Los Gatos real estate market trends and statistics

Low inventory has been the headline story in the Los Gatos real estate market since spring 2020! Here’s a multiple year view of single family homes for sale in Los Gatos 95030 and 95032 since January 2015 – I find this to be enlightening since any one year can be an anomaly. The chart below shows us that the average inventory for Los Gatos in September can vary, but usually sits somewhere between the low 80s to low 70s and rarely as small as 60. This September fell well below that range with only 43 active listings, the lowest across all visible years!

Seasonal trends for 2020 were thrown completely off shortly after the lockdown order. Inventory never grew to the expected level that spring with available listings consistently shrinking from May through January and hardly any growth in spring 2021, despite the vaccine and subsequent reopening!

 

Active Inventory September 2021 Los Gatos 95030 & 95032

 

The ultra low number of listings is due to many factors, one of them being the current coronavirus pandemic and health and safety concerns. Although most things have reopened, things aren’t back to the pre-pandemic norm. For a look at how Covid-19 affected the local real estate market today, please check Coronavirus Impact on Real Estate Sales on my other blog.

Covid restrictions have mostly been lifted, and Silicon Valley remains in a hot seller’s market with limited inventory. If you’re interested in selling your home this year, check out my article on how to Sell Your Home in 2021. When you’re ready to talk to an agent I would love to hear from you!

What is selling best in LG right now?

In general, single family homes listed at or under $2.5 million are selling well, with their sales averaging around 5.7% over list price in September. Those listed upwards of $2.5 millions are also frequently selling above asking with an average of roughly 3.7% above list price. Even so, there are exceptions in both groups.

Certain things can skew the data. For instance, a home in Los Gatos listed just under $1.9 million took 100 days to sell, and sold around 1.3% below list price, while another listed at $3.2 million sold nearly 12.5% above asking ($400K over) in just 3 days! When planning to buy or sell, it’s best to look at the data within a mile of your home (or the one you want to buy), and across similar properties, excluding the sales which aren’t comparable.

By the numbers: Of the 39 single family home sales in Los Gatos (not including the mountain market) in September on the MLS, none sold under $1.5 million, 6 sold under $2 million, 21 sold from $2 to $3 million, 5 sold above $3 million and below $4 million, 5 sold between $4 to $5 million, 1 sold over $5 million and another sold over $6 million!

The high end price point tends to be around $3,000,000 and up for this part of Santa Clara County, although it’s been creeping upwards with the overly hot market we’ve been experiencing. The vast majority of what sold would not be considered luxury properties, even though in most areas of the U.S. these would be luxury price tags.

Los Gatos real estate statistics at a glance for 95030 & 95032

Next, data from the RE Report for Los Gatos (“in town”), in the Los Gatos Mountains, and for Los Gatos condos (only in town, none in the mountain communities) – the entire Los Gatos real estate market combined. Below that are the live Altos Research charts, updated automatically each week. Altos uses list prices, not sold prices.

The numbers below analyze data gathered during the first week of each month and cover real estate statistics from the month prior in Los Gatos 95030 & 95032 (all areas / school districts), or MLS “area 16”. See the full RE Report here.

Trends At a Glance Sep 2021 Previous Month Year-over-Year
Median Price $2,710,800 (-8.1%) $2,950,000 $2,350,000 (+15.4%)
Average Price $3,249,660 (-0.1%) $3,253,780 $2,491,080 (+30.5%)
No. of Sales 37 (-7.5%) 40 37 (0.0%)
Pending 61 (+10.9%) 55 51 (+19.6%)
Active 47 (-6.0%) 50 55 (-14.5%)
Sale vs. List Price 105.1% (-0.2%) 105.4% 102.5% (+2.6%)
Days on Market 15 (-23.8%) 20 29 (-46.6%)
Days of Inventory 37 (-1.8%) 38 43 (-14.5%)

Prices for Los Gatos real estate haven’t changed much month-over-month, but compared to last year they’ve risen about 15%-30%! Last year’s market had a higher number of active listings, but fewer pending sales. Compared to last month, closed sales and active inventory fell short while pending sales grew. The sales vs list price ratio shrank a hair month-over-month, still well above last year at a red hot 105.1% of asking.

Overall, despite some seasonal cooling it remains a busy seller’s market in Los Gatos, likely impacted by pent up demand from the last two years.

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The Monte Sereno real estate market

Elm Park in Monte Sereno, sold by Mary Pope-Handy
Ranch style home on Elm Park in Monte Sereno, sold by Mary Pope-Handy

The City of Monte Sereno is quite small, with just about 4,000 residents, so the number of houses sold in any given month will always be extremely small.

For that reason, the data may appear to jump around wildly compared to Los Gatos or Saratoga, which each have about 30,000 people living there. Please take these statistics with a tablespoon of salt, and be sure to view the Los Gatos housing market data to get a more accurate picture of what’s happening with Monte Sereno homes (just add a little to the price tag as homes there tend to sell for a bit more than LG properties).

