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Lee Ginsburg is an award-winning Realtor with 30 years experience in Peninsula residential real estate. With the utmost attention to detail, Lee delivers expert marketing, negotiating, and management of all financial matters. With a strong commitment to honesty, fairness and hard work, Lee has successfully helped first time home buyers, move up buyers and investors.

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Saturday, April 3, 2010

Bay Area Prices up 20%????

The headline reads Prices Up 20%.

What do these numbers mean? I am sorry to tell you, your home did not increase 20%. Buyers don’t get scared off and sellers don’t put your home on the market for 20% more than you paid last year.

These numbers are totally misleading. Prices are increasing in some areas and in some price points but not by 20%. Possibly 3-5%.

You can make numbers do whatever you want. First you need to know if the numbers are for Single Family homes or Condominiums or both. Then are they comparing it to the same month in a previous year or just the previous month. Are they talking about median price or average price. The Median price is the price that is in the middle; there are an equal number of transactions above and below. These numbers are very general. It is interesting and might give a slight indication as to the market in the country, in your state, in your city but Real Estate is very localized down to the neighborhood in the city. If you want to know the value of your home call your Real Estate consultant.

An example of Median prices:


AVER IS 410,000

MEDIAN =480,000

The numbers recently announced are really telling us that higher priced homes are beginning to sell. In San Mateo County 32% of Single Family homes sold in Feb. 2009 were under $500,000 that dropped drastically to 13% in 2010. Homes over $500,000 increased from 50% to 59% from Feb. 09 to Feb. 10, driving the median price up. Homes over $1,000,000 increased 11% from 17% to 28%.

The number that shocks me is that over 27% of all sales in the nine county Bay Area were paid in cash. That is with a median price of $354,000. Many people are taking money from the stock market and or IRA account and equity from their homes. Cash is King.


Please look at the numbers below. Inventory has decreased more than 10%, sales have increased almost 10% and the days on market has decreased a dramatic 25%. This is for single family homes listed on the MLS. All the numbers are indicating good things ahead.

San Mateo Cty. Inventory Sales DOM
Feb. 2009 1576 208 83
Feb. 2010 1346 228 64