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Home-Buyer Demand Kicks into a Higher Gear April 2011 – Update on San Francisco Real Estate

Case-Shiller Index results for January have recently been published with news of a continuing fall in home values in the United States and most of its metropolitan areas. According to Case-Shiller, home values in the San Francisco Metro Area (5 counties with wildly different markets) have continued to fall – the kicker being that C-S determined the total decline over the past 12 months to be a whopping 1.7%. (January sales reflect accepted-offer activity in November-December, so the data is already 3-5 months old.)

Even the most competent and experienced agent, concentrating on a single market area, seeing virtually every home available and sold, would be hard pressed to estimate the fair market value of any given house – what one reasonably knowledgeable, willing and able buyer would pay for it – within less than a 5% range of value. To those of us in the market day in and day out, prices have appeared relatively stable in San Francisco over the past 20 – 24 months (ever since the big decline of late 2008/ early 2009). It also appears that the employment situation is improving and that optimism regarding the general direction of the economy is growing, which if true, and if it continues, will play a large role in future market conditions.

It may be that home values are falling in the country, state and greater Bay Area – that is beyond our competence to assess – but in San Francisco, 2011 has seen a surge in home-buying demand, and a resultant change in the supply and demand equation. If it continues, it is unlikely to result in a further decline in values. Indeed, the recent changes in market dynamics would typically start to produce an upward pressure on prices. There are many reasons why we do not expect a “double dip” in San Francisco values, reasons which were explored in last month’s market update. Time will tell what the future holds – price declines, increases, stability – but in the meantime, here is a look at recent activity.

Statistics are generalities, subject to fluctuation due to a variety of reasons. Sales not reported to MLS are not included in this analysis. All information herein is derived from sources deemed reliable, but may contain errors and omissions, and is not warranted. All numbers should be considered approximate.

SF Homes Accepting Offers
The number of listings accepting offers in March dramatically accelerated and was comparable to the activity in April 2010, when buyers rushed to take advantage of the double US and CA home-buying tax credits. And if inventory was higher, the number of accepted offers would almost certainly have been higher as well. Even if we adjust March’s figure down by 5-6% to reflect deals that will fall out of escrow in future weeks, it was still the second strongest month in terms of listings going into contract in well over 2 years – with lower inventory, no tax credits and a very large number of rainy days.

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Percentage of SF Listings Accepting Offers (by Month)
Over a 2-year period: high buyer demand plus relatively low inventory gave March a very high percentage of home listings accepting offers. March’s figure may be adjusted down by 3 – 4 percentage points to compensate for deals that will fall through in coming weeks, but it would still remain among the highest percentages of recent years.

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Percentage of SF Listings Accepting Offers (by Quarter)
Over a 3-year period: The first quarter of 2011 achieved the highest percentage of home listings accepting offers in 3 years, exceeding even spring 2008, when the market in many of SF’s neighborhoods was still peaking.

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SF Homes for Sale
Though beginning to climb, the inventory of homes for sale in the city remains relatively low, especially as compared to demand. We will see if early spring sees the typical surge in new listings. If it does, it will probably feed a further increase in sales.

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Months Supply of Inventory (MSI)
MSI measures how long it would take to sell the current inventory of homes for sale at current rates of market activity. The lower the MSI: the higher the demand and the stronger the market. March 2011 saw the lowest MSI in well over 2 years. For houses, the strongest market segment, the MSI was a very low 2.2 months; for condos, 2.4 months, for TICs and 2-4 unit buildings, 4 months and 3.9 months respectively. For distress home sales (bank-owned properties and short sales), the MSI was an incredibly low 1.8 months (but these deals have a high fall-through rate). An MSI under 3 months would typically be considered a “sellers’ market.”

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Average Days on Market (DOM)
Average days-on-market measures the number of days between going on market and acceptance of offer (for those listings that accept offers). It is a blend of those homes that sell relatively quickly (actually the majority of sales) and those that go through multiple price reductions to ultimately sell after months on the market (which raises the average significantly). Average DOM in March was as low as it has been for years.

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SF Home Sales
The number of sales usually falls dramatically in January and February, reflecting the holiday season slow-down in listing and buyer activity. (Sales are 4-8 weeks behind accepted-offer activity.) March began to reflect the acceleration in the market that began in mid January.

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Median Sales Price for SF HOUSES
January and February usually show a big drop in median price, again reflecting the changed dynamics one sees during the holiday season (the higher end of the market checks out and distress sales increase as a percentage of sales due to ordinary sellers pulling their homes off the market). In March, there was an increase in the median sales price of SF houses to $768,000 – higher than the average median of $734,000 over the past 13 months – reflecting offers accepted in mid-January and later. If we strip out distress sales, March’s median house sales price rises to $840,000. Remember: monthly fluctuations in median price are generally meaningless – until one sees an established trend up or down over an extended period of time.

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Average Dollar per Square Foot for Condos Sold
Jogging up and down over the past 2 years, but reflecting a basic stability. March 2011 increased over the previous 3 months and at $611/sqft was a tad over the average of $599/sqft for the past 25 months. The median condo sales price in March was $635,000, which is a mix of the median price for distress condo sales ($390,000) and the median price for regular condo sales ($725,000). Again, monthly fluctuations are generally meaningless until reflected in an established trend over an extended period of time.

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SF Luxury Homes Accepting Offers
The luxury home market, defined in this chart as homes $1,500,000 and above, also accelerated in February and March. The months’ supply of inventory for luxury homes was a very low 2.7 months in March.

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SF Distress Home Sales
March saw an increase in the number of distress homes – bank-owned properties and short sales – to its highest level ever, adding up to about 20% of total sales. Distress sales often take much, much longer to close – and indeed, probably about 25 – 30% of accepted offers on distress home listings fall out of escrow and never close at all due to their difficulties – so a fair number of these sales probably went into escrow in late 2010. Though distress sales now occur everywhere in the city, they continue to be clustered in the less affluent neighborhoods and the lower price ranges. So far, they have not affected the market dynamics of many of the more affluent areas of the city. Of the 94 distress sales in March, 39 were houses and 49 were condos, with the remainder being 2-4 unit buildings. San Francisco still has a much lower rate of foreclosures and distress sales than California or the greater Bay Area.

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Distress Home Listings Accepting Offers
The deal fall-through rate is much higher for distress home transactions, so the number for March – a very high 150 units – will certainly decline over the coming weeks, but March still showed a large acceleration of distress home deals going into contract. Even more interesting is that the median LIST price of distress homes accepting offers fell dramatically in March to $389,000 – a huge drop from any of the last 24 months (18% below February’s) – while the median list price for non-distress homes ticked UP to its second highest point in 10 months. The SF markets for distress and non-distress homes seem to be going in different directions, an unusual disconnect – and it may simply be a temporary anomaly. In any case, March’s surge in distress home listings going into contract appears to have been powered by very, very low list prices.

