If you are a seller, you probably don’t remember a time like this. This is the strongest seller’s market that we have been a part of. It is an incredible time to sell. But working first-hand with many buyers, I also know that on the other side, the sentiment is quite different. It is a very tough and competitive market to purchase a home.
Our market—Carpinteria to Goleta—has way more buyers than sellers currently. Properties are receiving multiple offers, and home values at many price points are pushing up noticeably. A change we have noticed is that with the current demand, buyers are getting more bold and risking more. In markets like San Francisco, it has not been uncommon for buyers to remove contingencies in their offers prior to an acceptance. For instance, some buyers are willing to give up the right to conduct physical investigations before they enter a contract, waiving their inspection contingency when they make an offer. On the other hand, we’ve experienced financed buyers removing appraisal or loan contingencies in their offers. Both of these practices are generally unusual in our market.
At the moment, many people from as far as the East Coast and across the pond, and as close as San Francisco and Los Angeles, think the Santa Barbara area is a great place to call home. Add to that the numerous locals who want to own their own piece of South County Santa Barbara and we have an extremely active real estate market!
Looking specifically at Carpinteria, prices are pushing up and many more homes are selling. June through August activity picked right back up after a slow April and May. Twenty-six homes and 21 condos were sold on the public market (multiple listing service). This does not account for the additional seven home and two condo sales that occurred off-market in June and July, with August’s numbers not released yet.
As of Sept. 4, we had 17 homes or condos in escrow. These pending sales have on average 81 days on the market, which seems long. Most homes are selling relatively quickly, but what is skewing these numbers are the handful of homes that have been on the market over six months, but are now under contract—a very encouraging sign for the desirability of our home town.