Saratoga has a diverse real estate market due to a wide range of home prices, square footage, lot sizes, school districts, and more. The luxury tier, generally $4 million and up (but in Saratoga, that’s really still just a house in an expensive zip code) normally moves slower than other price points. Saratoga’s entry level housing is usually the strongest. If the numbers swing wildly at any given month, it could be that more or fewer homes in a particular school district and pricing tier.
To really understand the Saratoga CA real estate market, you’ll need to get hyper local data for that home’s pricing tier, school district, and any other impactful data points.
Trends at a Glance for the Saratoga CA Real Estate Market
Data below for the Saratoga CA real estate market is from the ReReport.
Prices are up annually but down monthly – however, that is with just 13 sales, which may be too few to really indicate what’s happening. The sale to list price ratio and the short days on market tell us that it is a hot market.
How is the Campbell real estate market? Campbell is in a strong seller’s market that has finally outstripped this time last year. This article, updated monthly, offers data and analysis on the residential real estate market within this popular Silicon Valley community. Here are a few details from the latest update on Campbell’s single family housing market:
Inventory has fallen behind last month and last year’s levels, remaining significantly below normal. Smaller pools of data can cause more dramatic swings in these statistics, so take these numbers with a grain of salt.
The average sales to list price ratio for homes sold last month dropped to 103.7% of asking – that’s still red hot, and completely overtaking last year’s October numbers.
Average and median sales prices are up +9.9% and +14.2% from last year respectively.
Average time on market sped to 12 days and market absorption was a quick 26 days. The best homes are being snatched up quickly, while less desirable properties may linger slightly longer.
Closed sales nearly doubled month-over-month with a slight increase in pending sales and a major drop in active inventory.
The market in this popular west valley city is red hot overall!
The Campbell, CA Real Estate Market
It’s hard to predict what’s coming next, especially since Silicon Valley real estate is connected to the global economy and many buyers rely on stocks and mortgage loans to finance their purchase. On top of that, we’re emerging from an already wild few years!
If you’re selling a well prepared, beautifully staged, and aggressively priced house, you’ll likely see multiple offers on your home for sale. We’ve been seeing more bidding wars, but not with overbids quite as high as last spring. Competition for homes has undoubtebly waned from it’s peak as buyers financial power shrank with rising interest rates. That said, with even fewer homes being listed this year there’s still far more demand than there is inventory, especially for a move-in ready home!
Desperate and worn out buyers want to get their foot in the door before they are priced out of the market altogether by either climbing interest rates or rising home prices.
Don’t expect a balanced market any time soon – California still has a severe housing shortage and buyers are still clamoring to get property!
Here’s a quick view of the Campbell real estate market stats from Altos Research, using list prices (not sales price) which updates automatically about once per week:
The Altos chart is showing Campbell, CA single family homes in a strong seller’s market with a recent decline in market action paired with steadily low inventory. Inventory remains well below typical, and these few homes continue to sell quickly.
And now – here are some quick stats, pulled from the MLS (Multiple Listing Service) through the RE Report:
Why is inventory so low? As of today, October 26, 2023, there are 796 single family homes for sale in Santa Clara County (population appx 2 million people). A year ago it was about 1165 and the end of October. Where have all the listings gone? And when will it get better for home buyers? (You can check Santa Clara County inventory and other real estate stats on this blog.)
Why is inventory so low: historical perspective, how low IS it?
Here’s a look at our houses for sale from Jan 1999 to today. Please note that the MLS has a problem with its data sharing feeds, and if I pull this same info in a month, some of the numbers (not just this month) will likely change.
Inventory Oct 1999 through October 2022 (only Octobers, 24 months) = 2640. Inventory was bloated during the Great Recession, so that’s not representative of “normal”.
If we consider just 2013 – Oct 2022 (10 Octobers), which I think is much more typical, the average inventory is 1403.5
The current inventory level is 57% of the last 10 years and 30% of the last 24 years (not including 2023 in the averages).
The lack of inventory is causing a lack of sales, layoffs in various real estate related industries, and pretty much economically challenging for Realtors, lenders, title and escrow people, inspectors, stagers, photographers, and anyone else involved in the buying and selling of homes.
