Big Bear Real Estate – Is the Market Stabilizing?

Is the Big Bear Real Estate Market Stabilizing?

Wow, it continually amazes me how time flies. It is hard to believe summer is already winding down. Let’s get caught up on the happenings in the Big Bear real estate market shall we?

Big Bear Real Estate %age Active Inventory ClosedOverall the real estate market in Big Bear has shown a decrease in available inventory and an increase in overall demand.We are seeing multiple offers quite often on aggressively priced listings. Most of this activity remains in the lower price ranges as financing for loans over $417,000 for second homes in San Bernardino County remains an issue.

There are, however, a few cash buyers jumping in at the upper end of the market as there are certainly some great deals to be had if financing is not an issue.

Big Bear Real Estate Homes Sold under $250KBut most of the action is still under $350,000 in Big Bear Lake. In fact, of the 524 closed residential transactions so far this year, 78% were sold under $350,000.We have been tracking, since mid to late last year, an increase in number of transactions occurring under $250k and this trend has continued so far throughout 2009. In every month so far this year there have been significantly more residential sales than we saw in 2008. In fact, under $250k, the total number of transactions for the first eight months of 2009 is up a whopping 66% compared to last year. Amazing.

The Formula for Stabilization in Big Bear Real Estate

What this tells us is that prices, which have corrected very swiftly and very drastically, have dropped to a point where demand is beginning to efficiently absorb the inventory. That is the formula for stabilization.With more and more sales and increased momentum, the downward pressure on prices starts to diminish and the market gradually creates a solid support level. In fact, the average sales price in July of 2009 was actually up 2% from July 2008. Amazing. We have not seen an increase in average sales price in the Big Bear real estate market since early 2007.

Overall, we currently have 847 active residential listings on the market in Big Bear. That is down significantly from the peak of over 1,200 in early 2008. Furthermore, there are currently 147 homes in escrow and another 54 short sales awaiting bank approval.

Three re-sale listings of mine (neither bank-owned nor short sales) hit the market in the last few months and sold in a matter of days at or above their list price. In fact, one of those went into escrow for more money than was paid for it 14 months ago! For a real estate agent in Big Bear it is very refreshing to see so many buyers getting off the sidelines and starting to enjoy the many advantages that owning real estate in Big Bear provides.

What is Selling in Big Bear?

In addition to price, let’s also take a look at the type of properties selling. For good reason, much attention has been focused on bank-owned listings in Big Bear. Bank-owned properties in Big Bear have accounted for 207, or 40%, of the 524 sales so far this year. There are currently 41 active bank-owned listings, which is only 4.8% of active inventory, but there are currently 43 bank-owned listings in escrow, making up about 30% of what is currently pending. So, as these figures illustrate, although bank-owned properties are not a major part of our active inventory, they are indeed a large part of what is actually being sold. (I can certainly get you info on our bank-owned inventory before it hits the market, just let me know if you are interested.)

In comparison, there have been only 45 short sales close so far this year which is just 8.5% of the total. Of the 129 active listings (75 are currently listed as active and 54 more are active but awaiting bank approval), 22 more should close this year. It is important buyers understand that after waiting sometimes four to six months for bank approval, the chances of actually closing a short sale are about 1.7 in 10…Yikes.

This brings us up to speed on the developments in in Big Bear Real Estate through August. I hope your eyes haven’t rolled back too far in your head with all these numbers…Let me know if you have any questions. I always look forward to hearing from you and am grateful for your feedback.