Market Update

Is it just me or is the market slowing?

November 12, 2018

The market is slowing. We’ve been hearing that all over the place lately and it’s been a common clickable headline. But it’s not just hype because there’s some truth to it. Today I want to show this reality with a few visuals, mention three takeaways, and unpack a huge Sacramento market update for those interested. I hope this is helpful – whether you’re local or not.

Last year the fall season felt more flat than not, but this year is a different story. We are definitely having more of a dull seasonal lull that reminds us how the market felt in 2014 when the fall season was definitively soft. Here are some of the things I’m watching right now. I’d love to hear what you are seeing. 

Adjusting to rates: Buyers have seemed to back off the market a bit lately, and we’re seeing the effect of that with lower sales volume. What’s up with this? The culprit could be increasing interest rates and a growing lack of affordability.

Balancing of power: Buyers have gained more power in recent months, though I don’t think sellers got the memo since they are still struggling with overpricing and pretending it’s an aggressive market from 2013 instead of a slower market in 2018. This doesn’t mean buyers have total control though. Keep in mind 41% of all sales last month had multiple offers, which tells us it’s not the type of market where buyers can lowball sellers and get whatever price they want.

Pricing lower this fall: Since the summer the median price has softened by 4% in Sacramento County, 5% in the region, and 7% in Placer County. This doesn’t mean every neighborhood lost 4-7% in value. These are county stats and they don’t translate into every area or price range. Keep in mind it’s normal to see a 5% or so reduction in the median price during a given fall season, but this year it wouldn’t be surprising to see a more pronounced price difference between spring and fall (we’ll see how it pans out).

Listings did peak: I’ve been talking about listings looking like they were peaking for the past couple months, and the stats now definitely show listings have crested for the season. This is normal for the time of year as sellers tend to pull back from the market and wait until spring to list. This is why the fall sometimes feels like a market of leftovers since many sellers are waiting until the next year.

Concessions and credits: Buyers have more options today, so they’re tending to ask sellers more often for credits, repairs, and concessions. It would be wise for sellers to listen to buyers and be aware they may need to give something to get the deal done.


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