Lower Inventory Leads to a Decline In Sales
By: Paul Brocchini and Mark Ryan
In our last report we warned readers that changes in the way our Multiple Listing Service (MLS) presents its statistics had a large impact on the historical numbers we have used in these reports. We have decided to adapt rather than resist, but the result is that some of the comparative numbers make no sense.
Here is what we are facing. “Carmel” used to be Carmel-by-the Sea and the neighborhoods close to town. Now it is all of 93923 including Carmel Highlands and Carmel Valley to Mid-Valley but does not include Carmel-by-the-Sea, 93921.
Carmel Valley is only 93924. These changes, for example. make comparing our old Carmel Valley numbers to the new compilations ludicrous.
In the accompanying charts we have made the following changes: 1) we have three new categories: Carmel-by-the-Sea, 93921, Greater Carmel, 93923 and Greater Monterey, 93940. The town of Del Rey Oaks and the area the MLS calls Salinas/Monterey Highway have been axed as both of those have 93940 zip codes and are now part of Greater Monterey.
There is another problem. The MLS still offers stats for Del Rey Oaks and Carmel Highlands. The problem is if you do a zip code search for 93940 Del Rey Oaks is included in those numbers. If you use both 93940 and Del Rey Oaks as separate categories Del Rey Oaks is counted twice. Same thing with Carmel Highlands which has a 93923 zip.
Is anyone still with us?
We Shall Overcome
Here is what we have done. We have used the new categories in the quarterly charts. This ends up with lots of zeros as the historical numbers are not available. We have stuck with the old categories for the annual charts even though some comparisons, like Carmel Valley, have no validity.
Tailor Made for You
If you want specific data, call us and we will do a custom search for you.
How is the Market?
All of the above is preamble to our report. First thing to look at is the Barometer.
On January 1st the inventory was relatively low, 73 listings with 17 of those under contract. There were fewer listing last year, 49, but this year’s figures are substantially down from the 95 on October 1st.
If you compare it with the market-crash years when listings went as high as 180 and the Barometer as low as 7% the market looks both good and the inventory tight.
The smaller inventory mean fewer sales and lower dollar volume.
Our median sales price chart for the 4th quarter is impacted by the change in data definition. In four of the nine markets we do not have comparative data. In the five markets with comparative data four are up and one down.
The ten year annual chart, tracking median sales prices from 2004 to 2014 is interesting. 2004 was a boom year so it is not surprising that seven of the nine markets were down, most significantly.
See our 4th quarter and year-end report on houses for a redefined analysis factoring in the decline in the value of the dollar.
The one year comparison show substantial gains in six markets, modest gains in Monterey and the Pebble Beach under one million dollar category and a big drop in the over one million category in Pebble Beach. You can discount the latter as there was only one sale in each year.
In summary, we see the current condo market as normal, offering good opportunities for both buyers and sellers.
The charts are based in whole or in part on data supplied by the Monterey County Association of Realtors’ Multiple Listing Service (MLS). Neither the Association nor the MLS guarantees or is responsible for their accuracy. Data maintained by the Association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity.
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Paul Brocchini ~ (831) 601-1620
Mark Ryan ~ (831) 238-1498