Month: May 2012

Home Prices Rise in Half of US Cities, Carmel, Pebble Beach Markets find more traction during Memorial Day holiday.

Memorial Day saw the best week in sales in several years for many Carmel retailers. Some of my friends in the jewelry business even reported staggering activity, and not the usual “looky lous” from years past. Carmel Real Estate itself received generous activity from many well qualified buyers. There were 5 total closed sales of  Carmel homes, 2 of which were in Carmel-by-the-Sea, proper, all between $870K and $2.5M. Carmel Valley real estate saw healthy activity in the lower price points with a total of 7 closed sales, all between $180K and $675K. Pebble Beach real estate had only one sale at $909K on Crest Road. Pebble Beach homes have been the slowest moving properties on our market since the financial meltdown, but have seen a recent influx of ready buyers from the Midwest and overseas, primarily Houston and Dallas, Texas. If you’re looking in this area, the deals are certainly there.

The greater US markets have shown an increase in home values in over half of US cities, and consumer confidence has surged to it’s highest level since 2007, according to Los Angeles Times Business. This is great news for the Carmel and Pebble Beach real estate markets, and the greater US market, as we continue to build towards a full recovery. Even with the possibility of additional foreclosures and short sales coming to market, with the activity we’ve been experiencing in our local market, I think the worst is up, and now is the prime time to buy. Many of our most sought after areas in Carmel and Carmel Valley are already at an abnormally low inventory level due to the many investors, vacationers and first time home buyers that have taken advantage of historically low interest rates and price points. With interest rates hovering around 4%, I wouldn’t expect them to go anywhere but up in the near future.

As far as local events, the Monterey Peninsula was abuzz this weekend with visitors from all over looking to relax, enjoy the best of Carmel’s fine dining, Carmel-by-the-Sea’s famous sunset beach bonfires and Carmel Valley’s world-class wine tasting. The Cali Roots music festival at the Monterey fairgrounds also drew a younger crowd, and added a more energetic element to the already perfect Memorial Day Weekend.

Market Conditions

The Monterey Peninsula, specifically Carmel and Pebble Beach, has reached a very consistent level of real estate activity. Homes that have been sitting on our market for one and two years, have been selling steadily over the last quarter, leaving some hot areas with very little inventory. Carmel Valley and Carmel-by-the-Sea are two such examples, with property under $2M, remaining very popular. Pebble Beach continues to trail a little behind, with high dollar estates still experiencing low activity.

On a national level, 71 percent of people surveyed by Fannie Mae say it is a good time to buy. Prices for single-family homes climbed in half of U.S. cities in the first quarter as real estate markets stabilized. The median sales price increased from a year earlier in 74 of 146 metropolitan areas measured, the National Association of Realtors said in a report.

The U.S. housing market is showing signs of bottoming as improving employment and record-low mortgage rates boost demand while inventories of available properties tighten. At the end of March, 2.37 million previously owned homes were available for sale, 22 percent fewer than a year earlier.

All in all, I remain confident that we are seeing the beginnings of a turn around in our local market. We personally closed 2 sales in Carmel Valley this month in the $1M to $2M range, with a couple others in escrow in that same price range. Buyers are really taking advantage of the amazing opportunities out there, while sellers seem to be showing greater signs of willingness to be realistic on their prices. Normal sales are lining up with foreclosure prices as a means to compete (which we are happy to see), and short sales are becoming easier to complete in a timely manner.

We hope everyone had a wonderful Mother’s day, and are looking forward to an amazing Summer and Fall selling season! Please let us know if we can be of any assistance to you or your friends.

Please Note: While delighted to respond to real estate related inquiries, Ryan is not particularly interested in being contacted by persons with a specific interest in any “celebrity” affiliations.
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