A resource for folks living in or moving to Los Gatos, by Mary Pope-Handy

Housing Market

What kind of a home can you buy in Los Gatos for $1.25 million?

How far does your money go in Los Gatos when it comes to buying a home? As always, location is the biggest factor – and within that arena, schools are often a driving factor on pricing.  Today we’ll look at real estate buying power of 1.25 million by zip code and high school district (95030, 95032, 95033).

For single family homes, the 95030 zip code with Los Gatos schools tends to be the priciest (this is probably at least in part because many home buyers find living near downtown LG to be very desireable). and the Los Gatos Mountains area tends to be the least expensive of the three areas.  As you can see in the chart below, the cost of housing is very much graded by both the zip code and the school district.

What can 1.25 mil buy you in Los Gatos?

What about the Los Gatos condo and townhome option – how much home can 1.25 million buy there?

In the last 90 days, there have been only 15 closings of townhouses and condos combined  in Los Gatos 95030 and 95032 (there are none in the mountains or the 95033 area) and in both high school districts, so that’s pretty scant info to go on.

 95030 & Los Gatos High – just one townhome sold at any price for $960,000 (list price was $949,000 with 1500 SF, 3 bed, 2.5 baths ($568.72 per SF) * Just one sale in here, and not “in range” makes this info less helpful than we’d like it to be.  Normally this area would be more expensive per SF.

95032 & Los Gatos High – just 4 condos and townhomes combined which sold between $1 million and $1.5 million (including a buyer sale of mine): av list price $1,042,667  and average sale price $1,075,667, average square footage 1464 and average price per sf $736.77

95032 & Leigh or Westmont High – 5 sales in the $1 mil – $1.5 million range, av list price $1,108,300 and av sale price $1,162,000.  Average home size 1,657  SF and average price per SF $708.77.

It is possible to get a nice Los Gatos home for under 1.25 million but if you want to live in downtown Los Gatos with the 95030 zip code and Los Gatos High, it will mean getting a small home!  You could get a larger place “in the schools” if you are OK purchasing a townhome.  Or go a little further out to get much more “home for the money” – quite a bit more if you go into the Los Gatos Mountains.

Contact Mary NowWant to buy a Los Gatos home?  Please contact me and we can set up a time to chat in person, confidentially: 408 204-7673 or email me: mary@popehandy (dot) com

Los Gatos houses for sale between $1,000,000 and $1,500,000

  1. 4 beds, 3 full baths
    Home size: 2,266 sq ft
    Lot size: 5.94 ac
    Year built: 1983
    Walk Score®: 0
  2. 3 beds, 2 full baths
    Home size: 1,600 sq ft
    Lot size: 8,058 sqft
    Year built: 1954
    Walk Score®: 33
  3. 3 beds, 2 full, 1 half baths
    Home size: 2,200 sq ft
    Lot size: 14,374 sqft
    Year built: 1968
    Walk Score®: 1
  4. 4 beds, 2 full, 1 half baths
    Home size: 2,114 sq ft
    Lot size: 435 sqft
    Year built: 1999
    Walk Score®: 38
  5. 3 beds, 3 full baths
    Home size: 1,720 sq ft
    Lot size: 13,721 sqft
    Year built: 1916
    Walk Score®: 47

See all Real estate in the city of Los Gatos.
(all data current as of 5/24/2017)

Listing information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Read full disclaimer.

Los Gatos condos and townhomes for sale between $1,000,000 and $1,500,000

  1. 4 beds, 3 full baths
    Home size: 2,122 sq ft
    Lot size: 2,221 sqft
    Year built: 1977
    Walk Score®: 23
  2. 3 beds, 2 full baths
    Home size: 1,218 sq ft
    Lot size: 2,657 sqft
    Year built: 1972
    Walk Score®: 24
  3. 3 beds, 3 full baths
    Home size: 2,450 sq ft
    Lot size: 2,700 sqft
    Year built: 1969
    Walk Score®: 36
  4. 3 beds, 2 full, 1 half baths
    Home size: 1,750 sq ft
    Lot size: 2,047 sqft
    Year built: 2008
    Walk Score®: 41
  5. 3 beds, 2 full baths
    Home size: 1,420 sq ft
    Lot size: 3,484 sqft
    Year built: 1977
    Walk Score®: 23

See all Real estate in the city of Los Gatos.
(all data current as of 5/24/2017)

Listing information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Read full disclaimer.

