The busiest home buying season of the year is about to arrive, and it has just developed into one of the best times for sellers in years.  A lot is going on, in and around the San Francisco Bay Area, that affects the value of a Piedmont or Oakland home.  Here are some of the elements at work:

1. Lack of Available Homes On the Market--Throughout the Bay Area, the inventory of available homes is extremely low.  This means that motivated buyers are competing against each other for fewer homes. Additionally, it means that home prices are rising dramatically, as buyers compete fiercely against each other to purchase the limited home stock.  An indication is that last year's February's median single family home price in the immediate nine bay area counties went from $350,000 to $426,500 this February.  That is a dramatic shift.

2. Rise of Foreign Investment, and All Cash Payments--Many investors are interested in the Bay Area market, and are willing to offer prices well over the asking price to get into the marketplace.  Then, as bidders compete against each other, the price of the home rises significantly above the asking price.  Sales of $100,000 over the asking price are not uncommon now.  Additionally, banks are moving ahead promptly while favoring all cash offers.

3. Appraisal Negotiations--Often, to move a sale ahead, buyers have stopped making the home purchase contingent on the appraisal.  Often, non-cash buyers will attempt to compete with cash buyers by using this technique.  Faced with 20-30 offers on a home, the buyer needs to find the most effective methods to be considered by the seller. 

It is important to step into this type of marketplace now, if you are considering selling your home. 

Posted by Bruce Wagg on


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