The market in East County is still hot, although if inventory continues to rise, we may see appreciation slow later this year.
Here are all the good things going on right now for our real estate market: Inventory (number of homes for sale) is still very low and buyers are plentiful. Many people who lost a home due to foreclosure or short sale 2-5 years ago can now qualify to buy again. Interest rates are still incredibly low. The economy appears to a muddling through into a tepid recovery, but a recovery nonetheless. Maybe wages aren’t as high as they could be, but at least the massive layoffs we saw during the “Great Recession” have slowed. The Silicon Valley continues to go gangbusters, and real estate prices there are above the peak prices of a few years ago. That’s driving homebuyers out our way again in droves as they seek affordable housing. Highway 4 is getting better and about to get a whole lot better when the current expansion is completed. Bart is coming to Antioch soon and e-Bart is coming to Brentwood (sometime in my lifetime).
Here are the things we need to monitor that may slow things down: Inventory, while low, is starting to rise again, and I’m hearing a lot of agents talk about the new listings they are going to put on the market soon. Many of the investors that bought homes at “the bottom” are looking to cash in their profits. Plus all the homeowners that really wanted to move the past 5-8 years but were “trapped” with no equity can now sell, so look for more homes on the market over the next few months. Affordability is also becoming a problem for many buyers because prices have risen so quickly the last few years.