Carmel Valley / East Del Mar
When looking at the upper-end of the San Diego real estate market, one thing is clear. There are lots of homes to choose from. A perfect example is in the Carmel Valley zip code 92130 where there are presently 221 houses for sale. Considering that there are only 5,995 detached homes for sale in all of San Diego County, Carmel Valley accounts for 3.7% of the detached single-family house listings in the San Diego MLS. The number is lower for condos and townhomes. The 62 condos for sale in Carmel Valley represent just 2.1% of the 2,982 condos for sale in San Diego County as a whole.
The absorption rate (approximate time to sell the existing inventory) in Carmel Valley is also larger than in San Diego as a whole. In June 2009, there were only 32 homes sold in Carmel Valley (almost a 7-month supply). This was 18% fewer sales than in June 2008. With the increased inventory and longer market times, the median sales price also slipped in June, far more than other parts of San Diego County where there is arguably a housing recovery underway. The median price of a home in Carmel Valley in June 2009 was 13.5% the June 2009 median price, and 30% below the June 2005 median price. Where there used to be none, there are currently 79 houses for sale in Carmel Valley that are priced under $1 Million.
Until recently, home prices in Carmel Valley had been pretty stable relative to the rest of San Diego. Carmel Valley (East Del Mar) has so many things going for it: top-rated schools, newer housing stock, good proximity to employment centers, freeways, and beaches, superb weather, lots of clean family-friendly parks, etc. And there is a much wider range of housing types in Carmel Valley; much more variety than the neighboring Rancho Penasquitos homes, previously discussed in Part I of the San Diego Real Estate Prices blog post. The most expensive home currently on the market in Carmel Valley is a 10,000+ square foot estate priced at $7,995,000 (this is a reduced price, down from $9,995,000). The lowest priced Carmel Valley house for sale is a 1,348 square foot home priced at $545,000. Due to the large variation of home styles and prices, the median price is a better gauge of market activity than the average price. The average price really becomes skewed whenever the large Carmel Valley luxury homes sell.
It’s hard to say when prices will stabilize in Carmel Valley. There were three times as many homes listed in Carmel Valley in June than were sold. However, there are currently twice as many homes in pending status than were sold in June. So July and August should show some higher median and average price numbers.
When priced right, Carmel Valley homes are still selling. The average time-on-market for the homes that sold in June 2009 was 59 days, and the median time-on-market was just 35 days. In June 2009 there wasn’t a single home that sold over asking price, and only a few homes sold at asking price. So the time is right to negotiate when buying a home in Carmel Valley or in any of the San Diego luxury homes communities.