Volume 71 - Dancing with the Gorilla!
As Wall Street meets Main Street, the Piedmont residential housing market remains a very stable investment. Looking at third quarter statistics for 2007, compared to the same quarter for 2008, the value of your home seems to be good and sound!
Last year, 23 homes sold in Piedmont between July 1 and September 30, 2007. The average list price was $1,797,217 and the average sales price was $1,772,304. Days on market (DOM) averaged 32 days. When I remove the $7, 600,000 sale on Sea View Avenue (which statistically skews the numbers) the average list price adjusts to $1,522,272 and average sales price adjusts to $1,507,409. DOM remained virtually the same at 32 days.
Although only 13 homes sold during the same time period in Piedmont this year - here is the good news: The average sales price adjusted only 1.059% to $1,422,870 - AND the average price per square foot was actually UP from $597 a square foot last year, to $614 a square foot this year! DOM was cut almost in half! Houses sold on average, in 18 days in the 3rd quarter of this year, compared to 32 days on average for last year. While equity in most stocks has fallen dramatically over the last few weeks,
Piedmont real estate seems to be holding its own! Isn't it nice to hear good news for a change?
Did the real estate market stand still the last few weeks?
Yes it did.
D0 we have market optimism?
Yes we do.
Here's Why . . . There are currently 23 Piedmont homes listed for sale on the MLS (Mulitple Listing Service) which represents a fair amount of inventory as we approach a late fall market and The GRUBB Co. is scheduled to bring on another seven homes in the next 10 days - so stay tuned (I'll be bringing you all the news)!
The least expensive listing is Tricia Swift's 2bdrm/1bth sunny "starter" home at 102 Oakmont Avenue for $695,000 and the most expensive property is a 6bdrm/5bth rambling estate with a private tennis court on Tyson Circle for 7 million! Between these two extremes, lies a more traditional price point averaging $2,210,208.
Here's even better news: Sellers are paying attention - especially to terms! In a market where liquidity is scarce and loans are tougher to come by than they were in the not-too-distant past, CASH will play a more significant role than it has previously - and so will seller financing!
Finally, anyone with a home on the market in today's climate is a bona fide Seller! These aren't people who are "testing" the waters. They represent motivated Sellers who are often willing to negotiate. Don't be shy! Sellers want and need to negotiate through the process. As your representative, it is my job to "frame" your offer in a way that respects the process and doesn't polarize the Seller. (It can be a delicate dance!)
However, any offer can provide an opportunity for true negotiation to take place. This is a very healthy environment! In spite of the uncertain economic landscape nationally, this may actually be the best time to purchase locally - but only if you are so inclined.
YOU have to be comfortable on the dance floor before taking on the Tango!
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Julie Gardner, has been writing The Perspective for 18 years and has published more than 670 essays on life and real estate.