The Real Estate Market Trends in Los Gatos

Los Gatos Home Sale Trends: it really depends on your segment of the market

How’s the real estate market in the Town of Los Gatos? The real estate market trends in Los Gatos varies from one price point and neighborhood to the next, from one type of housing to the next, and even between the town’s two zip codes, 95030 and 95032. Here we’ll take a view of the overall movement in the market; please understand that it may or may not apply to your particular Los Gatos home so please call or email me for specific information relating to your property.

Overall, Los Gatos continues to be a seller’s market, though not as deep as in other places in Santa Clara County (it’s wild in Cupertino, Sunnyvale, Palo Alto). Inventory is better than a year ago, inching toward more normalcy while remaining on the scarce side.

Today I pulled the data from MLSListings.com using their “statistics” tool (any Realtor can do this who’s a member of the MLS).  The numbers below represent single family homes, or houses, in the Los Gatos zip codes of 95030 and 95032, all price ranges, school districts, home sizes etc.

Real Estate Market Trends in Los Gatos

2015-8-25 Los Gatos real estate statistics 95030, 95032

 

The luxury market over about $3 or $4 million is usually more sluggish than the entry level homes, so what happens if we don’t go that high?

And now, same criteria but just homes under $ 2,000,000:

Los Gatos real estate market for homes listed under 2 mil

 

As you can see, the sale price to list price ratio for these 240 houses is a little higher and the days on market a bit shorter if we focus on just the homes offered at under $2 million.  We could further refine this ad infinitum but Realtors often say that the best price will come with a fast sale (some sellers feel like if the home goes sale pending in just 2 weeks, it was too soon and they left money on the table).  So let’s check it out.  The next set is the same as above but only for homes that went under contract in 14 days or less:

Los Gatos Stats DOM 14 or less

Not only are the $2 million dollar or less homes the ones moving better, but the 130 of them (out of 240) that did sell within 14 days really moved fast (9 days on average) and with a much higher sale price to list price ratio!

This is why it is so key to drill down what’s happening to the micro market level.  The monthly average for 95030 & 95032 in Los Gatos was 101.3% for all homes, but how very different it is for those under $2 million that sell within a couple of weeks!  Home buyers and real estate investors who rely on only those general numbers will be 4% off (about the amount of a typical price reduction) – plenty enough by which to lose the sale.

What can throw your Los Gatos property’s home values:

  • having a pool with a small backyard (pool removal may make you money) or NOT having a pool with an acre or more
  • additions that you love but most buyers consider a detraction
  • smaller than normal kitchen
  • home in worse repair or lack of updating than typical
  • being adjacent to something undesirable, such as a busy road, high voltage lines, or train tracks
  • bad odors from pets, strong cooking, cigarette or cigar smoke etc.

If you are thining of buying or selling in Los Gator or nearby, please reach out to me and let’s talk about working together. To be successful and to get the most out of your transaction, it’s key to get the data that is relevant to the house in question and not just wing it based on zip code or city wide data.  Los Gatos real estate and Silicon Valley real estate require a more sophisticated approach!

For those who want to do more research, here is a great resource

For info on Los Gatos or anywhere in Santa Clara County, San Mateo County or Santa Cruz County, please have a look at my online Real Estate Report.

 

Home prices in Los Gatos & Monte Sereno: how much home can your money buy?

money blockHow far will your home buying dollar stretch if your goal is to buy Los Gatos real estate or Monte Sereno real estate? Housing prices in these areas are steep, but it’s interesting how different the market is from one price point, zip code, and school district to the next.

Today I spent some time doing the very mundane task of pulling and crunching the data from MLSListings.com to give my readers and clients a sense of the housing market in Los Gatos and Monte Sereno.  I teased it out by zip code and high school district (476 is Los Gatos-Saratoga Joint Union High School District and 473 is Campell Union High School District).  The 95032 zip code stretches to the far east and far west corners of this area  and if there were more sales I’d want to pull out the west vs east parts of the zip code – but with scant inventory and sales, that just wouldn’t work well right now.

The following statistics reflect Los Gatos and Monte Sereno single family home sales in the last 90 days in the 95030 zip code:

There are very very few homes in 95030 with the Campbell Union HSD, but there are a few and in the last 90 days there were two such sales / closings.  Obviously I cannot break 2 sales into 4 pricing quartiles too well, so left them lumped together – but you can see from the price per square foot that this area is selling incredibly well!

