Sonoma County attracts thousands of people every year. Situated just minutes from the Pacific Ocean and ancient redwood forest, home to award-winning winemakers and chefs, the juicy and versatile Gravenstein apple, and it’s friendly inhabitants, it is no wonder why Sonoma County turns many visitors into permanent residents each year. We welcome all new members of our community and encourage even more to find out what makes Sonoma County such a great place to live! For both newcomers and old-timers, the Real Estate Market in Sonoma County continues to see the affects of low inventory and high demand creating a significant sellers' advantage.
According to the 2014 Sonoma County Indicators Economy, Environment, Health, Society, Tourism, Workforce Abridged Edition report there has been a 6% increase of tourists visiting Sonoma County. The quality of life in our area, accessibility to outdoor pursuits and even air quality drives visitors and permanent residents here by the thousands each year. This does not surprise us and we are encouraged by the upswing as it serves as a benefit to our communities all across the County. Tourism, as well as new residents, can only bring increased revenue that benefit our local shops, restaurants, wineries, apples orchards, markets, hotels, schools, residents and community supported foundations.
Another result of the increased interest in making Sonoma County home is in our local real estate market. Over the last year we have watched the Sonoma County housing market and, in particular, Sebastopol develop into what's known as a seller’s market. The high demand for housing, coupled with a low inventory of homes to sell, creates an advantage to anyone selling their home. Our daily conversations with our clients are increasingly more about multiple offer situations, shorter times on market, and a greater sense of urgency in moving forward quickly.
The number of new listings in all Sonoma County January 2015 decreased by 32% from last year, and in Sebastopol alone that number decreased by 81% with a 20% decrease in the number of days the properties spent on the market.
If you have been considering selling your home to downsize, upgrade, or finally find the perfect panoramic view to build your dream home, now could be an advantageous time to do it.
There has been much discussion in Real Estate circles about the Federal Reserve increasing the standard mortgage rates soon. As of this blog post the rates for a 30-year fixed loan is 3.96%. Couple these low loan rates with the growing need for homes in our area; it is not likely that our current seller’s market will change soon.
It is gratifying to see our community continue to bounce back from the housing crisis of 2006/2007. As local housing continues to increase in value and people are able to gain some stronger footing in their homes, we remain cautiously optimistic that this high demand for new housing, and low interest rates will provide communities all over Sonoma County with a richer diversity of people and strong financial growth.