Also, there are only single family, detached houses in Monte Sereno: no apartments, multi unit housing (2 – 4 plex), no duet homes (attached single family homes). That will be changing soon, however, as the old La Hacienda property (formerly an estate, then a hotel and restaurant) at Hwy 9 and Austin Way (aka Austin Corners) is under development and incorporation into Monte Sereno with plans to include 7 townhomes and 8 duet homes in addition to standalone single family dwellings. Some of those designs have already been listed on the MLS and sold.

This month’s data will reflect some of the effects of the pandemic on the real estate market, but not the whole picture – plenty has changed since March 2020! To learn more about how Covid-19 is affecting the local real estate market, please check Coronavirus Impact on Real Estate Sales on my other blog.

During the shutdown so far, the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) stopped the timer on all Days on Market (DOM) for a time. Therefore these numbers will be off beginning from March 17th through around May 17th, 2020. In the data below, this will affect any numbers related to the days on market, the absorption rate, and the days of inventory from those months, but current numbers should be accurate.

First up for the market analysis is the Altos Research weekly profile for Monte Sereno (uses list prices, not sales):

 

 

This chart shows a strong seller’s market, heating up from a slight seller’s advantage last month. Inventory is extremely small, days on market are stable, and most indicators suggest it is a hot market!

Below is the Monte Sereno Real Estate Report (click to view the complete Real Estate Report).

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15839 Edmund Dr. Los Gatos, CA 95032

15839 Edmund Dr LG 95032 Collage

SOLD – 15839 Edmund Dr. Los Gatos 95032
Closed on 4/30/2021 at $2,465,000

View virtual tour at LosGatosHomeSale.com

A spacious 4 bed 3 bath open floorplan home on a deep lot
in a beautiful, convenient East Los Gatos cul de sac!

Spacious home featuring hardwood floors throughout. Large kitchen with abundant counter space and breakfast bar. Open living space overlooks the back yard. Four bedrooms, two with en suite baths. Deep back yard provided newer, heated lap pool with safety cover, large deck, and storage shed.

Highly regarded schools: Alta Vista Elementary (convenient access via pedestrian bridge), Union Middle, and Leigh High.

4 bed / 3 bath (2 bedrooms with en suite baths)

Lot Size 10,000 SqFt

Building Size 2,252 SqFt

Built 1953

Offered at $1,800,000

MLS # ML81835578

For more images and information visit LosGatosHomeSale.com

Features:

  • Deep lot
  • Hardwood flooring – oak in original bedroom wing and engineered hardwood in most of the rest of the home (all but kitchen and bathrooms)
  • Fireplace in living room
  • Open floorplan
  • Large kitchen with 10′ breakfast bar and gas cooking
  • Heated lap pool with safety cover
  • Large, 750 SF deck with hot tub near primary bedroom
  • Storage shed

Los Gatos condo sales: what does your money buy?

Los Gatos condo sales are good to watch as it provides info on the most affordable segment of the local real estate market. The condo / townhome market in Los Gatos includes a broad spectrum of housing and affordability across the 95030 and 95032 zip codes and its various school districts.

Included are senior condominiums (mostly but not exclusively at the Los Gatos Commons), which are usually the lowest priced homes and which are residences with age restrictions (mostly 55+). This can skew the data a little, so remember that if it looks too good to be true, it probably is (for all the non-seniors who would love the prices at the Commons in a non seniors complex).

Also incorporated in the chart below are townhouses. A townhouse is an architectural style, not a type of ownership. A townhouse really refers to properties with no other units above or below them. They are either in condo style ownership (essentially a condominium in the shape of a townhouse) or they are planned unit developments (PUDs), which are not condos and in which the ownership includes the land under the unit.  (See also: Is that Los Gatos house or townhouse actually a condo? on this blog.)

Chart of Los Gatos condo sales in 2020

Below please find data on the Los Gatos 95030 and 95032 condominium and townhome sales.

 

Los Gatos condo sales in 2020 year to date

 

How do these condo and townhome prices compare to other nearby areas? Here’s the most recent data from my RE Report (link is to the main site, the PDF with this chart is listed in left column).

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Average & median sale prices in Los Gatos

My RE Report stats come out between the 5th and the 10th of each month, but I like to get a sneak peak, so crunch my own numbers some of the time. Today I wanted a window into Los Gatos real estate pricing. First, here are the average and median sale prices for the Los Gatos market in the two “in town” zip codes of 95030 and 95032 (for single family homes):

2019-5-2 Los Gatos 95030, 95032 average and median sale prices

Next, the Los Gatos Mountains (MLS area 23, zip code 95033):

2019-5-2 Los Gatos 95033 average and median sale prices

Additional market info to follow in just a few days!

