OC Housing Report

What a Difference a Year Makes

In comparing this year to last year, the housing market is profoundly different with higher mortgage rates, more available homes, much lower demand, and significantly longer market times.

The tell-tale signs that the market has changed are all here. OPEN HOUSE directional arrows now adorn busy intersections, and it is common to see the same OPEN HOUSE for multiple weekends in a row. The number of price reductions is rapidly growing, indicating buyers’ sensitivity to pricing. Sales prices are no longer stretching tens of thousands of dollars above asking prices. The heydays of 2020, 2021, and the first few months of this year are gone. The rapidly appreciating, insanely hot housing market has transformed into a completely different, much slower Slight Seller’s Market that requires a much different strategy and approach to find success.

The Orange County housing market has transitioned from an Expected Market Time (the number of days between hammering in the FOR-SALE sign to opening escrow) of 19 days in March to 72 days today. Anything below 60-days is considered a Hot Seller’s Market. Below 40-days is insane, and at 19-days it is nothing short of nuts, almost instantaneous. That is where buyers trip over each other to see every home that enters the fray, sellers call all the shots, multiple offers and bidding wars are the norm, and home values uncontrollably skyrocket higher. Yet today, the Expected Market Time has risen to 72 days, a Slight Seller’s Market, where sellers still get to call more of the shots, but there are fewer multiple offers, home values are not appreciating that fast, the market is no longer instant, and properly pricing is absolutely crucial to find success. 

What happened in just a few short months? When mortgage rates climbed from 3.25% at the start of the year to over 6% in June, home affordability took a massive hit, buyers backed off, and demand dropped. Year-over-year, demand (the number of pending sales over the prior 30-days) is down by 40%, or 1,119 fewer pending sales. In fact, Orange County demand is at its lowest level since tracking began in 2004, slightly lower than the start of the housing meltdown in 2007.  It is down in every price range, including luxury, due to Wall Street volatility. Demand is down the most (by more than 50%) in the lower price ranges, homes priced below $750,000, where higher mortgage rates and qualifying for loans has had a deeper impact. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Excerpt taken from an article by Steven Thomas.

About the Author

Tim Morissette, also known in the community as Mr. Foothill Ranch, offers over 43 years of real estate experience which has given him an established reputation and unmatched market knowledge. He is joined by his wife, Michele and son Matt, as they continue to offer personal service with an emphasis on achieving his clients’ real estate goals.  This unique combination of traits has led to his proven track record of referral and repeat business. This can be witnessed by the trust of homeowners in Foothill Ranch where he has sold twice as many homes and represented three times more buyers than the next-leading real estate agent for the last 23 years.

As residents of Foothill Ranch since 1994, Tim and Michele are actively involved in the community by fundraising for Foothill Ranch Library, Make-a-Wish Foundation, Cancer Society, Homes for Habitat, Relay for Life, South County Outreach, and the local church and schools. Tim enjoys sponsoring community-wide garage sales, as well as sponsors Paper Shredding and E-Waste Recycling events twice a year.

Tim and Michele are dedicated to their family of four sons, daughter-in-laws, and grandchildren. As a family, they enjoy many outdoor activities which include camping, spearfishing, mountain climbing and exploring the miles of hiking and equestrian trails in Foothill Ranch and the Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park. Tim and his sons are also avid snowboarders and enjoy mountain biking and lobster diving. Family is a top priority in the Morissette household. They look forward to helping more families achieve their dreams of homeownership.