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Median Sales Price: Distress vs. Non-Distress Listings
The hash-marked bars show the median price of distress home sales, and the solid bars, the median price of regular home sales. Not to overstate it, but In some ways these are 2 different markets with a separate group of buyers willing to deal with the aggravation, condition, and to some degree, location, of distress home sales in order to get a deal. Interestingly, there has been a general trend downward in the median price for distress home sales recently – $450,000 in March – and a mild trend upward in the median price for non-distress homes ($771,000 in March). Not enough to make a concrete determination of trends yet. Distress home sales play a significant role in pulling down the overall median sales price (for ALL sales), and yet in many areas of the city, typically the more affluent neighborhoods, distress sales are not at this time a significant percentage of transactions.

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Mortgage Rates
In this 3-year chart from Bankrate.com, one sees the increase from the historic lows of last autumn, however rates are still very low as compared to any year prior to 2009.

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A double dip for San Francisco real estate?

Note: You may skip the analysis below and jump straight to the market dynamics charts following.

For the past 2 years, new predictions for additional, significant (10-30%) price declines – the so-called double-dip in home values – have been made on an almost weekly basis. The reasons: turmoil in financial markets, foreclosures, shadow inventory, debt crises, jobs, China, oil, the groundhog saw its shadow. For many of these pundits, analysts and bloggers, the market is always bad and about to get worse. Good stuff for headlines. Frankly, it’s a little disturbing how many people take pleasure in, even gloat over, the idea of everything always getting worse. (See the comments section on any online real estate article.)

That is not to say they’re never right, much less those real estate agents who believe it’s always “the best time to buy.or sell.” What’s missing most often from the articles, blogs and predictions is context; in-depth market expertise; and understanding of location, inventory, seasonality and how buying trends can change (without necessarily affecting values). Instead, typically a single statistic, poorly understood, is seized upon to trumpet a conclusive unified theory of US, California, Bay Area or SF markets.

What will happen tomorrow in the San Francisco home market? Don’t know. Has there been a significant decrease in values since prices stabilized after the big decline of late 2008? No. Is a double-dip possible? Yes, the future is full of unknowns.

But is a double-dip likely?

Ever since the large drop from 2007-2008 peak values – 15% – 25% in most of the city’s neighborhoods – median prices in SF have been generally stable: indeed, median prices for both houses and condos in 2009 vs. 2010 were virtually unchanged. Which suggests we may have hit the bottom of this cycle. Also, San Francisco, especially its better neighborhoods, has a miniscule rate of foreclosures when compared to the state and Bay Area overall. Though some of our least affluent neighborhoods were badly hit, the predicted tsunami of foreclosures never arrived, and it seems unlikely to show up now.

MONTHLY FLUCTUATIONS IN MEDIAN PRICE ARE MEANINGLESS.

Even in a stable market, median prices will jog up and down by 1-5%, because there are a number of factors besides value which affect them in the short term. It is what occurs consistently over the longer term that indicates a verified market trend. The computer generated algorithm one constantly hears about, the Case-Shiller index, may be the best available, but is still a very blunt analytical tool for something as diverse as the values of specific (relatively unique) homes in specific (relatively unique) locations. Yet it’s treated as a precision measurement – “According to Case-Shiller, home values fell [exactly] 3.7% last month” – when, at minimum, a 5% +/- margin of error should be assumed.

Consider this: the Case-Shiller index for the “San Francisco Metro Area” comprises 5 counties, encompassing wildly different markets from Pacific Heights to Martinez, Hillsborough to the Tenderloin, areas with 50%+ foreclosure rates and those with less than 3%, but every month, a percentage change calculated to one tenth of one percent is delivered as generally applicable to all.

To be repeated endlessly in articles and blogs as gospel truth.

If the market is indeed strengthening, instead of being on the cusp of another crash, what might be the reasons?

    1. A growing suspicion that, 2 ½ years after the crash, the SF market has bottomed out price wise. If true, that makes it an excellent time to invest. 

    2. Indications that consumer optimism about the economy has finally turned a corner. Nothing impacts market dynamics more.

    3. Very low interest rates that have recently started to rise. (Very motivating for buyers.)

    4. Reduced inventory: among other things, the city’s flood of new condo units over the past decade is slowing to a trickle, and that will not change for years.

    5. An influx of young, new buyers, from Bay Area companies such as facebook, Google, Apple, Twitter and Zynga, who strongly desire to live in San Francisco. And who suddenly have a lot of money.

    6. The stock market: SF buyers are relatively affluent (by necessity considering our prices); when the stock market climbs considerably, as it has, they benefit most.

    7. That old canard: San Francisco is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. It is only 7 miles by 7 miles and cannot grow larger. SF is the center for flourishing high-tech, biotech and financial industries in one of the most educated and affluent areas on the planet. Our market has always been different: it usually declines last and recovers first.

 

Statistics without informed context are worthless. (“There are 3 kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics.”) Below are charts of market activity in San Francisco, as reported to MLS, within the context of longer term trends. They look at the SF home market by 9 different statistical parameters. The median price charts and the distress sales chart show long term stability. Every single one of the other market dynamics charts describes a strengthening market.

Still, predicting the future is tricky. And it’s still too early to identify a lasting, definitive trend. As always, it is up to you to reach your own conclusions and act accordingly.

Statistics are generalities, subject to fluctuation due to a variety of reasons. Sales not reported to MLS are not included in this analysis. All information herein is derived from sources deemed reliable, but may contain errors and omissions, and is not warranted.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Percent of SF Listings Accepting Offers
Due to strong buyer demand and relatively low inventory levels, February saw the highest percentage of listings accepting offers in years. This chart is for SF house and condo sales.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Months’ Supply of Inventory (MSI)
Months’ Supply of Inventory measures how long it would take to sell the existing inventory of homes for sale at current rates of activity. The lower the MSI, the stronger the market. This chart measures MSI for SF houses and condos. At 2.6 months of inventory, February 2011 saw the lowest MSI in years.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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SF Homes for Sale
The number of homes for sale remains relatively low even for February.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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New Listings Coming on Market
The number of new listings coming on market remains relatively low.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Average Days on Market
Days on market measures how long it takes a listing to accept an offer. The average is often distorted by a relatively small percentage of listings that take a very long time to sell. Over 60% of SF home listings accepting offers actually do so within 7 to 30 days. In any case, February’s figure was among the lowest in the past 2 years.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Distress Home Sales
This chart shows the number of bank-owned sales and short sales of SF condos and houses. For the past 20 months that number has generally fluctuated between about 60 and 70, and has shown no signs of dramatically increasing. Most of these sales occur in the lower price ranges and often in the least affluent neighborhoods — hit hardest by foreclosures. The more affluent SF neighborhoods have not been significantly affected by distress sales.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Median Sales Prices for 2-3 BR Houses
This chart shows the median sales price for 2 & 3 bedroom houses in SF, by quarter, over the past 3 years. After the big decline of late 2008/ early 2009, the median price has stayed within about a 5% margin for 7 quarters. The median for the 4th quarter of 2010 was virtually the same as that of 3 other quarters, with the other 3 a bit up or down. The chart shows a remarkable stability in median sales price over a long term period of sales.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Median Sales Prices for 2 BR Condos
The same median sales price stability shown in the previous chart for SF houses also shows up for 2 bedroom condos in San Francisco. Again, the big decline in late 2008, and the relatively minor ups and down since. The median price in the 4th quarter of 2010 was virtually the same as 3 other quarters, with the other 4 quarters being slightly lower.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Sales Price to Original List Price by Price Reductions
The darker bars show the percentage of sales price to original list price of houses that accepted offers without a price reduction. These homes typically sold quickly and, on average, for a tiny bit over the asking price. This reflects the majority of houses accepting offers in any given month. The lighter lines show the discount to original list price when a property stays on the market longer and goes through one or more price reductions. Typically, another 30 – 40% of listings expire without selling due to being perceived as overpriced.

