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

Sellers Market

What Is Selling in Los Gatos Now?

July 26, 2010

As of today, there are 163 single family homes (houses & duet homes) for sale in Los Gatos 95030 and 95032.  In the last month, 29 homes in that same area closed escrow.  So the months of inventory for Los Gatos houses for sale is 5.62, very close to the benchmark of a balanced market, which is 6 months. (There are also 48 sales which are pending without a release clause, but not all of these will close escrow.)

Here are some quick facts regarding the 29 homes which have closed escrow in the last month.

List price to sales price ratio

  • the average list price to sales price is 98% (most homes sold for less than asking price)
  • 14 out of 29 sold for less than list price (48%)
  • 3 sold right at list price (10%)
  • 12 sold for more than list price (41%)

Distressed sales (short sales and bank owned homes)

  • 3 of the 29 were short sales (10%)
  • 1 of the 29 was bank owned or REO (3%)
  • distressed sales (3 +1) accounted for 14% of the solds

Days on market, home size and lot size

  • the average Days on Market of these solds was 48
  • the average length of escrow was 46 days
  • the average square footage of the homes was 2552
  • the average square footage f the lot was 15,788

Average list price and average sales price, median list & sales price, highest and lowest price of homes bought

  • the average list price was $1,460,754
  • the average sales price was $1,437,434
  • the median list price was $1,308,000 & median sales price $1,275,000
  • the least expensive home sold went for $800,000 (a 1 bed, 1 bath cottage)
  • the most expensive home sold for $3,550,000

Price Points of sold homes in Los Gatos

Most of the homes sold between 1 and 2 million dollars.  Here’s the breakdown by price points:

Over $3 mil = 1 home
Between $2 mil and $ 3 mil = 2 homes
Between $1 mil and $2 mil =  21  homes
Under $1 million = 5 homes

How fast are homes selling in Los Gatos?

The DOM was 48 as an average, but that doesn’t tell the whole story.  While some homes sold only after many months, a number of them sold fast:
Within 1 week = 6 (21%)
Between 1 and 2 weeks =  4 (14%)
Between 2 and 3 weeks = 5 (17%)
Between 3 and 4 weeks = 2 (7%)

All DOM at or under a month = 17 = 59% of the sales.  So the odds are very good that if your home is priced right, it will sell in the first 1-3 weeks on the market.  The most sales of these “sold quickly” homes happened in the very first week.

What about all the homes that have not sold? What can the owners learn from this?  First, your best chance of selling is early on in the listing period.  If you get to the one month mark, the chances begin diminishing that you can sell without a price change.  Do everything you can to make your home turnkey and super accessible that very first week or two especially!

What is key to sales success is generating a good amount of qualified traffic, again especially early in the game.  In Los Gatos, having open houses and having the home open for the broker’s tour are both important (at least initially – less so after 2 or 3 weeks on the market).  If you are not getting at least 3 to 5 showings per week, you may have a problem.  (Disclaimer: this is “in general” and may not apply to luxury estates and certain other properties.) Having overly restrictive showing schedules makes it hard to show and hard to sell. 

For homes priced below $2,000,000 it is really not a bad market right now for sellers or buyers – it is pretty balanced overall.  In some areas there’s more competition then sellers would prefer, but in general these homes are moving when priced right, nicely staged and well marketed. 

Los Gatos Real Estate Market 95030 and 95032 Update June 2010

June 06, 2010

The Los Gatos real estate market varies between the price points, areas, school districts and zip codes (and, where present, sale type – regular sale vs short sale or bank owned home).   Today we’ll update the market info for the homes for sale in Los Gatos (houses and duet homes, not the condo or townhome market).

First, here’s some data from my RE Report subscription for May sales in Los Gatos. (You can see the whole online report here.)   To get the months of inventory or absorption rate, simply divide the active listings by the solds in the month – so 156/29 = 5.37 months of inventory for Los Gatos.  It is just slightly inside the definition for being a seller’s market (6 months is balanced, less is a seller’s market and more is a buyer’s market). It is close to a balanced market in Los Gatos overall.

Trends At a Glance May 2010 Previous Month Year-over Year
Median Price $1,231,150 $1,275,000 (-3.4%) $1,012,000 (+21.7%)
Average Price $1,416,700 $1,333,370 (+6.2%) $1,111,280 (+27.5%)
No. of Sales 29 29 (0.0%) 20 (+45.0%)
Pending Properties 62 60 (+3.3%) 37 (+67.6%)
Active 156 130 (+20.0%) 160 (-2.5%)
Sale vs. List Price 97.5% 96.6% (+0.9%) 95.6% (+2.1%)
Days on Market 46 70 (-35.0%) 55 (-16.6%)

Next, we’ll break it down a little:  a look at the Los Gatos real estate market this week by zip code and price quartile for houses (and duet homes) – not condos or townhomes. Data from Altos Research, to which I have a subscription.  (You can get a weekly report for Los Gatos by zip code sent to you automatically….just email me and ask and I’ll set you up to receive it on auto-pilot.)

Let’s start with the numbers for the Los Gatos 95030 zip code area by price quartile.  Median price here refers to the median LIST price, not sold price. The quartiles each reference 25% of the market. The first quartile is the most expensive segment and the 4th is the least. What I find really helpful with this view is what size of home your money can buy and on what lot size.