For those who insist on 95030 “in the schools”, the good news is that the real estate market is much softer here than in much of the valley – homes are generally selling at or under list price, rather than over, and they are not selling, on average, with just 10 days on the market or less.  Some do, of course – but most do not.  That makes it a great buying opportunity!

95030

 

Los Gatos and Monte Sereno single family home sales in the last 90 days in the 95032 zip code:

Next let’s look at Los Gatos and Monte Sereno 95032.  MOST of Monte Sereno is in the 95030 zip code, but a portion is not and has 95032 and/or Campbell Union HSD.

For the part of 95032 with CUHSD, the market is actually quite hot with most sales at 105-106% of list price.  Please note that in this grouping, there’s a very big jump in what you get for your money between the under $1 million quartile and the next quartile up – the house size about doubles, actually, but the price does not likewise double.  The next tier up has a far smaller jump, but when I was exporting the date from the MLS I saw that there was a very large clustering of homes sold between about 1.3 and 1.9 million and almost just combined them since an awful lot were sitting right around 1.5 – 1.7 million.  In any event, if you want to live in Los Gatos with about 2500 Square Feet with Leigh or Westmont High, the homes are running about $1.5 to $2 million.  Often they are a little higher on the west side of town as opposed to the east – my best guess is that it’s because that end is closer to pricy Saratoga and is a closer commute to many of the high teck work places.

The 95032 area “in the schools” is popular – you get a more affordable zip code with the famed Los Gatos schools. Interesting that again, this area is not as hot a market as the part of LG and MS with the Campbell Union HSD.  Perhaps that is because the elementary and middle schools are now very comparable, and only the high schools have a gap?  Many buyers are not willing to pay a giant premium for Los Gatos High – though some, of course, are.  (And they will also be happy to be in a location closer to downtown.)

95032

 

So where are the opportunities in this market?

Buyers:  If you want to buy in Los Gatos and get a home with Los Gatos Schoools, the market is not as competitive as the areas further from downtown with Union or Campbell schools. It is not cheaper, but it’s not quite so competitive, and you may not need to give away all your rights just to buy a home. Also, many Silicon Valley home buyers will push themselves to get into a home or school or zip code.  If you are able to get out of the bottom tier and into the 2nd from the bottom tier of pricing, you will find less competition and a whole lot more house for the money in most cases (just check the price per SF).

Sellers: Ovviously it’s a great time to sell a home in Los Gatos and Monte Sereno, and some segments are a whole lot hotter than others.  With the right pricing, staging, pre-sale prep and marketing, a solid home in this area can sell in under a month and often in under 2 weeks.  Home buyers are clamoring to live in Los Gatos and are often frightened by biting off more than they can chew, especially after the last mega recession, so having a good plan to ease buyers’ fears is truly imperative for selling fast and at top dollar (those two usually go together).

Interested in buying or selling a house in Los Gatos or Monte Sereno? Please give me a call or shoot me an email and we can set up a time to talk and see if we might work well together.  I’m a Los Gatos resident and a Los Gatos Realtor, a valley native and I appreciate the nuances of our area and market.

Los Gatos Real Estate Market Trends

January 11, 2011

December 2010 sales numbers in Los Gatos

December was a good month for sales of houses in Los Gatos, showing a dramatic 63% increase in the number of closed sales over the month before. Inventory was down sharply too, further increasing the odds of a sale in December.  With lower inventory and buyers jumping on interest rates as they began to creep up, it was a sellers market for this part of the Los Gatos real estate market.  For many more details, click on the link below.  A sumary of the number follows directly beneath it.

The Los Gatos Real Estate Market Trends Report: Single Family Homes (houses & duet homes)

December 2010:  Sales increased 63.2% from the month before, and were up 14.8% year-over-year. Prices slipped in Dec 2010 with the median price dipping 13% from the previous month, down 15% compared to last year. The average price fell 7.4%, a yearly loss of 10.3%. Inventory fell 26.7% from last month, and was down 10% year-over-year.