We have a supply and demand imbalance, with demand outpacing supply but available homes for sale low.
Why is inventory so low? What is causing the shortage?
Next, let’s consider the root causes of the problem, and which ones may not be ongoing. (more…)
Listing syndication matters to buyers and sellers, even if they don’t know it!
What is listing syndication?
Listing syndication refers to the distribution of listings of homes for sale to other websites from the multiple listing service or MLS. The information about the home is input into the MLS for members online, and also for those visiting the MLS directly as guests or those receiving email updates from that system. When it’s sent further, say to Realtor.com for example, that’s syndication.
Put more simply, listing syndication is distributing and displaying listings online.
Today most listings can be found on real estate web portals large and small, including real estate agents’ own websites (we have it, too). On real estate agent websites, that is accomplished through either an IDX feed (Internet Data Exchange) or VOW (Virtual Office Website). The main difference between IDX and VOW is that with the VOW more can be displayed, but it’s behind a login / password wall. The IDX feed shows information without having to register.
Silicon Valley real estate market predictions – it’s time for a late 2023 update. As always, this is a best guess based upon the major influences that we see at play.
My Silicon Valley real estate market predictions in brief:
Home prices in Silicon Valley have been holding steady since early 2023 despite interest rates rising. This is contrary to the norm.
Inventory remains painfully and increasingly low as sellers do not want to sell. This is likely to remain the case. The bottom line is supply and demand. If demand remains strong and inventory low, prices will go up and only be tempered by the rate issue. That’s what we are seeing now. Many buyers are sitting this market out, but those who are active continue bidding prices up.
Many factors could swing the market one way or the other: Covid (new variant is more immune evasive), layoffs, the stock market, how much rates rise, a big quake, weather and disaster related issues, and more.
Home prices are up from a year ago but down from the peak. If the current trends continue, though, we’ll surpass that peak in not too long. And that is precisely my prediction.
The low point in pricing is usually in January, but sometimes a month earlier, and the contracts for those sales are ratified 30 days before that (so November or December).
Many buyers are waiting this out. I believe that they risk being priced out of the market if the typical pattern continues and we see large price jumps in the new year.
3 minute video on the current market and future predictions
Supply and Demand + Seasonal Patterns
This odd market with home prices rising despite interest rates rising comes down to highly motivated buyers fighting over a scarcity of homes for sale. Below is a chart from MLS Listings which displays the inventory of active listings of single family homes (houses and duet homes) from January 2004 to today. Since we are close to the end of September, I am including the month to date.
Take a look:
From about 2006 – 2012 we had the impact of the financial collapse with many foreclosures and short sales inflating the number of listings. Beginning in 2013, though, the market followed more normal seasonal patterns. Since then, most years the peak of inventory came close to 2000 houses on the market (except in 2017, when prices skyrocketed). From 2020 on, meaning the pandemic years, inventory has not gotten close to those levels.
This lack of inventory is the main issue, and the corresponding result is increasing home prices.
The inventory of available homes to buy is painfully low throughout San Jose, Santa Clara County, and Silicon Valley. When will inventory begin to rise again? I’m getting this question from many of my home buyer clients right now.
When can we expect inventory to increase?
There are seasonal patterns which become clear with a few images. Here’s a view of San Jose’s real estate listings inventory over the last few years: it gives a good idea of how far out of balance the supply and demand formula is. The amount of housing supply normally is lowest in December and January, and it usually begins to increase after the SuperBowl or by the middle of February.
In the chart below, you can see a marked point downward at around the 1st of each year. In recent years, though, that’s not the only time when it dips to the low side. Also it should be noted that we have seen lower inventory in the last few years – just not during this season.
If we step back and consider all of Santa Clara County instead, the pattern looks much the same. (more…)
Today we’re looking at the real estate market for houses in some of the “west valley” communities along the base of the Santa Cruz Mountains – areas where schools are good, crime is low, residents enjoy scenic views of the hills (or of the valley from the hills, depending on the location) and overall, a highly educated population not too far from Highway 85. This will be a real estate market comparison for Los Gatos, Saratoga, Cupertino, and Los Altos.
