Home for the Holidays

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Here it is, Christmas Eve, and I find that Santa has brought the good people of Santa Cruz a present: the median home price has continued to rise, up to $789,000 in November 2005. Just what every home buyer wants to hear! This was brought about by an unusually large percentage of over-$1 million homes. Interestingly, the number of sales has dropped considerably. In November 2005, there were 170 sales of single-family residences in Santa Cruz county; in November of 2004, there were 233! That’s quite a drop.

What does this mean for you? Well that of course depends on just who exactly you are! If you are a home buyer, don’t despair – the market has definitely softened. Inventory is rising, and now – the winter time – is the slowest time of the year for sales and so is actually the best time to make a purchase. There are more homes to chose from, fewer buyers in the market, and plenty of sellers getting antsy about the number of days their home has been on the market.

If you are a home owner looking to sell, don’t be bedazzled by the new median home price number. Rather, look at the nubmer of sales: they are dropping. Demand is softening up. You can still sell your home for top-dollar – it’s just that the top-dollar may not be as much as you thought it was. Price your home wisely, and do not count on getting as much for it as your neighbor got for his a few months back.

Happy Holidays everyone!

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