The Real Estate Market in the Coachella Valley and COVID
A standard market update isn’t sufficient to describe the rapidly changing real estate market in the Coachella Valley due to COVID.
So with the help of Market Watch LLC, we’re watching the market using shorter term metrics that demonstrate more of the daily moves, based on a 28 day average.
We’re comparing Real Estate Market Metrics *March 19 – May 15, 2020 vs the same time period in 2019 and the impact COVID has had on the Coachella Valley Real Estate Market. *(Date of Governor Newsom’s Stay at Home order)
Coachella Valley Single Family Homes
PENDING SALES –
One of many metrics we use to pick up developing market trends is Pending Home Sales. In 2019 there was an average of 23 units going under contract everyday in the Coachella Valley. For the first 2 weeks after the stay at home order, people and business froze – no one knew what to expect and as real estate agents, we were legally NOT able to practice Real Estate – so, it’s no surprise that as of May 15, 2020 we averaged 11 homes going under contract per day. That’s about a 52% decline in the number of sales from one year ago. Eventually, Governor Newsom added the practice of real estate to the list of “Essential Businesses” and since then we’ve started to see a substantial uptick in online home buyer activity.
PRICE / SQ FT –
Interestingly for Single Family Homes,
May 1, 2019 the average price / sq ft was $244. This year it’s $238 / sq ft.
Down just 2.4%. Prices are showing only a small downward bias.
Inventory is actually down from one year ago. May 1, 2019 we had 3,636 units for sale, but inventories had been down since November 2018, (prior to COVID). Inventories have been hovering around 3,000 units for sale since then. We’re down only about 100 units since.
NEW LISTINGS –
No rush to sell. Net new listings are also down, offsetting the decline in pending sales. We generally average about 25 new listings / day, (adjusted for seasonal swings). Currently we’re at about 20 new listings / day.
In a standard market, we average about 5 cancellations / day in the Coachella Valley. Initially, right after Gov Newsom’s Stay at Home order on March 19th, there was a spike in cancellations for about 2 weeks, but we’re now back to the average. So at this point we’re not seeing a long term affect, as buyer’s (and seller’s too) are feeling more confident.
NOTICE OF DEFAULT LISTINGS AND SALES –
From March 19 – May 15, 2019 there were 4 homes that sold as foreclosure with notice of default.
2020 there are 3 homes in default listed for sale and 2 have sold.
DAYS ON MARKET –
There has been little effect to the average time on market.
May 1, 2019 it was taking on average 76 days to sell.
May 1, 2020 is an average 78 days.
PRICE DISCOUNTS –
In a standard market, we average 3% discount off asking price. May 1, 2020 we were averaging 3.2% price discount from asking.
Unlike the financial crisis of 2008 where our entire financial system was teetering on collapse with huge spikes in housing inventory, little to no lending activity, and little to no buyer activity – This is a health crisis, our financial institutions are solid and lending practices are open and operating properly and interest rates are again at near historic lows. True, we’ve seen a decline in the number of sales, but it’s trending up as more and more states and cities open up for business. And unlike 2008, inventories remain low and steady with prices holding.
I believe we will see a shift away from the “trendy urban lifestyle” that’s been so popular among Millennial’s. This health scare seemed to be in epic proportions in large cities and relatively small in outlying suburban areas; shining a spotlight on the benefits of living in areas with space. Both business and their employees have learned they really can work from home and still be productive. The natural next step will be people looking for areas where they can live and work from home but not too far from the office. Far enough away that they feel safe without sacrificing their lifestyle. And an area with homes they can afford to buy. The very things that make our Desert an attractive place for people of all ages to live, work and play.
Yes, we may have a bumpy road ahead short term, but people buy and sell homes everyday for a million different reasons – I do not see this lasting as a long term market problem. There’s pent up demand waiting to get back into the swing of life and doing business. I’m optimistic for the future of our Coachella Valley real estate market.
2019 Coachella Valley Annual Real Estate Report
and 2020 Projections
Coachella Valley Real Estate Market
Our market has become more year round with the number of sales during the summer months exceeding sales during “season” in the past two years running.