Los Gatos, CA 95030 Real Estate Market Trends at a glance by price quartile June 6 2010
Please remember that these numbers mostly reflect listings, not sales.  If you just look at the days on market, it appears that the 95030 market is much better than the 95032 market.  But that is not really true.  More than half of Los Gatos is in the 95030 area but note the number of homes absorbed – just 3!  In the same time, though, for 95032 there were 19 homes absorbed.  So while the DOM is longer in 95032, homes are actually selling better in that part of town than in 95030! (My hunch is that it’s because of two things: first, homes in 95032 tend to be more affordable and second, there are more short sales available in 95032 so they are getting scooped up at a faster rate than regular sales.)

Let’s next look at pricing trends by Los Gatos zip code next.  First is the 95030 zip code area of Los Gatos with the median list prices for the last year.  Hurt the most is the luxury market.

Median list price of homes for sale in Los Gatos 95030

Same info but for the 95032 part of town – the median list price of houses for sale in Los Gatos, CA 95032:

los@20gatos@2095032@20med@20list@20price@20june@206@202010 - Los Gatos Real Estate Market 95030 and 95032 Update June 2010

Lastly, a look at the trend for “days on market” (DOM) of homes for sale in Los Gatos over the last year.  Has it gotten harder or easier to sell in the last 12 months in 95030 and 95032?

Average Days on Market for houses for sale in Los Gatos, CA 95030

For this part of Los Gatos, which tends to be the most expensive part of town, the DOM was rising until about March for all price points, then suddenly began to fall.  A market reversal?

In the 95032 part of town, here’s how the DOM looks over the last year:

los@20gatos@2095032@20av@20dom@20june@206@202010 - Los Gatos Real Estate Market 95030 and 95032 Update June 2010

Interestingly, the days on market for 95032 has seemed to be a lot less volatile with one exception: the most expensive homes in the 95032 zip code.  As a group, the DOM for 95032 is longer now than a year ago, which is also true for the 95030 part of town.  the recent movement has been downward, though, and this also changed starting at about March 1st for most parts of town.

Overall, it is close to a balanced market in Los Gatos.  Depending on the price point, zip code, school district and more, it could be a “hot seller’s market” or a “cold buyer’s market”.  If you are buying or selling a home in Los Gatos, it is very important to drill down to the micro-market that applies to your home to understand how to price your home to sell or how to structure your offer price to buy.

Feel free to shoot me an email or call me to chat about your buying & selling plans.  Please also check out my Valley of Heart’s Delight blog for comparative market info.

Thanks for reading,

- Los Gatos Real Estate Market 95030 and 95032 Update June 2010408 204-7673
mary (at) popehandy.com

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Lowest Priced Homes Remain the "Best Sellers" in Los Gatos

October 16, 2009

As readers of this blog know, Los Gatos is full of micro-markets, and that can make generalizations about how the “Los Gatos real estate market” is doing a bit skewed. So whatever you read online, or hear about in your neighborhood or from friends, do take with a grain of salt since your home may or not be similar to whatever other home you’re hearing about in terms of how it might sell (or if you’re a buyer, the home you may want to purchase may be different….).

Disclaimer aside, I did a few minutes of data-collecting on MLSListings just now for single family homes (houses or attached/duet homes, but not condos or townhomes) in the town of Los Gatos (not Monte Sereno, but LG with zip codes 95032 and 95030). It appears that the general trend continues: the most affordable Los Gatos homes, generally, are selling fairly well.

What I did was run the numbers (agents: using the “preview” button on REIL), then simply added two other criteria: high school district (Saratoga-Los Gatos High School District and Campbell Union High School District) and then list price of up to $1.5 million. Then I figured out the absorption rate, or the months of inventory (MOI). The solds are homes which have closed in the last month.

Where the MOI is greater than 6, it is a buyer’s market, and where it’s under 6 it is a seller’s market – six months is considered a “balanced” market.

So, looking at the first set, for Los Gatos overall the absorption rate is 5.6 months – or very close to a balanced market. But we know that some areas and price points are selling much slower than others. Surprisingly, when all of Los Gatos with “the schools” are considered, the MOI is 7.7. Given that it feels like entry level homes in that part of town feel like they’re flying off the market, this doesn’t sound right. So look at the second group of numbers, where the price range is limited to those under 1.5 million. We can see that there are only 39 such homes for sale now (vs 101 for all price points) and the MOI is a brisk 3.55. That makes sense. So what’s slower are the more expensive homes, generally. Entry level homes in the schools are selling at a healthy pace.

Interestingly, homes in the Campbell Union High School District are faring even better – and the data is inverted, slightly, as to where the sweeter spot of the market lies. For these homes, those under 1.5 mil are going at a quick 2.4 months of inventory. The market as a whole for Los Gatos houses for sale in this area is lower still, though – 2.23. That demonstrates that the market is even faster in the higher priced homes. My belief is that this is the case because those homes – high end homes in the CUHSD – have taken a bigger hit on pricing and buyers are responding. Cannot prove it in this brief blog post entry, though, but that’s my (hopefully educated) hunch.

What about your neighborhood, or where you’d like to buy? Get hyper local when you think about how “the market” is. Feel free to visit my Los Gatos Real Estate Report and see local sales in your neighborhood. Make it more precise by indating the beds/baths you want to consider, and how far out (in a radius) you’d like to see the comps, or how far back in time. Best part: you don’t have to register, you don’t have to leave a footprint. (Your search is not saved on my site, so I will not be showing up on your front porch!) Or call or email me for a confidential, no obligation, no-pressure consultation.

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
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