When California Sneezes…Oregon Catches a Cold.

I’ve seen it many times – the real estate market in California catches fire and consequently the real estate market in Central Oregon does the same thing. OR…the real estate market starts to cool and the same thing happens where we live. A California real estate agent once told me that when California sneezes, Oregon catches a cold.  It’s a great metaphor for what can happen and a good reason to keep your eyes on the market if you are planning to buy or sell in the next year.

As you know, I love the numbers.  What the numbers are saying in the past 30 days is that sellers are going to have to be VERY realistic when deciding on the sales price of their home. Are current sellers still getting more for their properties than sellers were getting 4 years ago?  Heck yes! But the line that was headed for the ceiling hit a plateau a few weeks ago and is now starting a slight downward trend toward a more realistic market.  Things are SHIFTING. We are not in a buyers market yet – but we are certainly in the transition period between the Sellers and Buyers market. Inventory is not high enough to create a true buyers market but the trends are certainly headed in that direction.

There is one writer I listen to when he writes:  Steven Thomas has been writing about real estate issues in Orange County, California for a long time. He completely understands that market (as well as the National market) and writes about it in a well-regarded newsletter.  He had this to say in his most recent publication:

I have seen, over and over again, how our local Central Oregon market is affected by what happens to the South of us. I have heard that Californians make up 65% of the number of people moving here from out-of-state. So if their homes there take longer to sell – guess what? They aren’t as quick to purchase here. As I stated last month the number of currently listed properties that are showing price reductions continues to climb a a relatively high pace. That means that sellers should price to the market and buyers may want to make sure they are working with a broker who knows that this is happening so they can get the best deal possible in a shifting market.

If your home is currently for sale, then don’t be fearful, just be aware and price correctly. If you are thinking that maybe you will wait to put your property on the market next Spring when “things pick up again,” you may want to rethink that. There may actually be no time like the present.

If you have questions about what’s going on – call me. Like always, I’ll give you the straight scoop.  Back soon…

Jim

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