Trends At a Glance Dec 2010 Previous Month Year-over Year
Median Price $1,000,000 $1,150,000 (-13.0%) $1,176,000 (-15.0%)
Average Price $1,203,520 $1,299,320 (-7.4%) $1,342,370 (-10.3%)
No. of Sales 31 19 (+63.2%) 27 (+14.8%)
Pending Properties 39 48 (-18.8%) 31 (+25.8%)
Active 87 124 (-29.8%) 109 (-20.2%)
Sale vs. List Price 96.5% 94.5% (+2.1%) 96.8% (-0.2%)
Days on Market 69 75 (-7.5%) 59 (+17.2%)

The Condo market in Los Gatos is another story! December saw a slight improvement in market conditions but it remains a buyers market for Los Gatos condominium or townhouse buyers.  The prices (average and median) both slipped, as did the list price to sales price ratio, accompanied by a longer “days on market”, underlying the soft market.

The Los Gatos Real Estate Market Trends Report: Condominiums & Townhouses 
(aka condos & townhomes)

December 2010: Sales increased 12.5% from the month before, and were up 12.5% year-over-year.  Prices slipped in Dec 2010 with the median price dipping 7% from the previous month, down 7.4% compared to last year. The average price fell 6.6%, a yearly loss of 16.5%. Inventory fell 18.8% from last month, and was down 20.4% year-over-year.

Trends At a Glance Dec 2010 Previous Month Year-over Year
Median Price $520,000 $559,000 (-7.0%) $561,500 (-7.4%)
Average Price $493,267 $527,988 (-6.6%) $590,738 (-16.5%)
No. of Sales 9 8 (+12.5%) 8 (+12.5%)
Pending Properties 5 10 (-50.0%) 9 (-44.4%)
Active 34 38 (-10.5%) 40 (-15.0%)
Sale vs. List Price 95.2% 99.0% (-3.9%) 97.2% (-2.1%)
Days on Market 107 38 (+181.7%) 103 (+3.2%)

November 2010’s numbers for Los Gatos residential real estate sales – first for houses, then condos:

Trends At a Glance Nov 2010 Previous Month Year-over Year
Median Price $1,150,000 $1,080,000 (+6.5%) $1,360,000 (-15.4%)
Average Price $1,299,320 $1,305,570 (-0.5%) $1,412,730 (-8.0%)
No. of Sales 19 32 (-40.6%) 31 (-38.7%)
Pending Properties 48 45 (+6.7%) 46 (+4.3%)
Active 124 141 (-12.1%) 142 (-12.7%)
Sale vs. List Price 94.5% 96.4% (-1.9%) 96.2% (-1.8%)
Days on Market 75 33 (+127.0%) 63 (+19.0%)

Trends At a Glance Nov 2010 Previous Month Year-over Year
Median Price $559,000 $525,500 (+6.4%) $573,500 (-2.5%)
Average Price $527,988 $534,833 (-1.3%) $560,394 (-5.8%)
No. of Sales 8 6 (+33.3%) 8 (0.0%)
Pending Properties 10 6 (+66.7%) 10 (0.0%)
Active 38 44 (-13.6%) 43 (-11.6%)
Sale vs. List Price 99.0% 96.0% (+3.1%) 96.5% (+2.6%)
Days on Market 38 101 (-62.6%) 95 (-60.1%)

The real estate market will vary based on zip code, school district, price point, square footage of home & land etc., so this is only a very broad overview.  Information for your home’s segment of the market could be very different.  For instance, there’s a huge difference betwen the luxury home market and the entry level markets in Los Gatos.  Often there’s a big gap between a “walk to town” home and one that’s remote. So too with “sale type”: regular vs short sale vs bank owned. Loads of variables.  Please contact me for specific info on your area or part of the market.

Want a longer timeframe, such as annual or quarterly report, or the performance of the market going back a few years?  You can view the 2010 annual report, qua
rt
erly reports or view sales around any address in Santa Clara County (Campbell, Saratoga, San Jose and also areas of San Jose such as Cambrian Park or Almaden Valley) by visiting
www.popehandy.rereport.com.

To see the most recent posts or articles on this topic, please click here:
Los Gatos Homes & Housing Market

Interested in selling or buying a home in Los Gatos? Please call or email me today!
Mary Pope-Handy, Realtor, Sereno Group
408 204-7673  mary (at) popehandy.com

Monte Sereno Market at a Glance June 2010

June 20, 2010

Monte Sereno is a small city of approximately 4,000 residents.  Prices there are a little more expensive than Los Gatos, but the two areas are almost like family as they share police, schools, parks and more. 