WHO WERE THE HOME BUYERS
Remote Owners represented 50% of our home buyers who were looking for a second home or investment property. Nearly 68% of those Remote Owners came from other California cities, followed in numbers by Washington state. Canadian Home Buyers are making an appearance again, with 14% of the Remote Owners coming from Canada.
Home Buyers from other metropolitan markets; especially our drive markets such as Los Angeles, Orange County and San Diego see great value here in Coachella Valley Real Estate. Baby Boomers are cashing out from other areas, and looking for a Lifestyle in their retirement; that’s largely what’s driving home sales in the Coachella Valley. Our sunny blue skies are pretty inviting, compared to snow and rain in other parts of the country.
WHAT WERE THE HOME BUYERS LOOKING FOR?
Bigger is not necessarily better in the case of our home buyer demographic. Aging Boomers want a simpler lifestyle and a home that requires less maintenance. Great Room Living, Each Bedroom with en-suite baths, Master Suite separate from the Guest Bedrooms, No Stairs and Light and Bright inside – with the current design trends showing Sleek White Gourmet Kitchens. Outdoor Living is a Must with Covered Outdoor Seating and Outdoor Kitchen / BBQ, most home buyers want a private pool and Views.
HOME BUYERS WANT TO BE WHERE THE ACTION IS
With more and more commercial development and signature events going on here in the desert, growth is on a fast pace and home buyers want to be where the action is. The Coachella Valley has an attractive lifestyle and home prices are a bargain comparatively speaking.
COACHELLA VALLEY REAL ESTATE BY THE NUMBERS
2019 Coachella Valley Real Estate had 9,787 sales. That number is down about 5% from the 10,295 units that sold in 2018. The reason is mostly due to a lack of inventory, (3.9 month supply of homes on the market), but price sensitivity is also a factor.
VALLEY HOUSING INVENTORY
January 1, 2020 there were 3,200 units for sale vs 3,398 units for sale January 1, 2019. The valley median price for detached homes was $425,000 up 9% in 2019. Median prices for attached homes was also up, 2% at $279,000.
The Luxury Home Market has seen in increase in both home value and sales. The California Desert Association of Realtors reports in the million dollar plus market, there was a 22% increase in sales in the 4th quarter of 2019.
|Coachella Valley Luxury Country Club Sales 2019 vs 2018|
|COUNTRY CLUB||2018 SALES||2018 AVERAGE SALE PRICE||2019
|Andalusia||32||$ 1,439,578||27||$ 1,581,415|
|BIGHORN||36||$ 3,892,153||31||$ 3,688,519|
|Eldorado CC||4||$ 1,713,750||16||$ 2,260,250|
|Indian Wells CC||45||$ 1,154,953||23||$ 1,044,192|
|Ironwood CC||22||$ 958,364||18||$ 1,422,800|
|Mission Hills CC||30||$ 914,666||44||$ 1,043,920|
|Mountain View||42||$ 881,012||25||$ 866,619|
|PGA West||121||$ 890,691||111||$ 964,449|
|Tamarisk CC||14||$ 1,090,643||12||$ 1,181,742|
|The Citrus Club||46||$ 871,464||48||$ 900,020|
|The Hideaway||28||$ 2,434,571||44||$ 2,467,545|
|The Madison||8||$ 6,275,000||6||$ 6,529,167|
|The Palms||9||$ 873,333||9||$ 821,555|
|The Reserve||11||$ 1,750,000||14||$ 2,176,607|
|The Quarry||2||$ 2,856,750||2||$ 2,492,500|
|Thunderbird CC||7||$ 1,640,000||5||$ 721,800|
|Toscana CC||37||$ 1,965,600||38||$ 2,171,903|
|Tradition GC||22||$ 2,409,431||22||$ 2,449,045|
|Vintage CC||11||$ 3,271,818||13||$ 3,081,154|
The National Real Estate Outlook
Home prices increased across the country in 2019 and experts predict the National Housing Market will remain strong through 2020 in the January Forbes article: “Five Housing Market Predictions for 2020” they cite crazy rents in the luxury apartment market is driving Millennials to buy instead of rent. More aging Baby Boomers are expected to sell their homes looking to transition into smaller homes with less maintenance. Some estimates say as much as 27% of the housing inventory in the country could hit the market between now and 2040, easing the housing shortage. The National Association of Home Builders report home builder confidence is at a 20 year high, paving the way for a boom in new home construction. That combined with low mortgage rates the outlook for 2020 is strong.
