Extreme Real Estate: Santa Cruz County
After our 3-month lull in the upper end of the market, we had 3 properties priced above $2,000,000 enter and close escrow during the month of April in Santa Cruz county. All 3 were beachfront, and they sold for $2,350,000, $2,7000,000, and $6,000,000. It's refreshing to see some revitalization in this segment.
So far in May we already have one new pending, another beachfront at $3,200,000. But don't worry, there are a variety of amazing luxury properties waiting for the right buyers. E-mail or call me if you're interested.
At the other end of the spectrum, investors and first-time home buyers had an active 30 days. During that time, we had 143 new sales of single-family homes priced at $500,000 or below, but only 85 new listings, 7 of which have already been withdrawn or canceled. Of the net 78 new listings, 31 are already under contract.
Between new sales and new listings, there is a 65 home deficit, and there are currently 205 homes on the market. If things were to continue in this way, in just over 3 months we would be completely out of homes priced below $500k.
This data is from the MLS, gathered on May 10, 2009. Happy Mother's Day.
State of Real Estate in Santa Cruz and the Monterey Bay
I am finally getting my blog up and running again. I intend to re-post some of the more interesting items from the old SantaCruz.pro blog, but in the mean time, here are some snippets of information for your consideration.
In the last week, the lower end of the Watsonville Single-Family home market is seeing about twice the number of new sales than it is new listings. If things were to continue in this way for 2 months we would be completely out of inventory below $350,000.
Throughout Santa Cruz county we are seeing multiple-offers on an almost daily basis, in all price ranges except in the heights.
The 2009 Luxury market in Santa Cruz County is finally showing at least the faintest signs of life. Up until recently, we had no new escrows of homes priced above $2M for the entire year. During the last 9 months of '08, which was not particularly booming, we had an average of about 2 homes per month in this price range going into escrow, so a complete lack of new sales for over 3 months is a serious void.
One of the major problems with homes in the upper end of the spectrum is the unavailablity of financing. Yesterday at a closing I had a conversation an owner of one of the local mortgage brokerages. He mentioned that right now, loans up to $2m are possible with a 40% down payment. So, maximum leverage would be achieved on a purchase price of about $3.3M. But many of our finer properties are priced well above $3.3M, and those are going to require additional cash to close. For instance, to buy a $7M house, you would need to bring $5M in cash, and at the moment, there aren't too many buyers willing to reach so deeply into their own pockets.
The good news is that in so far in April we have had 3 homes priced above $2m go under contract.
If you are a lower-end buyer, you really have to be prepared before you find your dream house, because the best properties are being fought for by cash buyers and other buyers who have missed their first choice and have awoken to the need to be on top of things.
If you are a luxury buyer with a bit of cash, you are in heaven right now. Santa Cruz county is offering opportunities that would cost many times the price in other equally-desirable areas.
If you are a buyer who is ready to buy, call me, and I'll show you the benefits of uncompromised fiduciary loyalty and a heightened level of expertise, reserved exclusively for the benefit of real estate buyers.
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Santa Cruz Buyers’ Brokerage (831) GET-HOME