Monte Sereno real estate market update for June 2010

Here’s a quick look at the real estate inventory (homes for sale) in Monte Sereno and the absorption rate.  There were NO short sales or bank owned homes either for sale or recently closed, so all of the numbers below reflect “regular” sales.  All together, the “months of inventory” for Monte Sereno is 9.25. That’s a very high number for the absorption rate and it indicates that it’s a strong buyer’s market in Monte Sereno.

 

Monte Sereno Homes for Sale, Recently Closed & Absorption Rate by Price Band

Monte Sereno, like everywhere else in Santa Clara County, varies from one location & price point to the next.  The most affordable homes are in a very different market than the most lavish luxury homes. So let’s see how it plays out if we break it down by price point.

Monte Sereno Houses List Price For Sale  Closed in last month Months of Inventory
Up to $999,999 0 0 n/a
$1,000,000 to $1,499,999 1 2 0.5
$1,500,000 to $1,999,999 12 2 6
$2,000,000 to $2,499,999 10 0 8
$2,500,000 to $2,999,999 3 0 8
$3,000,000 and up 11 0 8
       

Llike the rest of Silicon Valley, Monte Sereno has its hottest segment of the realty market at its “entry level” price range.  For this city, that means homes priced between $1 million and $1.5 million.  The market cools as prices rise, until nothing seems to be closing at all and the months of inventory are “infinite”.

Pending Sales in Monte Sereno

Looking at the pending sales, though, homes are selling in higher prices.  At the moment there are six houses which are under contract in Monte Sereno. The list prices range from $1.1 million to $3.688 million.  The average list price of these properties is about $2.1 million.

Monte Sereno Houses  List Price Under Contract (sale pending)
Up to $999,999 0
$1,000,000 to $1,499,999 3
$1,500,000 to $1,999,999 1
$2,000,000 to $2,499,999 0
$2,500,000 to $2,999,999 0
$3,000,000 and up 2

While the recent  sales don’t show much activity over $2,000,000, there are two pendings between $3 mil and $4 mil in Monte Sereno, so the absorption rate will be changing as these higher priced homes close escrow.  And we see again that the majority of pendings are on the lower end of the Monte Sereno scale (expensive in any area but relatively affordable here). What seems most consistent is this: the homes most likely to sell in Monte Sereno are those priced in the most affordable ranges.   More expensive homes are selling, but the “constant” is the desireabiity of the entry level market there.

April 2010 Real Estate Sales Numbers for Los Gatos Now Ready

May 06, 2010

My Santa Clara County Real Estate Report is now updated for the April 2010 sales

Countywide, there are now more pending homes than available homes for sale here in Silicon Valley!  But how about in Los Gatos?  The ratio is about half as many pendings to availables here, both for houses and for condominiums or townhomes.  (The list price to sales price ratio is also lower here – countywide it’s at about 100% but here, as you can see below, it’s around 96%.)

Get the full report for Los Gatos homes & real estate online.

Here’s the summary for Los Gatos houses & duet homes:

Trends At a Glance Apr 2010 Previous Month Year-over Year
Median Price $1,275,000 $942,500 (+35.3%) $955,000 (+33.5%)
Average Price $1,333,370 $1,235,480 (+7.9%) $1,035,330 (+28.8%)
No. of Sales 29 22 (+31.8%) 25 (+16.0%)
Pending Properties 60 45 (+33.3%) 26 (+130.8%)
Active 130 121 (+7.4%) 170 (-23.5%)
Sale vs. List Price 96.6% 97.4% (-0.8%) 95.0% (+1.7%)
Days on Market 70 89 (-20.6%) 54 (+29.1%)

And for condos and townhouses in Los Gatos (see the full report online):

Trends At a Glance Apr 2010 Previous Month Year-over Year
Median Price $692,500 $543,000 (+27.5%) $710,000 (-2.5%)
Average Price $683,625 $572,833 (+19.3%) $700,222 (-2.4%)
No. of Sales 8 (+33.3%) (-11.1%)
Pending Properties 19 19 (0.0%) (+137.5%)
Active 40 52 (-23.1%) 51 (-21.6%)
Sale vs. List Price 95.9% 101.5% (-5.6%) 94.5% (+1.5%)
Days on Market 56 29 (+96.1%) 74 (-24.0%)

To see the data, charts & graphs for listings and sales in Los Gatos, Monte Sereno, Saratoga, Cambrian Park, Almaden, Campbell, Willow Glen or anywhere in Santa Clara County, please visit my RE Report online now!