California Real Estate Outlook
The median home price in California was up about 4.1% in 2019, while the number of sales were down slightly. The California Association of Realtors forecast a similar uptick in prices through 2020. Housing affordability, (just 32% of households can afford a median priced home), and low inventory have been an ongoing challenge in California, mortgage interest rates at near historic lows are giving home buyers more buying power.
Barker Dam, is a water-storage facility located in Joshua Tree National Park in California. The dam was constructed by early cattlemen, including CO Barker, in 1900. It was raised in 1949 by rancher William F. Keys. It is situated between Queen Valley and the Wonderland of Rocks near the Wall Street Mill. It is a gathering place for desert wildlife, including many species of birds and Desert Bighorn Sheep.
Visitors can reach the Barker Dam via a short trail from a nearby parking lot and can see Native American petroglyphs a short distance to the west. There is also good bouldering on side trails near the dam. The park offers a Barker Dam Nature Hike led by a ranger.
The lowest 9 feet (2.7 m) of the dam, the original portion, was constructed of concrete surfaced with stone on the downstream side. The height of the dam was raised an additional six feet with concrete in 1949–1950. The dam has several indentations. An inscription at top reads: Big Horn Dam Built by Willis Keys, W.F. Keyes, Phyllis M. Keys, 1949–1950.
The start of the trail is well marked, and if you are driving in your car, there are signs around the park that will direct you to the area where the trailhead starts. There is also a large parking lot by the trailhead and this area is busier if you come on a weekend, as it is one of the most well known and family-friendly hikes in the park.
The trail itself is less than a mile and half round trip, and it is a loop so that you never see the same thing twice. As soon as you get out of your car and start the trail, you immediately enter into an area with large rocks surrounding you on both sides.
The trail winds around for a little bit before dropping you out in a wide open area that makes up Barker Dam. The Barker Dam itself was really cool, primarily because it was so old and was still in working condition. I also enjoyed seeing the sign right at the top of the dam that was carved in the concrete from the brothers that helped build it.
DIRECTIONS: Turn east off Park Boulevard on Barker Dam Road towards Hidden Valley Campground. The turnoff is located 9 miles south of the west entrance station and 1.6 miles north of the intersection with Keys View Road. Continue on the paved road for 2.8 miles to a large parking area.
For current park conditions
visit JTNP Website or Call 760 367-5522
The Coachella Valley Real Estate Market is Strong.
When we look at prices now compared to one year ago, we see that detached home prices are up 4.6% and attached home prices are up 7.3% from last year. Eight of Nine Valley cities saw a price increase.
The total number of sales have slowed a bit from last year, down about 5.3%. Detached homes were down about 4% while Attached homes, which saw a bigger price increase, has had a bigger dip in the number of sales, down about 7.6%.
When we look at the number of sales by Price Range, we see that the majority of the sales are between $200,000 – $500,000. The largest dip in number of sales is in the $800,000 – $1m price range, then picking up again over $1m. However, when we compare the number of sales year over year by price bracket, we see that the largest dip in the number of sales in 2019 was below $400,000. From $500,000 and up the number of sales were at about par over last year.
Currently there are about 3,600 homes listed for sale in the Valley, about the same as this time last year. This is a seasonal market; you can see the pattern on the chart below. We reach our lowest inventory levels in September every year and gradually increase to an annual peak in February and March.
Breaking down the inventory levels; it’s no surprise that the lowest inventory levels are in the $200,000 – $400,000 price range. The month’s supply starts climbing over $500,000. Based on the current number of homes listed for sale divided by the number of sales each month, if no new inventory entered the market, we see there is a 6 month supply in the $500,000 – $600,000 range. About a 7 month supply for homes priced between $700,000 – $900,000 and a 13 month supply for homes priced over $1m.
