Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Skaneateles Real Estate - The Weekly Update

I spent a great deal of time yesterday going over the numbers for some people interested in selling their home. I pulled out active listings, closed, re-listings, changes of price. Since I love numbers and statistics, what I found fascinated me, just as the weekly updates I do for this blog keep me well-informed. Self-imposed homework.

This week there are currently 120 active listings in the Skaneateles area. Two new listings came on, one a truly new lake rights listing and the other a re-list (or reconfiguration actually) of an existing listing.

In the contingent category the number remains the same (4) as well as in pending (8).

There were two new closed properties that although vastly different - waterfront and double wide - had similarities. Both were first listed in the fall of 2007. Both came down in price substantially and then closed within 10% of their last list price. However, they closed at 35% of their original list price.

Now, before anyone suggests that all properties need to be reduced this much in order to sell, or that this is the beginning of a trend, a better explanation is that the original price was overly optimistic. I can relate from experience that when three agents are brought in to give a price opinion and two say one number (as in "Tell me what it would take to sell this before winter"-type-number) and the other goes 30% higher, the owners take the much higher number and run with it. And live with it. And see it sit until the next winter. Then unfortunately it closes under the number the other two agents suggested. (Sorry, but these were too perfect of an example!)

One of the statistics I looked at yesterday was the number of homes which had been withdrawn from the market. Year-to-date, 75 homes were withdrawn. Within the past six months 50 were removed. In the past three months (think Labor Day) 26 have come off. By comparison last year only 26 were taken off from Memorial Day and 9 from Labor Day. That's a significant jump.

What happened to these 26 homes not on the market since September? At least 2 were rented, probably more. There were 5 re-lists that are currently active. Three others were taken off and amazingly received offers - two are pending and one is closed! But that leaves more than 10 in limbo - waiting for next year, I think. Of the 9 from 2007 all but one was re-listed, and 3 sold in 2008 (at lower prices.)

I said to someone recently that it's as if you have to "pay your dues" here in Skaneateles. "Only been on for 8 months - you're a newbie!" It's not true, but I wish it were, so that selling would be just a matter of waiting out some imaginary time period.