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Seasonal Pricing Patterns

The Silicon Valley real estate market tends to have seasonal pricing patterns. They are not rigid, and some years the typical or expected patterns don’t really hold. Generally, though, we expect the Spring market to be hot and the winter period to be cool. Is that true? Let’s take a look at the stats that I pulled today from MLS Listings.

I spot checked the median sale price as well as the average sale price for houses in Santa Clara County, and they both followed the same seasonal pricing patterns. In the chart below, we have data from January 2013 (when the recovery really began) to November 2021. I’ve named the months with the peak prices and also the biggest dip each year. The pattern is a bit like the stock market – it does not only move up or down, but there are a lot of both with a generally upward trend.

This image is best seen on a tablet or desktop computer. If it is too small, please click on the image to view a larger version of it.


Seasonal pricing patters via the average sale price in SCC for SFH



If you prefer a data table, here’s one with just the peak bolded (please click to view larger image):

Should You Move Out Before You Sell?

Should You Move Out or Vacate Before You Sell?A decade ago, it was the norm for Silicon Valley homeowners to occupy the home they were selling – today a majority of homes are being sold unoccupied or vacant. Why is that? And should you move out before you sell?

A few years ago, around the mid- to late-2010s, we began to see an increasing number of vacant and professionally staged properties for sale. Last year, most sellers simply felt safer moving out before selling due to the pandemic. Today that continues to be the case.

Over time, the reasons for homeowners to move out before marketing a primary residence have increased. While sellers can certainly still occupy a home on the market and sell it successfully, it’s not our recommendation for most people and here’s why.

Seller Stress

First things first, if you are able to move out before you sell it can reduce a lot of stress. And this has almost always been the case.


Almaden Valley Real Estate Market Conditions

Almaden View Real Estate Market Conditions San Jose 95120 - photo with Mt Umunhum in backgroundThe Almaden Valley real estate market remains red hot while inventory shrinks to record lows this autumn. All in all, Almaden Valley is in a continual, active seller’s market. Here are a few data points from the most recent update, which you will find in more detail below:

  • Closed sales grew while active inventory and pending sales fell in October.
  • The sales to list price ratio remains extraordinarily high, heating to an average of 106.5% of asking.
  • Homes are selling at breakneck speed in an average of just 13 days on market.

Before we begin, it’s important to recognize how much has changed since March, 2020. Over time we will have a better grasp over the pandemic’s affect on the real estate market. For more on the impact of the pandemic on the market, check out my post titled Coronavirus impact on real estate sales.

A large part of the story is inventory levels. The number of active listings has been the lowest we’ve seen in years, and very likely decades, for much of 2021 and it’s only getting compounded by a regular cool-season dip!

Almaden Valley Real Estate Market Conditions: Trends at a Glance

Next, a look at the residential real estate market statistics for Almaden, or San Jose 95120 from the Real Estate Report (a subscription that uses closed / sold data). Closed sales have shot up above last month, but are a little behind last year. Pending sales have dipped month-over-month and were a little above last year. Active inventory dropped to half of the month before, remaining below where it was a year ago. That small inventory is selling quickly, averaging a lightning fast 13 days on market and with a hot, and heating, sale to list price ratio of 106.5%. It’s a fierce seller’s market in Almaden Valley homes!

Please find the current statistics for single family homes (houses & duet homes) from my Almaden Valley real estate report (click on link for more info).

Trends At a Glance Oct 2021 Previous Month Year-over-Year
Median Price $2,065,000 (+0.7%) $2,050,000 $1,685,000 (+22.6%)
Average Price $2,042,500 (-2.5%) $2,094,600 $1,840,150 (+11.0%)
No. of Sales 31 (+47.6%) 21 39 (-20.5%)
Pending 37 (-11.9%) 42 33 (+12.1%)
Active 11 (-50.0%) 22 15 (-26.7%)
Sale vs. List Price 106.5% (+1.5%) 104.9% 102.7% (+3.7%)
Days on Market 13 (+6.8%) 12 20 (-36.6%)
Days of Inventory 11 (-65.0%) 30 12 (-7.7%)



Updating the Campbell Real Estate Market

Tudor style house on graphic that says - How's the Campbell real estate market?How is the Campbell real estate market? Campbell is still in a strong seller’s market that’s currently going against seasonally typical trends with a red hot market in autumn. This article, updated monthly, offers data and analysis on the residential real estate market within this popular Silicon Valley community. Here are a few points from the latest update on Campbell’s single family housing market:

  • Sales to list price ratio for homes sold last month rose to a jaw-dropping, blazing hot 113.6%.
  • Turnover was extremely fast with an average sale in 12 days on market.
  • The data shows that this October saw clear market warming!

