Contact Us

  • Sally Bookman Team
  • 1414 Soquel Ave #100
  • Santa Cruz, CA 95062
  • (c) 831.687.8728
  • (o) 831.457.5535
  • (f) 831.515.5108
  • (e) info (at)

How’z the market, Sally?

When I beam and say “its terrific” I know I will see a puzzled look on the face of the enquirer.  How can they not know that we Realtors here in Santa Cruz are going nuts trying to find inventory for the huge number of buyers just  itching to get their hands on Santa Cruz real estate.

There is a sense of urgency not because of fear of rising interest rates, but the awareness that we have left the bottom of the pit and prices are beginning to stabilize if not actually increase.  In fact the median home price in July was up to $562,500, the highest in four years.  Just last year the median home price was less than $500,000.

It is also rewarding to note that the number of distressed properties (ie. those that are in short sale and foreclosure) has decreased to just 28 percent of home sales.

In 2009 there were 2,000 default notices sent out to homeowners.  In 2010 this number had dropped to 1,500 and so far this year there have been just 800 filed.

One of the reasons we had such a flurry of distressed sales was because of the nasty interest-only loans and adjustable loans with unreasonable terms.  Many of those homeowners have been able to refinance their loans, sold the property through short sales or in a few cases, succeeded in getting loan modifications.

More help is on the horizon for those homeowners still struggling with loans that exceed the current value of their homes.  In July of this year a State law was passed that becomes effective January 2013 restricting “dual-track foreclosures.”  This is a process in which a lender forecloses while the borrower is negotiating for a loan modification.  Enactment of this law will give the home owner more time to make efforts to keep the home and not be forced to sell.

So if you are a seller, right now there are buyers very anxious to take a look at your property and to give you more money today than this time last year.

If you are a buyer, make sure you have completed paperwork with your lender and have a Pre-Approval letter in hand.  Be prepared to compete in a multiple offer situation and hang in there because you will be so glad you did.  Next year, if you did not buy this year, you will wish you had because besides price, those interest rates probably will be higher!