What Costs How Much Where in San Francisco

Low, High & Median Sales Prices & Average Dollar per Square Foot
By Neighborhood, Property Type & Bedroom Count
2/16/10 – 2/15/11

The charts below track San Francisco MLS home sales by price, size and average dollar per square foot ($/sq.ft.) for the year ending February 15th. Only homes listed as having at least 1 parking space are included.

Within the charts, neighborhoods are listed by median sales price. “Avg Sq.Ft.” signifies the average size in square feet for all those units that reported square footage. If a price is followed by a “k” it references thousands of dollars; if followed by an “m”, it signifies millions of dollars. “REO” refers to the sale of bank-owned properties (typically pursuant to foreclosure).

See the notes below the charts for important context to the analysis. Depending on your screen settings you may wish to adjust your viewing “zoom level” to below 100%.

* San Francisco TIC sales have been dramatically affected in the last few years by changes in financing conditions and condo conversion rules. Recently, more TIC listings expire without selling than actually sell. The TICs that do sell are generally perceived as particularly excellent values when compared to condos of similar size, location and quality. That is, a TIC usually has to stand out as a great value to attract attention from buyers, and the TICs sold are cherry-picked from the general inventory. Because the number of sales is low in the TIC chart, the resulting statistics are less reliable as indicators of general trends or comparative neighborhood values. TIC listings commonly do not publish square footage figures, so no $/sq.ft. analysis is possible.

The MEDIAN SALES PRICE is that price at which half the properties sold for more and half for less. It may be affected by “unusual” events or by changes in buying trends, as well as by changes in value.

Low Price & High Price are self-explanatory, but the low price might be for a property that needs significant work just to be habitable. Within a single neighborhood, it is possible for the low and high prices to be millions of dollars apart – the difference between a small, distressed, bank-owned 2-bedroom condo and a large, pristine 2-bedroom penthouse with spectacular views.

DOLLAR PER SQUARE FOOT is based upon the home’s interior living space and does not include garages, storage, unfinished attics and basements; rooms and apartments built without permit; decks, patios or yards. These figures are typically derived from appraisals or tax records, but can be unreliable, measured in different ways, or unreported altogether: thus consider square footage and $/sq.ft. figures to be very general approximations. All things being equal, a house will have a higher dollar per square foot than a condo (because of land value), a condo will have a higher $/sq.ft. than a TIC (quality of title), and a TIC’s will be higher than a multi-unit building’s (quality of use). All things being equal, a smaller home will have a higher $/sq.ft. than a larger one.

The AVERAGE SIZE of homes of the same bedroom count may vary widely by neighborhood: for example, the average size of a 4-bedroom house in Pacific Heights is 38% larger than one in Noe Valley; and the average of a Marina 2-bedroom condo is 25% larger than one in South Beach. Besides the affluence factor, the era and style of construction often play large roles in these disparities.

Some neighborhoods are well known for having additional ROOMS BUILT WITHOUT PERMIT, such as the classic 1940′s Sunset house with “bedrooms” and baths built out behind the garage. These additions often add value, but being unpermitted are not reflected in $/sq.ft. figures.

Many aspects of value cannot be adequately reflected in general statistics: curb appeal, age, condition, views, amenities, outdoor space, “bonus” rooms, parking, quality of location within the neighborhood, and so forth. Thus, how these statistics apply to any particular home is unknown.

In real estate, the devil’s always in the details.

February 2011 Newsletter

SF House & Condo Listings Accepting Offers
Activity by Week: sales activity really picked up since mid-January, with the last week of the month showing the highest number of accepted offers of any week in the past 6 months. In number of listings accepting offers, the full month of January 2011 was up 28% from January of 2010 and up 76% from January 2009 (the market’s nadir). 2010 Overview Analysis

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Percentage of House & Condo Listings Accepting Offers
Charted by Week: With buyer demand increasing and relatively low inventory levels, the last week of January saw a spectacular rise in the percentage of listings accepting offers in San Francisco.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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SF Home Listings for Sale
The dark red columns show the number of listings for sale at any time during the month; the lighter columns show the number of active listings on the LAST day of the month. Except for December 2010 and December 2009, January 31st saw the lowest number of active listings on the market for the last 25 months. (This chart shows the last 13 months.) Inventory levels should climb dramatically as we move toward spring.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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SF New House & Condo Listings
Charted by Week: new listings have been arriving on market in relatively moderate numbers, especially as compared to the beginning of the autumn 2010 season in mid-September. It appears that the number of new listings is not currently meeting buyer demand.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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SF Median Home Sales Price
For houses, condos, TICs by Month: as is typical in January, the median home price dropped. This is for 2 main reasons: firstly, for whatever reasons, a greater percentage of buyers of more expensive homes check out once the holiday season begins in mid-late November, and this affects the median sales price for the subsequent months of closings. Secondly, while many sellers pull their listings from the market for the holidays, banks do not: bank-owned home sales thus climb as a percentage of sales, and since bank-owned sales are heavily clustered at the lower price points, that drags the median price as well. January’s median sales price was virtually the same as in January 2010, which is in keeping with the overall stability of median prices in the City over the past 7 quarters. Indeed, despite jogging up and down on a monthly basis, comparing 2010 with 2009, the overall median sales prices for both houses and condos in SF were virtually unchanged. More on SF Median Prices

