Homes in Saratoga, CA: real estate market trends and statistics for houses as well as condominiums and townhouses.

The real estate market in Saratoga improved a bit last month. But, as always, it really depends on what subset of the market you’re considering. It will be much different between price points, for instance (as well as between school districts, proximity to town, views, acreage, etc.). Today we’ll review the broad trends in Saratoga 95070 to get a general feel for the conditions but this could be very different for the home you own or want to purchase because real estate is always very local.

Let’s start with the months of inventory, or the absorption rate. I ran the numbers from, our mls provider, this afternoon. The numbers below reflect all houses (or duet homes) in Saratoga, CA 95070. With months of inventory, the lower the figure the “hotter” the market or the more in the seller’s favor it is. Six months is said to be balanced. For Saratoga as a whole, there are 4.17 months of inventory or MOI right now. That’s not bad. It’s a seller’s market but not strongly so. But what if we look at subsets of the market? Let’s try it by price point.


Saratoga CA real estate months of inventory and what's hot May 23 2011


We could drill this data down by any number of factors to see what the hyper local’s market climate would be like. The mix could include sale type (distressed properties, short sales, bank owned homes vs “regular sales”), various school districts, a “walk to town” location, horse properties, homes with views, newer construction, historic homes. etc.

Schools are always a big deal in terms of market drivers. Saratoga has 3 high school districts and 4 elementary school districts, and understanding those boundaries can make buyers a little crazy. Anyway let’s tease this out just a tad by looking at the MOI for Saratoga by high school district to see what we get.

  • Homes feeding to the Los Gatos – Saratoga Joint Union High School District (Saratoga High) have 4.71 months of inventory (a bit cool but still in the seller’s favor)
  • Houses which belong to the Campbell Union High School District (Prospect High School) have 3.71 months of inventory
  • Properties in the attendance area of the Fremont Union High School District (Cupertino school, Lynbrook High School in Saratoga) enjoy 2.5 months of inventory (a pretty good, strong seller’s market)

Why such a big discrepancy, and why are homes in the Prospect High area selling so much better than those in the Saratoga High area? I believe that the answer has to do with the graph above – most of the homes in the Prospect and Lynbrook attendance areas are more affordable than those in the Saratoga High area, and as we know, the more expensive houses for sale in Saratoga are having some trouble selling. Unless we pulled these out by both school district and price point (and perhaps more factors, too), we can’t be sure but I think it’s the most likely cause.

Overall, though, we can see that in Saratoga right now it’s a whole lot easier to sell homes under $2,000,000 than over. Interestingly, it’s slightly easier to sell a home between $1 million and $2 million rather than lower than that. I believe that’s because homes under that price point are not in the highly prized Saratoga (or Cupertino) school area.

Right now, high end or luxury homes in Saratoga are difficult to sell. This will be more true if there are any “issues” (such as being too close to high voltage power lines or a noisy location). This may change. With the recent IPO of LinkedIn, there may be some newly minted millionaires who will not find the commute from Saratoga to be too far. They cannot buy just yet, but in a few months we may see an improvement in the market of these upper tier price levels. Watch this spot!

Luxury or estate home buyers: if you are looking to purchase a home upwards of $2,000,000, you might consider doing it before you are competing with Linked In money. Just a thought.

Next, let’s look at the most current REReport for Saratoga, using the closed sales from April. This month’s closed numbers will be available about 6-10 days into next month.

It has been a mixed bag in the Saratoga real estate market with both the median sales price and average sales price slipping until recently; pending sales were up, though, and closed sales were flat. Overall, it’s still a buyer’s market there. (Click on the link for a full report.)


Trends At a GlanceApr 2011Previous MonthYear-over Year
Median Price$1,443,750$1,425,000 (+1.3%)$1,598,500 (-9.7%)
Average Price$1,657,080$1,541,650 (+7.5%)$1,588,320 (+4.3%)
No. of Sales3217 (+88.2%)40 (-20.0%)
Pending Properties3737 (0.0%)47 (-21.3%)
Active121117 (+3.4%)111 (+9.0%)
Sale vs. List Price97.9%92.0% (+6.3%)98.7% (-0.8%)
Days on Market4559 (-23.6%)53 (-14.4%)


Median List Prices of Saratoga Homes for Sale

First, a graph displaying the overview of the median list prices for condominiums and single family homes in Saratoga – all price quartiles combined:


Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research


In general, the seller’s market is showing itself for houses in the fact that list prices are rising. Not so with condo and townhouse pricing. That’s a much cooler market.

Next, the median list prices for single family homes with a breakdown by price quartile. (Please note that the info would be even more precise if broken down by school district, but this particular program doesn’t yet filter by schools.)


Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research


In most price points, the list prices are now rising slightly, but most of all in entry level homes. In the last few months we’ve seen the high end home sales start to pick up in Saratoga, with a good run up in late 2010 before sliding earlier. Starting to improve now, though.

And now, list price of condos by price quartiles.


Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research


Interestingly, the condo market is not enjoying at all the decent seller’s market seen among houses in this city. Every price point appears to be suffering, but the high end most of all.

Inventory of both houses & condos in Saratoga


Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research


It’s seasonally typical to have more inventory in summer than other times of the year. Going back a few more years (see below), please note where the peaks are found – always sometime in summer. (Single family homes only.)


Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research


It’s less clear, but still visible, with condominiums and townhouses in Saratoga:


Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research


Average Days on Market for Saratoga Homes for Sale


Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research


Houses by quartile is not much different – DOM was rising across all price points and has been since August until spring, when the bottom and two quartiles (blue and green) reversed the trend. These are the “hotter”or improving segments of the market right now.


Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research


It is strangely disjointed in the Saratoga Condo market, though. I can’t explain why this had been so “all over the board” based on just this data. But since August, all four groups appear to be following the same general trend.


Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research


My suspicion is that the homes with the better schools are faring the best, but that’s just a hunch based on how well homes usually sell – it’s not provable with this info at hand.

If you’re interested in buying or selling a Saratoga home, please contact me. I’ll be happy to meet with you for a no obligation initial consultation.

Saratoga Real Estate Listings – Saratoga Homes for Sale – Condos, Townhouses & Houses for Sale in Saratoga

If you’d like to browse Saratoga homes for sale, I invite you to have a look here! Below please find all properties currently listed as available on our local MLS. Please be advised that there are a number of different property types and school districts listed here. For more precise information on houses, condos or town houses on the market, please contact me via email or complete a form at or on my website. Either way it will come to me and I will personally set up your search for a Saratoga property. (If you are moving to the South Bay area from far away, please also see my Silicon Valley relocation website for helpful tips.)

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