statsWhy market statistics?

The factors of supply and demand control prices
Real Options Realty is a recognized source for the interpretation of residential market statistics in Santa Cruz County. We are often quoted by the media.

Knowing market statistics can help you make informed decisions, because the factors of supply and demand control prices. Now you have access to this information anytime.

 

Residential Market Statistical Graphs and Explanations

Number of Listings

The Number of Listings shows the supply, or how many properties are for sale. Is the inventory of listings increasing or decreasing, and is it seasonal?

Number of Sales

The Number of Sales shows the demand, or how many properties closed escrow. Is the number of sales increasing or decreasing?

Unsold Inventory Index

The Unsold Inventory Index is the most important predictor of future price movement. It is the inventory of properties expressed in time, or the current relationship between supply and demand. For example, if there is a 6 – 8 month supply of houses on the market, prices are stable. If there is only a 4 month supply, prices usually increase. If there is a 10 month supply, prices usually decrease.

Median Price

The Median Price shows the price at which there were an equal number of sales higher than or lower than that price. Have prices been increasing, decreasing, and how fast?

Average Price

The Average Price shows the sum of all sales prices divided by the number of sales. Have prices been increasing, decreasing, and how fast?

  • August 2020:  As of the first week in August, there were 381 listings, down 39% from 624 listings one year ago at that time, and the fewest number of listings for this time of year in at least 25 years. There are still some would-be-sellers who are hesitating because of fear of getting COVID-19.

    144 of the 381 listings are under contract, and just 237 are active listings.  168 of the 237 active listings (71%) are priced over $1Million, and only 69 are priced under $1Million.

    BACKGROUND: The number of properties for sale is seasonal. Each year, December and January have the fewest number of homes for sale, because people don’t like to show their homes during the holiday season. And each year, the highest number of homes for sale is in the summer, because it is more convenient to sell your home in the summer. Note this repeating annual pattern in the above graph.

     

  • August 2020:  There were 135 listings as of the first week in August, up 12% from 121 listings the first week ofAugust 2019. Additionally, 52 of the 135 listings are under contract, leaving just 83 active listings.

    BACKGROUND: The number of properties for sale is seasonal. Each year, December and January have the fewest number of properties for sale, because people don’t like to show their homes during the holiday season. And each year, the highest number of homes for sale is in the summer, because it is more convenient to sell your home in the summer. Note this repeating annual pattern in the above graph.

    The condo/townhouse graphs do not show as smooth a transition from month to month as the house graphs. This is because there are far fewer condo and townhouse sales in Santa Cruz County than house sales. In the field of statistics, a larger quantity of numbers makes a better statistic.

  • August 2020: There were 220 sales in July, as sales continued to rebound from the record low number of closings in April and May. This is up 46% from 151 sales in July 2019.  While the 220 July sales represent the highest number of July sales in five years, it is a rebound. The five month period since the pandemic began influencing sales, March through July, had a total of 687 sales, as compared to 719 sales for the same period last year, and 799 sales for the same period in 2018.

    BACKGROUND: A >sale’, in this context, means a close of escrow. For example, July sales mean houses that closed escrow between July 1 and July 31, but probably went under contract in May or June. The number of sales is seasonal. Each year, January and February have the fewest number sales, because people are usually too busy to shop for homes during November and December. The highest number of sales 49 in June or July, because more buyers shop for homes in the summer. Note this repeating annual pattern in the above graph.

     

     

  • August 2020: There were 60 sales of condominiums and townhouses in July, up 54% from 39 sales in July 2019, as sales continued to rebound from the fewest closings in 12 years in April and May. While the 60 July sales represent the highest number of July sales in five years, it is a rebound. The five month period since the pandemic began influencing sales, March through July, had a total of 191 sales, as compared to 201 sales for the same period last year, and 216 sales for the same period in 2018.

    There were no bank-owned sales or short sales in July.

    BACKGROUND: The number of sales is seasonal. Each year, January and February have the fewest number sales, because people are usually too busy to shop for homes during November and December. The highest number of sales is in June or July, because more buyers shop for homes in the summer. Note this repeating annual pattern in the above graph.

    The condo/townhouse graphs do not show as smooth a transition from month to month as the house graphs. This is because there are far fewer condo and townhouse sales in Santa Cruz County than house sales. In the field of statistics, a larger quantity of numbers makes a better statistic.

    A >sale’, in this context, means a close of escrow. July sales mean condominiums that closed escrow in July, but probably went under contract in May or June.

     

  • August 2020:  The July Unsold Inventory Index decreased to 1.7 months, mostly due to the significant decrease in the number of listings. It was 4.1 months in July 2019.

