Category Archives: Blog

An unusual October

Last month, October, something very odd was in the air. We had exceptional weather not typical of ‘Fall weather’, our National Government shutdown and homesales took an odd turn. So we have a couple good things and a big issue sprinkled in there as well but at least the weather was nice. Realistically, SLO has always had great fall weather but it seems that last month high 70’s and 80’s was the way it was going to be. Perhaps the pure joy of great weather is why homebuyers and sellers decided to list and buy substantially more homes than they did a year before.

Last month 130 homes were for sale (68 new listings) and 45 sold homes  in San Luis Obispo alone, county wide there were 1,115 homes on the market and 298 sold homes. In SLO these numbers account for a 25% increase in marketed homes for sale and nearly a 10% increase in sold homes from one year ago. The greatest oddity that we saw last month was a month-to-month 47.8% increase in new listings (September-to-October.) When I took a look at the data this morning I was trying to make sense of this peak in what should have been an otherwise slow month and the only explanation I have is that the market is actually equalizing. Looking at the chart below we can actually see what’s going on with home sales.

A market snapshot

A market snapshot

You will notice that the number of sold homes actually dropped 4.3% in October yet the number of new listings and for sale homes increased substantially. As that blue line increases and the dark green columns decrease we are creating excess inventory on the market unless the pending home sales increases (red line) to match that supply. If we look at the basics of supply and demand, we hit an equilibrium in May of ’13 where our new supply of homes and buyers putting homes into contract was the same but after that we saw a decline in pending sales and sold homes while supply continued to increase. The question then becomes, “Why did demand decrease, there are still a lot of interested buyers on the market looking to buy a home?” I think the next graphic sums it up pretty well.

Average home prices comparison

Average home prices comparison

Notice how the price of new listings continued to increase without any relief? At the same time the price of sold homes stayed considerably lower. The dramatic increase in pending transaction sent sellers into a frenzy of listing for more and it appears to me that the buyers won’t go for it, they simply are not buying overpriced listings. As such, the market is adjusting and for sale prices are coming back down to levels that buyers are willing to agree on. The real estate market dances on!

Last week in SLO and a bigger picture too

Last week in real estate is the weekly notice for what happened in the San Luis Obispo  real estate market as interpreted by Dominic Tartaglia of Tartaglia Realty.

This week I want to address our county-wide market but not without giving you the weekly snapshot of single family homes in San Luis Obispo from this past week. From last Monday 09/09/13 to today the market was fairly slow with just 4 new listings, 3 Pending listings and 7 Sold listings. Median prices for each category in order were $578,000, $649,000 and $575,000 for a total average of $589,857 for last weeks real estate movement. The average Days On Market (DOM) dipped down to 29 from last month’s average of 45 suggesting that there are still plenty of buyers in the game looking for a good price and interest rate yet our inventory is tightening up. If you will remember back to last weeks article I mentioned that we are in a time period of significance in relation to what the effect the Feds will have on mortgage rates; so far nothing significant has happened but we did see a slight relief on the 30 year fixed rate conventional loans with an ever so slight decrease back down to 4.75%, down .125% from last week.

In the coming month or two I expect that we will continue to see a diminished amount of inventory of existing homes and hope to see a few more new construction units introduced to the market by the way of Serra Meadows and Moylan Terrace. In looking at the historical data we see that the real estate supply cycle for the time of September through January has a negative correlation, as we get closer to January inventory decreases each month. That being said, in looking at San Luis Obispo and SLO County we have seen a diminishing supply of “New Inventory” since July but are still seeing increasing numbers of “For Sale” homes. That suggests to me that there is some hesitance from buyers to pay for the higher priced listings and the higher priced listings are still on the market while the more affordable homes are selling quickly (hence the avg. DOM of 29). As the number of New Listings decreases I would expect the number of For Sale homes to follow in that trend. If you are considering selling your home in this market, with a fair price; this is a good market to sell in because buyers are looking for value. I used to see buyers looking for bargains for investment purchases but today my sense is that buyers are buying for personal use now as opposed to investment previously.

Now let’s talk about the county. Q3 of 2013 saw a slight increase of Sold inventory from the previous year and a significant increase in the number of New Listings in the county, up 16.5%. That being said, inventory county-wide was still down nearly 6% from Q3 in ’12 with an increase in median home prices county-wide of 16%. Even more interesting to me was the statistic posted by the California Association of Realtor®s that our county’s sold homes were comprised of 90.9% equity sales in July. That means that 9.1% of the homes sold in July were distress sales. This is a huge swing from years prior where most of the inventory county-wide was distressed in some capacity. If we compare those numbers to Los Angeles County we see that LA County had 83% equity sales and 16.9% of homes sold in January under distress. Statewide, only 82% of home sales in July were equity sales. San Luis Obispo County is making a strong recovery and is ahead of the state in clearing out our distressed inventory and has turned the corner and is stabilizing well ahead of other counties.

