Atherton real estate

Atherton Market Conditions January 2015

  • Inventory in single digits – all but one over $10 million
  • Pending sales off the matt – still low
  • Fewest closed sales in three years
  • Prices remain strong

There were virtually no homes for sale in Atherton unless you wanted a home priced over $10 million. Inventory has been in a free fall for the past few months and it is making it very difficult to be a buyer. The lack of inventory is keeping sales low, although pending sales did increase in January (from zero in December). With so many buyers chasing so few homes, the pressure on prices continues to increase.

While the median sales price dropped sharply in January, it was from an extremely high level in December. January’s median sales price was $7.0 million, about $1.1 million below December’s $8.2 million and almost $3 million higher than a year ago. Again, we must caution against reading much into these numbers, given the extremely low level of sales. The average price per square foot increased from $1,368 in December to $1,545 in January. ON average, January’s sales were for 107% of the list price, up from about 101% in December.


Fewer sales closed in January than in any month for the past three years. There were three closed sales in January, compared with six in December and eight a year ago. We have to go back to January 2012 to find fewer closed sales (two).


Only one property priced below $10 million was actively listed at the end of January. The other seven homes on the market were priced higher than $10 million. Inventory at the end of both November and December was already at a ten year low and it fell even lower in January. By comparison, 22 properties were available a year ago. Six sales went to contract in January, up from zero in December but still two less than a year ago.


January’s closed sales were listed for an average of 113 days, the longest homes were on the market in the past two years. However, with only three sales, I don’t read much into that.


Analysis by Price Range

There was one home listed for less than $3 million at the end of January, one more than at the end of December but two less than a year earlier. One sale went to contract in this segment during January, the first time in three months there has been a sale for less than $3 million. 13% of Atherton’s inventory and 17% of its pending sales were in this segment.


One sale of a home price from $3 million to $4,999,999 went pending during January and no homes were actively listed at the end of the month. This price range made up 17% of pending sales.


The inventory of $5 million to $9,999,999 homes has been falling steadily since September and finally hit bottom, with no homes available at the end of January. Two homes were on the market last month and seven a year ago. Three sales went to contract, up from zero in December and two a year earlier. December’s two sales accounted for half of Atherton’s total for January.


Seven of the eight homes actively listed at the end of January were priced over $10 million (88% of Atherton’s inventory). That was still one less than at the end of December and five less than a year earlier. One sale went to contract in this segment in January, one more than in December.