Our experience and common sense, plus a few numbers, suggest the Marin housing market will continue to increase in value, though perhaps at a lower rate than the the last few years. Here are some factors that support the healthy real estate market in Marin:
- Our economy is strong. If the Bay Area economy is growing, there will be demand for homes in Marin. Bay area employment rose 2.1% from August ’17 to August ’18, or 86,000 jobs. Professional and business services jobs led the job gain with 25% of the total. Venture capital investments totaled $20 billion in the first half of 2018, an 18-year high.
- As long as the Bay Area economy is strong and there is not a national economic disaster, young families will move to Marin for the open space, good schools, and relaxed life style.
- Marin has approximately 85% dedicated open space and agricultural land, assuring its natural beauty, but limiting housing. About 2,900 homes are sold each year. Limited housing means more competition and stability of housing prices.
- Marin is not strongly affected by affordability issues. In 2017, 20 % or 583,000 of all Bay Area households earned $200,000 or more. This income qualifies them for homes costing $1.2M or more.
- Homes at the lower end of the market, up to $2M, often receive multiple offers and typically sell for 5-15% over asking price. 30-40% of the purchases are paid in cash.
Upward Marin Home Prices for September 2018
Marin home prices increased significantly in 2018.
Single Family Homes +13.5%
Through September 2018, single family homes sold for a median price of $1,362,500, an increase of 13.5% compared to 2017. The typical home was three bedrooms and two and a half baths in 2,000-2,100 square feet.
The number of homes sold was the same as 2017, but still lower than recent years and short of demand.
Condos and Townhouses + 11%
The $667,000 median price for condos and townhouses was an increase of 11% over 2017.
Typically, there is a pre-holiday burst in the number of homes for sale. This year the September burst was about 25% higher than the last few years. Since new listings were not unusually high in September, this higher inventory most likely reflects the slower sale of homes.