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Months’ Supply of Inventory (MSI)
For SF Houses & Condos by Month: except for April 2010 (with its tax credit crush of sales), the MSI in January was the lowest for the last 13 months, and signficantly below the level of January 2010. If we look at just houses, the strongest selling property type, the MSI drops to a very low 2.8 months of inventory. MSI for bank-owned and short sale homes in SF dropped to an even lower 2 months of inventory, signaling a very hot market for these typically lower-end “distress sale” homes.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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SF Distress Home Unit Sales
(By Month) In this chart, distress sales are defined as both bank-owned (REO) property sales and short sales (the lender must agree to a reduced payment on the outstanding loan for the sale to close), though one should note that these are somewhat different animals. In short sales, the seller still lives in the home and it usually does not look “distressed” as is often the case with bank-owned homes. (Short sales can be very time consuming and aggravating, due to the requirement for lender approval.) The monthly number of distress sales has stayed relatively stable in 2010, and though this January’s number was higher than that of January 2010, as a percentage of total sales it was virtually unchanged year over year. As seen in a later chart, distress sales are mostly clustered in the lower price ranges of home sales in the City.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Percentage of Distress Sales by District
The top chart shows the percentage of distress sales (both REO & short sales) by quarter in the less affluent Realtor districts of 3 & 10 (Bayview across to Oceanview), while the lower chart shows the percentage of such sales in the affluent districts of 5 (Noe/ Castro/ Haight) and 7 (Pacific Heights/ Marina). The cross-hatched portion of the column reflects the number of distress sales. In SF, the whole phenomenon of distress sales largely began in late 2008/ early 2009. As one can see, the less affluent districts 3 & 10 have been hugely affected, with the percentage of distress sales running 38% – 45% in the past 4 quarters. The more affluent districts 5 & 7 have been relatively unaffected by distress sales, with the percentage usually running in the 3 – 6% range (and those predominately in the lowest price ranges for homes in those neighborhoods). In both charts, the percentage of distress sales in the 4th quarter of 2010 was the lowest for the year.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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2010 Bank-Owned (REO) Home Sales by Price Range
In 2010, homes below $650,000 were much more dramatically affected by foreclosures and the resulting bank-owned home sales than those at the higher price ranges. Under $650,000, the percentage of REO sales is 29% for houses (and then, mostly in the less affluent areas of the city), and 13% for condos. Once above $650,000, the percentage drops to a relatively negligible 3-4% of sales. Above $1 million, it falls to well below 2%, not enough to impact values in these price ranges and the neighborhoods one finds them.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Median Price for SF Distress Sale Homes
Reflecting the fact that most distress sales (both REO & short sales) occur at the lower price ranges, the median price for such sales in the City has been generally running in the $450,000 to $500,000 range, well below the overall median sales price for SF homes (approximately $700,000 when including distress sales; approximately $750,000 when not).

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Homes Sold vs. Listings Expired or Withdrawn
The green bars delineate closed sales per month and the purple bars delineate listings expired and withdrawn. While the market has definitely heated up since mid-September, a large number of listings still expire or are withdrawn without selling, typically due to being perceived as overpriced. (December is usually the peak month for expired/ withdrawn listings.) If not priced fairly, as defined by the market, the home typically won’t sell, or even attract offers.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Mortgage Rates
For the past 12 months per Bankrate.com: interest rates have been climbing since their incredible lows in October, though they remain low by historic standards and are roughly comparable to where they stood 8-10 months ago. Many pundits believe rates will continue to increase in 2011. Rate increases could affect the market in two totally different ways: buyers may pull out of the market as the cost of home buying increases, or buyers may rush into the market having come to the conclusion that prices have bottomed out, and they best move quickly before interest rates climb further. Needless to say, interest rates can affect the cost of home ownership very significantly (unless one is paying all cash): an increase of 1 percentage point is roughly comparable to paying a 10% higher purchase price.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Mortgage Rates since 1971
Here’s a good chart to put into context the recent rise in rates since last October.

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Weekly Market Charts

These charts track activity by week for the past 6 months through January 16, 2011 for SFDs, Condos, TICs & 2-4 Unit Buildings. The market is starting to wake up after the holidays.

New Listings: Starting to accelerate after the big slow-down of late December.
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Listings For Sale: Increasing slowly but still very low by general standards.
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Listings Accepting Offers: Accelerating as the market warms up.
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Percentage of Listings Accepting Offers: On a percentage basis, we’re back up over 5% (per week), which is among the highest percentages of the past 6 months. Of course, this is a function of both buyer demand (increasing) and inventory available (increasing, but still very low).
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Interest Rate Chart from Bankrate.com: rates have significantly climbed from their 40-year lows, but at under 5% are still very low by historical standards.
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Market Update: Pricing Reigns Supreme

2010 saw a very strong spring market turbo-charged by federal and state tax credits, a much slower summer, and then a strong finish from Labor Day on. The 4th quarter of 2010 had more accepted offers than the 4th quarters of 2009, 2008 & 2007. Comparing 2010 to 2009, overall median sales prices for SF houses and condos barely budged. The luxury home market woke back up. Interest rates jumped at the end of the year, but are still very low. Of those homes that did sell in 2010, most sold relatively quickly, without price reductions, at or a little above or below list price: the market identified them as good deals. A minority of sales sold after one or more price reductions, taking much longer and at a substantial discount to the original price. And many listings didn’t sell at all because buyers perceived them as overpriced.

There seems to be a positive momentum to the market as 2011 begins. A large influx of new listings will arrive in coming weeks as both buyers and sellers jump back in after the holidays.

Statistics are generalities, subject to fluctuation due to a variety of reasons. Median prices may be affected by other factors than changes in value. Averages may be distorted by a small number of sales substantially higher or lower than the norm. New-development condo sales not reported to MLS are not included in this analysis. All information herein should be considered approximate. It is derived from sources deemed reliable, but may contain errors and omissions, and is not warranted.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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San Francisco Unit Sales: 2007 – 2010
Comparing 2010 to 2009, the market strengthened and sales went up in every property type except TICs. From 2007 to 2009, the total number of sales fell 23% (plus an approximate 15-20% decline in values). Now, house sales are almost back to 2007 levels; condo sales are 17% up from 2009 but still 14% below 2007; TIC sales are 62% below 2007; 2-4 unit buildings are up from 2009 but still down 28% from 2007; 5+ unit buildings recovered a bit but are still 34% below 2007.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Median Sales Price & Average Dollar per Square Foot
These 2 charts are for SF house and condo sales over the past 3 years. From late 2007, early 2008, the median price dropped about 15% and the average dollar per square foot about 18%. However, there has been a remarkable stability over the past 7 quarters: the median was within 1½ % of $700,000 in 5 of the 7 quarters (the 2 other quarters were about 5% above that); and the average dollar per square foot remained within about 2% of $550/sq.ft.. 2009 to 2010, the overall median prices for both houses and condos was virtually unchanged.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Median House Sales Price by Neighborhood
Median price in thousands of dollars. The median price is that price at which half the sales occurred for more and half for less. For more information on median price trends and average dollar per square foot, click on the below link:
Median Price Overview