Los Gatos Mountains 95033 Real Estate Market

Looking for great schools, more space, and a less suburban environment? Just beyond the borders of the Town of Los Gatos lies a collection of rural communities situated in the scenic Santa Cruz Mountains, or Coastal Range and together there are known as “The Los Gatos Mountains.” This large region sits above Almaden Valley, Los Gatos, Monte Sereno, Saratoga, and a bit north of there in Santa Clara County, and just over the summit and toward Scotts Valley, Soquel, and Aptos in Santa Cruz County. As the description implies, it is a sprawling area and within it there are different school districts, views, levels of sunshine, natural hazards such as earthquake faults, and amenities which can all impact housing prices and real estate market trends and the market may be very different from one segment or price point to another.

All of these areas fall under the 95033 zip code and have a Los Gatos mailing address, so they are viewed together. Don’t be confused into thinking that areas in the Los Gatos Mountains are the same as the Town of Los Gatos, though – they are quite different.

 

95033 Los Gatos Mountains Real Estate Market Update

Unfortunately, my usual resource, the RE Report, has no section for the Los Gatos Mountains. Instead, the analysis I have written below is based off of data collected directly from the MLS over September and to date in October.

In the month of September, 6 homes sold in the 95033 mountain area of Los Gatos. Sale price ranged from $550,000 – $1,950,000 with an average of $1,055,750. Wide ranges like this are not unusual. While lot size is usually larger than in-town properties it can also vary a great deal, as does building age and size. For instance, the highest priced home had nearly 10 times the building size of the lowest priced property. Now let’s compare this with October sales, since we are coming towards the end of the month. This time, the range of sales is between $890,000 – $1,887,500 with an average of $1,330,625. What does this show us? The range is fairly consistent. In the mountain area you can still readily find properties for under $1 million – something we are not seeing in any other Los Gatos market at the moment – but you can also find large properties with big homes selling at what would be the medium to high-end for an in-town home.

What else can we learn from the sold listings in September and October? Well, the listing price tells us a lot. In September, only one of the six homes sold for higher than list, two sold exactly at list, and three sold below list price. In October, one out of four sold above list price and the rest sold for less than listed. Inventory is taking longer to sell as well. Some homes are still selling rapidly with two selling in under a week last September, but many are taking longer; in the same month, one sold that was on market for 204 days. The average days on market for September 62 days and 45 days in October, while most of the South Bay has an average of a month or less. What does this all mean? Buyers are having an easier time in the mountain market. Listings on-market longer are receiving fewer offers, and offers under list price are more regularly being accepted. The fastest selling properties where there is greatest demand and where homes have sold over list are within a range of $1 – $1.3 million, which would be considered entry-level in the rest of town but is mid-priced here.

So what about active listings? There are currently 15 active properties on the market. The most recent listing has been on the market only 4 days, while the longest has been active for 238, with the average being 117 days on market. List price ranges from $550,000 – $5,800,000 with an average list price of $1,863,267. Another way to tell that this market is cooler than elsewhere in Silicon Valley is the number of active vs sold, which shows that there is a lower ratio of demand to inventory in the mountain market.

Although the market is noticeably cooler in the mountains than in town and many other areas around South Bay, the market here is still more active than it usually is. Buyers not wanting to deal with the stress of the strained seller’s market, or who are looking for lower-priced homes and don’t mind the drive and other special concerns with hillside properties will find the Los Gatos 95033 market to be a good option.

 

Mountain Market Trends by Quartile

Below is a chart taken from the October 2017 Altos Research market update. It divides properties into four price quartiles to show variances in market trend. Surprisingly, the last year has been looking a little backwards with prices rising in winter and falling in spring. This might have to do with the available inventory elsewhere, since we typically see more homes go on market around spring and inventory lessening in winter, giving buyers fewer options. The luxury market bounces around a lot because of the extreme variety of homes in that range.

 

Live Altos Charts

While I do not frequently update the Los Gatos Mountain market post (there are agents who specialize in the mountain market – I am not one of them, though I have sold a number of mountain homes) the charts below will always be up to date. These are live charts, regularly updated and constantly tracking sales and listings from the MLS.

 

The median list price of homes for sale in the Los Gatos Mountains 95033 – all price points combined:

 

The median list price of homes for sale in the Los Gatos Mountains 95033 – showing info by price quartile:

Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

 

Average days on the market (number of days the home’s been listed for sale on the MLS), all price points combined:

Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

 

Average days on the market for 95033 by pricing tier – it’s typically erratic as the amount of inventory tends to be small:

Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

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 How’s the Real Estate Market in the Los Gatos Mountains 95033?

 

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(all data current as of 10/18/2021)

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

 
 

Selling a Los Gatos home: how long will it take?

Shannon Valley Ranch house 2015How 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:

Los Gatos 95030 95032 Active DOM by 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.

Los Gatos Active Listings Days on Market with Los Gatos Schools

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.

Los Gatos Available homes Days on Market with Westmont or Leigh High School

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.

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