Cambrian months of inventory

Cambrian Park Plaza SignThe Cambrian area of San Jose, like much of Santa Clara County, is a very “hot market” overall, but it can be confusing to know how hot it really is because there are multiple school districts – and schools are probably the number one driver of home values in this highly educated valley. On top of that, the market was hot before the pandemic began in the spring of 2020 and has become even more fierce since then with heightened demand and almost no inventory. The best homes across all of Cambrian are selling quickly and with multiple-offers.

An explanation of “months of inventory”

What does “months of inventory” mean? This figure references how long it would take to sell a property if homes continued to sell and close at the current pace with no new inventory coming on the market. A good analogy is to consider a bathtub which drains. If you add no new water to the tub, how long will it take to empty out?

The months of inventory is sometimes called the absorption rate. The question is simple: how long will it take for the current inventory of homes for sale to get absorbed by the home buyers purchasing them? It doesn’t have to be calculated by months. It could be in days, weeks, or years. But months is probably most common.

The months of inventory for any part of the real estate market can vary, depending on many factors, including age of home, house size, lot size, and school district, whether or not there’s a pool, and many other things. It can be very useful to understand this metric when selling a Silicon Valley home. I’ve done market numbers crunching tied to the specific characteristics of a property (say, small yard with pool or big yard with no pool) to find the impact of those characteristics on the probability that a home will sell – or how fast.

The Cambrian area of San Jose’s months of inventory as a whole, and in one price point

Cambrian was once an enormous zone of the Santa Clara Valley. Today we mostly think of it as within San Jose in the 95124 and 95118 zip codes. Part of it is adjacent to Campbell – a very tiny sliver is IN Campbell, and a tinier still area is in San Jose and within the Campbell School Union District! However most of this area is in one of three elementary school districts: Cambrian, Union, or San Jose Unified.

Here’s the breakdown of the charts below – first, sales and active listings for single family homes in ALL of Cambrian (MLS area 14 for my Realtor readers) and then by elementary school district. Below that, we will narrow this down to active and sold listings only in a price range of $900K – $1.2M, the entry-level price point for single family homes in this market. The part of this area within Campbell Elementary is so small that the numbers are usually not statistically useful (no offense to the Campbell school residents), and frequently there is no usable data for it anyways.

The Latest Update: February 25, 2022

Please have a look at the latest chart. While Cambrian Elementary has the fastest MOI, the majority of sales and listings are happening in the highly sought after Union school district! Once again San Jose Unified holds the majority of the lower-price market, practically monopolizing it on our chart. That said, there’s almost nothing selling in that price bracket any more, and all 4 sales in the last 60 days went over $1M. All areas are showing extremely fast turnover with market absorption remaining below 1 month across the board.

Cambrian MOI by school district 0-60day 02-25-2022

 

Homes are flying off the market this winter. A majority of sales and active inventory are coming from the Union Elementary School District, followed by San Jose Unified with roughly half the sales and inventory. On the other hand, the Cambrian Elementary District has fewer sales and active inventory, but is a very active market (currently the second fastest MOI overall) and is significantly hotter than it has been in the past few years. Inventory remains low and struggles to keep up with the high levels of demand fueling a hot seller’s market in San Jose’s Cambrian district.

 

Below we have past charts for comparison. I usually do this analysis a few times a year, and it is good to see the long view.

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Hacienda Gardens neighborhood in San Jose

Hacienda Gardens smaller modelThe Hacienda Gardens subdivision in San Jose straddles the Willow Glen and Cambrian districts, and it enjoys the highly regarded Cambrian schools. Homes and lots tend to be a little on the small side, so prices are relatively affordable as Willow Glen or Cambrian neighborhoods go, especially for such a strong school district. As San Jose real estate goes, this is a good value area due to great schools, more modest prices and lots of great amenities in the immediate area.

What are homes like in the Hacienda Gardens neighborhood?

There are around 550 houses in this San Jose subdivision. They were built originally in 1953 and 1954, though some may be newer or rebuilt since then.  Ranch style homes, they were constructed with 3-4 bedrooms and 1 or 2 bathrooms and came with an attached one or two car garage.  The builder used slab foundations and wall heaters, but many home owners have since added forced air heat (and central air conditioning).

Square footage of these houses runs from 1060 SF to 1400 SF in 82% of the homes (I crunched the numbers using county real estate records via the Realist Report), but 78 are larger than this (18%) and one is a hair over 3,000 SF.

Most of the neighborhood has parcels of around 5500 square feet, as a ballpark. I ran the data on this too and found 486 of the 550 or so homes had lot sizes of 6000 SF or less (88% of the homes). But just like with the house sizes, there are a few that are bigger – 64 or 12% are larger than this, and the largest parcels are 1/4 acre or more.

There’s some new construction close to the shopping center too – it was built in very recent years. When I get more info on those homes, I will update this article.

Where is the Hacienda Gardens area?

Hacienda Gardens appx boundariesThis corner of San Jose is entirely in the 95124 zip code, but about one third is north of Foxworthy (and just south of beautiful Doerr Park), which our MLS refers to as the Willow Glen area, and the other two thirds is between Foxworthy and Hillsdale, just west of Meridian Avenue, in the Cambrian area.

Adjacent to this neighborhood is the Hacienda Gardens Shopping Center, which runs between Hillsdale, Meridian, and Foxworthy Avenues. In recent years that shopping center changed hands and has been given a gorgeous facelift, making it a place neighbors will appreciate having in close proximity. It is home to a good-sized Rite Aid store, the long-term tenant Hometown Buffett, and a number of other restaurants offering pizza, Chinese food, and BBQ as well as other shops, institutions, and stores, such as Wells Fargo. (more…)