Marin County Real Estate Market Report
May 2019

466 Bret Harte Road Kitchen / Dining / Living Room

My Listing at 466 Bret Harte Road in San Rafael Sold in One Week with Multiple Offers

Searching for information on the Marin real estate market? Each month I publish this market report for Marin County and the greater bay area, along with my commentary and updates on my own business. The April numbers are in and compared to a year ago at the same time, overall inventory (number of homes on the Marin real estate market) is about 35% higher while the median price of homes sold last month was down 11%. The latter figure is the first double-digit decline we have seen in the median home price, but given that the average price of homes sold was only down 2.4%, I think the larger decrease in the median indicates we’re seeing more stagnation at the higher price points in the market. Scroll down to see all the charts and statistics.

We continue to see more inventory on the market, and homes are in some cases taking a little longer to sell than in years past. We did see an increase in the number of pending sales (homes in escrow, contingencies removed) versus this time last year which I believe is due to our longer-than-usual winter and wetter-than-usual spring, which caused buyers to stay at home in February and early March.

I have also included the Q1-2019 charts from Golden Gate Sotheby’s International Realty below, and for the full quarter we saw median pricing down 5.5% in Marin County with the number of sales up about 4% versus the same period in 2018. We also saw days on market increase by about 20%.

What’s Thomas Been Up To?

My business has been brisk, with several of my listings going into escrow since last month’s market report. My beautiful home in the Scott Valley neighborhood of Mill Valley, 208 Benson Circle, sold the same day a deer delivered her fawn on the property.  I took that as a good luck sign! 3 Creekside Court in Corte Madera also went into escrow this month, just after 466 Bret Harte Road in San Rafael went into contract with multiple offers.

I was also able to get a buyer into contract on a beautiful mid-century home in San Anselmo. More on that next month, assuming all goes well through the inspection period!

I have a number of exciting listings coming up, and continue to work with buyers who are looking to either upsize for their growing families or downsize for aging in place. As the market has become more balanced, buyers are appreciating the greater selection of homes on the market while sellers are learning that proper presentation and price are key.

Further Reading

“San Francisco Bay Area Home Prices Fall for the First Time in 7 Years” — CNBC

“The Secret HQ2: How Amazon Quietly Raised a Bay Area Army of Engineers” — San Francisco Chronicle

“When Is the Best Time to Sell Your House? 5 Factors to Consider” —

“Trade Tensions Push Mortgage Rates Lower for Second Week in a Row” — Washington Post

“Solar Energy in Marin County: Advice from a Realtor” — Thomas Henthorne

Let’s Talk!

These monthly Marin County real estate market reports are a great place to start as you learn more about the market. Let’s continue the conversation — I am always happy to discuss the market, and the best way to approach it whether you are a buyer or a seller.

Interestingly, I have had several sellers talk to me this spring about selling next spring. That is very, very smart — it gives them the dry summer months to prepare their homes for sale next spring. I cannot tell you how many times I have walked into a newly remodeled home where the seller did not consult with me and thought to myself “If only they had chosen a different paint color…”

To those who read this report, thank you for all your support of my business. I couldn’t do it without you. Call or text me at 415-847-5584 anytime. Let’s talk real estate!

In Escrow – 208 Benson Circle in Mill Valley

208 Benson Circle Mill Valley Exterior Dusk
Marin County Home Prices by Town Q12019 Chart
Marin County Home Prices 5 Year Trend Chart

Marin County Real Estate Market Report
May 2019 Dashboards

Marin County Real Estate Dashboard:
Home Prices

For sale prices decreased by 8.9% versus last month and decreased by 2.4% versus the same month a year ago.

Average sold prices increased by 8.9% vs. last month and decreased by 2.4% vs. the same month a year ago.

The median sold price decreased by 2.9% versus last month and decreased by 11% vs. last year.

The average price per square foot sold increased by 7.5% vs. last month and decreased by 1.7% compared to 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 increased by 30.3% vs. last month and increased by 34.9% vs. the same month last year. 

Number of homes sold increased by 55.8% vs. last month and decreased by 0.8% versus the same month last year.

Months of inventory decreased by 16.1% vs. last month and increased by 39.3% versus the same month last year.

The average days on market decreased by 6% vs. last month and increased by 30.6% 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 County Market Report May 2019 Home Prices

Marin Home Prices List Price vs. Sold

Average Days on Market Chart for Marin County real estate

Marin County Months of Inventory Based on Closed Sales

Months of inventory chart

Average Price Per Square Foot

Average price per square foot chart

Marin County Number of Homes on the Market

Number of homes for sale in Marin County chart

What This Update Means For You

SELLERS: The sellers’ market of years past is quickly fading away, being replaced by a market that is much more balanced. 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”). Overpricing in a flattening to declining market can be a fatal mistake, causing your property to become stale and languish on the market. Now, more than ever, an experienced agent armed with the latest market facts and trends is critical. REMEMBER THE THREE P’S: PRICE, PRESENTATION, AND PRICE.

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. Sellers may not have caught up with the changing dynamics of the market now — and it may take more negotiation than in the past to strike a deal.

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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