By Mike Sannes, March 18, 2015

Hello and thanks for checking in with us regarding the the Big Bear real estate market. The beginning of a new year is always an interesting time for Big Bear real estate. How we start the year often lends insight into where we might finish and what to expect in between.

A Tale of Two Months

This year started as a tale of two months in stark contrast. The Big Bear real estate market finished strong in 2014. The average price of homes in Big Bear was up 9.8% last year compared to 2013 (The number of closed sales, however, was off by 13.7%.)

January Results

I was expecting that momentum to carry into 2015 but in fact, January of this year saw only 62 closed residential sales vs. 81 in January of 2014 (a 23% decline.) This is not uncommon as, after the holidays pass, the winter months in Big Bear can often be slow from a sales perspective. Prices held but our average days-on-market increased (up to 128 days on average from 115 last January.) The growth that we did see in the market in January came in the price range of $250,000 - $500,000. Sales in this price range were up a substantial 59% compared to last year. Whereas sales under $250,000, where most of the money has been changing hands — sales under $250,000 accounted for 62% of all sales in Big Bear last year — actually decreased in January by 51%.

January Residential Results

January 2015 Results

February Results

And then came February. The market made a nice recovery as we saw 69 closed sales this February vs. 67 in February 2014 (up 3%.) Hopefully this trend of seeing more homes sell this year than last will continue. We are already half way through March and I do see this trend holding as we head into Spring. Aside from seasonality, it is hard to point a finger as to why January was so underwhelming. I have noticed that cash buyers have accounted for only 28% of closed sales so far this year. In previous years, these cash buyers have typically accounted for approximately 35% of Big Bear sales, with that number peaking in the 40% range in 2008-2010.

February Residential Results

January 2015 Results

Supply & Demand Indicate Shift to Sellers’ Market

The story in the Big Bear real estate market from a supply and demand perspective is the recent increase in demand. When running these numbers, there were 407 active residential listings on our Big Bear MLS and 157 homes currently in escrow (not counting short sales, as those often do not close.) These figures equate to a whopping 38.5% absorption rate. The absorption rate has been hovering in the high 20% to low 30% range in recent months, so this is a significant increase. Although the total number of listings have come down a bit, it is really the large boost in the number of homes currently in escrow that has contributed most to this increase in the “speed” of the market.

Based on a typical 45-day closing period, current inventory equates to only 3.8 months of supply. If you recall, less than four months of supply denotes a “sellers market” and, based on the limited competition and rising demand, now is a great to time to list and sell here in Big Bear. We have been able to achieve fantastic results for many sellers in the market and would very much look forward to speaking with you about how you can obtain a top-dollar sale as well.

Looking Forward

A couple of bright spots looking forward:

  • Interest rates remain at historically low levels.
  • Mammoth Mountain’s purchase of our two local ski resorts has recently closed.
  • The confidence in the overall economy should help keep Big Bear’s real estate market heating up as winter fades.

We have access to ALL that is for sale here in Big Bear. So if you have questions on anything you see for sale, or would like a more specific valuation pertaining to your particular property, please do let us know. Until next time, all the best and happy hunting.

Thanks for checking in with us regarding the Big Bear real estate market. We hope you find this information useful. If you have any questions or would like more information regarding the market, if you would like a more specific valuation pertaining to your particular property, or if you have questions on any properties that you see for sale here in Big Bear, do let us know. We are happy to help and always look forward to hearing from you.

2014 was an interesting year for Big Bear real estate…

  • We saw fewer sales: there were 1,060 residential closings in 2014 vs. 1,228 in 2013, which equates to a 13.7% decrease in transactions.
  • However, the homes that did sell, sold for more money as the average price paid in 2014 increased by 9.8% vs. 2013.

...continue reading

By Mike Sannes, December 21, 2014

Looks like we will have a white Christmas here in Big Bear this year! Recent storms brought winter weather with a solid 4-6 inches of new snow and much more is expected. With 2014 rapidly winding down, and the New Year just around the corner, we wanted to wish you all Happy Holidays and provide a quick update on the Big Bear real estate market.

