FALLBROOK – February real estate activity levels in two prime North San Diego County markets were distorted by the dearth of properties on the market, Jerry Kalman, a realtor® with HomeSmart Legends here, reported March 6.
Kalman reported that the inventory slipped to 162 units entering March as twice as many properties came off the market and went into escrow than there were new listings. Most notable, he said, is the slimmest of pickings in condos where only three are on the market.
Two high end homes, both in Bonsall, closed escrow in February after an average of four months on the market. Eight more, four in each community, are in escrow; and there are 54 of these million-dollar-plus properties on the market, 70 percent of them in Fallbrook.
Looking at homes coming off the market in February, an indicator of future activity, 100 homes were in escrow, a 25 percent bump over January. The average price of those off the market dipped slightly from January to $623,000. Time on the market for those entering escrow remained steady at just under two months.
He estimated that the rush to escrow appears to have been prompted by the outlook for interest rate increases coming in the early months of the year. Cash buyers represented 17 percent of the February transactions while VA/FHA transactions accounted for 35 percent of the activity once again.
Comparing February 2017 with the same period a year ago, prices were 11 percent higher at $557,000 while volume was off 16 percent. He noted that the proportion of cash and VA/FHA transactions to conventional was the same in both years.
“As in January, close to one fourth of the sales were at or above the original asking price,” Kalman said. “This has occurred in each of the last three months, with most of those that sold at or above the listing price going into escrow within a month of when they were listed.”
He reported that the average selling price per square foot in the two communities, an important metric used here to price homes, soared 19 percent to $294, with Bonsall rising to an average selling price per square foot of $360, a 55 percent gain over January, attributed largely to a pair of high end homes representing half the volume there.
Fallbrook dropped almost three percent to an average of $228 per square foot per home, and that conversely reflected the absence of high-end activity last month.
Four condos sold in February, three in Fallbrook. Seven more condos were in escrow, five in Fallbrook. Only three condos were on the market entering March, two of them in Bonsall. The average market time for those condos in the active inventory was more than six months with an average price tag of $325,000.
Kalman´s data for the reporting periods ending February 28, 2017, came from Sandicor, Inc., the area’s multiple listing service for realtors. It represents properties listed or sold by various brokers in the region. He uses this information as a community service to analyze market trends and provide professional insight into real estate activity.
HomeSmart Legends is located at 701 S. Main, Fallbrook.