Sunday, February 15, 2009

Sunday Stats

bar-graph-by-miamiamia-id-987804photo credit to MiamiAmia, courtesy of StockExchange. See the entire series for historical perspective.

Time for another edition of the Sunday Stats


Background and Color Coding: red is bad, green is good, inasmuch as it means the stats are moving towards a balanced market. Most local experts/forecasters and Realtors use 6 months' supply of inventory on the market as the benchmark for a balanced market. Months of inventory is a measurement of how long it would take to sell every house currently for sale, if no new houses were listed for sale and sales continued at the current monthly pace. In metro Phoenix, balance is usually reached at about 5,000 sales per month and about 30,000 to 35,000 homes for sale.

There's a whole lotta green going on, and that's good news. I find it interesting that the green in the sold columns is mostly in the ZIPs I consider outlying parts of metro Phoenix. ZIPs closer to downtown Phoenix, particularly 85012, 13, and 14 continue to suffer with too much inventory for sale and not nearly enough selling. That seems to make sense, at least as much as it follows the old real estate adage "drive until you qualify."  That's a saying that basically means that a buyer who's intent on getting exactly what he wants often has to drive outwards from the downtown core to get to a place in the suburban sprawl where what he wants is affordable. That seems to be holding true in our downturn just as much as it held true in the price run ups of 2005 and 2006.

Green in the Pending columns but red in the Sold columns (like you see in most of the ZIPs from 85012 to 85024) seems to indicate either (1) a coming 'bulge' of sold homes, or (2) more likely homes that go under contract and then the deals fall apart during the home inspection ("Due Diligence") period.

2 Phoenix Area ZIPs Where It's GOOD to be a Seller

The media is filled to bursting with the phrase "buyers' market" and almost every person I talk to thinks "nothing is selling", "nobody can get a mortgage" and "sellers are taking pennies on the dollar these days."  No so!At least not everywhere.

It's good to be a seller in ZIPs 85379 and 85053. There's just about 6 months' worth of inventory on the market, and properties are generally selling quickly (if they're right-priced). Some specs:

ZIP 85379

  • Average time on market is just 48 days

  • Average sales price is a mere 2.05% less than the final list price (7.89% less than the original list price)

  • Average sold price is $149,349 ; median sold price is $143,000

ZIP 85053

  • Average time on market is 54 days

  • Average sales price is only 3.51% less than the final list price (14.08% less than the original list price)

  • Average sold price is $100,178 ; median sold price is $97,000

But just who are those lucky sellers who are getting nearly full list price in just a few weeks?? Banks. The stats above are for bank owned homes in both ZIPs. And banks are just about the only ones selling anything in these ZIPs (bank owned homes account for 77% of sales in 85379 and a whopping 89% of sales in 85053).

Banks are selling in the 85022 ZIP too. They're taking just a few days longer on average (66 days on market) but are getting a wee bit closer to their original asking prices (homes sold, on average, for 12.89% of original list).

What's the difference between ZIPs 85379 / 85053 and ZIP 85022? In the former, 15% of homes for sale actually sold in the past 30 days.  Things aren't so rosy in 85022, where only 3% of homes for sale actually got sold in the past 30 days. If you're a buyer looking to be in the 85022 area, take this info with you and drive a hard bargain when you make offers on properties! That seller you're negotiating with has only a 3 in 100 chance of selling if she/he doesn't make your offer work.

Till next week, this is your stats lovin' Realtor signing off.