The Campbell, CA Real Estate Market

It’s hard to predict what’s coming next with all that’s happened since spring of 2020. The charts below certainly show the impact of the pandemic on the real estate market, but it will take a while to see the full picture. To read more about the Coronavirus impact on real estate sales, check my blog post on the topic.

At the beginning of the shutdown, the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) stopped the timer on all Days on Market (DOM). Therefore these numbers will be off beginning from March 17th through around May 17th, 2020. In the data below, this will affect any numbers related to the days on market, the absorption rate, and the days of inventory in those months, though current numbers are now accurate.

If you’re selling, perhaps last summer you’d have gotten 4 – 6 offers on your well prepared, beautifully staged, and aggressively priced home for sale. Recently we’ve been seeing those numbers again (and sometimes many more!) in the 2021 market with a long (and growing) backlog of demand. Competition is high enough that many buyers are making offers without any of the normal contingencies. Around winter we can reasonably anticipate a decline in activity, but the way the real estate market has been behaving this year is signaling it will probably remain red hot through the new year. We’ll just have to wait and see!

Here’s a quick view of the Campbell real estate market stats from Altos Research, using LIST prices:

Campbell Altos Real-Time Market Profile

As of November 22nd the Altos chart showing Campbell, CA single family homes is in a strong seller’s market with elevated market action, falling inventory, and a quick market turnover. Homes are still hot in Campbell!

And now –  here are some quick stats, care of my RE Report for Campbell:


Milpitas real estate market

Milpitas Real Estate MarketThe Milpitas real estate market has been one hot seller’s market in Santa Clara County! Altos Research has called it a strong seller’s market for many months now, and it’s showing no signs of cooling down! Here are a few more points from the latest update to the Milpitas single family homes market, with more data and analysis in the article below:

  • October’s sales rose while active inventory plunged month-over-month.
  • Homes are regularly bid well over list price with sales averaging at 108.4% of asking!
  • The average Milpitas home is taking around 1.5 weeks to sell, and often less.

The Milpitas Real Estate Market

Despite unusual circumstance last year, Milpitas has maintained a highly favorable market for the well-prepared seller, though certainly not a typical market. This is in keeping with trends we are seeing throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and Silicon Valley: well priced homes are selling over list price, and usually above peak pricing from spring 2018! That said, sellers don’t be tempted to list your home too high. Price it appropriately to today’s market and you will have more interested buyers willing to compete for your home, perhaps even starting a bidding war!

A lot has changed since March 2020. Over time we’re beginning to get a clearer view of how covid-19 is affecting the market, but it will be a while before we know the full impact of the pandemic on real estate sales. For now, follow the latest market trends in this article and check out my post: Coronavirus impact on real estate sales, to learn more about pandemic restrictions on our local market.

During the initial shutdown, the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) stopped the timer on all Days on Market (DOM). Therefore these numbers will be off beginning from March 17th through around May 17th, 2020. In the data below, this will affect any numbers related to the days on market, the absorption rate, and the days of inventory. So disregard those previous months data, but current numbers are accurate.

So let’s look at some data. First up, the Altos charts using list price and active listings. It is updated automatically on a weekly basis, so check back often:

Altos Real-Time Market Profile, Milpitas


The San Jose Real Estate Market Analysis

San Jose - Valley View 2019-1-20 - for the San Jose real estate marketThe San Jose real estate market is a strong seller’s market, and it has been for months. Available inventory remains unbelievably low and can’t keep up with the high demand. This article is updated monthly with the latest market data. Here’s a sample of the latest for San Jose’s single family housing market:

  • The October 2021 market was distinctly hotter than the year before, and warmed up month-over-month!
  • San Jose homes took an average of only 14 days to sell.
  • The average sale to list price ratio was a red hot 108.5%.

Last year the spring market experienced mild unseasonable cooling, but from the summer of 2020 on it’s been heating up in San Jose. Early winter saw a hint of seasonal cooling, but by mid-winter it was heating right back up again! Finally, after a hyper-competitive spring, summer 2021 finally experienced some slight market cooling. This is shown in the San Jose housing market data below, and I’ve also experienced it in my own real estate practice.

These charts will not reflect the full effect of the pandemic on the market. It will take a while before we see the full picture on how it impacted realty, but for now you can read about the Coronavirus’ impact on real estate sales on my other post.