Despite posting strong numbers San Luis Obispo County still ranks at 13th in the state according the California Association of Realtors. The CAR bases their ranking system on a variety of metrics which includes median home price which can offset other shortfalls in other counties. For example, Marin County is ranked second in the state yet its DOM is approximately 40 days as opposed to SLO County at 29 but it’s median home price is $1,000,000. For  San Luis Obispo County to be 13th out of 41 counties, it’s safe to say that we are doing well. Putting all of this together, I think of a SCUBA diving concept known as the slack tide. A slack tide is the point at which water in a bay is calm, it’s not rushing in to fill the bay and it isn’t emptying out of the bay back to the open sea. That is the optimal time do dive in a bay because the water is clear, it isn’t moving erratically and you have less of a risk of being taken out to see.

I see our market at that point today. It’s safe to play and get into the market and buy or sell investment property as well as property for a personal residence without getting taken out to sea. Right now the market is pretty transparent and has a trend that is currently suggesting two things without question. First that prices are appreciating and secondly that inventory is at a slight shortage. Granted, each person and each transaction has individual circumstances that may differ from this article but I would be glad to consider your particular instance should you or somebody you know be considering making a move.

Setting City Budget Goals

Last Tuesday, I had the privilege of representing the SLO Downtown Association as the board chair to petition our City Council for allocation of resources to help our cause at a public outreach forum. Our organization was among many different organizations in the community that were there to give input as to how they wanted to see the budget reflected to support causes that are important to our community, there were 8 different organizations by my count. The goal was clearly to hear the public and to get a pulse on what the community felt was important to continue the growth and/or sustainability of our community. From the Downtown Association standpoint this was a great opportunity to thank our City Council and Staff for having been such a great help with all of our causes in the past decades and to come to them with more ideas to improve our community. Issues that I addressed were transient disruptions in our retail core of the Downtown and differentiating that between homelessness. While our organization supports homeless services and has taken a very strong position to continue to help our homeless population in whatever capacity we can, we stand against allowing transient delinquents to commit crimes and harassing our patrons to one of the City’s strongest revenue generating districts. Well, there is a lot more about what we feel and support but that isn’t the premise of this post. If I got into that I’d be writing all week and you would probably lose interest quite soon. No the point of this is to provide a graphic to show where our community stands on community issues.

I was one of the first speakers to address the Council and Staff and as such, I was able to record notes on each topic brought forth. By my records I have the following graphic which breaks down the topics addressed in one axis and how many times it was mentioned by different speakers. Keep in mind that some people only addressed one cause and others addressed multiple. The same goes for the non-profit representation where some people represented multiple organizations. So what did I take away from the meeting? Good question. I took away that we have a very passionate and involved community. Not only did we have an entire auditorium filled with concerned citizens but they stayed well into the night on a Tuesday night in order to express themselves and to hear what others were concerned about. It’s no wonder why, when you step back and look at this situation, we have the reputation of the “Happiest Town in America”. It’s because people here care about our town and they expend large amounts of time and resources in the spirit of improving our community. I am proud to be a part of this community and to say that selling homes here is a privilege that not all REALTOR®s are afforded. It’s a privilege to work with citizens that take pride in their homes, neighborhoods and greater community as a whole. I thank you all!

Here is the graph, please take from it what you want but understand that it is based on my recollection of the facts and not a statement to be all inclusive or complete. It is based merely on observations at a meeting and jottings on a legal pad and transcribed into Numbers on my iMac.

Screen Shot 2013-01-15 at 10.48.44 AM

Many topics were addressed by concerned citizens of San Luis Obispo pertaining to budget.

Welcome to the next generation in real estate

The Tartaglia Team is proud to announce that we are hard at work behind the scenes here at TartagliaLabs developing a new, interactive and innovative approach to real estate. We aim to market properties for sale as effectively as possible through innovative new business practices including ramped up marketing material, state of the art document sharing and complete integration with what we believe will be known as ‘internet 3.0’. These new practices combined with our team’s knowledge of San Luis Obispo County and our involvement with our local community will undoubtedly bring the best market exposure to your home when you are looking to sell it and find a new place.

Speaking of finding a new place, we can help with that too. That’s right! Not only does Dominic carry the Accredited Buyers Representative designation but our office has carefully combed through many data service companies to make sure that we have the easiest and most up to date and comprehensive network of listings available to you from the comfort of your couch. You can shop for a home any time, any where and from any device that you like. If you want to look at properties from your latest Mac product, knock yourself out. If you are using Android, guess what… our site looks good on Android devices. What about those of us out there that aren’t current on the technology available to buyers? The Tartaglia Team has your back and we will do all of the heavy lifting for you and make sure that you know of all of the deals that best suit your needs.

This website will be a coming development and we are working like a bunch of crazed REALTOR®s and web designers to put together a website that you will actually want to visit, maybe not as much as Facebook or Twitter but we’re just glad you stopped by to check us out on our real estate Blog. Oh yea, this blog is here for your enjoyment and we want to make sure that it answers the questions that you have about both real estate and living here on the Central Coast. If there is something you are dying to know about in regards to real estate shoot us a message in our Contact Us page and if there is a really cool event coming up that you want to share let us know so that we can put it up here on our Blog for our other fans to see!

The Tartaglia Team

California Real Estate Broker License# 01138936
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