Silicon Valley Luxury Home Prices Up in January, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage Reports

Luxury home prices in Silicon Valley jumped sharply in January from a year ago, although sales were essentially flat, according to a new report by Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, the South Bay’s leading provider of luxury real estate services. 

The median sale price for all homes over $1.5 million in Santa Clara County in January reached $2,067,500, up 18.5 percent from the same period a year ago and 8.8 percent from the previous month.

While prices moved higher, luxury sales were flat during the first month of the new year. Some 28 homes sold for more than $1.5 million, down fractionally from 29 sales in January 2011. Sales were down more sharply from December’s 73 transactions, although a drop from December to January isn’t unusual.

Other market indicators showed solid improvement. The number of $2 million sales climbed to 16 in January, up from just 10 a year ago.  Homes sold in an average of 66 days, down from 87 days during the like period a year ago and buyers received an average of 101 percent of their asking price compared to 95 percent in January 2011.

The figures were derived from Multiple Listing Service data of all homes sold for more than $1.5 million last month in Santa Clara County.

Beginning this year, Coldwell Banker has raised the threshold for luxury properties in its monthly analysis to $1.5 million from $1 million to reflect the changing dynamics of Silicon Valley’s high-end market.

“The luxury market gained momentum at the end of last year and is showing signs of continuing that into the new year,” said Rick Turley, president of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage. “As the rising prices indicate, there is strong buyer demand for good properties in Silicon Valley.”

Turley added, “The only thing holding back sales is that we don’t have enough inventory to meet demand. But as word gets out that the housing market is steadily improving and homeowners are getting good prices for their properties, I think more sellers will get off the fence and jump in.”

There are a variety of factors spurring activity in the luxury market, Turley said, including an improving economy, continued low mortgage rates, and sharp gains in the financial markets.

“With the rebound in the stock market, especially in the past few months, I think more buyers have the resources to make a sizeable purchase and are feeling more confident about the state of the economy going forward,” he noted.

Some key findings from this month’s Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage luxury report:

  • The most expensive sale in Silicon Valley last month was a five-bedroom, six-bath 7,851-square-foot home in Saratoga that sold for $4.35 million;
  • Palo Alto boasted the most luxury sales over $1.5 million with 10, followed by Saratoga with seven, Los Altos with four and Los Gatos with three;
  • Homes sold in 66 days on average, down from 87 days a year ago but up from 64 days the previous month;
  • Sellers on average received 101 percent of their asking price compared to 97 percent the previous month and 95 percent a year ago.

The Silicon Valley Luxury Housing Market Report is a monthly report by Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, a specialist in high-end real estate sales. Through its internationally renowned Coldwell Banker Previews® program, the company is recognized around the world for its expertise in the luxury housing market. 

Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage serves Santa Clara County with 21 offices from Palo Alto to Hollister. For more information, please call 925-275-3085.

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