I spent the morning meeting with clients who are thinking about purchasing a home in Manhattan Beach. I first met them in 2005 at an open house. After searching for 6 months and not finding the right home they decided to rent until they had more money saved.
What a difference a few years can make. In 2005 homes were selling as fast as they came on the market. A nice home, priced right.. in good condition and in a good location... could easily sell in one day with multiple offers...The list price was where you started.. not ended. It was fast and furious as the inventory was very limited. If you saw something you liked you had to be quick... Oh... how we longed for a little breathing space and a bit more inventory.
Today we were talking about how much the market has changed. While the inventory is still not large compared to other areas... you definitely have more choices. You can actually take some time to decide how much you really like a property... or not. While prices are not cheap by any means they have come down. The listing price is still a place to start... but now the biggest question isn't how much over the listing price to offer but rather how much under the listing price is a fair offer.
A lot has changed in our market since 2005. But it seems that what we were praying to see in 2005.. a slower market without so much volatility in price is seen as the gateway to the market falling into the abyss. I'm sure there will be more adjustments over the next few months but probably not as much or as many as some are hoping to see.
The economic news isn't great but some things are looking slightly better. Not all financial intuitions are hovering on the brink of bankruptcy. The FED is making a real effort to keep markets steady but not too enthusiastic. The stock market is up... then down... then up... seemingly out of bear territory for the moment... but no bulls in sight. No one knows what's happening with oil.. can you say hurricane.. but demand has gone down which may be a very good thing in the long run.
To quote Mr. Dylan... The times they are a changin'....