Of the four municipalities, three are really very similar to each other in several regards. Cupertino has the largest population – about 61,000 people – but Los Altos, Los Gatos and Saratoga are all similarly sized, somewhere between 31,000 residents. The latter three also enjoy a traditional “downtown” area which is popular with pedestrians, bicyclists and motorists alike. (Monte Sereno has under 4,000 residents, which is so small that the statistics are very easily thrown from month to month, so it is omitted in this quick study.) Of the four, Cupertino, then, is the least similar due to size and lack of a central downtown area for now. This may feel different once the Vallco Mall is redeveloped.
We’ll take a quick look at these areas now in terms of the real estate market trends and statistics for each area, considering just “class 1” (houses and duet homes). The charts used below are from Altos Research, to which I have a subscription, and they will be automatically updated each week.
Please note: the Los Gatos data is probably a little artificially low as it will include all 3 zip codes, meaning also the Los Gatos Mountains, which are quite a bit more affordable than the areas “in town”.
In addition, as of this writing we are in the shelter-in-place phase 1 of the pandemic. This post is updated approximately every quarter or half-year, so we’re just starting to see the results of these changes to the market, but it will take a while to see the full picture. For now you can read more about the Coronavirus impact on real estate sales in my post on the topic.
Also, during the shutdown so far, 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. In the data below, this will affect any numbers related to the days on market, the absorption rate, and the days of inventory.
It’s a January that feels like March, if a dry one. The weather is clear, mild, and temps are sixty to seventy degrees, the skies are blue and trees are beginning to blossom – a great environment for house hunting. Is it too early in the season to begin your search for the right home in Silicon Valley?
Each prospective home owner’s situation is different, but for many people, January is a great time to jump in with house hunting, before the Super Bowl, Valentine’s Day or some other point a little later in the calendar year.
Weather, Inventory, Interest Rates and Silicon Valley house hunting
First, to note the obvious: there is no weather related reason to wait. (Sellers: pay attention!)
How bad is it? I’m on the MLS right now. For single family homes (houses and duet homes) in Santa Clara County, there are 411 for sale right this moment which are not sale pending or under contract. This is for the whole county, where there are 1.8 million people residing.
First time home buyers in Silicon Valley and folks relocating from out of the San Francisco Bay Area often ask me if buying a home in late fall or winter is a good idea, or if it would be better to wait until spring, when there’s presumably more inventory. We sell a good number of homes year-round here, thanks to our sub-tropical climate. This is true even when we get a whole lot of rain.
The real estate market is a little different each year, but there are some general trends – you just cannot count on them, that’s all! Here are some “usually” situations, but please know that this may or may not apply the year you want to purchase a property!
Usually we see the most inventory in summer (followed by spring)
Usually we see the least inventory in winter (especially between about Thanksgiving and the Superbowl)
Prices are normally softest in winter – closings in January (sales in December) tend to be the lowest
Interest rates on mortgages or loans are normally at their lowest during the winter (it’s supply and demand related)
If you want a better deal, shop in the late fall and winter. If you want more selection, shop in spring and summer (but it will often cost more!). It is up to you!
What I normally tell my clients is this: buy the home you want to live in, when you’re ready, regardless of the time of year. If you can find what you like now, buy it! We never know what the coming year will bring, but right now, it’s expected that prices will rise in 2019.
See what’s currently for sale in Santa Clara County on the map below:
Buying a home in Silicon Valley is seldom easy, but right now, it’s nearly impossible with Santa Clara County’s critically low housing inventory. With slightly rising interest rates getting folks off the fence and strong job growth in the San Jose area – especially since Google announced its expansion in downtown, there are many more home buyers than home sellers. While this isn’t unusual, the severity of the problem certainly is extreme. How bad is it? Here’s a visual cue dating from January 2001 to March 2018 which indicates that this month’s inventory of single family homes for sale in Santa Clara County is the lowest we’ve had for March since 2001 (that’s as far back as I can get the data from MLS Listings). I’ve been selling homes for 25 years and have never seen it so dire.