Distressed Properties in Los Gatos: How Many Are For Sale?

October 02, 2008

Trulia is a great source for real estate information, but when it reports on the distressed housing sector, it relies on Realty Trac, which I have found to be inaccurate and unreliable much of the time. Twice I’ve had a subscription to Realty Trac and seen homes showing up on their database which were long since closed, for instance (so the numbers were inflated). If you are visiting these sites to get a sense of the distressed housing market in Los Gatos, please allow me to provide you information from our MLS as of today. You may be surprised that it’s not quite as bad as it may appear on that site. 

A couple of disclaimers: first is that not all distressed homes are for sale. The first step in the foreclosure market is receiving a Notice of Default. Some people do “catch up” and that NOD never turns into a foreclosure.

In other cases, the home may be on the market with a NOD but is not actually a short sale – there’s enough equity in the home so that when it sells, the bank will be paid off in full. Those types of sales are “under the radar” as our MLS only tracks homes identified as short sales and those known to be bank owned (which the agents are required to disclose).

That said, here’s the information as of today on homes in Los Gatos which are short sales or bank owned. I am including the Santa Cruz mountain areas as well (95033). These numbers are far lower than in much of Silicon Valley:

Los Gatos Total for sale # Short Sale # Bank Owned
       
95030 Houses 57 0 1
95030 Condos 7 0 0
       
95032 Houses 96 5 5
95032 Condos 38 3 0
       
95033 Houses 18 1 0
(no condos)      
       
totals 216 9 6

One extreme, in these times of financial chaos nationwide, is to assume that Los Gatos is “tanking”. That is one extreme that I hope I have helped to dispell here. The other extreme is to assume that we are somehow so insulated in our beautiful haven that we are not impacted by the crisis at all. Make no doubt, Los Gatans are feeling the effects of the mortgage meltdown and the crisis in our economy overall. The lack of available credit is hurting home buyers and home sellers, but also those who work in any industry where having credit matters or where spending is a matter of discretion. So Los Gatans who sell automobiles are hurting right along side those who sell houses or have anything to do with the Silicon Valley real estate market.  The lack of available money to loan is part of the formula which is pushing house prices down, of course.

So yes, Los Gatos is impacted by the mortgage crisis and general roller coaster on Wall Street. Some homeowners are in real trouble with their mortgages. Many residents who work in credit-dependent fields are making much less then they used to and in some cases have walked away from careers in lending and selling altogether. But the sky isn’t falling on our housing market. The numbers, above, are proof enough of that.

For more posts on short sales and bank owned properties in Los Gatos (and nearby) please see:
http://www.realtown.com/LiveInLosGatos/blog/short-sales-and-bank-owned-homes

How is the Los Gatos Real Estate Market Now?

May 02, 2008

It remains a buyer’s market in Los Gatos, but not as deep a buyer’s market as in many other parts of Silicon Valley.

Below please find links to reports on the local Los Gatos housing market, broken down by zip code and housing type, current as of April 28, 2008.  One of the most helpful aspects of the Altos reports is that it breaks the activity down by market quartiles, so that the activity in entry level homes, for instance, is differentiated from the luxury home market. Have a look:

Los Gatos Single Family Homes in 95030

Los Gatos Single Family Homes in 95032

Los Gatos Condos and Townhomes in 95030

Los Gatos Condos and Townhomes in 95032

These are care of Altos Research, which uses list prices (rather than sales prices). In a week or so we’ll have the data on solds in Los Gatos from April, care of another subscription I have, the Real Estate Report. Please check back soon to get that information.

Housing Market Here and There

April 14, 2007

The housing market in Silicon Valley is often different from the rest of the US, as our economy here is fueled by the high tech sector in particular.  Los Gatos is on the expensive end of the spectrum and when the computer industry or biotech here fare poorly, so does our housing market in the west valley.  Right now they’re doing very well, and hence, so is the market in the areas closest to the coastal foothills.  But cross the valley to the less-wealthy areas with poorer schools, and it’s an entirely different experience. A lot of it appears to do with the disaster happening in the mortgage industry right now.