Paragon Real Estate Group
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SF Condos: Average Dollar per Square Foot
Dollar per square foot is calculated on liveable square footage, which doesn’t include garages, attics, storage or outdoor space. This calculation is based on those sales that reported square footage. Square footage figures are often unreliable or unreported, and average $/sq.ft. figures can fluctuate, but as a general statistic, this gives a relatively fair picture of the progression of condo values by neighborhood in San Francisco. Remember that the average age, size and condition of condos can vary widely by neighborhood.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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SF Home Sales by Realtor District
The big districts for house sales were southern District 10 (hit hard by distress sales), western District 2 (Sunset/ Parkside), central Districts 4 (St. Francis Wood/ Forest Hill/ Miraloma Park) and 5 (Noe/ Castro/ Haight). District 9 (SOMA/ South Beach/ Mission), with dozens of large condo developments, had twice as many condo sales as District 8 (Nob/Russian/Telegraph Hills) and District 5. TIC sales have dramatically declined in the city and are mostly found in Districts 5, 8 (Nob/Russian Hills) and 6 (Hayes Valley/ NOPA). The big districts for 2-4 unit building sales are 5 and 1 (Richmond).
SF Realtor Map

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Sales by Price Range
For sales of SF houses, condos, co-ops and TICs over the past year, the largest price segment by far was $500,000 to $750,000, with the next largest being the segments on either side. Once the million dollar mark is passed, the quantity of sales in each segment steps down dramatically.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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SF Luxury House Sales
Luxury house sales – sales of $2m and above – bounced back dramatically in 2010, but are still below 2008 levels except in District 7 (Pacific & Presidio Heights, Cow Hollow & Marina), which saw a large surge this past year.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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SF Luxury Condo Sales
High-end condo sales – sales of $1.5m and above — have not recovered as well as luxury house sales, except in Realtor District 5 (Noe/ Castro/ Haight), where after a huge decline in 2009, there was a huge increase in 2010 (though still slightly below 2008). The Pacific Heights area (District 7) also saw a small increase in 2010.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Distress Home Sales by District
Bank-owned property sales and short sales (loan amount greater than market value) can be found throughout the city, but are heavily concentrated in specific areas. Distress house sales are concentrated in the southern band of neighborhoods running from Bayview west to Oceanview (Districts 10 & 3). Distress condo sales are mainly found in the eastern band of neighborhoods that experienced massive new development in the last 15 years (District 9). Compared to other counties, San Francisco has been much less affected by distress sales, with the overall percentage in the past year running at roughly 15-16% of total sales.
SF Realtor Map

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Listings Accepting Offers; Listings Expiring
The dark blue columns delineate the number of listings accepting offers in any given quarter over the past 3 years; the purple columns show listings that expired or were withdrawn (without selling). In the top chart, last spring’s market surge shows clearly. The 4th quarter of 2010 was more active in offers being accepted than the 4th quarters of 2009, 2008 or 2007, and the usual slowdown between 3rd and 4th quarters did not occur. However, a high number of listings expired without selling in the 4th quarter of 2010 as well. Many of these will be relisted in January at reduced prices.

Paragon Real Estate Group
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Months’ Supply of Inventory & Days on Market
These 2 charts pertain to SF house sales only, which is the hottest segment of the market. The gray columns show months’ supply of inventory over the past 2 years, which at 2.5 months, is now at its low for that time period. Inventory will increase significantly in January. The dark blue columns show the average number of days it took a house to accept an offer (by quarter over 3 years).

The San Francisco Real Estate Market: December 2010 Update

Despite mostly negative reports from other parts of the country, the San Francisco home market has performed relatively well since the autumn market began after Labor Day. Indeed, the number of listings accepting offers in November was well above last year’s and the median home price is at its highest since the April tax-credit crush. Typically the market slows down dramatically from mid-November to mid-January, but so far it is slowing far less than usual.

Generally speaking, 30-40% of San Francisco new home listings accept offers within 30 days of going on market (i.e. quickly). They are perceived as good values, often attract multiple offers, and the sales prices for such homes are still, on average, slightly above the list price. (Houses perform better than condos, and condos perform better than TICs and multi-unit buildings.) Another 20% of new listings sell after 1 or more price reductions: on average, they’re on the market for over 100 days before offer acceptance, and sell at a sales price to original list price percentage that is 10-14% lower than that of homes selling quickly. And then 30-40% of listings expire without selling, typically due to being perceived as overpriced. The San Francisco home market is active, but buyers aren’t buying everything (as it seemed they did in the bubble years) – they’re buying only those properties they consider fair or, better yet, compelling values.

Statistics are generalities, often subject to surprising fluctuations due to a variety of reasons. Median prices may be affected by other factors than changes in value. Averages may be distorted by a small number of sales substantially higher or lower than the norm, especially where the sample size is small. New-development condo sales not reported to MLS are not included in this analysis. All information contained herein is derived from sources deemed reliable, but may contain errors and omissions, and is not warranted.

Homes Accepting Offers
Paragon Real Estate Group
The number of SF homes – houses, condos, TICs & 2-4 unit buildings – accepting offers is remaining generally stable. Though the market typically starts to slow markedly in November, this has not occurred this year, and the number of listings accepting offers in November was only slightly reduced from October, and was 17% above November of 2009, and 90% above November 2008 (the market crash era).

Median Sales Price
Paragon Real Estate Group
The Median Sales Price is that price at which half the properties sold for more and half for less. The median price for all home types in San Francisco was $775,000 in November which is its highest since April. However, median price is a very general statistic, which can be affected by a number of factors (such as an increase in high-end home sales), and it’s not unusual for it to fluctuate up and down by month. It’s certainly too early to conclude SF home values are on a sustained upward trajectory.

Median Price: Distress vs. Non-Distress Sales
Paragon Real Estate Group
A distress sale is a bank-owned property sale (usually pursuant to foreclosure) or a short sale (the lender must reduce the loan amount to allow the sale to close). The cross-hatched and solid bars delineate the median prices of distress property sales and non-distress homes respectively: in SF, distress properties have a much lower median sales price than non-distress sales — in November, $435,000 vs. $802,000. This is due to 3 reasons: firstly, the majority of distress sales in the city occur in the least affluent neighborhoods and housing costs less there anyway; secondly, distress properties often look distressed, and thirdly, buyers expect major discounts on a such sales. (Otherwise, they wouldn’t bother with the considerable hassle of dealing with the bank sales departments.) Of the 43 distress home sales in November, only 2 were above $750,000. September and October each has 11 distress home sales over $750,000.

Homes for Sale
Paragon Real Estate Group
The number of listings actively for sale declined significantly in November, but is still running 17% above November of last year. The cross-hatched section of the bars delineates the number of distress properties actively for sale: in November, they totaled 483 or about 18% of all active listings. Again, though these sales occur throughout the city, most of them are clustered in specific neighborhoods. San Francisco has been much less impacted by foreclosures and short sales than most other California counties.

Luxury Homes Accepting Offers
Paragon Real Estate Group
In this analysis, luxury homes are defined as houses and condos listed at $1,500,000 and above. October was the strongest month for luxury home sales in the past 25 months, and November was not far behind. Such sales in November of 2010 were 61% above those in November of 2009, and 350% above November of 2008 (the nadir of the market, right after Lehman Bros.).

