After the most tumultuous year we’ve experienced, and perhaps arguably one of the direst years in our nation’s modern history, we take a moment to reflect on home sales from 2020, the results of which were certainly not anticipated.
We’ve said it and seen it before—when there’s uncertainty in the world, homes sales tend to suffer, as buyers take a wait and see approach.
We can’t predict what unknown events may arise in an upcoming year to forewarn our clients as to when will be the optimal time to make a move, except in an election year when there’s almost certain to be uncertainty in a mid-term or Presidential election year. It’s for that reason, that we encouraged our sellers not to wait until October to list their home for sale in 2020.
But then the pandemic hit, and apparently, all the norms—everything we’ve seen in market shifts in our 25+ years in business—went out the window.
In March, there was the stay-at-home order. Initially, our trade had yet to be determined an essential business, and thus we were essentially shut down. No open houses, offices closed, and even showings of occupied homes were disallowed.
That was relaxed in short order. Once declared an essential business, real estate offices could re-open, and with the new strict showing guidelines, occupied homes could once again be shown.
Many non-essential tech companies closed their offices, and ordered their employees to work from home. Schools also closed, and in-home learning became the norm.
A shift in home buying almost immediately transpired. People quickly learned they needed more space. Apartment dwellers found their cramped quarters no longer viable, and condos with common elevators and long hallway corridors were found to be ill suited for precautionary safe distancing measures.
In June, when the stay-at home-order was relaxed, it triggered a pent-up need for single family housing, and with sellers reticent to have throngs of strangers in their homes, the scant inventory of homes for sale had tilted the already unequal supply and demand equation and drove up prices.
Many homeowners found they could work from home in alternative areas, and chose to make a Bay Area exodus. That served to loosen the tight grip on low inventory, but it still fell shy of meeting the needs of eager home buyers wishing to gain more space, and prices continued to rise.
The following graphs illustrate the shift in the 2nd quarter of 2020, where increased sales and skyrocketing home prices ensued, eclipsing all records for new listings, sales and median prices over 2019.
Predicting the future of real estate is a fool’s game. If you’re interested in learning how Proposition 19 could help you make a move, and carry a low property tax base, start with our article outlining the opportunities and restrictions, then give us a call if you’re considering a move.
On a local level, these are the year-over-year comparisons for Belmont.
On a slightly more macro-level, these are the same graphs for the entire san Mateo County.
Drew & Christine Morgan are REALTORS/NOTARY PUBLIC in Belmont, CA. with more than 25 years of experience in helping sellers and buyers in their community. As Diamond recipients, Drew and Christine are ranked in the top 50 RE/MAX agents nationwide and the top 3 in Northern California. They may be reached at (650) 508.1441 or emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The information contained in this article is educational and intended for informational purposes only. It does not constitute real estate, tax, insurance or legal advice, nor does it substitute for advice specific to your situation. Always consult an appropriate professional familiar with your scenario.