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Burlingame Real Estate - August 2012

September 11th, 2012

Another Strong Month for Prices

Home prices in the Burlingame real estate market have increased approximately 5% to 10% from the bottom near the end of 2010. That is an extra $50,000  to $100,000 on a home that would have sold for a $1 million a year ago! While that is exciting for sellers, there is still some ways to go before we reach the peaks seen in late 2007. At that time the average price per square foot was around $700 and average/median selling values were over $1.4 million. Prices would have to rise about another 10% to reach that level. While that might be disheartening for people who bought at the top of the market, they are in much better shape than people who purchased in most other areas of California.

To the casual observer it may not even appear that prices have increased. After all, the median selling value in the first eight months of 2012 has been $1.23 million, equal with the median of $1.23 million in 2011 and down from $1.28 million in the first eight months of 2011.  Average selling values are up slightly. In the first eight months of 2012, average selling values have been $1.33 million, up from $1.26 million in 2011 and $1.29 million in the first eight months of 2011. These 'total' value measures have been dampened by the fact that the average home sold in 2012 has been smaller than the average home sold in 2011.

One way to help correct for this is to look at the average price per square foot. This tells a very different story. In the first eight months of 2012, the average price per square foot has been $651, up 9% from $598 in 2011. This isn't a fluke in the numbers. Every single month in 2012 has had an average price per square foot above $615. Last year, only 4 months were even above $600. Moreover, in the last four months, the average price per square foot has been above $640. We have not seen a streak of sustained prices like that since late 2008/early 2009.

Another sign of rising prices is that we continue to see buyers compete with each other and bid above asking prices, sometimes significantly. The ratio of sales price to list price has been above 100% in each of the last seven months, meaning that on average, homes have sold for more than their final list price. Many of the best homes are selling with 4-8 offers and often with no contingencies, something not observed at this rate of frequency since at least 3 years ago.

Sales Activity Strong Again in July

Sales activity continued to be strong in Burlingame in August 2012, with 25 homes sold. Through the first eight months of the year, there have been 181 homes sold, up from 154 homes sold in the same period in 2011. At the current rate, Burlingame is on pace for 250 sales for the first time since 2006.

The heightened level of sales is even more impressive when one considers that the inventory of unsold homes remains low. At the same time that sales are up 18%, new listings have been down slightly.  This has pushed inventory down. At the end of August 2012, there were about 35 homes for sale, down from 55 homes on the market at the end of August 2011. Sellers have benefitted from the lack of competition from other sellers. Check out my recent blog post and analysis on why we have such low inventory and the data behind it. There have been 37 listing that were cancelled or expired through August 2012, down from 66 listings that were cancelled or expired from January 2011 to August 2011.

Recent Home Sales in Burlingame

Below is a selection of recent Burlingame real estate sales, sorted by area of Burlingame.

This is yet another view showing the increase in home prices. In all of 2011, the average price per square foot was just under $600. Among the 24 sales listed below, just 4 of them are less than $600. The average has shifted upward.

Many homes end up selling soon after listing. With the exception of a handful of outliers, homes that are selling are doing so very quickly. Over half of the homes in the table below sold in less than two weeks. Once you factor in the time to actually see a home and then make an offer, buyers who do a weekly or bi-weekly scan of the inventory will miss the majority of homes that end up selling. In an already constrained market, those buyers will be frustrated. It's important to have the right Realtor monitoring the market for you. A few days or even few hours can really make all the difference.

There are interesting sales in all areas of Burlingame. Lyon-Hoag really catches the eye this month. There were four sales, all for more than $600 per square foot. Last year, the average price per square foot was $527 in Lyon-Hoag. All four homes sold in less than 10 days on the market. Imagine the delight of sellers at 122 Stanley.  They listed their 2 bed 1 bath for $599,000. It sold in less than 1 week for $757,000, which is an extra $158,000! This home was a total fixer upper which needed a major overhaul.

Even when homes go for less than asking price, it can still be a sellers market. Take Easton Addition for example. Most of the homes in this table went for less than the list price, suggesting that sellers did not receive bids above asking. However, this was probably the case that sellers were getting a little too far ahead of a hot market. Of the 8 Easton Addition sales, 7 sold for an average price per square foot that was above the average of $642 last year.

By The Numbers - Burlingame Real Estate for August 2012

Current Month YTD Total or Average
August 2011 August 2012 Jan - Aug 2011 Jan - Aug 2012
Sales 22 25 153 181
Days on Market 58 30 36 33
Months of Supply 2.5 1.4 2.6 1.6
Average Price $1,434,000 $1,403,000 $1,290,294 $1,325,055
Median Price $1,450,000 $1,310,000 $1,276,745 $1,233,072
Avg $ per Sq Ft $633 $678 $595 $651

Thinking of buying or selling a home in Burlingame?

If you're interested in learning more about the Burlingame real estate market, considering selling your home in Burlingame, or thinking about moving to Burlingame, please drop me a line and I'd love to connect with you.