Well, it was definitely great while it lasted. Temperatures soared to 85 degrees (even at Ocean Beach) last week and the week before that there were five straight days of sunny 70+ degree temperatures. People donned their coolest summer linen, left work early, got together with friends and enjoyed what seemed like true California dreamin.
Today, the linen has been replaced by wool sweater and jacket, the sun is hiding behind the overwhelmingly grey sky and thoughts have shifted to summer get a ways.
So why am I talking about the weather?
With the summer solstice behind us and the 4th of July holiday a week away, we can naturally expect the real estate market to quiet down. During the summer months, many people simply put their real estate plans on hold, which for the active buying public can mean less competition. While one may argue that there may be fewer new listings, there is still plenty of excellent unsold inventory for the savvy buyer to snap up, particularly in the neighborhoods where the sun doesn’t shine as often.
So my advice is: Put on a sweater, and start thinking about properties that you’ve seen in person or online and liked. Go back, look at them again and remember that there are always good properties that for one reason or another haven’t sold. Maybe the price was too high, maybe the property wasn’t marketed aggressively or perhaps the property was overshadowed by other competing properties. Often times, when properties sit too long on the market, people lose interest and the properties can become unfairly stigmatized.
For example: I have two separate sets of clients who were able to buy excellent properties for these very reasons. In one case, a well located, three bedroom/three bath home sat on the market basically because the listing agent was from out of the area, and the price was set too high. The sellers finally hired a local agent who remarketed the property at a more competitive price. My clients saw it, loved it and bought it without competition at slightly below the new asking price. The second example is similar; another property had been poorly presented and priced inappropriately, after a few unsuccessful months on the market, the seller made some minor changes to the house and lowered the price. Once again, my clients came in without competition and bought the house.
Moral of the story:
Think smart. Keep your eye on the market. For buyers, less competition means better deals. For sellers, realistic pricing and proper presentation means a better chance of closing a deal before the new fall listings hit the market.