West Portal properties stable in the first quarter of 2008

The West Portal/Inner Parkside First Quarter 2008 Real Estate Market Update

By Eric Castongia, Zephyr Real Estate

Properties in West Portal and Inner Parkside are selling and remain desirable; all this despite weakened consumer confidence and the ability to get a mortgage wreaking havoc on the marketplace.  The following is an interpolation of data from the San Francisco Multiple Listing Service and my analysis of the real estate market in the West Portal/Inner Parkside area.

  • The number of sales in the first quarter of 2008 was 12, up from six the first quarter of 2007.
  • Of the 12 first quarter 2008 sales, six sold for over the asking price, four sold under. In the majority of cases, the overbids were close to the asking price.  This seems to reflect consumer confidence and buyer ‘pickiness’ in the market.  The bubble popping seems to be in the amount of overbids as opposed to reduced sale prices.
  • The number of active listings went up, from 4 in 2007 to 6 in 2008.  Given where these properties are and their length of time on the market, I think this is more a reflection of these areas selling slower than others.
  • The total transactions for the first quarter, including active properties, is 23; up from 12 in the first quarter of 2007.  Both the number of active unsold and sold listings are up, suggesting more activity (and demand) at the beginning of this year.
  • In terms of appreciation, we’re within the range of error-level to up 3 percent across the board. 
  • Our neighborhood price range is going up.  There is currently a very desirable upper end property on the market, which I expect, will set new sales expectations in the neighborhood.
  • Desirable, well-priced property with nice remodeling or great potential, are highly sought after, with lots of activity.  Buyers remain selective, however, so quirky floor plans, less than desirable locations, or construction issues, are a significant black mark and affect a properties salability.
  • The Federal Reserve has reduced interest rates, but interest rates have gone up.  The new increased conforming loan limits, ‘super conforming loans’ don’t seem to be having the affect that most of us hoped would happen-there is simply a third tier of interest rates.  We’ll see the affect of this more throughout the year.  Once financing woes have started working themselves out, I predict higher demand and sales prices.
  • Given our slow fall and winter, we have had a strong first quarter.  I’m seeing more activity and more buyers coming out of the woodwork-perhaps getting poised to take advantage of the ‘slower’ market.
  • If you are going to buy, remember location, location, location.  If you are going to sell, prepare your home to make a great first impression and price it correctly.
  • I think we’ll look back and see that this was a good time to buy real estate-2008 is a great time to invest.

Eric Castongia, Residential Sales Specialist at Zephyr Real Estate provided the information in this article.  Eric can be reached by e-mail at Eric@EricsSFHomes.com, or via mobile phone at (415)307-1700.