Spring is in the air and the Marin real estate market has awakened - with more force than ever before. I have not seen this activity since I started my real estate career in the early 2000s. Two weeks ago, I represented a buyer on a property in Corte Madera. We knew that competition was going to be tough. Yet, I was very surprised to learn there were 23 other offers! This may have been an extreme situation, yet multiple offer situations are increasingly common. As long as inventory remains low it is easy to predict that the prices will continue to surge. For you who are planning to buy this spring/summer, no worries. It is still a great time because prices are still "relatively low" and mortgage rates are still SUPER low! Somehow the current market conditions seem to be as desirable for buyers as it is for sellers.
I found an interesting article published by Goldman Sachs on Feb 13th. Robert Shiller, Professor of Economics at Yale University, was interviewed. When asked: "Could there be another housing boom?", he replied:
"Yes. We've actually seen several booms since the US crisis in Canada, China, Brazil, northern Europe, especially Scandinavia, Australia, etc. I think it's definitely possible that some of these booms aren't over yet, and that we could see another housing boom in the US. But it would surprise me to see another boom in US anytime soon given that we have all of this new government apparatus to assure more sensible lending standards. I think it's more likely that we'll see languishing home prices. But the irony is that, right now, they're going up. I respect momentum in home prices. When they go up, they often go up for years."
He stated that it is a good time to purchase a home right now, but it's not a get rich quick bonanza. Rather a perfect time for long-term ownership and "consumption".
When looking beyond the US - it was a global housing crisis, after all. To get some perspective on where the US stands relative to other countries that also experienced housing booms and busts, it is interesting to note that the US is in the middle of the pack between "low-lyers" that are seeing little housing recovery (such as Ireland, Spain and the UK) and "high flyers" that are experiencing strong recoveries (such as Canada, Norway and others).
Marin County and other affluent Bay Area counties, have always outpaced the national prices and trends. It seems like we are going to do that again. The SF Chronicle featured the rising home prices around the bay in an article last week. The projected change in home values for 2013 ranged from 4%-17%. See http://www.sfgate.com/realestate/article/Bay-Area-home-sales-prices-surging-4200912.php
Impressive numbers indeed!
Helen Luttemo is an experienced Marin County realtor, known for great service and in-depth knowledge of all the cities and neighborhoods of Marin. For assistance with your real estate needs, please call or email: (415) 244-4414 Helen@MarinModern.com