In the Bay Area, homes are taking longer to sell and aren’t getting as much money as they did just a few months ago. After years on the up, the red-hot housing market appears to be cooling off.
“This is a more normal market and I hope it stays like this,” said Gustavo Gonzalez, president-elect of the Santa Clara County Association of Realtors. “People are still coming to this area and they’re still working here and they’re making good money and they want homes, so there’s a limited supply (and) lots of demand.”
The California Association of Realtors recently shared a somber forecast for the state housing market in 2019. Officials expect rising interest rates and a lack of affordable housing to stall some of the record-setting prices the Bay Area has seen in recent years.
“There’s more inventory online today than there was a year ago, and that’s partially because as home prices get more expensive, it’s harder and harder for buyers to scrape together that down payment,” said Zillow economist Sarah Mikhitarian.
Bucking the trend, Anna Machado-Wang sold her Almaden Valley home three days after it went on the market. She has no plans to leave the area anytime soon.
“My husband is an engineer and this is where the jobs are,” Machado-Wang said. “I mean, we could go to Austin, Texas, but why? We like California.”
In Sunnyvale, luxury property specialist Sherdin Betbabasi just lowered the price of a home on Windsor Terrace by about $250,000. However, it isn’t necessarily a bad thing for the seller. In fact, Betbabasi thinks it will help him generate some buzz.
“Look at the quality of what you buy, not just the price. If you’re looking at a nice home to buy, in the right school district, with a good commute that you want to have, then go for it, understanding that the market will fluctuate,” Betbabasi said.
The California Association of Realtors expects home prices to go up by about 3 percent next year, but total sales are expected to go down. Because of our strong economy, experts say those who are looking for a home should buy as soon as they feel comfortable to do so.