Based on price trends, the number of sales, inventory levels and low interest rates, we can say the Coachella Valley Real Estate Market is Strong. The trends we see suggest that we will continue to see a strong real estate market throughout 2019 and into 2020.
If you would like more detailed market information about your city, your community, or your home specifically, give us a ring – we’re on standby to help. (760) 218 – 5752
DESERT REAL ESTATE MARKET REPORT
2018 Year in Review
As we start 2019, it’s time to take look back at how the Desert Real Estate Market performed last year and look for developing trends.
In 2018, there were 5,836 single family home sales throughout the Coachella Valley. Those homes sold at an average of $610,300 and an average of $260. / Sq Ft. Homes that were priced correctly for the market, sold on average in 89 days. The highest sale price in 2018 was $12,000,000 for a home located in The Madison in La Quinta.
With those statistics, we compared 2018 sales to the previous year and found that while the number of sales were down slightly overall, (2%), Selling Prices were up 10% and the price / sq ft was up 8%. The time it took to sell was down 10% from the year prior. The highest priced home sale in 2017 was $8,700,000. for a home located in The Vintage Country Club in Indian Wells.
While prices are up, inventories remain low as compared to this time of season in years past. Historically when the inventory of homes for sale is low, prices tend to rise due to the pressures of supply and demand.
Interest rates also play an important role in how markets perform; rates are still low despite the fact that the Fed gave us 4 rate increases in 2018. As rates increase, buyers can afford less house for the same mortgage payment, which ultimately puts downward pressure on home prices.
But good news, rates pulled back a bit this week. Conforming loans, (up to $484,350) for a 30 year fixed rate is still just 4.47%.
The Coachella Valley has long been viewed as a destination for the soon to retire and already retired home buyers looking for an active lifestyle, but with the increase in mobile commuting, people can work from anywhere. We’re also seeing more young home buyers who are looking for a quality lifestyle, moving to the Desert full time. Easy Freeway and International Airport access makes that possible.
Combine the Lifestyle that only the Coachella Valley offers along with affordable home prices – the Valley is and will continue to be a destination for both full time residents, second home buyers and
We have a strong and steady real estate market here in the Coachella Valley.
If you would like more detailed information about your neighborhood specifically, drop me a line – we just finished our 2018 “Year in Review” Market Report, I’m happy to send you a copy.
Broker Associate with Bennion Deville Homes
The Real Estate Corner Desert Market Update
NUMBER OF SALES
Home sales are up Valley-wide. The total three-month sales are up 2.9%. On a city by city basis, six cities show higher sales, with three; Palm Desert, Desert Hot Springs and Palm Springs showing the largest increase in sales.
The three cities with the largest sales declines are Indio, Indian Wells and Cathedral City.
INVENTORY OF HOMES FOR SALE
While home sales are up, inventories are down. Typically our inventories dip to to their lowest point every year toward the end of September, but this year inventories are even lower.
Low inventory acts as both a positive and negative; it’s positive for sellers and future home sellers as it tends to move home prices higher. But, it’s also a negative in that low inventory puts the brakes on the number of sales. If interest rates continue to increase, that can put a damper on sales as the cost of borrowing money for a mortgage becomes more expensive.
MONTHS SUPPLY OF HOMES FOR SALE BY CITY
The month’s of supply ratio is down valley-wide compared to one year ago in every city. Most have less than 4 month supply except two; La Quinta which currently has a 4.5 month supply and Indian Wells with a 6 month supply of homes to sell.
MONTHS SUPPLY OF HOMES FOR SALE BY PRICE BRACKETS
When we look at the supply of homes by price category, we see the supply is lower across all price brackets compared to one year ago. The biggest change is homes priced above $800,000. Last year the higher price points were taking 7.5 months – 1 year to sell. Now, it’s taking on average 5.3 – 8 months
The tipping point when using this metric is 6 month’s. 6 months is considered a “Balanced Market”, not particularly favoring either Home Buyers or Home Sellers. Less than 6 months, the market is tipped in the Sellers favor, otherwise known as a “Sellers Market”. More than 6 month supply is viewed as a “Buyers Market”.
