’s how the pending sales stack up:
And for those under contract in the Campbell Union High School District:
It’s hard to know how much is “the market” versus how much is the pricing tier when there is only 1 home in any particular price point. In any segment, selling in 4 days for a luxury home is pretty remarkable. Very few home sellers would anticipate a good offer and ratified contract that fast. Overall, though, the main message to me is that about half the homes may be selling (36 pending vs 70 available). It’s just one data point, but it is worth paying attention to.
Lastly, a view of the recently sold and closed properties – those houses that have closed escrow in the last 30 days in Los Gatos with the 95030 or 95032 zip codes. These are the true success stories. They know how long it took to sell.
Here it is almost shocking that the average days on the market on these 16 sold homes was a mere 12. These houses likely sold 30-60 days ago, when of course there was much less inventory. (January is often a great month in which to sell as there’s very little competition.) And of course it’s almost as shocking that there are only 16 houses represented here. Is the market slowing down or is inventory just rising? We have seen inventory increase dramatically, so my hunch is it’s the latter.
With Los Gatos High it’s even shorter – just 10 days. The longest was 18 for 3 properties between $2.5 and $3 million:
And for the areas with Leigh High School or Westmont High School:
This looks almost sluggish by comparison with 24 days on the market – but it’s only 3 homes. I’d have to suggest that this isn’t enough data to be truly helpful.
The bottom line is this: not every home that gets listed will sell. If you only look at the properties which have successfully sold and closed, you may think that this is what will happen for your house (or any house) with that price point, condition, and schools. But it is not guaranteed. There are, in every market, homes that do not sell. There are also homes that seem to always be a little off: they are priced too high, the condition isn’t up to par, the home is hard to see (showings are too restrictive), perhaps the sellers never leave, maybe there’s no sign or lock box or open houses allowed.
The success stories are something to study – especially the pending sales, as they are more recent than the closed sales. What are they doing right? Aggressive price, good photos, compelling descriptions? How easy were they to see? Were there presale inspections and disclosures ready? If you want to sell, study success. That’s where you want to be.
In many cases, we see a tale of two markets: the homes that sell fast and those that don’t sell or take much longer to sell. Often, if a property becomes a contingent or pending sale within 2 weeks, the sale price to list price ratio is much higher than if it takes 3 – 4 weeks to sell.
With my seller clients, no matter the location or price point, my goal is to sell within 2 weeks. That’s where the greatest sale price tends to be in this Silicon Valley market. We – the sellers and I – do a whole lot of work upfront, before the house is ever seen by a buyer in person or online – to set it up for success.
Interested in selling your Los Gatos home? Please email or call me and we can discuss the market and possibly working together. No obligation, of course.
Los Gatos real estate market trends and statistics (on the Valley of Heart’s Delight blog)