As the calendar turns to summer it is a good time to take stock and understand how Lamorinda real estate performed over the last year. Below is a summary of Multiple Listing Service (“MLS”) data for Lamorinda residential detached home sales over the last twelve months from July 2016 to June 2017 (the prior-year comparison is from July 2015 to June 2016).
Before the calendar turns to summer and folks start to head for vacation, it is a good time to take stock and understand how Lafayette real estate has performed over the last year. Below is a summary of Multiple Listing Service (“MLS”) data for Lafayette residential detached home sales over the last twelve months from May 2016 to April 2017 (the prior-year comparison is from May 2015 to April 2016).
Inventory remains tight with the number of transactions down 14% (273 vs. 318). The average sales price is down by 2% ($1.539M vs. $1.576M), but this is a result of smaller homes being sold (the average home sold square footage was 2,580 vs. 2,728, a 5% decrease). The metric that matters most, price per square foot, is up 3% ($611 vs. $591). This is great news for Lafayette residents and reflective of the recent strong spring selling season.
At the beginning of May, I always start to get excited about the Lafayette Kitchen Tour. No matter how many houses I see throughout the year, I love the kitchen tour because it is a great opportunity to see new kitchen design trends and the creative new choices homeowners are making in their kitchens, while at the same time supporting local charities.
I feel lucky to have the opportunity to help clients sell and buy very unique and special properties. Lafayette is filled with amazing neighborhoods and interesting nooks and crannies. While we have many beautiful homes, what we don’t see very often are vacant lots. We do see more and more builders and frustrated buyers tearing down existing homes on good lots and starting over because there are so few vacant lots left in Lafayette. I call this the Moraga Blvd phenomena. Every time I drive down this quaint street, there seems to be another home being taken down in order to build something new. In south bay cities like Menlo Park and Palo Alto this common place and maybe the wave of the future in Lafayette.
I have received several phone calls from clients and readers who are considering selling their home in the spring. Despite the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, now is the perfect time to start laying the groundwork for a successful sale. This is especially true in Lamorinda where the “spring” market has gotten progressively earlier; school enrollment begins in the early spring which means many buyers are looking to close on their new home even earlier in the year to ensure that their child is able to attend neighborhood schools. It is more important than ever to start making your to-do list now if you want to take advantage of this typically strong early selling market.
One of the many perks of being in the real estate business is that I get a front row seat when it comes to new trends in home design. It is exciting to see what home owners are doing in terms of remodeling and updating and it is just as interesting to see what trends buyers are paying a premium for.
The hustle and bustle of Fall is here but the Moms of Lafayette get a moment to catch their breath now that school is back in session. Summer vacations are gone, day camps are behind us and weekend trips to Tahoe make way for Saturday soccer games, fall basketball and parent school parties. September also brings an increase in real estate activity as parents or soon-to-be parents can now focus on where they want to live for the next twenty or so years.
How many of you regularly monitor the value of your home on real estate sites like Zillow? This month I want to share my perspective on these values measures or “Zestimate” and what they mean to the market value of your home. In my view these estimates of your home are like the weatherman telling us that it will be in the 70’s tomorrow. I generally know it will be a nice day but I would certainly like to know if it will be 79° so I can wear shorts and a T-shirt or 70° so I bring a sweater.