As home prices or the cost of buying a home, (rising interest rates), increase – sales will start to slow putting downward pressure on pricing. Markets are always in a state of flux, moving from one market to another and rarely stopping at “balanced” for long.
While there is typically a lag period between market shifts, the lag time is shorter as the number of sales are increasing. Home sellers quickly see an improving market and strive to maximize the price they can ask. When prices increase too fast or too far ahead of sales, potential home buyer’s become reluctant to make offers, fearing they could be buying at the peak.
DISCOUNT FROM ASKING PRICE
In 2018, when negotiating a sale price with buyers; home sellers are discounting their listed price an average of 2%. One year ago, sellers needed to discount an average 2.4% off their asking price to close a sale.
For example, this ratio means if a home is listed at $400,000 it’s selling at an average of 98% of their asking price, or $392,000. a discount of $8,000. This metric also shows a strong and improving real estate market here in the Desert.
When we look at the story each of these metrics are showing for the Desert Real Estate Market, we can see an improving but pretty balanced market. In addition, we can see that the market has had and continues to show sustained growth. Making now the right time to be a participant in the market.
The Desert Lifestyle is unlike any other, as we head into our season now is a great time see what the Desert has to offer. Check out these FAB Desert Homes!
Summer Desert Market Report – Median home prices rose for the 8th straight month. Up 9.6% from last year. The hottest cities for sales by volume were Palm Desert (233), Palm Springs (213), La Quinta (156), Indio (131), Rancho Mirage (97). Each city and each community has its own story some communities have seen huge growth, while others are relatively flat. The cities that had the largest price increases, have seen the number of sales flatten, which tells us that prices were getting ahead of the market.
Inventories are down again putting upward pressure on pricing. Overall the desert has seen a decline in the time it’s taking to sell, nicely presented homes in a good location and priced well are selling quickly. Currently there is a 3 month supply of homes for sale in the desert, which puts us in a “Sellers Market” as we head into season.
The Fed has indicated there will likely be two more interest rate increases before the end of the year, which could start to weigh on the market and slow sales until the shock is absorbed.
Southern California and specifically, the Coachella Valley continues to be a sought after destination for a second home get a way.
As we head into our “Season”, we expect to see continued strong home sales and price appreciation valley-wide.
How’s your neighborhood doing? Send me an email, I’ve got the details!
What is a 1031 Exchange and can it work for you?
Thanks to IRC Section 1031, a properly structured 1031 exchange allows an investor to sell a property, to reinvest the proceeds in a new property, and to defer capital gain taxes.
1031 EXCHANGE FOR REAL ESTATE INVESTORS – THE BENEFITS
Whether an investor’s property is owned free and clear or encumbered, the benefits of a tax deferred exchange can be significant. The tax dollars saved by doing an exchange can be used to buy additional investment property.
An investor who exchanges is able to defer the capital gain tax and buy a replacement property worth more than the investor who simply sells and reinvests with after tax dollars.
1031 Exchange for real estate investors provides one of the best tax strategies for preserving the value of an investment portfolio. By using an exchange, the investor is able to defer the recognition of capital gain taxes that would otherwise be due with the sale of an investment property. To qualify as an exchange the relinquished and replacement properties must be qualified “like-kind” properties and the transaction must be structured as an exchange.
1031 EXCHANGE FOR REAL ESTATE INVESTORS – NON TAX BENEFITS
In addition to deferring the capital gain tax, tax deferred exchanges provide the investor with a wide range of non-tax opportunities that may suit an investor’s portfolio
- Reposition assets
- Change property types
- Increase leverage
- Increase depreciation deduction
- Reduce management obligations
- Provide for estate and retirement planning
- Allow for relocation
- Improve cash flow
- Achieve property consolidation or diversification
- Eliminate or create joint ownership
THE EXCHANGE PROCESS
Most exchanges, involve three parties: the investor, (exchanger), who is doing the exchange, the buyer who is buying the exchanger’s old (relinquished) property, and the seller who is selling the exchanger a new (replacement) property. To create the exchange of assets and to obtain the benefit of the “Safe Harbor” protections of the tax code, it is wise to employ an Exchange Accomodator, or Exchange Facilitator. This qualified intermediary becomes a fourth party principal in both simultaneous and delayed exchanges.
