Coastside Real Estate: Highlights, Numbers, Summary

Is 2008 shaping up to be as bad as some think?  It’s all a matter of perspective.  Here’s a look at some single family home numbers for Half Moon Bay, El Granada, Moss Beach and Montara combined, comparing the 2006, 2007 and 2008 from the raw monthly data between January 2006 and May 2008.

The good news is the San Mateo County Coastside real estate market as a whole is not suffering the reality being experienced by other areas.  The sale prices have not been diving…unless sellers start out too high to begin with; however, they are continuing their moderate correction, so far.


  • Median sale prices drop of approximately 5%, roughly $50,000 off the median price, in the first half of the year.
  • The number of transactions dropped 50% in the first part of 2008.  Significantly fewer buyers in the market so far this year.
  • The number of homes for sale (inventory) increased about 30% from the same time period last year (only June listings missing).  Overall inventory has dropped about 10% from the first half of 2007 to the second half of 2007.

Median Price: (method used:  monthly medians averaged; no June figures yet)

  • January to June 2006 – $908,750
  • July to December 2006 – $861,667
  • January to June 2007 – $895,875
  • July to December 2007 – $967,417 (mortgage crisis announced in media)
  • YTD 2008:  January to May – $855,666

Coastside Inventory: (method used:  same as above)

  • 2006.1st half – 90
  • 2006.2nd half – 111
  • 2007.1st half – 99
  • 2007.2nd half – 112 (mortgage crisis announced)
  • 2008 Jan-May -118

Closed Sales: (method used: same as above)

  • 2006.1st half – 17
  • 2006.2nd half – 20
  • 2007.1st half – 22
  • 2007.2nd half – 13 (mortgage crisis announced)
  • 2008 Jan-May – 13

** Summary **

The potential buyers for your home are different than those of a few years ago.  The flippers, wheeler-dealers, and speculators are few and far between.  What buyers there are have the funds to complete their purchase.  As financing continues to gain quality control (again) and buyers come to the table with some down-payment, I am seeing fewer wishful buyers and more prepared buyers.  Sellers are not testing the market, they are listing their homes because they want or have to sell.  Most are beginning to figure out that it pays to price it right the first time…and it can really hurt to have an overpriced listing at the peak of exposure – the first two weeks.  The rest of the sellers are reducing the list price or taking solid offers with a lower than desired price or even considering lease-options.  This is the maket correction in action, happening now.  Another way to watch the market is to check periodically the Local Stats on this site which are the local market’s leading indicators provided by Altos Research.

Recent articles of interest:

 (National) Business Week 6/30/08 – “The Next Victim of the Real Estate Crisis”

(County/Local) San Mateo Daily Journal – “Tax Roll Shows Healthy Economy”