Tuesday, November 28, 2006

October Sales for El Dorado County

El Dorado County continues to defy the regional trend of declining home prices. In their October report, DataQuick Information Systems found year-over-year median price declines in existing single-family homes for Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, Sutter, Yolo and Yuba Counties. The drop in home values ranged from 5 percent in Sacramento to 11 percent in Placer County. El Dorado County, however, posted a slight 2.7 percent increase, finishing the month with a $445,000 median price, the second highest in the eight county region.

Our local Board of Realtors compiles its sales numbers from the multiple listing service. Over the last 10 years, October housing sales have averaged 215 units. This last month only 145 county home sales were reported. Although average and median sales prices appear to be holding, the number of properties changing hands fell 22 percent from last year and was 37 percent less than October of 2004. It was the slowest October since 1996.

With 1,650 county homes currently for sale, the odds of selling one in any given month is less than one in ten. El Dorado Hills continues to be the most popular destination for homebuyers and healthy appreciation rates. There are currently 450 homes for sale in EDH, 40 sold last month but the average price of $791,500 was a whopping $91,500 over the average price in October of 2005. Cameron Park, on the other hand, has 200 homes currently for sale, 20 sold last month for an average price of $486,000, a loss of $10,000 from last year at this time.

The Placerville area has 155 homes on the market. Eighteen closed escrow last month with an average selling price of $471,000 but $45,000 over last years average. El Dorado/Diamond Springs reported only 6 sales on an inventory of 86 units for an average selling price of $356,000 and a loss of $40,000 from a year earlier. Pollock Pines/Sly Park has 125 homes with a “For Sale” in their front yard. Fifteen closed escrow last month with an average price of $373,500 and $15,000 above last year. Cool/Pilot Hill has 70 homes on the market. Six sold last month for an average price of $412,000 but $15,000 less than last year.

The new Traffic Impact Mitigation Fees are having their desired effect. Vacant land sales have nearly stopped. With over 700 vacant land parcels listed for sale in the county, only 13 monthly sales were reported. It was the slowest month for land sales in recent history. Building and impact fees now easily total $80,000 for an average size house in some parts of the county, forcing many to look for lots and acreage elsewhere.

A healthy sign for the real estate market is fewer of them. The number of new monthly listings is finally slowing. The 340 new listings last month were 18 percent less than September and 40 fewer than October of 2005. It was the fifth consecutive month of declining new listings. Total residential listings at 1,650 are still 15 percent higher than last year but the declining number is headed in the right direction. Many discretionary sellers have decided not to sell at this time and are pulling their properties off the market. Others, are having second thoughts about listing their home given current market conditions.

After 10 months, year-to-date home sales have declined 31 percent from 2005 levels while the median and average price continues to hold at or near 2005 levels. Land sales have been hit hard by the declining market and by the county’s building and impact fees.

It’s no consolation to area sellers but our county real estate market appears to be weathering the regional market slow down better than most. If the number of new listings continues to decline, interest rates hold below 6.5 and regional populations and job growth continue, the worst will be behind us by spring. Our current market correction was long overdue and anticipated by most in the real estate industry. If it only last 18 months, so much the better.


Post a Comment

<< Home