Monday, August 15, 2016

The Ethics of Real Estate Photography

This is a big topic but here, in one screen grab, sums up my take (pardon the pun) on it.

A newish company in the real estate listing photography business is offering two "enhancement services".  1. They will add a blue sky to a photo instead of the gray sky that was there the day the photos were taken.  2.  They will turn the brown lawn green.  They normally charge extra for these services but during this promotion they are free.


In my view, one of these is OK and the other isn't.

We don't always have the luxury of photographing a listing on the perfectly sunlit day.  Adding a blue sky enhances the photo without changing the presentation of the property.  On certain days there will be a beautiful blue sky above; on other days there won't.  In any case the sky it's not part of the sale.

On the other hand, the brown lawn is going to be there until the season changes or new sod is installed.  It's part of the sale.  You could argue that the lawn will be green in the spring.  Maybe or maybe not.  And, the prospective buyer is going to see the brown lawn as soon as they arrive at the showing.  What message does that send?  What other edits or "enhancements" have been made in the marketing materials?  What other important information about the property is the seller/listing agent trying to hide or misrepresent?


New Listing Market Watch -- right on track (almost)

We could almost repost the same information we showed a year ago since  the number of sales and the percentage going into contract for the last two weeks is almost identical to a year ago.


During the last two weeks 90 single family homes came on the market compared to 102 last year in the same period.  4 homes went into contract compared to 2 last year.  129 condos came on the market during the last two weeks compared to 114 a year ago.  6 condos went into contract compared to 9 a year ago.



Price reductions for single family homes is also in line with last year:  22 during the last two weeks compared to 20 a year ago.  The only number not consistent with a year ago is the 33 condos posting price reductions during the last two weeks compared to only 13 last year.




Tuesday, August 2, 2016

New Listing Market Watch -- summer doldrums, kinda

New listings for the past two weeks are about the same as this period last year (239 vs. 229) and the number of listings going into contract is similarly similar to last year (32 vs 32).



This is traditionally the time of year when new listings drop until after the Labor Day holiday.

However, the number of price reductions is several times what it was a year ago.  During the past two weeks there were 28 price reductions of single family homes compared to 9 for the same period last year.  For condos, the numbers 42 vs 12.


The vast majority of these price reductions were for properties originally priced at over $1million.


Monday, July 18, 2016

New Listing Market Watch - fewer price reductions and fewer new listings

During the last two weeks, the number of new listings has gone down compared to the previous two week period (136 vs 197) and also compared to a year ago (136 vs 150).   The period -to-period fall off is typical for this time of year as we head into the summer doldrums.


The number of price reductions has also fallen rather dramatically compared to the previous period (50 vs 96) however, they are still well above last year at this time (56 vs 25).


Finally, the number of listings that went into contract has fallen compared to the previous period (30 vs 60) but is about the same as this time last year.


Wednesday, July 6, 2016

New Listing Market Watch - even more price reductions

The number of new listings during the last two weeks stayed just about the same as the previous two weeks (353 vs. 361) even with the holiday weekend.  But compared to the same period last year which also contained the holiday weekend the number of new listings is way up (353 vs. 187).



But the ratio of single family homes to condos did a complete flip flop compared to the previous period with single family home new listings at 197 vs. 127 and condos at 156 vs. 234.

The number of properties that went into contract is also up compared to the previous period (60 vs. 31) with both single family homes and condos seeing an increase (single family homes 29 vs. 13 and condos 31 vs. 18).  Compared to a year ago the number of properties that went into contract is higher (60 vs. 49) with single family homes and condos fairly evenly split.  Some of the increase in contracts may be a result of there being more properties on the market.


The number of price reductions during the past two weeks stayed higher and reached the highest point since we started keeping track in December 2014.  There were 55 price reductions of single family homes and 41 condo price reductions.  That ratio between single family home and condo price reductions is opposite what we've seen for the past two months.


While average selling prices seem to be holding at or near all time highs (at least for the categories we survey, which covers about 60% of the market), it appears that sellers are having to be more aggressive in their pricing strategies in order to entice buyers.