    BACKGROUND: The Unsold Inventory Index is the most important statistic used to predict value increases or decreases. It is the current relationship of supply and demand for the housing market. The index is created by dividing the current supply (number of listings) by the current demand (number of sales). The result shows the time it would take to deplete the inventory of houses for sale at the current sales rate. It is expressed in months.

    Years of statistical analysis have shown that a 6 ‑ 8 month unsold inventory index has been normal‑ meaning the market is balanced, and home prices are stable. Historically, when the Index has been less than 6 months, prices can increase, and when it is more than 8 months, prices can decrease. The further away from normal the index is, the stronger the influence on price movement.

     

     

  • August 2020:  The Unsold Inventory Index in July was 2.3 months. A year ago, in July 2019, it was 3.1 months.

    BACKGROUND: The Unsold Inventory Index is the most important statistic used to predict value increases or decreases. It is the current relationship of supply and demand for the housing market. The index is created by dividing the current supply (number of listings) by the current demand (number of sales). The result shows the time it would take to deplete the inventory of condos for sale at the current sales rate. It is expressed in months.

    Years of statistical analysis have shown that a 6 ‑ 8 month inventory index is normal‑ meaning the market is balanced, and home prices are not increasing or decreasing. When there is less than a 6 month supply, prices can increase. The further away from normal the index is, the faster the price changes can occur.

     

     

  • August 2020:  The median sales price for single family homes in July was $1,010,500, a new all-time high, and the first time it has exceeded one million dollars. One year ago, in July 2019, the median price was $899,000.

    112 of the 220 sales, or 51%, sold for more than $1Million. The more affordable areas of San Lorenzo Valley and Watsonville had 53 sales, or 24% of the total. These numbers show how the mix of sales influences the overall median price (midpoint of sales prices) each month.

    There was one short sale, and no bank-owned sales in July.

    Sales over $1,000,000:

    July: 51% of the sales (Overall median was $1,010,500)
    June: 41% of the sales (Overall median was $911,000)
    May: 39% of the sales (Overall median was $855,000)
    April: 42% of the sales (Overall median was $957,500)
    March: 38% of the sales (Overall median was $925,000)
    February: 33% of the sales (Overall median was $900,000)
    January: 40% of the sales (Overall median was $880,000)
    December: 39% of the sales (Overall median was $895,000)
    November: 35% of the sales (Overall median was $889,500)
    October: 35% of the sales (Overall median was $867,000)
    September: 31% of the sales (Overall median was $815,000)
    August: 34% of the sales (Overall median was $877,000)

    BACKGROUND: People who keep statistics argue whether the median price or the average price is a better indicator. The average price is calculated by totaling the sales prices and dividing by the number of sales. The median price is that price where an equal number of sales occurred at a higher price and a lower price than the median.

     

  • August 2020:  The median sales price for condominiums and townhouses in July was $652,000. A year ago, in July 2019, it was $585,000. The median price for condominiums and townhouses is generally less consistent because of the relatively small number of sales.

    BACKGROUND:   The condo/townhouse graphs do not show as smooth a transition from month to month as the house graphs. This is because there are far fewer condo and townhouse sales in Santa Cruz County than house sales. In the field of statistics, a larger quantity of numbers makes a better statistic. Here, we are working with very few numbers (25 to 75 sales per month). Occasionally, a few very expensive condos sell in the same month, and the graph takes a jump that month.

    People who keep statistics argue whether the median price or the average price is a better indicator. The average price is calculated by totaling the sales prices and dividing by the number of sales. The median price is that price where an equal number of sales occurred at a higher price and a lower price than the median.

     

  • August 2020:  The average sales price for single family homes in June was $1,205,205, a new all-time high. A year ago, in July 2019, it was $1,097,823.

    In Santa Cruz County, we have a few very expensive homes, such as those fronting Monterey Bay. Because of that, the average price tends to be a higher number than the median price here.

    BACKGROUND: People who keep statistics argue whether the median price or the average price is a better indicator. The average price is calculated by totaling the sales prices and dividing by the number of sales. The median price is that price where an equal number of sales occurred at a higher price and a lower price than the median.

     

  • August 2020:  The average sales price for condominiums and townhouses in July was $678,461. A year ago, in July 2019, it was $600,038. The average price for condominiums and townhouses is generally less consistent because of the relatively small number of sales.

    BACKGROUND: The condo/townhouse graphs do not show as smooth a transition from month to month as the house graphs. This is because there are far fewer condo and townhouse sales in Santa Cruz County than house sales. In the field of statistics, a larger quantity of numbers makes a better statistic. Here, we are working with very few numbers (25 to 75 sales per month). Occasionally, a few very expensive condominiums sell in the same month, and the graph takes a jump up in that month.

    People who keep statistics argue whether the median price or the average price is a better indicator. The average price is calculated by totaling the sales prices and dividing by the number of sales. The median price is that price where an equal number of sales occurred at a higher price and a lower price than the median.