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It's a cool, cool summer

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Believe it or not, the chart which accompanies this article actually indicates a small cooling from May's market, despite the fact that it also shows plenty of San Francisco homes selling above asking price. In May of this year, 7 percent of homes sold went through price reductions before sale; then in July, price reductions went up to 11 percent. In May, the percentage of homes selling for 20 percent or more over list price was 29 percent; in July, that dropped to 24 percent. The percentage of listings that sold below final list price went from 8 percent in May to 12 percent in July.

Our current practice of underpricing listings skews this analysis. This "price well below market" strategy became popular this past spring as it incited competitive bidding. As most buyers now expect to pay above asking, we have to keep prices low in order to keep all potential bidders in play. Call or email me if you want some "from-the-trenches" anecdotes about how pricing at market instead of below can backfire on a seller in this market).

A word about summer and the real estate market: summer is often considered a good time to sell. Buyer interest tends to perk up when the weather is warmer. That said, others think that summer constitutes the doldrums. So who’s right? Well, it depends on how you look at it – what segments are you considering, and what are the current economic conditions?

One thing is for sure: summer can be a good time to get in a little maintenance on the ol’ homestead. We’ll talk about this tomorrow.

Dreaming of San Francisco? Cece Blase offers local advice to San Francisco buyers, sellers and owners– and feeds the dreams of those who wish they could live in Tony Bennett’s ‘City by the Bay.’ Call 415-577-0809 or email cblase@paragon-re.com. www.ceceblase.com

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