The steps for completing an exchange are relatively simple with qualified intermediary:
- The exchanger signs a contract to sell a relinquished property to the buyer.
- Exchanger enters into an exchange agreement with a Qualified Intermediary and assigns rights in the sale contract to the intermediary, including the right to receive the exchange funds.
- At the closing of the relinquished property, the exchange funds are wired to the intermediary and the intermediary instructs the settlement officer to transfer the deed directly from the exchanger to the buyer.
- The exchanger has a maximum of 180 days in the exchange period to acquire all replacement property.
- Unless the exchanger can acquire all replacement property within the first 45 days from the close of the relinquished property, the exchanger must identify possible replacement properties in writing to the intermediary within the 45 day identification period.
- The exchanger signs a contract to buy the replacement property with the seller and the exchanger assigns the exchanger’s rights in the purchase contract to the intermediary.
- At the closing of the replacement property, the intermediary wires the exchange funds to complete the exchange and the intermediary instructs the settlement officer to transfer the deed directly from the seller to the exchanger.
As a general rule of thumb, to avoid paying capital gain taxes in an exchange, the investor should always attempt to:
- Buy a property of equal or greater value, (net sales price).
- Reinvest all of the net equity in replacement property
- Obtain equal or greater debt on replacement property.
*Exceptions: A reduction in debt can be offset with additional cash from exchanger, but increasing debt cannot offset a reduction in exchange equity.
Do you own an investment property and thinking about selling it to buy another that might have more cash flow or less management headaches? We can help. Give me a call or send me an email, let’s talk about what’s possible for your situation.
Cathi and Ben Walter
(760) 218 – 5752
Ever wonder how much income you need to buy an average home in other areas of the country?
@HowMuch.net just published a map showing How much income you need to buy the average home in each state in the U.S.
They collected average home prices for every state from Zillow and then plugged that information into a mortgage calculator to figure out monthly payments. The interest rates used varied from 4 to 5% depending on the market, a 10% down payment, and total cost of housing not exceeding more than 30% of gross income. Using this rule as the benchmark, they calculated the minimum salary required to afford the average home in each state.
The Top Three Places Where You Need the Highest Salaries to Afford the Average Home 1. Hawaii: $153,520 for a house worth $610,000 2. Washington, DC: $138,440 for a house worth $549,000 3. California: $120,120 for a house worth $499,900 Here’s a quick snapshot of housing affordability across the United States.
Home much income do you need to buy the average home in each state; Check it out!
What the Dodd-Frank Rollback Means for Real Estate
On May 22nd, Congress passed reforms to the Dodd-Frank Act, the massive financial reform bill enacted in July of 2010 in the wake of the 2008 US financial crisis.
The current bill could have a big impact on the real estate and mortgage lending. Economists believe the rollback of the Dodd-Frank regulations could lend a hand toward partially solving the industry’s inventory crisis.
“This is a win for the financial industry,” said Chief Economist Nela Richardson, who worked on the bill as an economist for the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. “These are community banks, credit unions, a lot of them are in rural areas. They do a lot of mortgage lending. This will help consumers in that the banks will be able to free up some credit.”
National Association of Realtors Chief Economist Lawrence Yun echoed Richardson, adding that a loosening of Dodd-Frank rules may lead to a rise in regional construction.
“The regulations placed on small-size community banks were terrible because it hindered small-sized homebuilders from obtaining construction loans,” he said. “As the homebuilding industry has become more dominated by large corporations, now we have this relief, which means that, small-time homebuilders will have better access to capital to build homes.”
Economists seem to agree, that the economy is not on track to repeat the financial crisis of 2008, since big banks were at the center of the collapse a decade ago. Richardson explained that the only way to eliminate all risk is to make everything as onerous as possible.
The legislation will also require Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to consider the use of alternative credit scoring models, which could help borrowers with thin credit files receive a mortgage. But Gardner said he’s concerned, ultimately, we need to remain aware of looser credit restrictions so the country does not repeat the acts of the last financial crisis, where homeowners were given loans they could not pay back.