The October 2017 Marin County Real Estate Market Report

Thomas Henthorne with Enzo Ricciardelli and Tanya Stawski

Thomas with Beverly Hills Agents Enzo Ricciardelli and Tanya Stawski
At the Sotheby’s International Realty Global Networking Event in Las Vegas

Welcome to my Marin County Real Estate Market Report for October 2017. You may notice that I delayed publishing the report this month. I decided to wait until the terrible fires to our north in Sonoma and Napa were extinguished. My heartfelt condolences to all touched by this tragedy. There are many ways to help those suffering the after effects of the fire. One way is to go to Sonoma and Napa and patronize businesses. Another is to donate to an organization such as the Milo Foundation which rescued animals displaced by the fires. You may also donate to the North Bay Fire Relief Fund — 100% of donations go to those in need with no overhead costs deducted.

And now on to my report…

The weeks after Labor Day are the strong “mini-season” in Marin that drives a lot of activity before the winter holiday slumber sets in. Don’t get me wrong – there are still some very motivated buyers and sellers transacting business during the winter period, and there are advantages to that, but many wait until spring.

The September numbers are in, and while we saw a 24% increase in inventory of homes for sale versus the prior month, we also saw about 10% fewer homes for sale than September of 2016. This continues the trend of 2017 where we see fewer homes on the market which is driving pricing up. The median pricing increased about 6% versus August 2017, and the median was up about 15% versus prior year to $1,090,000.

In my business, 125 Calle del Sol in Bodega Bay went into escrow, and 36 Tampa Drive in San Rafael sold for $1,020,000.  I also launched a stunning mid-century modern home, 40 Twain Harte Lane, in San Rafael. It is never too soon to talk about the spring real estate season, so if you’re thinking of buying or selling after the new year, let’s talk. I already have some exciting listings lined up.

Last month I attended the Sotheby’s International Realty Global Networking Event (photo above) in Las Vegas. I met many top real estate agents from around the world and served as a panelist in the social media real estate marketing breakout session. It was a great opportunity to learn best practices that I will incorporate into my work going forward.

As always, I am happy to discuss the Marin real estate market with you — just give me a call at 415-847-5584. Please scroll down to see this month’s Marin real estate market graphs.

I Was Honored to Serve on the Social Media Panel at the Sotheby’s International Realty Global Networking Event Last Month in Las Vegas

Thomas Henthorne on the social media panel at Sotheby's Global Networking Event 2017
Round Pond Estate in Rutherford, California

We had the tasting room just about to ourselves recently at Round Pond Estate in Napa. Please help the wine country recover from the fires by visiting soon.

Marin County Real Estate Market Report October 2017 Dashboards

Marin County Real Estate Dashboard:
Home Prices


For sale prices decreased by 2.9% versus last month and increased by 16% vs. the same month in 2016.


Average sold prices increased by 5.6% vs. last month and increased by 24.8% vs. the same month in 2016.


The median home price increased by 5.8% vs. last month and increased 15.5% vs. the same month in 2016.


The average price per square foot sold increased by 4.7% vs. last month and increased by 12.6% 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:
Inventory


Number of homes for sale increased by 24% vs. last month but decreased 10.1% vs. the same month in 2016. New listings decreased 19% versus August 2016.


Number of homes sold decreased 8.2% vs. last month and increased 16.1% vs. the same month in 2016.


Months of inventory increased 35.2% vs. last month and decreased 24.3% vs. the same month last year.


The average days on market increased by 11.8% vs. last month and increased 16.3% vs. last year.

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

Pool area at dusk

National Real Estate Market Update

Courtesy of Wells Fargo:

Storm-Related Distortions Will Weigh on Housing Through Year-End

“While some economic data have shown surprising resilience since hurricanes Harvey and Irma, the housing data are not among them. Home sales were already soft before the storms hit and have weakened notably in their aftermath. Most leading indicators of housing activity, such as pending home sales and mortgage purchase applications, have weakened as well. The declines are understandable given that Harvey and Irma hit Texas and Florida, two of the nation’s largest and
fastest-growing housing markets. Given the short timeline between now and the end of the year, and the typical fall-off in activity that occurs around the holidays, we expect storm related disruptions to hold back sales and new home construction through year-end. Housing starts should be stuck at around their current levels, although unseasonably mild weather might boost a single month’s seasonally adjusted numbers off their current low base.

Mortgage rates have risen slightly over the past month, now at 3.85 percent, compared to 3.76 percent at the end of August. Rates are down compared to Q1-2017, when they floated in the 4.1-4.2 percent range, despite the federal funds rate having increased since then. Re-finance applications might increase in coming weeks, as homeowners affected by hurricanes borrowmoney to fund repairs not covered by insurance. “

Please click here to read the full report from Wells Fargo

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. Keep an eye on some of the trends we are seeing — that while inventories remain tight, sellers are having a hard time pushing pricing higher than last year.  Bottom line: price your home for this market, not for the market in early 2016 or 2015.

BUYERS: For home buyers, the good news is that more balance is coming to the Marin real estate market even though inventories are tight. Look for homes that are well-priced 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.

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.

Marin 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 home price chart

Marin Home Prices List Price vs. Sold

Marin Real Estate Market Report selling price vs original price chart

Marin County Months of Inventory Based on Closed Sales

Months of home inventory in Marin County chart

Average Price Per Square Foot

Average price per square foot chart Marin County

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:

Kentfield Real Estate Market Update

Mill Valley Real Estate Market Update

San Rafael Real Estate Market Update

Tiburon Real Estate Market Update

I hope you have found my Marin County Real Estate Market Report for September 2017 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.

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

1 reply
  1. Judy LeMarr
    Judy LeMarr says:

    The mid-century home is truly stunning. Another wonderfully comprehensive report. Looks like it was a great season for you so far.

    Reply

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