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Real Estate Market Update – 2013 Wrap Up



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2013 has proven to be a very active year in the real estate market.  During the first half of the year, it appeared that we were going to surpass 2012 in the number of sales and that was a blockbuster year.  But during the second half of 2013, our number of sales was less than the year before.  In the end, we had only 1.2% less sales than in 2012.  This can be attributed to the very low inventory that we are experiencing.  At the end of the year, there were only 218 houses (comprising of single family homes and Planned Unit Development (PUD) homes) for sale between Carpinteria and Goleta.  This is the lowest it has been in years.  More interesting is that only 25 of these available houses were under $1,000,000.  With so few homes, there is very little variety to choose from, so buyers may be waiting on the sidelines for more inventory to choose from or they have not found just the right house.


The median price by the end of 2013 increased 18.9% for houses from the year before.  This is an incredible increase, though when properties go up in price too fast there is concern that it will create a bubble.  The median price is very close to the 2004 median during our last up-market.  Part of this increase can be attributed to the low inventory and with that many properties had multiple offers that pushed the actual sales price above and beyond the list price.


The condo market somewhat mirrored the single family houses and PUDs.   In 2012, 516 condos sold, and in 2013, 441 condo sold, representing a 14% decrease in the number of sales.  The median price on condos went up 26.8%.  Again, this is an incredible increase that can stir the talk of a bubble happening at some point.  The median went from $399,945 as of the end of 2012 up to $507,000.


There is a fair supply of condos on the market; as of the end of December the count is 88.  Earlier this year, there were less than 50 at any one time.  For clarity, 24 of the 88 condos are from three newer complexes: Alma del Pueblo, the resurrected Sevilla on Chapala and the Hideaway Bungalows in Goleta.


It is now official:  Village Properties came out #1 in both the number of properties sold and total dollar volume sold.  We are on track to repeat this ranking in 2014!


Looking forward and barring any national emergency situations, the real estate marketshould be fairly steady in 2014.  There needs to be more inventory in place so that buyers will have options and will buy.  There is some concern about the interest rate creeping up this year, but no one expects anything dramatic to occur, though the prediction is that it will hit 5.0%.  Overall, it should be a good year.




*Information courtesy of Village Properties and the SBMLS*