Broderick Perkins, a real estate writer and owner of Deadline News,  lives locally and discusses our strangely bifurcated market in an excellent article in Realty Times titled “Silicon Valley Housing Statistics ‘Freak You Out’“. In a nutshell, Los Gatos has a robust housing market right now, as do the more high-end areas like Cupertino, Palo Alto, Sunnyvale, Saratoga, and Monte Sereno (not an exclusive list).  Broderick always has good, current info on the local real estate market – he is a lot more accurate than our local newspapers, in fact – so I’d encourage you to bookmark his website and check it often to know what is really going on. One tidbit that I’ll tease you with from his article is a fact about the number of foreclosures falling in Silicon Valley.  Click on the link above and check it out. You may be surprised!

Los Gatos Real Estate Market

February 20, 2007

 

View From Los Gatos

San Jose from Harwood DriveTo the left is a photo I took a few weeks back from the far edge of Los Gatos – up on Harwood Road (where you aren’t allowed to park your car so this shot was taken from the window of my automobile). That’s downtown San Jose in the distance. Behind me are the Santa Cruz Mountains, aka the Coastal Range. Across from me, beyond downtown San Jose, you see the eastern foothills. Beyond them, at some distance, is the Central Valley.

This valley, the Santa Clara Valley, was once known as “The Valley of the Heart’s Delight”. Los Gatos lies at the base of the Santa Cruz Mountains and is a town you’d need to pass through to get to Santa Cruz and the beach. It s a vibrant part of life in SIlicon Valley, though it has only a little industry (Netflix being the biggest Los Gatos employer and tax generator). Most homes don’t have a great view like this, but many do have views of the hills – and those are lovely too.

How’s the Los Gatos real estate market?

So how’s the market in this very scenic corner of the valley? Well, it depends on your price point. For Los Gatos, the most affordable (i.e., really middle class) housing is going fast. Inventory is low. In fact, in January there were 100 homes for sale (not a lot) and as of this moment, there are just 89. We have 36 homes “pending”. Most of these are not at the high end of the spectrum. Prices in our fair town (not a city, but a town – just to be clear) range from a low of $799,000 to over $15 million for single family homes. By and large, the homes under $1.5 million are flying off the market. But there just aren’t that many buyers for homes over $10 million.

In my own neighborhood, Belwood of Los Gatos, there are about 500 homes and last year about 10 of them sold. This is an exceptionally low-turnover neighborhood. Prices in 2006 averaged about $1,230,000 for a home with about 2400 square feet. Right now there’s exactly one home for sale, it’s not far from the average size but it’s listed at $1,380,000. Will it sell for that much? I have no idea. If it does sell close to that price, we will know that prices are rising again. I cannot wait to see this home myself – naturally I want my home to appreciate in value (that is, until I think about my kids hopefully being in the housing market themselves in 10 years…then I hope it just climbs very, very slowly). You can check out the housing situation in Belwood by visiting my site, www.BelwoodOfLosGatos.com and clicking on the “Homes Info” button, or navigate there directly by using this link: http://www.belwoodoflosgatos.com/more/index.cfm?Fuseaction=more_11917
Historical information for recent years is on the following page, which you can reach at the top of the Homes Info page.

So how’s the market? If you are the owner of a high end home and you need to sell, you will say it’s awful. If you own a nicely updated, well priced middle class home, you would say it’s a market that is great for sellers and a little rough on buyers. If your home is not in great shape or is not priced in the bottom third of its competition, you might be convinced it’s a terribly strong buyer’s market. Truth is, it is close to balanced for most homes. It can be a win-win market, but everyone has to be realistic and be prepared to do a little work. But that would be true for most worthwhile things in life: they tend to need a dose of realism and some effort.

Mary Pope-Handy

Realtor
ABR, CIPS, CRS, SRES
Sereno Group Real Estate
214 Los Gatos-Saratoga Rd
Los Gatos, CA 95030
408 204-7673
Mary (at) PopeHandy.com
License# 01153805

Selling homes in
Silicon Valley, with
special focus on
Los Gatos

and nearby areas,
including
Monte Sereno,
Saratoga,
Campbell,
and the San Jose areas of
Cambrian and Almaden Valley

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Mary's other sites
and blogs


ValleyOfHeartsDelight blog
Santa Clara County Real Estate,
especially the West Valley areas

Move2SiliconValley.com
Silicon Valley relocation info

popehandy.com
Los Gatos real estate
Silicon Valley real estate,
focus on home selling


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