Median Sales Price – August ’08

Here are the median sales prices recorded in August for single-family homes, condos and new construction in the following communities:

$635,000 Agoura Hills
$1,100,000 Calabasas
$433,000 Camarillo
$350,000 Fillmore
$470,000 Moorpark
$570,000 Newbury Park
$625,000 Oak Park
$320,000 Oxnard
$296,500 Santa Paula
$396,000 Simi Valley
$560,000 Thousand Oaks
$415,000 Ventura
$890,000 Westlake Village
$502,750 Woodland Hills

Source: Data Quick

Getting Your Home Ready for the Market

As a seller, your No. 1 goal is to sell your home as quickly as possible at or near the listing price. In today’s market, where there is much more competition for buyers, it is important to put your best foot, or in this case, home forward because first impressions are vital.

Many of today’s prospective homebuyers have busy lifestyles and are looking for properties that don’t require a lot of work. Therefore a home in move-in condition is much more attractive. Before placing your home on the market, you may want to invest in making needed repairs.

To get started, inspect both the inside and outside of the home. Take inventory of practical and aesthetic repairs. You may want to apply a fresh coat of paint on the walls, doors, and shutters. Clean the carpet and buff and polish wooden floors. Tighten and polish hardware. Repair cracks in sidewalks and driveways, and clean any stains on them. Replace missing or warped roofing. Clean or re-grout kitchen and bathrooms. Repair dripping faucets and drains or plumbing fixtures that aren’t operating.

Fix sticking doors and replace old locks and doorknobs. Replace old bulbs and broken electrical sockets. Replace cracked windows and torn screens. Repair broken fencing and reseal the deck. Clean up stains on the tiles and countertops.

Some experts also recommend hiring a certified home inspector to thoroughly and impartially evaluate the property. We have an extensive list of inspectors from which you can select from if needed. A standard report will review the condition of the home’s heating system, central air conditioning, plumbing and electrical systems, the roof, attic, walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors, the foundation, basement and visible structure.

If there are recommendations for improvement, consult with your real estate professional in prioritizing the list of repairs.

Depending on your goals and budget, you may want to repair only items that could cause significant deterioration to the home, such as a leak. In addition, your local market conditions may dictate how extensive your repairs need to be. Let your budget and your real estate professional guide you.

However, be careful about major repairs. Sellers rarely recoup money on major remodeling projects, and you may want to save funds for your new home.

A home in good condition demonstrates pride of ownership. Taking the time to make small repairs to your home can go a long way in making sure that your home is presented to potential buyers in its best possible light. They also just might make the sale.

What’s the Difference Between Median and Average Price?





Many of you have asked this question, and there is a surprising number of people who think they are the same thing… They aren’t! We’ll provide some explanation using some prices as an example.

AVERAGE: This can be determined by adding all the prices together and dividing by the total number of prices available. For example: A neighborhood recently sold five properties at $300K, $400k, $450K, $600k and $700k. To find the average add all the prices together and divide by five. In this neighborhood, the average price home sells for $490,000.

MEDIAN: This can be determined by taking a string of prices in order and selecting the middle most price. In the same example given above, the median price would be $450,000. It is NOT the middle of the lowest price and the highest price, which would be $500,000.

Both are very significant when it comes to pricing a neighborhood. However, it is very important to understand the difference between the two. Here is an extreme example: Another neighborhood has three properties selling for $100K, $100K, and $1M. The average price of these homes comes to $334,000 while the median stays at $100,000.

Should Buyers Use a Real Estate Professional?

With just the stroke of a few keys, you can find myriad resources on the Internet to help you in your search for a new home. Besides property listings, you can find out about specific communities, schools and mortgage options. Our website alone has a wealth of information – MLS Search, Featured Listings, Area Info, Stats, etc.

With this wealth of information at your disposal, do you really need a real estate professional to represent you? Absolutely.

Think of it this way, when you go to an unfamiliar place, sure you could do a self-guided tour. However, your tour is much more rewarding and enriching when you have someone who is familiar with the location to guide you along because he or she has inside knowledge on the history, culture and stories that you may not have otherwise received.

The same can be said about sales professionals. Their role is more than someone to drive you around from property to property. They can be a great resource, especially to homebuyers relocating from other communities. He or she knows the local area including home values, taxes, utility costs, and school data, and may even be knowledgeable about resources pertaining to your special interests or needs. For instance, should you require help relocating an aging parent with you, your real estate professional may be able to direct you to local services or organizations for the elderly.

A sales professional can familiarize you with the processes involved in buying a home, alert you to potential risks, help you determine how much house you can afford, explain alternative financing strategies, as well as provide tremendous moral support.

