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Eight-month market check-up

Ridgecrest Ca Homes Clint Freeman, CRS. CNE, SFR– We are already two-thirds through the year 2023! “How is the market? Really?”  I get this question all the time now that interest rates have topped over seven percent. Rather than express a personal opinion, I’m more inclined to scrape through the data that has just arrived to discover the health of our local market. Here is what I discovered:

Clint Freeman

Forty homes were sold in August, which is a very robust number of site-built homes sold. That is a return to the month of June’s high figure. On average, Ridgecrest has seen 31 homes sold per month in 2023.

Out of those 40 August homes sold, 25 or 62% sold for full price or more. Over the past eight months, this rate has ranged from 54% to 87%. The past two years have seen this rate hold at 50% or more.  That is a very positive sign and signifies a housing market that is maintaining its value and gradually increasing over time.

The median home price last month was $277,500. That value jumped to $294,250 in June and dropped as low as $233,750 in January.  Our city still hosts some of the least expensive homes in the state.  A comparable area would be rural Lassen County, where the median home price sits at $280,000.

Bill Farris of Ashley Furniture recently reported that the last six couples to come in to purchase furniture were all from out of town and did not have jobs connected to NAWCS. They were all employed with remote work and recently purchased homes. They were looking for a comfortable city away from the traffic and with an area that had affordable housing.  They found it here.

If you sold your home in August, you spent an average of 83 days on the market. This included the initial marketing period, contract acceptance, and a 45-day escrow period. The past three months’ average days on the market have hovered at 75 days. Market acceleration has slowed a bit, but it is not that remarkable of a change.

The local area still moves in a seller’s market with a 1.76-month absorption rate. Two hundred four site-built homes have sold over the past six months, and there are presently 60 homes on the market. That means if no other homes were to hit the market, and the rate of homes continue to sell at the present rate, our housing inventory would be at zero in about one and three-quarter months. A low absorption rate and a low inventory of homes still plague California and Ridgecrest as well.

And finally, appraisers derive values for homes based on dollars per square foot. Here are the average 90 days $/sqft values of areas across the city: College Heights: $219; Northwest: $169; Northeast: $159; Southeast: $163; Southwest: $167; Ridgecrest Heights: $171.