Early on in the shutdown, the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) stopped the timer on all Days on Market (DOM). Therefore these numbers will be off beginning from March 17th through around May 17th of 2020. In the data below, this will affect any numbers related to the days on market, the absorption rate, and the days of inventory. Current numbers are accurate, but disregard this data for those previous months.

First please find the Altos Research Charts, a live feed of data on the housing markets in San Jose. You will then also find the RE Report, charts with statistics comparing sales in the last month and comparing them month-over-month and year-over-year. These are both the usual tools I use to gauge a market. Directly below are links to the market analysis of specific neighborhoods in San Jose. Some of these, where I work the most, are updated monthly, and others are updated every few months.

Altos Charts for the San Jose real estate market as a Whole – automatically updated each week – single family homes

First, the market profile and then the basic charts for single family homes or houses in San Jose. FYI, Altos uses LIST prices. The RE Report further down uses SOLD prices (which is part of the reason why I utilize both).

This real time market San Jose housing market profile (updated November 18th) shows shrinking low inventory, speedy days on market, and extremely high market action bouncing back after a recent decline. San Jose is in a strong seller’s market and holding, according to Altos! The Median List Price (for condos and houses combined) is usually stable around $1,250,000, though it has been getting nearer and nearer to $1.3 mil since last year and, around the spring peak was sticking close to $1.35!


Morgan Hill real estate market

Morgan Hill land along the Uvas RiverHow is the Morgan Hill real estate market? This article will include data, trends and statistics for both houses/single family homes and condominiums/townhouses (in the second half of the article). Here’s a bit of what you’ll find in the latest monthly update for Morgan Hill’s single family housing market:

  • October had some up and down, but overall remained a red hot seller’s market, more competitive than last year despite a smaller pool of sales and inventory.
  • The sales to list price ratio for homes dipped to a red hot 104.6% of asking.
  • Homes sold in an average of just 19 days.

The Morgan Hill Real Estate Market

If you’re looking to learn more about Coronavirus’ impact on real estate sales, please check my post on that subject. This month’s data gives us only a small window into the changes the pandemic has had on the market.

At the start of the pandemic here in Silicon Valley, the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) paused the timer on all Days on Market (DOM). Therefore these numbers will be off beginning from March 17th through around May 17th, 2020. In the data below, this will affect any numbers related to the days on market, the absorption rate, and the days of inventory. This will not affect current numbers, but will affect those previous months data.

The cities of Morgan Hill and Gilroy are usually a bit less in demand than parts of Santa Clara County which are either tech magnets or closer to these big businesses. So if most of the Silicon Valley has a sale price to list price ratio of anywhere from 100% to 105%, it’s generally lower here, making the home buying conditions calmer for weary buyers, though still a sellers market.

First up, the market profile from Altos Research – this is updated weekly, so check back often! You can also view the weekly newsletter through the link below, where you can also subscribe to receive this update every week in your inbox. Prefer a particular zip code instead? You can type in your desired zip in the “Search Anywhere” line and then request that particular weekly update by email.

Altos Research weekly report for all of Morgan Hill

Altos weekly report for 95037 only

Altos weekly report for 95038 only

Morgan Hill Real-Time Market Profile

The latest Altos update (November 20th) shows a steadily shrinking inventory, speeding days on market, and a stable market action. It’s still red hot this autumn and Morgan Hill remains in a strong seller’s market.

Trends at a Glance for Single Family Homes in Morgan Hill

Below is a chart with basic info, to see more click on this link to see the Real Estate Report for Morgan Hill. This October remained extremely active with some ups and downs month-over-month. Closed sales increased, pending sales dipped, and active inventory shrank from the month before. Compared to last year, closed sales, pending sales, and active inventory all fell well behind. That said, this time last year the market was rebounding from a low point brought on by the initial pandemic lockdown. Homes continue to sell more quickly than a year ago and with higher overbids. It’s an active seller’s market with high demand competing for a tiny pool of available homes.

Trends At a Glance Oct 2021 Previous Month Year-over-Year
Median Price $1,455,000 (+9.8%) $1,325,000 $1,017,500 (+43.0%)
Average Price $1,591,830 (+9.6%) $1,452,620 $1,169,110 (+36.2%)
No. of Sales 47 (+46.9%) 32 66 (-28.8%)
Pending 59 (-3.3%) 61 71 (-16.9%)
Active 31 (-13.9%) 36 51 (-39.2%)
Sale vs. List Price 104.6% (-0.5%) 105.1% 100.8% (+3.7%)
Days on Market 19 (+73.4%) 11 23 (-17.4%)
Days of Inventory 20 (-39.3%) 33 23 (-14.6%)