Low interest rates and years of pent up Buyer demand are fueling a stronger real estate market in most parts of the country. Buyers who have been on the sidelines, waiting for prices to hit bottom, are rapidly re-entering the market. The number of distress sales (foreclosures and short sales) is declining, and prices are improving nationwide. U.S. home prices are up almost 10% compared to a year ago. The latest forecast predicts home prices will increase by an average of 3.3% annually over the next five years. Great news for the national economy!
Santa Barbara- South Coast
The local market is extremely active, dominated by strong Buyer demand and a significant shortage of homes for sale. Although all segments of the market are improving, the market under one million dollars is the strongest, with multiple offers common place and homes frequently selling for over their asking price. Overall, inventory levels are down 20% compared to a year ago. The number of sales is up 11%. Average Sales Price rose 6% to $1,178,506. Median Sales Price jumped 11% to $723,894.
The lower end market in Montecito is red hot! During the first quarter of 2013, the Median Sales Price soared 57% to $2,575,000. Inventory levels are down 11%, and the Number of Sales is up 11%. However, activity in the higher end of the market is quieter than this time last year. There has only been one sale over $10 million so far this year. With fewer large estates selling, Average Sales Price declined 14% to $3,033,858.
There are currently five active listings in Birnam Wood Golf Club ranging from $2,750,000 to $5,375,000. There were three closed sales in the first quarter: 2091 Stratford Pl. ($2,438,000); 1931 Boundary Dr. ($2,750,000); and 513 Crocker Sperry Dr. ($2,850,000). There are two pending sales: 2000 Sandy Place and 1975 Inverness Lane. I have several qualified buyers looking specifically for a home in Birnam Wood. There is currently not enough selection to satisfy strong buyer demand.
P.S. If you are considering selling, you need a strong agent with precise market knowledge, and superior marketing, advertising, and negotiation skills. Creative marketing, extensive advertising, and good old fashioned hard work get the best results in any market! I have also developed a strong network of top Realtors around the U.S. and Canada- if you need real estate assistance outside our area, I can help you find an experienced agent! Please call me at (805) 565-4896 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. All calls will be confidential.