Supply and demand defines all markets, and the Big Bear real estate market is no different. On the supply side, it has been an interesting year in that we have seen larger than normal variations in homes available for sale. ...continue reading

By Mike Sannes, November 21, 2014

Let’s get caught up on what has been happening in the Big Bear real estate market, shall we? Apologies up front, as it has been too long since our last report. Time flies when you’re having fun (and when you’re busy working as well, it seems) and the summer simply vanished this year.

Cali4nia PassThe BIG news since last we wrote is the purchase of our two local ski resorts (Snow Summit and Bear Mountain) by Mammoth Mountain… big news indeed. So far, with respect to real estate sales, we have seen an increase in curiosity, especially in the luxury market, but no big bump in sales or prices as of yet. But I do think that will occur when the planned investment in development begins. The big initial impact will be in the number of folks coming to Big Bear to ski this winter. The season pass for Mammoth Mountain last year was $689.00 and that is the same price this year, BUT that same price now includes the two Big Bear resorts as well. I think this will bring more folks up to Big Bear that may not have come otherwise, to enjoy the proximity of our local mountains. ...continue reading

By Mike Sannes, June 12, 2014

Let’s take a look at the state of affairs in the Big Bear real estate market as we head into summer... May is typically a good ‘spring season’ indicator month and can also shed light on what to expect of the upcoming summer selling season.

Average Sales PriceThis May was very encouraging from a price perspective, as the average price of all residential property sold in May 2014 compared to the same month last year, increased 19%. Year-to-date through May, compared to last year, the average price is now up 9% in total. (At the end of April the average price was up 6.6%, so substantial price gains were seen this May)  Most of these price gains have come from high-end sales in Big Bear Lake area. However, Sugarloaf has also seen above market appreciation so far this year as well. ...continue reading

By Mike Sannes, May 25, 2014

May 2014 Market Update Hello from Big Bear and thanks for checking in with us on the Big Bear real estate market. With Memorial Day fast approaching, which kicks off our local selling season, let’s get caught up on what has transpired this Spring and what that might indicate as we look forward to Summer.

Looking at Transactions…

Residential Transactions
Residential Sales: YTD 2014

From a transaction standpoint, Spring is typically the "slow time" for the Big Bear real estate market and this year has been no exception. In fact, year-to-date through April vs. the same period in 2013, we are off a substantial 18.6% in total number of residential sales. Every month so far this year has seen fewer sales than ...continue reading

By Mike Sannes, April 16, 2014

Q1 2014 Update: Now that the first quarter of 2014 is behind us, let’s take a look at what has transpired in the Big Bear real estate market and what that indicates about what we can expect from the market as we head into the summer selling season.

2014 got off to a surprisingly strong start. January and February, which are typically slow months for real estate sales in Big Bear, saw impressive demand. ...continue reading

By Mike Sannes, March 19, 2014

February 2014 Market Update: Hello and thanks for checking in with us on the Big Bear real estate market. Winter in Big Bear this year was underwhelming, to say the least. And although the ski resorts and vacation rentals were disappointed with the lack of snow, the good weather actually helped keep the Big Bear real estate market moving right along through the cold months and should continue to help as we head into the Spring.

Normally, spring in Big Bear brings lots of listings to the market and I expect this to hold true for this season as well. In fact, we have already begun to see a substantial rise in the number homes for sale in Big Bear. ...continue reading

By Mike Sannes, February 14, 2014

January 2014 Market Update: 2014 is well underway, so let's take a look at how the Big Bear real estate market has started off the New Year and what that indicates regarding what to expect going forward.

The lack of snow, although not great for the ski slopes, has actually helped the Big Bear real estate market. Interested buyers can easily make the drive up to look at properties and tend to feel more confident about offering on real estate when they can actually see the roof and the yards. (Although what pops up in some yards when the snow melts can be an interesting surprise!) ...continue reading

By Mike Sannes, February 5, 2014

January 2014 Market Update: Looking at 2013 Year-In-Review.

Hello and thanks for checking in with us regarding the state-of-affairs in the Big Bear real estate market. We diligently track and analyze Big Bear’s unique real estate market and our aim is to make this your one-stop-shop for all the latest Big Bear real estate information. Should the urge to buy or need to sell arise, we most certainly look forward, and are very able, to help you obtain a great result.

2013 was a solid year for the Big Bear real estate market. In the paragraphs to follow, I will update you on how the market fared with respect to price and number of sales, as well as cover some important market statistics that are worth keeping an eye on. ...continue reading