New Listings
Paragon Real Estate Group
As is typical for this time of year, the number of new listings crashes in November (and December), and then revives again in January. The cross hatched portions of the bar delineate new distress-home listings, which at 129 in November, are at the second highest number of the past 25 months. (The average number of new distress-home listings over the past year was 116 per month.)

Average Days on Market (DOM)
Paragon Real Estate Group
This chart measures the average number of days between going on market and accepting an offer for all home types: at 58 days in November, it was the lowest, by a few days, of the past 25 months. Breaking it down further, houses had an average DOM of 52 days, condos were at 67 days, and luxury homes ($1.5m and above) were at 57 days. Those homes that do sell generally sell relatively quickly.

Months’ Supply of Inventory (MSI)
Paragon Real Estate Group
MSI is defined as the number of months it would take to sell the current inventory of homes for sale, at the current rate of sale: generally speaking, the lower the MSI, the greater the demand. MSI for all SF homes was 3.8 months in November, which is moderately low. However MSI varies widely by property type: for houses, the MSI was lower at 3 months; for condos, it was 3.9 months; for TICs, 6.3 months; and for 2-4 unit buildings, 5.2 months of inventory. The MSI for luxury homes was 3.8 months.

Expired/Withdrawn Listings
Paragon Real Estate Group
On one hand, the SF home market has been stable both in regards to buyer demand and to property values – and November was an excellent month in sales activity – but on the other hand, quite a few listings expire without selling, typically because they are perceived as overpriced. November had the highest number of expired/withdrawn listings since last December – December generally being the highest month as properties are withdrawn for the holidays, often to be re-listed in January (not unusually at reduced prices).

Return on Investment
Paragon Real Estate Group
Comparing stocks with homes is like comparing apples with hardboiled eggs, but it’s still interesting. This chart is based upon all-cash purchase (no leverage). Stock performance does not include dividends and real estate performance does not include value of housing provided or potential rental income. Real estate appreciation is calculated on changes in median sales price for 2 & 3 bedroom houses and 2 bedroom condominiums in a sampling of SF districts. (Appreciation based upon changes in average dollar per square foot was 59% for houses and 64% for condos.) The chart does not adjust for transactional costs or for the $250,000/ $500,000 capital gains exclusion for primary residence sales. All numbers should be considered approximations.

2-4 Unit Buildings Accepting Offers
Paragon Real Estate Group
November was reasonably active for the sale of 2-4 unit residential buildings – one of the top 5 months of the last 25. Changes in financing conditions, tenant eviction law and the TIC market have affected this market in the past 2 years.

TICs (Tenancies-in-Common)
Paragon Real Estate Group
This chart shows the number of TICs for sale vs. the number sold in any given month. Due primarily to major changes in TIC financing conditions, the number of TIC sales in the city has fallen dramatically as compared to the period before September 2008. In November, there were 269 TIC units for sale, 39 new listings, 30 accepted offers, 16 sold (closed escrow) and 50 listings expired.

Paragon Performance
Paragon Real Estate Group
This chart shows the average percentage of sales price to original list price when acting as listing agent for luxury homes of $2,000,000 and above. Of the major city brokerages, Paragon consistently achieves the highest Sales Price to Original List Price percentage and lowest Days on Market for luxury homes (and indeed for all home sales as well). Homes that are priced correctly, prepared to show in their best possible light, and marketed comprehensively unsurprisingly achieve the highest sales prices in the shortest amount of time. Since September 1st, Paragon’s percentage market share for luxury homes is up over 47% year over year, we are currently the #2 luxury home brokerage in the city by unit sales for homes $1,500,000 and above.

The San Francisco Real Estate Market – December 2010 Update

The San Francisco Real Estate Market – December 2010 Update

Despite mostly negative reports from other parts of the country, the San Francisco home market has performed relatively well since the autumn market began after Labor Day. Indeed, the number of listings accepting offers in November was well above last year’s and the median home price is at its highest since the April tax-credit crush. Typically the market slows down dramatically from mid-November to mid-January, but so far it is slowing far less than usual.

Generally speaking, 30-40% of San Francisco new home listings accept offers within 30 days of going on market (i.e. quickly). They are perceived as good values, often attract multiple offers, and the sales prices for such homes are still, on average, slightly above the list price. (Houses perform better than condos, and condos perform better than TICs and multi-unit buildings.) Another 20% of new listings sell after 1 or more price reductions: on average, they’re on the market for over 100 days before offer acceptance, and sell at a sales price to original list price percentage that is 10-14% lower than that of homes selling quickly. And then 30-40% of listings expire without selling, typically due to being perceived as overpriced. The San Francisco home market is active, but buyers aren’t buying everything (as it seemed they did in the bubble years) – they’re buying only those properties they consider fair or, better yet, compelling values.

Statistics are generalities, often subject to surprising fluctuations due to a variety of reasons. Median prices may be affected by other factors than changes in value. Averages may be distorted by a small number of sales substantially higher or lower than the norm, especially where the sample size is small. New-development condo sales not reported to MLS are not included in this analysis. All information contained herein is derived from sources deemed reliable, but may contain errors and omissions, and is not warranted.

Homes Accepting Offers
The number of SF homes – houses, condos, TICs & 2-4 unit buildings -accepting offers is remaining generally stable. Though the market typically starts to slow markedly in November, this has not occurred this year, and the number of listings accepting offers in November was only slightly reduced from October, and was 17% above November of 2009, and 90% above November 2008 (the market crash era).

Median Sales Price
The Median Sales Price is that price at which half the properties sold for more and half for less. The median price for all home types in San Francisco was $775,000 in November which is its highest since April. However, median price is a very general statistic, which can be affected by a number of factors (such as an increase in high-end home sales), and it’s not unusual for it to fluctuate up and down by month. It’s certainly too early to conclude SF home values are on a sustained upward trajectory.

Median Price: Distress vs. Non-Distress Sales
A distress sale is a bank-owned property sale (usually pursuant to foreclosure) or a short sale (the lender must reduce the loan amount to allow the sale to close). The cross-hatched and solid bars delineate the median prices of distress property sales and non-distress homes respectively: in SF, distress properties have a much lower median sales price than non-distress sales — in November, $435,000 vs. $802,000. This is due to 3 reasons: firstly, the majority of distress sales in the city occur in the least affluent neighborhoods and housing costs less there anyway; secondly, distress properties often look distressed, and thirdly, buyers expect major discounts on a such sales. (Otherwise, they wouldn’t bother with the considerable hassle of dealing with the bank sales departments.) Of the 43 distress home sales in November, only 2 were above $750,000. September and October each has 11 distress home sales over $750,000.

