The North Bay real estate market has opened up following total closure earlier this year. While virus safety protocols have changed the way properties are marketed and more of the closing process occurs online, sales activity is currently vibrant. Let’s forget statistics commonly quoted in the press, most of which are either meaningless in general or have no influence on specific transactions. Instead we’ll focus on three local trends effecting home buyers and sellers the most in Napa, Sonoma, Marin and Solano Counties.
People Are Moving
Drive through North Bay neighborhoods and you’ll see multiple For Sale signs in many of them. Homes are selling and the motivations are varied. Perhaps the seller is unloading an unprofitable investment property, down-sizing, moving closer to family, or even leaving California. For whatever the reason, they’re moving.
A major influence on moving brought about by virus conditions is a large increase in the number of people working at home. Some are leaving neighborhoods near their workplace where overall living costs are high and, in some instances, the quality of life is low. Others need a different floor plan, such as a home with separate office space. How long the work-at-home trend continues and the number of people effected is unsure. But at this time, it is having an impact on the real estate market.
A final influence driving moves that actually happens every October through December – some people just want to sell before the end of the year. They could be investors wanting to capture capital gains in 2020 or families leaving California who don’t want to file state income tax returns in 2021. The reasons don’t really matter. There are always sellers who want to close escrow by December 31st.
Bottom line – there are homes for sale in most neighborhoods and across a wide range of sizes, styles and prices.
Financing Costs Are Down
Between stimulus funding and a drought in borrowing earlier in the year, mortgage companies are lending at record low rates. Combine that with simplified application processes and qualified borrowers have their choice of attractive loan programs. Some lenders are cutting or eliminating fees to help buyers getting into a home.
Home Values Are Stable To Rising
If you’re considering a sale, you may be surprised at how much home values have increased recently. In general, virus conditions have not reduced home values as many predicted. Some buyers and sellers had to put their purchase plans on hold due to employment issues, but the temporary shut down of sales actually created a backlog of buyers who have re-entered the market. The result is increased demand, multiple offers and short times on the market for well-prepared homes.
If you’re looking to buy or sell a home, the North Bay real estate market is open for business. Forget the statistics, real estate is selling and each property and each sale is unique.
Sellers should be creative in their bids and know what the seller wants to see in a winning offer. Sellers should prepare their properties to sparkle at showings and showcase its most attractive features.
If you’re buying or selling, call John at (707) 317-0280 for aggressive, professional and experienced representation.