Another benefit is having a strong advocate during the negotiating process. Sales professionals can help you objectively evaluate an offer then work to negotiate a favorable contract. During the process, he or she will review the contract and obligations before you sign, explain how contingencies and release clauses work, and so on.

And something easy to overlook is our familiarity with the complexity and risks inherent in the process. In the years we have been practicing we have been continually amazed at how quickly a seemingly simple transaction can grow legally complex and risky. When complex questions arise, a sales professional can help you quickly locate an attorney or other licensed professionals whose services you may require, such as home inspectors, engineers, surveyors and lenders.

As your single point of contact, a sales professional can manage the entire transaction including coordinating inspections, keeping in touch with the other real estate professionals, managing the documentation for the loan process, monitoring deadlines associated with contingencies, providing applicable paperwork, estimating closing costs, and helping prepare for a smooth and uneventful closing.

If you’re about to begin the process of buying or selling a home, consider involving a real estate professional. When the stakes are high, it’s comforting to have a specialist by your side.

Camarillo Prison Hospital Update

In August we wrote an article about the upcoming Camarillo Prison Hospital and how it would effect real estate in the Ventura County.

We do have a couple of updates with slightly good news…

A number of city’s including Camarillo and Fillmore and a number of groups and organizations have formally opposed the building of this new structure in Camarillo. It has yet to be determined if all that have opposed are being taken into consideration.

Also, the structure in Camarillo was planned to be the third out of eight structures the government had planned to implement in California. We received news that Camarillo has now been pushed back to the fifth structure to be built. This buys the community slightly more time to let their voice be heard.

What can you do? A committee has been formed to allow for the community to voice their opinions, donate, etc. The Prison Hospital Action Committee is looking for help. Please check out their website:

www.PHAC.org

Update 9/24/08: Receiver is moving ahead on Camarillo prison hospital
Looks like Kelso’s Prison is still going strong…

Camarillo Average Price – August ’08

This is a comparison of average prices for the area of Camarillo, CA, between 2007 and 2008.

Camarillo
August 2008 List Price Sold Price Diff. SP/LP % DOM
  $528,692 $507,954 -3.92% 84
August 2007 List Price Sold Price Diff. SP/LP % DOM
  $634,985 $617,720 -2.72% 66
Diff. ’08/’07 % List Price Sold Price   DOM
  -16.74% -17.77%   27.27%

All information is gathered from the Ventura County MLS and is deemed reliable but not always accurate.

Moorpark Average Price – August ’08

This is a comparison of average prices for the area of Moorpark, CA, between 2007 and 2008.

Moorpark
August 2008 List Price Sold Price Diff. SP/LP % DOM
  $531,102 $513,650 -3.29% 117
August 2007 List Price Sold Price Diff. SP/LP % DOM
  $679,129 $655,730 -3.45% 63
Diff. ’08/’07 % List Price Sold Price   DOM
  -21.80% -21.67%   85.71%

All information is gathered from the Ventura County MLS and is deemed reliable but not always accurate.

Simi Valley Average Price – August ’08

This is a comparison of average prices for the area of Simi Valley, CA, between 2007 and 2008.

Simi Valley
August 2008 List Price Sold Price Diff. SP/LP % DOM
  $446,129 $435,959 -2.28% 87
August 2007 List Price Sold Price Diff. SP/LP % DOM
  $639,698 $619,838 -3.10% 78
Diff. ’08/’07 % List Price Sold Price   DOM
  -30.26% -29.67%   11.54%

All information is gathered from the Ventura County MLS and is deemed reliable but not always accurate.

Westlake Village Average Price – August ’08

This is a comparison of average prices for the area of Westlake Village, CA, between 2007 and 2008.

Westlake Village
August 2008 List Price Sold Price Diff. SP/LP % DOM
  $1,184,376 $1,094,914 -7.55% 101
August 2007 List Price Sold Price Diff. SP/LP % DOM
  $1,796,224 $1,758,554 -2.10% 67
Diff. ’08/’07 % List Price Sold Price   DOM
  -34.06% -37.74%   50.75%

All information is gathered from the Ventura County MLS and is deemed reliable but not always accurate.

Thousand Oaks (West) Average Price – August ’08

This is a comparison of average prices for the area of Thousand Oaks (West), CA, between 2007 and 2008.

Thousand Oaks (West)
August 2008 List Price Sold Price Diff. SP/LP % DOM
  $564,250 $543,595 -3.66% 85
August 2007 List Price Sold Price Diff. SP/LP % DOM
  $667,404 $656,804 -1.59% 77
Diff. ’08/’07 % List Price Sold Price   DOM
  -15.46% -17.24%   10.39%

All information is gathered from the Ventura County MLS and is deemed reliable but not always accurate.