Summer Markets Find their Swagger
Our region continues to attract those from the greater Bay Area looking to find a more acceptable place to put down roots with a lower housing cost component - finding their dollars delivering much greater value than their existing homes while affording them a more relaxed lifestyle more connected to leisure activities and the ability to enjoy their “adulting” years – the requirements of each bring additional weight to the historical demands throughout our marketplace.
According to BAREIS MLS, Sonoma County had exactly 633 single-family homes left for sale at the close of July – 17 percent fewer than this same period twelve months ago as well as a new all-time monthly
low for July. Sellers delivered 269 new listings to the market during the period – 38 percent less than in 2022 - while buyers garnered control of another 364 new deals – 11 percent greater than a year earlier,
even with higher interest rates, lower inventory levels and the seasonality of our marketplace. In support of these metrics, completed sales tipped the scales at 302 for the period – 15 percent fewer
than the 354 homes sold last year.
The continued pace of the markets can be measured by the months’ supply of inventory (MSI) and, with the Federal Reserve aggressively trying to dampen demand by raising the cost of money, MSI has
continued to stabilize and in July the level stood at 2.1 – indicative of a stronger seller’s market and one gathering momentum even during a generally seasonally slower period.
MSI is the metric that indicates the number of months it would take to sell the current inventory at the current rate of sales. An MSI ranging from 4.0 to 6.0 is indicative of a balanced market, with lower
numbers increasingly favoring sellers and vice versa.
Getting down to the details in the town of Sonoma, which submarket includes the hamlets of Kenwood and Glen Ellen, there were 108 homes reported for sale as July concluded – essentially on par with a
year earlier. This region experienced the addition of 24 new listings during the month while buyers garnered accepted contracts on 38 more properties. Sellers in the valley awarded keys to 36 new
homeowners – 10 percent more than a year earlier – allowing MSI to steady at 3.0 with an expectation of regressing to a tighter reading in August.
Healdsburg witnessed 17 new listings arrive to the market last month – still 23 percent less than a year ago. Buyers absorbed 15 homes in new deals while sellers closed out 13 transactions leaving this
submarket with 70 homes for presentation to buyers in August – which is 35 percent higher than where it was last year and the only region not setting a new record low monthly inventory level while revealing an MSI swinging back and forth establishing a looser reading of 5.4 for this period.
Petaluma’s Westside attracted just 13 new sellers in July which helped available inventory to stabilize for now at 37 homes for buyers to select from by months end. Home seekers grabbed 14 new deals in
the period while sellers closed out 19 more purchases generating an MSI of 1.9.
Sebastopol wrapped up the period with 43 available homes for buyers to consider inclusive of the 17 additional offerings brought forth in the period. Home shoppers placed 23 more dwellings into contract while sellers completed 15 sales – 42 percent fewer than in 2022 - allowing MSI to hold at 2.9 for the month.
With the summer season coming to an end, Russian River property owners delivered just 16 new listings in July while buyers captured 24 deals during the period. Sellers closed out 25 more transactions leaving 52 single-family homes available for buyers to peruse in August while highlighting an MSI steady at 2.1.
The summer window for buyers to have a greater say in the prices being paid is closing and the next window will open as we approach the December through January period. This does not mean deals will
not be getting done – au contraire - just that there will be more buyers with heightened focus on their purchases having been away to enjoy their “summering” and now getting back to their quest for a new
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