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Big Bear January 07′ sales numbers not so hot

The numbers for the Big Bear real estate market for January 2007 look pretty bad….for sellers, that is. According to the local First American Title Co., there was a total of 77 units that sold during this time frame (Download first_american_jan. 07.xls {Excel doc. 1.61 MB}). That number is down 45% from the January 2006 numbers of 139 total units closed. This makes January 2007 the slowest month in the last 10 years for sales numbers. To really understand the numbers though, this stat refers to the number of closings in January. So, really you need to go back 30-60 days (typical escrow time frame) to see that November & December of 2006 were pretty slow from a buyer activity standpoint. Where the market is right at this exact point is yet to be seen but it feels like activity has picked up a little bit since then. The February 2007 numbers should be out soon and I will report on them as well.

Another interesting number to look at is how the prices on residential real estate are holding. According to the Big Bear MLS statistics, there were only 55 sales (not inlcuding land, condo, commercial, etc) in the month of January 07′ with an average price of $379,744. Compared to 89 sales and an average price of $447,699 for January of 06′, it tells me the market was down approximately 38% in the number of residential sales and down 15% or so in price. This is pretty significant because it has been over 9 or 10 years since we have seen the prices lower than the previous year. I know this is not completely scientific given the limited number of properties selling and the chance for one or two sales to really skew the numbers but the main point is clear. The prices are not going up or really holding steady, they have come down and may continue for a while.

Sellers in today’s Big Bear real estate market really need to get serious if they want to sell their property. Take a good look at your competition (other active listings) and what has recently gone into escrow (current pendings) to get a feel for where you have to be pricewise. Price, more than ever, needs to be in line with these numbers or else you will be sitting on the market for at least 6-12 months (depends on how overpriced your are) with the possibility of getting less in your pocket.

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