This is sort of like “inventory limbo” – how low can you go? To me, this is uncharted territory for our region.
I am really wondering if other cities around the world have had this kind of inventory crisis in the past, and if so, what happened to pull them out of it. Obviously, we need more inventory, and that will mean either more new construction, incentives for current owners to sell, an easier way for people to commute long distances to work, or some combination of the three.
How does this impact you?
Many long time residents may recall that we have had a shortage for a few years here. In January 2012, I wrote about it here: Why is it so hard to buy Silicon Valley real estate right now? Compared to the recession that had just ended, inventory was low – I can look back now and think “wow, we had no right to complain! We had a lot more inventory then as we do now!” What also happened is that with the restricted inventory, home prices rose. A lot.
If you are a renter and want to be a home buyer, you now have two things going against you: rising interest rates and rising home prices (due to strong demand and critically low supply of homes to buy). If you wait a year, there’s a good chance that you will lose quite a lot of buying power as interest rates continue to go up and home prices do, too. Please check out my article on rates: How will rising interest rates impact your home buying power? Super low inventories tend to cause rapid price appreciation, and if you aren’t careful you could be priced out of the market (either because of home prices or because of those rising interest rates).
Normally, I’d be saying “take heart, buyers, inventory usually starts to rise after the SuperBowl” or “inventory rises after Valentine’s Day” or “we’ll see more homes coming on the market in March”. Well, it just hasn’t happened to any kind of significant degree.
If you are a seller, this is great news for you as it’s very likely that your equity will be increasing with the tight inventory. Buyer demand is good and interest rates are still very tolerable. It is hard if you want to sell and buy something else, but if you are down-sizing, you may be able to capitalize by purchasing all cash.
If you are a buyer, it’s important to realize that these days, most homes are selling with no contingencies of any kind (loan, appraisal, inspection). Purchasing a condo, townhome, or house is not for the faint of heart! Being not just pre-approved, but having an underwriter’s approval subject only to the ratified contract, a preliminary title report, and a satisfactory appraisal will put you into a better position. Cash is king, of course, so being able to absorb any appraisal shortfall is crucial. However, don’t let the all cash buyers scare you as some of them over estimate the value of cash. Most sellers will wait a few extra days if it means making more money on the sale.
Christie's International Real Estate Sereno, Los Gatos, CA 95030 408 204-7673 Mary@PopeHandy.com License# 01153805
Clair Handy, Realtor
Christie's International Real Estate Sereno 214 Los Gatos-Saratoga Rd Los Gatos, CA 95030 ClairHandy@sereno.com License# 02153633
Mary & Clair sell homes throughout Silicon Valley: Santa Clara County, San Mateo County, and Santa Cruz County. with a special focus on: San Jose, Los Gatos, Saratoga, Campbell, Almaden Valley, Cambrian Park.
Mary Pope-Handy, Realtor
ABR, AHWD, CIPS, CRS, SRES
Christie's International Real Estate Sereno
DRE License #01153805
“Helping nice folks to buy and sell homes in Silicon Valley since 1993”
Clair Handy, Realtor, GREEN
Christie's International Real Estate Sereno
DRE License #02153633
email@example.com “Helping nice folks to buy and sell homes in Silicon Valley”
This is the Valley of Heart's Delight blog , covering Silicon Valley real estate - Santa Clara County, San Jose, Los Gatos, Cupertino, and nearby communities in the South Bay Area and lower Peninsula. Find info on neighborhoods, disclosure issues, buyer and seller tips, and housing market conditions in the west valley and most of the county.Please also see my other websites and real estate market statistics site, which are listed in the sidebar, above.
Mary Pope-Handy, Realtor
ABR, CIPS, CRS, SRES
DRE License #01153805
“Helping nice folks to buy and sell homes in Silicon Valley since 1993”
Strictly Necessary Cookies
Strictly Necessary Cookie should be enabled at all times so that we can save your preferences for cookie settings.
If you disable this cookie, we will not be able to save your preferences. This means that every time you visit this website you will need to enable or disable cookies again.