What’s the Ratio of Distressed Sales – Short Sales or Foreclosures – to “Regular Sales” in Santa Clara County?

Right now there are about 4664 active residential real estate listings (homes listed for sale on our local MLS) which are houses, duet homes, townhouses or condominiums in Santa Clara County.  Of those, there are 1255 short sales (27% of the inventory) and 463 bank owned properties, or REOs (9%),  on the market.  So the “distressed properties” segment equals 37% of the Silicon Valley real estate market (or Santa Clara County real estate market).

Some areas are flooded with short sales & bank owned homes. Others are going through this meltdown nearly unscathed. Below please find a sampling of areas in and around San Jose with the percentage of distressed homes for sale (including both short sales and REOs or bank owned properties).  In most areas, there are usually about 3 times as many short sales as bank owned homes, but sometimes it’s a lower percentage, closer to 2.5%.   I pulled the numbers from our MLS tonight – info is deemed correct but of course not guaranteed.

Percent of Distressed Home Listings in Parts of Santa Clara County
Figures represent houses, duet homes, townhouses & condos for sale
South County (Morgan Hill, Gilroy, “area 1”43%
Santa Teresa (area of San Jose, “area 3”)44%
Central San Jose (downtown & nearby, “area 9”)51%
Palo Alto2%
Los Gatos (town of, zips 95030 & 95032)12%

Campbell Condo Market Update

How is the Campbell condo and townhouse market?  The answer may well depend on both what part of that market we’re discussing and which data we’re focusing on.

The Campbell Condo Real Estate Market Summaries for Summer 2010

The summaries here are from my Real Estate Report.  Get the most current, detailed report at www.popehandy.ReReport.com.

Campbell condominium & townhouse sales in September 2010

The condo market in Campbell, California has been strengthening.  September 2010 was a good month!


Trends At a GlanceSep 2010Previous MonthYear-over Year
Median Price$410,000$375,000 (+9.3%)$377,500 (+8.6%)
Average Price$394,463$359,600 (+9.7%)$350,875 (+12.4%)
No. of Sales1510 (+50.0%)8 (+87.5%)
Pending Properties2126 (-19.2%)25 (-16.0%)
Active3541 (-14.6%)19 (+84.2%)
Sale vs. List Price98.3%96.5% (+1.8%)102.0% (-3.7%)
Days on Market6353 (+18.1%)81 (-22.4%)

August 2010 Condo Sales in Campbell CA

August was slow across Silicon Valley – real estate sales lagged (more than the “seasonal average”)

Are There Lots of Short Sales and Bank Owned Homes for Sale in Los Gatos and Saratoga?

No, sorry, there aren’t a lot of distressed homes for sale in the Saratoga and Los Gatos areas.  Would be bargain hunters email me regularly, hoping to find lots and lots of short sales and bank owned (REO – real estate owned by the bank) houses for sale in high end west valley neighborhoods.

There just aren’t many of them!

As of today, in Los Gatos (95030 and 95032 zip codes) and Saratoga (95070) , there are 185 single family homes (houses, perhaps a few “duet homes”) for sale.  Of the 185, a mere 14 of them are distressed properties (6 bank owned, 8 short sale).  That is just 7.5%!  For those who want Los Gatos or Saratoga Schools (not Campbell, Union, or Cupertino), the odds are even worse.  Only two of those homes go to the Los Gatos-Saratoga High School District. (Prices of all distressed properties currently available in these areas range from $699,000 to about $3 million.)

There are some good deals to be found in addition to this very small pool of bank owned properties and short sale listings in Saratoga and Los Gatos.  Often the best deals are found among homes which have been on the market a long time but aren’t selling due to cosmetic issues.  Homes which need changes such as fresh carpet, paint, or “easy” updating and remodeling (like new countertops, light fixtures, etc.) can be the best bargains around, particularly if the seller is truly motivated.  So don’t lose heart – just broaden your strategy a little and you’ll be far more able to locate a suitable home.




So You Think You Want To Buy a Silicon Valley Short Sale?

You want to buy a Silicon Valley short sale - we should discuss riskYou want to buy a Silicon Valley short sale? Be careful what you wish for! There can be unpleasant and expensive surprises ahead. We’ll go over the risks.

The lure of a short sale

The news stories make it sound so attractive – get a home for 10% less than market value. That may happen. Sometimes.

The national average for short sales actually closing is extremely low, by some counts as low as 10 or 11 percent.

What about San Jose area short sales? Lets start with the lay of the land in Santa Clara County specifically (Silicon Valley includes Santa Clara County and a bit of Alameda, Santa Cruz, and San Mateo Counties). Some areas are loaded with short sale listings, others have few, if any.

You Want To Buy a Silicon Valley Short Sale – do you care where it is, or only that it’s cheap?

The best deals, in terms of low pricing, are going to be in areas with a lot of the short sales because they sell for less and pull property values down, making them more and more affordable. Those are the areas with lower priced homes, generally, the entry level areas where perhaps the buyers didn’t have great credit to start with.

In places like South San Jose, the south county areas, and Blossom Valley, for instance, most of the entry level homes are short sales. Values are plummeting there.

In places like Cupertino, Saratoga, and Los Gatos, there are hardly any short sales. Virtually none. And home values are rising.

Sometimes buying these distressed homes can pay off for some buyers.

If your goal is to purchase an investment property, this may be a good strategy for you. (We’ll go over the risks shortly.)

If you can afford one of the rare short sales in the higher-end neighborhoods, this can be a good opportunity for you. No guarantees, but if you can purchase in an area that’s appreciating, you may be able to get equity in your home without waiting years for the market to recover.

Risks in getting into escrow on a short sale