Review of 2015 Santa Barbara Real Estate

Review of 2015 Santa Barbara Real Estate

 Elings Park on the Mesa in Santa Barbara (credit: Louise Palanker, Flickr)

Elings Park on the Mesa in Santa Barbara (credit: Louise Palanker, Flickr)

Happy new year and welcome to 2016!  Hopefully your holiday season was filled with family, health, and happiness.

Before we start to work towards our goals this year, it is important to look back at 2015.  By analyzing recent trends in our local market, we can be better prepared for future transactions.

I've mined the Santa Barbara MLS for transaction data from 2015.  This particular post covers single family homes, while a future post will look at condos and townhouses.

Below you will see four graphs: median sale price, high sale price, low sale price, and total number of sales.  These statistics are provided for the following seven Santa Barbara MLS areas: Hope Ranch, Montecito, Santa Barbara (East of State), Santa Barbara (West of State), Carpinteria-Summerland, Goleta (South), and Goleta (North).  

For simplicity, I arranged them in order of descending median sales price, then kept that same order for the remaining graphs.

Let's see what we can glean from this data set........

Median sales price is determined by lining up all sales prices in ascending or descending order and selecting the price in the middle of the list.

It is no surprise to find Hope Ranch and Montecito far ahead of the pack.  Those two areas are among the most sought-after in the county, and even in the state!  

Among the others, we can see that Santa Barbara was more expensive than Goleta, with Carpinteria and Summerland finishing between the two.  This keeps with tradition, as there is generally more demand to live in Santa Barbara than Goleta.  

No surprises in this graph, which is predictable because median figures take into account all data points, so outliers are very rare.

Speaking of outliers, here is a plot of the highest individual sale prices of 2015.  

Hope Ranch and Montecito again do very well, but there is a surprise finisher with Carpinteria-Summerland coming in second place.  This is attributable to a property sold by Riskin Partners on prestigious Padaro Lane (with 5 bedrooms, 5.5 bathrooms, and over 6,000 square feet, sitting RIGHT ON THE BEACH).  

In fact, 8 of the top 11 Carpinteria-Summerland sale prices were on Padaro Lane.

The plot for lowest sale price yields some interesting results, albeit based on one data point per MLS area.  

We can see that the entry point for Hope Ranch properties is very high in comparison to surrounding areas.  There are also more homes in Montecito than in Hope Ranch, so it shouldn't come as a surprise to see a low sale price appear there.

The graph also shows a relatively low entry point for Santa Barbara as compared to Goleta.  This is presumably due to Santa Barbara being older, and thus featuring more homes that have deteriorated over time.

This plot touches on a point made earlier about the limited inventory of Hope Ranch versus Montecito.  You can see why the entry price in Hope Ranch is so high.

Goleta has roughly half the number of transactions as Santa Barbara, which is more than one would expect given Santa Barbara's population is roughly three times Goleta's.  This can be attributed to an uptick in the market this past year which pushed many buyers to the less expensive Goleta.


Hopefully this breakdown was helpful to you.  Many agents simply use the MLS to advertise listings and shop for their buyers, but there is so much more to it than that.  A savvy agent (oooh! me! me!) can use the vast amounts of data available to learn from past/current trends, inform and educate buyers, AND craft tailored marketing strategies for sellers.  Don't settle for less!

Review of 2015 Santa Barbara Real Estate (Part 2)

Review of 2015 Santa Barbara Real Estate (Part 2)

The High Stakes Gamble of FSBO

The High Stakes Gamble of FSBO