First Quarter Update for Santa Barbara’s Real Estate Market

santa barbara real estate market activity chart

Median sale price of Montecito homes: $2.8M

Fellow Village Properties agent Carol Kruckenberg recently wrote an article for the Santa Barbara News Press which discusses the current state of the Santa Barbara real estate market, as well as reviews the market over the first quester of 2013. Carol sites a resurgence in the market based on a number of compelling factors, including the median list price for homes, which has risen 12% to $940,000 over last year. Low inventory has created a seller’s market, which according to the article means that listings should sell in approximately 2.2 months. Last year, there were 414 homes to sell, this year there is nearly half as many at 287 homes listed for sale. Going back to 2011, there were 511 homes for sale. More encouraging evidence of market recovery stems from a recovery financial arena as well; last year, 30% of homes for sale were “distressed,” meaning bank-owned or short-sale properties, this year less than half as many listings (12%) are “distressed.” Carol’s article also highlights the final sale prices of listings as evidence for a recovery in the area’s real estate market, the number of listing’s sold to date is the highest it’s been in the last five years, including last year’s banner year.

Carol’s article also provides a number of valuable tips to both buys and sellers entering into the Santa Barbara area real estate market. Below, an excerpt from the article highlights a few of Carol’s tips:

Here are some practical tips whether you are a buyer or a seller in this very active real estate market. If you are a seller, it is recommended that you hire a real estate professional to assist you through the process of selling your house/condo/mobile home.  If your agent has suggestions for you regarding the condition of the property, you will want to listen with an open mind.  It is best that you do not purposely underprice your property hoping for multiple offers; this strategy has been known to backfire.  With your agent’s help, come up with a realistic price for your home.  The important factors that guide pricing are location and condition.

If you are a buyer and need to finance the property you will be buying, get pre-qualified first.  This will tell you if you are financially capable of buying and the amount you can finance. It is recommended that you enlist the services of a real estate professional.  The agent will be able to keep you informed of properties that fit your specific requirements and may have the inside track on properties that may not be in the Multiple Listing Service.  The agent will then be able to guide you through the purchasing process.

The article makes sense of the market activity during the first quarter of 2013 in Santa Barbara’s residential real estate market while providing valuable information and recommendations for navigating one’s way through this most interesting seller’s market, and Santa Barbara’s #1 realtor team, Riskin Associates, applauds Carol’s insight into the market and her dedication to the industry.

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