Homes for Sale
The number of listings actively for sale declined significantly in November, but is still running 17% above November of last year. The cross-hatched section of the bars delineates the number of distress properties actively for sale: in November, they totaled 483 or about 18% of all active listings. Again, though these sales occur throughout the city, most of them are clustered in specific neighborhoods. San Francisco has been much less impacted by foreclosures and short sales than most other California counties.

Luxury Homes Accepting Offers
In this analysis, luxury homes are defined as houses and condos listed at $1,500,000 and above. October was the strongest month for luxury home sales in the past 25 months, and November was not far behind. Such sales in November of 2010 were 61% above those in November of 2009, and 350% above November of 2008 (the nadir of the market, right after Lehman Bros.).

New Listings
As is typical for this time of year, the number of new listings crashes in November (and December), and then revives again in January. The cross hatched portions of the bar delineate new distress-home listings, which
at 129 in November, are at the second highest number of the past 25 months. (The average number of new distress-home listings over the past year was 116 per month.)

Average Days on Market (DOM)
This chart measures the average number of days between going on market and accepting an offer for all home types: at 58 days in November, it was the lowest, by a few days, of the past 25 months. Breaking it down
further, houses had an average DOM of 52 days, condos were at 67 days, and luxury homes ($1.5m and above) were at 57 days. Those homes that do sell generally sell relatively quickly.

Months’ Supply of Inventory (MSI)
MSI is defined as the number of months it would take to sell the current inventory of homes for sale, at the current rate of sale: generally speaking, the lower the MSI, the greater the demand. MSI for all SF homes was 3.8 months in November, which is moderately low. However MSI varies widely by property type: for houses, the MSI was lower at 3 months; for condos, it was 3.9 months; for TICs, 6.3 months; and for 2-4 unit buildings, 5.2 months of inventory. The MSI for luxury homes was 3.8 months.

Expired/Withdrawn Listings
On one hand, the SF home market has been stable both in regards to buyer demand and to property values – and November was an excellent month in sales activity – but on the other hand, quite a few listings expire without selling, typically because they are perceived as overpriced. November had the highest number of expired/withdrawn listings since last December – December generally being the highest month as properties are withdrawn for the holidays, often to be re-listed in January (not unusually at reduced prices).

Return on Investment
Comparing stocks with homes is like comparing apples with hardboiled eggs, but it’s still interesting. This chart is based upon all-cash purchase (no leverage). Stock performance does not include dividends and real estate performance does not include value of housing provided or potential rental income. Real estate appreciation is calculated on changes in median sales price for 2 & 3 bedroom houses and 2 bedroom condominiums in a sampling of SF districts. (Appreciation based upon changes in average dollar per square foot was 59% for houses and 64% for condos.) The chart does not adjust for transactional costs or for the $250,000/ $500,000 capital gains exclusion for primary residence sales. All numbers should be considered approximations.

2-4 Unit Buildings Accepting Offers
November was reasonably active for the sale of 2-4 unit residential buildings – one of the top 5 months of the last 25. Changes in financing conditions, tenant eviction law and the TIC market have affected this market in the past 2 years.

TICs (Tenancies-in-Common)
This chart shows the number of TICs for sale vs. the number sold in any given month. Due primarily to major changes in TIC financing conditions, the number of TIC sales in the city has fallen dramatically as compared to the period before September 2008. In November, there were 269 TIC units for sale, 39 new listings, 30 accepted offers, 16 sold (closed escrow) and 50 listings expired.

Paragon Performance
This chart shows the average percentage of sales price to original list price when acting as listing agent for luxury homes of $2,000,000 and above. Of the major city brokerages, Paragon consistently achieves the highest Sales Price to Original List Price percentage and lowest Days on Market for luxury homes (and indeed for all home sales as well). Homes that are priced correctly, prepared to show in their best possible light, and marketed comprehensively unsurprisingly achieve the highest sales prices in the shortest amount of time.

Since September 1st, Paragon’s percentage market share for luxury homes is up over 47% year over year, we are currently the #2 luxury home brokerage in the city by unit sales for homes $1,500,000 and above.

Giant Demand in “Giants’” Town

Buyer demand has been strong since the autumn sales season began in mid-September. Overall median home prices continue to remain stable – as they have for the past 12-16 months – jogging up and down within a narrow band of value. Inventory is about 12% higher than 1 year ago, but Months’ Supply of Inventory remains at about 4 months of inventory, which is considered a relatively balanced situation between buyer’s and seller’s markets. However, for every 10 listings that have sold in the past 4 months, another 8 have expired without selling: buyers are choosing those properties they consider fairly priced (which typically sell quite quickly) and ignoring the rest. Average Days on Market for those houses, condos and TICs which did sell in October was 54 days: the lowest in over 2 years.

Below are specific San Francisco home sales which closed at or near the median prices for houses and condos sold in the neighborhood specified – however, they are not necessarily representative of typical values.

At the bottom of the newsletter are links to additional market trend analyses.

Specific SF HOUSE Sales at Median Price — by Neighborhood

Pacific Heights, $3,500,000, 4BR, 4.5 BA Victorian on California Street, 4509 sqft, panoramic views, decks, 6 fireplaces, 2 car parking, $776/sqft
Sea Cliff, $3,000,000, 1951 4BR, 3.5BA on El Camino del Mar; 3491 sqft; water, Golden Gate and Mt Tam views; Zen garden, 8000 sqft lot, 2 car parking, $859/sqft
Clarendon Heights, $2,800,000, modern 3-level 6BR, 5.5BA on Villa, 4580 sqft, panoramic views, all new systems, 4 car parking, $617/sqft
Russian Hill, $2,250,000, 1906 3BR, 2.5BA on Hyde, 2090 sqft, deck, garden, library, 2 car parking, $1077/sqft
Telegraph Hill, $2,000,000, 1912 3BR, 2.5BA Edwardian on Vallejo cul de sac; spectacular views of bay, bridge and downtown; roof deck, separate apartment, leased parking
Marina, $1,875,000, 1930 3BR, 2.5BA on Cervantes, 2180 sqft, seismic upgrades, bonus office, 2 pkg, $860/sqft
St Francis Wood, $1,825,000, 1956 4BR, 3.5BA on San Pablo, 3740 sqft, ocean views, bank-owned sale, 2 pkg, $488/sqft
Lake Street, $1,759,000 (median is $1.85m), 1913 3BR, 2.75BA, North of Lake Craftsman on 18th, 3465 sqft, family room, needs restoration work, 1 pkg, $508/sqft
Eureka Valley, $1,475,000, 1905 4BR, 2.5BA Victorian on Noe, 2389 sqft, family room, sunroom, 1 pkg, $617/sqft
Cole Valley, $1,450,000, 1907 3BR, 3BA on Cole, 2040 sqft, new systems and foundation, garden, deck, 2 pkg, $711/sqft
Forest Hill, $1,400,000, 1926 3BR, 3BA detached Spanish-Med on Magellan, bonus family room, deck, yard, 1 pkg
Lower Pacific Heights, $1,232,000, 1883 4BR, 2BA Victorian on Pine, needs complete renovation, 1760 sqft, 2 pkg, $700/sqft
North of Panhandle (NOPA), $1,230,000, 1910 2BR, 1.5BA Craftsman Edwardian on Hayes, 1950 sqft, seismic upgrades, decks, 2 pkg, $631/sqft
Noe Valley, $1,200,000, 1902 renovated 2BR, 2BA Victorian on Jersey, den, deck, yard, 1 pkg
West Portal, $1,095,000, 1926 4BR, 2.5BA detached Spanish-Med on Lenox, 2036 sqft, large yard, 1 pkg, $538/sqft
Diamond Heights, $1,035,000, 1975 3BR, 2.5BA contemporary on Berkeley, 2892 sqft, roof deck, Glen Canyon view, 2 pkg, $358/sqft
Potrero Hill, $950,000, 2BR, 1BA Marina-Style house on Wisconsin, north slope, bay and bay bridge views, beautiful garden, bonus office, 1 pkg
Glen Park, $929,000, 1909 2BR, 1.5BA corner-lot Victorian on Congo, 1471 sqft, garden, den, bonus rooms, 1 pkg, $632/sqft
Central Richmond, $925,000, 1919 3BR, 2BA Edwardian on 18th, 1827 sqft, 2 parking, $506/sqft

