March 2010 home page

  The Millionaire Next Door?
Greg Allen | Zapo Street. Mr. Allen is a local realtor.

How is the Del Mar real estate market?

Kinda depends on who you talk to, and how you define “Del Mar.”  If your property just closed escrow, the market feels great! If you are still looking for buyers, it feels lousy.

If you define Del Mar as zip code 92014, total sales for 2009 were 176 homes & condos according to the local Multiple Listing Service (MLS). This is down 46% from the peak volume of 329 sold in 2004, yet up 28% from 137 sold in 2008. Some might say this is a nice recovery!

The time it took to sell a Del Mar house or condo in 2009 averaged 100 days. This is twice what it took in 2004, but is about the same as it was in 2008. Not slowing, but not accelerating either.

For me, the most notable 2009 stat was the activity along beach front properties.
The MLS reported that 6 homes on the beach sold in 2009. Not many? Well, this is more than total sold from 2004 up to 2009! The median price was, surprisingly, $8.5M in 2009, about the same as in 2004.

It would seem that beach front values have withstood the tide of the last 5 years!
What spurred the buying spree? One explanation is that buyers saw real value on the beach at Del Mar. Another is that prices are at or near the bottom. Either way, they decided it is time to buy prime real estate. And, if there is confidence on the high end, this surely bodes well for all property in Del Mar.

The median price for the 176 properties sold in 2009 was $1,086,250. In 2008, the median was $1,200,000 and in 2004 it was $1,050,000. In other words, prices have come down and are approaching the median price measured in 2004. It is possible that prices may still need to come down a bit more to keep the sales pace growing. There have been a lot of price reductions this January.

I know what you are saying. There are a lot of other factors to consider and I am using averages, medians, and perhaps a positive bias. If you are reading this article, you are likely a Del Mar resident. So you know that this is a great place to live. The market seems to agree with you.

Sellers : Buyers are in the market and as credit eases, and it will, watch for more “sold” signs.

Buyers : Sellers are finally ready to talk so let the negotiations begin.


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