Monday, June 1, 2009

Mixed Messages

Using some slightly non-scientific methods (the ZipRealty interactive map), I took a look to see how the different Sacramento housing market price levels are faring this spring. On March 4th of 2009 inventory was around 9000 SFH units. Today its now down to around 8400 units, a drop of 8.2%.

This is very misleading if you look at total inventory. Luxury inventory, over 500k, actually went up by 5.3% (at approximately 18% of total SFH inventory). In the mid-priced homes, 250k to 500k, inventory is down by 10.6%, and in the starter-home category (below 250k), inventory is down by 12%.

This may account for some of the trends we have seen in the Sacramento Housing Tracker weekly/monthly numbers. As lower end inventory dries up, and higher end inventory grows as a percentage of total inventory, thus driving the asking prices higher.

Side note.......While I really like Housing Tracker because it tracks multiple asking price percentiles (25th, 50th, 75th) as well as inventory, I have never understood where their inventory numbers come from. When I look at the greater Sacramento area on the ZipRealty interactive map, (from Davis to the West, Auburn to the North, Cameron Park to the East, and Elk Grove/Franklin to the South), I only come up with inventory at around 9,200, whereas HT is currently listing around 14,500. If I include land listings, it only bumps my number up to around 10,500.

P.S. We went to our first River Cats game on Sunday. The weather was perfect, the stadium is really nice (not to big). But I was surprised at how empty it was and wondering if it's the economy or normal attendance (not complaining...cause I usually stay away from venues like that cause I don't like huge crowds). The announcer made a comment of how the River Cats have the best attendance of all minor league teams. Perhaps I am just used to big city crowds (but very grateful to get away from them!!!).


srcerer said...

FYI now covers the Sacramento area

Max said...

Back when I got into the stats game, the discrepancy with Housing Tracker disturbed me as well. My only conclusion was they were using old neighborhood designations for their data query. There is also the chance they use an 8-10 county market instead of the usual 4.

As an aside, the Bee was horrible during the bubble, using a 6-8 county number for sales, and a 4 county number for listings. :)

sacramentia said...

Your data seems to make sense. The prices are compressing around the median. I think this is going to continue for a while in both housing and income levels.