Marin County Real Estate Market Report January 2019

Photo of Thomas Henthorne holding champagne glass

Happy New Year!

Welcome to my Marin County real estate market report for January 2019! I hope that you all had a wonderful holiday season and like me are excited to see what 2019 brings us. In December, we saw the trend of higher home inventories with flattening to declining home prices continue at the national, state and local levels. Please continue reading on for more detail on what we are seeing here in the Marin County real estate market.

Home Inventories Up While Pricing Continuing to Flatten and Decline

As reported in last months’ Marin County Real Estate Market Report, we continue to see the number of homes on the market increasing versus last year at this time, while pricing is flattening and even decreasing. The average price of homes sold in December declined by 2.1% versus December 2017, continuing the trend we saw last month. The median price sold was up 4.5% versus last month, but flat to the same period a year ago.

From an inventory perspective, the number of homes for sale in Marin County in December increased by 47% versus December of 2017 and the number of homes sold decreased by 12% vs. the same time last year. Days on market – a measure of how long properties are taking to sell – increased by 12%. I believe that number is deceptively low as there were many homes that did not sell in the fall and therefore show up in the higher inventory metric instead of the days on market metric.

If all of this is starting to make your head swim, call me and let’s talk. This just means to me that sellers have to be even smarter as they price and market their homes, and buyers may have the luxury of more to choose from with slightly less competition. Having said that, we are still far from a buyer’s market at this point – and I expect the spring season to be competitive when it comes to well-priced and well-presented homes.

What Does This Mean for the Spring Market?

My phone has been ringing with buyers and sellers excited about the upcoming Marin real estate season. Last year at this time, my phone was very quiet until mid- to late-March, which at the time I found a bit disconcerting. I have a number of  exciting listings in the pipeline for spring. I also have several buyers who are excited about the prospect of higher inventories and greater selection that we began to see in Fall 2018. If we can get the stock market to calm down, I believe we will see a very busy spring season here in Marin County and the San Francisco Bay Area.

I Am Never Too Busy For You

Please keep an eye on My Featured Listings page or call me for details on homes coming soon or being held as pocket listings. Whether you are a buyer, a seller, or just want to learn more about the market for a potential future move, I am always happy to talk about the Marin real estate market.

These market reports are a great place to start — but let’s continue the conversation. Call me at 415-847-5584 and I can provide you with a personalized market overview tailored to your specific situation. To those who read this report, thank you for all your support of my business. I couldn’t do it without you.

Marin County Real Estate Market Report January 2019 Dashboards

Marin County Real Estate Dashboard:
Home Prices

For sale prices increased by 9.5% versus last month and decreased 23.5% versus the same month a year ago.

Average sold prices increased by 1.3% vs. last month and decreased by 2.1% vs. the same month a year ago.

The median sold price increased by 4.5% versus last month and was flat vs. the same month a year ago.

The average price per square foot sold decreased by 2.2% vs. last month and decreased by 3.5% vs. the same month last year.

All information courtesy of and copyright by BAREIS MLS and TrendGraphix.
Dashboard compiled by Thomas Henthorne, all rights reserved.

Marin County Real Estate Dashboard:

Number of homes for sale decreased 39.4% vs. last month but increased by 47% vs. the same month last year. 

Number of homes sold decreased by 21.5% vs. last month and decreased by 12% versus the same month last year.

Months of inventory decreased by 18.7% vs. last month and increased by 71% versus the same month last year.

The average days on market increased by 14.3% vs. last month and increased by 12% vs. last year.

All information courtesy of and copyright by BAREIS MLS and TrendGraphix.
Dashboard compiled by Thomas Henthorne, all rights reserved.

Marin County Real Estate Market Report Charts

(click any slide to enlarge & launch slideshow)

“For Sale” vs. Sold Home Prices vs. Median Home Prices

Marin Real Estate Market Report Home Prices January 2019

Marin Home Prices List Price vs. Sold

Marin Real Estate Market Report Selling Price vs List Price Chart

Marin County Months of Inventory Based on Closed Sales

Months of Inventory Chart

Average Price Per Square Foot

Marin Real Estate Market Report Average Price Per Square Foot

Marin County Number of Homes on the Market

Home Inventory Chart January 2019

What This Update Means For You

SELLERS: If you’re thinking of selling your home, don’t listen to your Uncle Fred at dinner who says it is a sellers market and buyers will pay anything. Buyers are well-educated and the majority in Marin County are working with very experienced and savvy agents who know values and comparative sales (“comps”). Keep an eye on some of the trends we are seeing — that while inventories are improving, sellers are having a hard time pushing pricing beyond what the comps would support. The market is very different now than in 2017 and early 2018.

BUYERS: For home buyers, the market is improving as more inventory comes online. However, an increasing percentage of homes never appear on MLS as they are sold “off-market” as pocket listings or top agent referrals. Work with a well-connected agent and be prepared to move quickly. Chances are you are looking for the same things most other buyers are also seeking (see my list below.) Set up property alerts on my website so you can immediately see new homes on the market, and make sure you are pre-qualified so you present a compelling offer. (You may wish to read my article Buying a Home in Marin County for more tips and advice.) One other tip: Ask your agent to run aged inventory reports in and above your price range. Sometimes there are some real gems that the market has overlooked due to pricing or other factors.

If you are a buyer looking only at online portals such as Redfin or Zillow, and not working with a well-connected agent, you’re not seeing all of the homes available in Marin County.

What Are Buyers Looking For Right Now?

In speaking with buyers, they want it all right now, with the following at the top of their lists:

  • Great schools
  • Single-level
  • Easy commute
  • Walk to restaurants and shops
  • Views
  • Quiet streets
  • Remodeled homes in move-in condition

Smart buyers, which is almost all of them, realize they cannot have all of those attributes and buying a home in a market like Marin County is a series of tradeoffs. For example, they may choose to give up walking to restaurants to be in the hills with a view of the bay. In any event, we are seeing buyers that are more tech-savvy than ever and who have done their homework, reading market reports such as this one and spending a lot of time online looking at homes.

I hope you have found my Marin County Real Estate Market Report informative. Please feel free to add your comments, questions or suggestions in the comments section below. If I may be of any assistance in helping you attain your real estate goals, please call or text me at 415-847-5584 and I will be in touch right away.

Would you like to see this data for your town only?

I am also now rolling out market update charts for selected towns in Marin. Please click the below for local real estate market updates & charts:

Corte Madera Real Estate Market Update

Kentfield Real Estate Market Update

Mill Valley Real Estate Market Update

Novato Real Estate Market Update

San Rafael Real Estate Market Update

Tiburon Real Estate Market Update

What do YOU think? What would you like to see in this report going forward? Please leave your comments in the section below.

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