Marin County Real Estate Market Blog | Marin Market Trends

After finishing 2014 with near historic lows at 3.7-3.9%, it’s hard to believe affordability for buyers could get much better.

However, the golden ages for buyers may be coming to an end. According to the website Investopedia, interest rates are expected to rise in the latter half of 2015.

“If they do jump to the 5% range it will be a modest hike when compared to historical averages. Rates will still be far below the approximately 8.5% 30-year fixed-rates mortgages have averaged since 1971 when Freddie Mac started tracking them.”

Projections are as follows:

So what does this mean for today’s buyers? I think it’s obvious what I’m about to say: If it’s been on your plate for the past few years, stop waiting. Buy now! Although we are still in a

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The market has, at least for the time being, turned the corner. According to the most recent “Existing Home Sales Report” published by National Association of Realtor (NAR), home sales have risen drastically in five of the six price ranges that NAR measures.


Furthermore, there are other metrics that suggest the market is ready to move in a positive direction for the next few years. NAR and Freddie Mac are both projecting number of home sales to increase over the next two years. The metric used to measure sales projections was existing and new construction.


The recent flood of positive 2015 projections is both motivating and refreshing for buyers and sellers. For buyers, this means your investment will likely be safe and lucrative. Sellers can

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Someone will always find a good reason not to buy a house. Everybody knows that there’s never a good time to move. However, these historically low rates continue to make a case for buying now instead of waiting. I will continue to blog about this because everyone that’s thought about entering the market as a buyer or seller needs to take notice to this profound economic incentive.

Although this chart portrays a monthly payment for a $200,000 mortgage (not very applicable to Marin County), it paints a nice picture of today’s affordability in comparison with recent decades.


See my point? If you’re a seller, these rates will create buyer demand. If you are a buyer, get off the couch and get preapproved.


Alex Narodny

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It’s not even Thanksgiving yet, and we are already seeing the cheesy Christmas ads. The holidays are right around the corner. So are the family dinners, packed parking lots, office cocktail parties, and forced conversations with friends you haven’t seen in 12 years. It’s easy for the home buying decision to take a back seat with all the commotion surrounding the holiday season. However, here are four reasons you should consider buying now rather than waiting for 2015:

  1. Mortgage Interest Rates are Expected to Increase – Although rates have softened lately, Freddie Mac/Fannie May and The Mortgage Bankers Association predict they will rise almost a full point by the end of the year.
  2. Values Continue to Rise – Home prices are rising every month. Over the
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While much of the eternal rent vs. own dilemma can be funneled into economic equations based on current market conditions, the only way to determine a “good investment” is through guess and check.

Economists have a long-held view that the choice to own or rent is shaped by putting assets and liquidity under a microscope and making a calculation about costs of owning vs. renting after controlling for alternative investments.

The prospective homeowner can use a complex user-cost equation that captures all these variables that influence their decision:  house price appreciation, opportunity cost of making a down payment, cost of capital adjusted after deductions, operating costs, insurance, mortgage, etc.

For prospective renters, you simply calculate

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Every year, the Gallop Organization releases the “Economy and Personal Finances Poll”, which asks Americans to rank the best options for long-term investments.

 The Gallup Poll contrasted Real Estate with Gold, stocks/mutual funds, savings accounts/CDs, and bonds to determine where most Americans are most confident putting their money. Given high consumer confidence and a steady appreciating market, it’s no surprise that Real Estate came out on top.  Here are the numbers:



Real Estate, however, didn’t always wear the investment crown. Gold was the most popular investment among Americans in 2011. Gold was not yet an investment option in

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Investor profiles are very different from the days of old. One of the fastest growing buyer profiles are, not surprisingly, single women.

According to the National Association of Realtor’s 2013 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, Single Women represented 16% of the population of recent home buyers, compared to 9% that were single males. Let’s see how else they topped their male counterparts:

Single Women Represented

-       16% of First Time Home Buyers (11% - Single Men)

-       15% of Repeat Home Buyers (8% - Single Men)

-       56% of Homeowners that Live Alone (47% - Single Men)

-       25% of Homeowners that spend over half their income on housing (10% - Single Men)

This shouldn’t come as a shock to anyone. The number of women in

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Many people have the misconceptions that a Real Estate Agent’s job is easy and they can save thousands by selling their house without help. The reality is that without the marketing strategy, transaction guidance, and negotiation skills from a Real Estate Agent, sellers are more likely to net less money from the sale of their house.

Let’s address the very first thing to consider when selling a residence: a powerful marketing plan. As a seller, how will you cast a wide net to local and international buyers? Considering that 92% of buyers begin their search for a house online, what will be your targeted online approach? How will you reach the area’s top agents and their clients without access to the local MLS? These things cost money, time, and a specific

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With holidays around the corner and fresh into a new school year, sellers get very weary about putting their house on the market. However, low inventory and high buyer demand still tip the scales heavily in the seller’s favor.  It’s never going to be convenient to get your home sale-ready, but here are a few reasons why you shouldn’t pass up the opportunity this Fall:

1. Less Competition – Inventory is still at historic lows. Simply put, there are not enough homes to satisfy the number of buyers looking. A fresh supply of inventory is expected to come to market soon, so it would be wise to put homes on MLS while there are still bidding wars.

2. Meet your terms – This market is urging buyers to please sellers when they write their offers. This means

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Millennials (ages 18-29) make up the future’s home-buyer population. As the economy continues to strengthen, it’s important to know where future buying demand is headed. How do these youngsters prioritize real estate investment?

A recently released report by the Demand Institute (“Millenials and Their Homes: Still Seeking the American Dream”) unveiled many myths about these generations and their perception on owning property. Not so glum after all:

-       48% of Millennials plan to switch from renting to owning in the next 4 years

-       75% view home ownership as an important long-term goal

-       73% believe that home ownership is an excellent investment

-       60% plan to purchase in the next 5 years

Here are some other surprising facts

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