Inner Sunset, $833,000, 1948 3BR, 1.5BA contemporary on 18th Ave, FDR, patio, yard, 2 pkg, $499/sqft
Inner Mission, $800,000, 2BR, 2BA Victorian on Harrison, den, deck, bonus rooms, garden, 2 pkg
Central Sunset, $760,000, 1951 3BR, 1BA traditional on 35th Ave, 1400 sqft, expansion potential, 2 pkg, $543/sqft
Bernal Heights, $750,000, 1952 2BR, 1BA on Folsom, 1125 sqft, garden, 2 pkg, $667/sqft
Miraloma Park, $750,000, 1931 detached 2BR, 1BA on Rockdale, 1150 sqft, east views, FDR, deck, garden, 1 pkg, $652/sqft
Midtown Terrace, $750,000, 1957 3BR, 2BA on Dellbrook, 1244 sqft, bonus room with kitchenette, trust sale, 2 pkg, $603/sqft
Outer Parkside, $645,000, 1945 2BR, 1BA corner-lot house, 1089 sqft, ocean view, bonus room, expansion potential, 2 pkg, $592/sqft
Ingleside Heights, $520,000, 1955 3BR, 2BA tunnel-entrance home on Bright, 1394 sqft, 2 pkg, $373/sqft
Excelsior, $500,000, 1947 2BR, 1.5BA contemporary on Vienna, 1278 sqft, bonus BR & BA, short sale, 1 pkg, $391/sqft
Silver Terrace, $450,000, 1942 2BR, 1BA contractor special on Bridgeview, 1375 sqft, 4 pkg, $327/sqft

Specific SF CONDO Sales at Median Price — by Neighborhood

Marina, $1,100,000, 1935 2BR, 2BA Spanish-Med lower flat on Beach, FDR, sunroom, patio, shared garden, 1 pkg, $625/month dues
Russian Hill, $990,000, 1911 top-floor 2BR, 1.5BA Edwardian on Green, 1450 sqft, GG Bridge views, leased parking offsite, $219/month dues, $683/sqft
Pacific Heights, $857,000, 2BR, 2BA condo on Sacramento, 1130 sqft, doorman bldg, GG Bridge views, 1 pkg, $784/month dues, $758/sqft
Cole Valley, $827,000, 1924 2BR, 1.5BA top-floor flat on Belvedere, 1519 sqft, Marin Headlands view, FDR, 1 pkg, $250/month dues, $544/sqft
Duboce Triangle, $850,000, 2BR, 1BA top-floor Victorian on 15th, 1 car parking, $367/month dues
Eureka Valley/Castro, $790,000, 1911 2BR, 1BA top-floor flat on Hartford, 1054 sqft, downtown and Twin Peaks views, deck, $257/month dues, $750/sqft
NOPA, $775,000, 1900 2BR, 1BA lower flat on Grove, 1399 sqft, yard, deck, 2 fireplaces, 1 pkg, $225/month dues, $554/sqft
Noe Valley, $770,000, 1900 2BR, 1BA top-floor Victorian flat on 23rd , 1042 sqft, sunroom, 1 pkg, $241/month dues, $739/sqft
Nob Hill, $770,000, 1992 2BR, 2BA on Sacramento, 1289 sqft, 2 patios, city lights views, 1 pkg, $597/sqft
North Beach, $730,000, 2BR, 2BA lower flat on Vandewater, 910 sqft, walk-out garden, 1 pkg, $250/month dues, $820/sqft
Lower Pacific Heights, $693,000, 1916 3BR, 2BA top-floor Victorian on Baker, 1400 sqft, deck, 1 pkg, $300/month dues, $495/sqft
Hayes Valley, $685,000, 1992 2BR, 1.5BA townhome on lane off Fulton, 1146 sqft, 1 pkg, $411/month dues, $598/sqft
Mission Dolores, $684,000, 1907 3BR, 1BA top-floor Edwardian on Clinton Park, 1147 sqft, deck, office, leased pkg offsite, $220/month dues, $596/sqft
South Beach, $665,000, 2005 2BR, 2BA brick contemporary on King, 987 sqft, ballpark views, 1 pkg, $963/month for dues and parking, $674/sqft
Inner Mission, $649,000, 3BR, 2BA 2-level contemporary on Alabama, 1445 sqft, 1 pkg, $535/month dues, $449/sqft
SOMA, $579,000, 2002 2BR, 2BA, high-rise condo on South Van Ness, 1075 sqft, city and bridge views, 1 pkg, $539/month for dues and parking, $539/sqft
Potrero Hill, $575,000, 1999 1BR, 1.5BA top-floor condo on 17th , 1215 sqft, panoramic views, decks, family room, 1 pkg, $423/month dues, $473/sqft
North Waterfront, $537,500, 1983 1BR, 1BA high-rise condo on Lombard, 923 sqft, doorman bldg, balcony, 1 pkg, $809/month dues, $582/sqft
Western Addition, $535,000, 1963 3BR, 2BA condo on Cleary, high-rise, 1100 sqft, 1 pkg, $685/month dues, $486/sqft

San Francisco MLS sales closing between January 1 and September 30, 2010. Median price is that price at which half the sales occurred for more and half for less, and it may fluctuate for a variety of reasons. Dollar per square foot is based on “livable space”, which does not include decks, garages, unfinished basements and attics, or rooms built without permit (“bonus rooms”). Sadly, square footage figures are often unreliable or unreported. All data herein is from sources deemed reliable but subject to error and omission, and not warranted.