Danville Express

Real Estate - November 2, 2007

Diablo real estate year in review

Nancy and I have been asked a number of times by Diablo residents to feature their community in one of our articles. Analyzing sales in the Diablo Community is challenging because there are very few home sales on an annual basis, they frequently change hands off market, and the quality and condition of the homes within this small community vary tremendously. Just the same we thought we would give it a try and prepare our first annual Diablo Year in Review using the data we have available.

For the year ended Dec. 31, 2006, unit sales of single family Diablo Homes were down about 40 percent from the 15 reported sales in 2005 to nine in 2006. Average unit sales during the past five years have been 13 homes, so on a unit basis Diablo Home sales are down 31 percent from their five-year average. This parallels what we are seeing in Danville and Alamo.

Price decline in this same reporting period was not so drastic. Average reported price paid for a single family home in Diablo during 2005 was $2,319,000 (Note: two home sales in 2005 were reported at $0 dollars and are excluded from all calculations) while the average price paid in 2006 was $2,177,500 representing a 6.2 percent decline in average selling price. For the statistics fans among you, median price declined nearly 9 percent from $1,950,000 to $1,775,000 during the same time period. Interestingly, both Danville and Alamo show price appreciation during this same time period. The reader is again reminded that there were very few home sales in Diablo and these values could be dramatically different had more homes sold during this time period.

During 2006 the highest reported price paid for a Diablo home was $4,000,000 while in 2005 the highest sales price was $4,919,000. The lowest price reported for a single family home during 2006 was $1,235,000, significantly more than the $950,000 low price for 2005. In direct opposition to the significant decline in average reported selling price, average price paid per square foot rocketed upward from $558 to $653 or about 17 percent from '05 to '06. Noteworthy to this dramatic jump per square foot price is the sale of one property during 2005 that sold for the mind-boggling low price of $330 per square foot, or $228 per square foot less than the 2005 average. The highest reported price paid per square foot in Diablo during 2005 was $827 and the highest reported in 2006 was $935. In stark contrast to the lowest reported price paid of $330 per square foot in 2005, a $521 per square foot was the lowest price recorded in 2006.

Looking back to the good old days of 2002 (Note: three homes sales in 2002 were reported at $0 and are excluded from all calculations), the average reported Diablo home commanded a price of $1,913,076. The lowest price paid for a home then was $840,000 and the highest was $4,545,000. Simply put, the average reported selling price for a Diablo home is up about 13.8 percent from 2002. This number is interesting in that the average increase in reported price over the past 5 years for Danville is 73.6 percent, and Alamo is up 57.5 percent in the same time period. If averages have any meaning at all, another way to look at this situation based solely upon the reported numbers is that $1 invested in Alamo in 2002 is now worth $1.58. A dollar invested in Danville is now worth $1.74 and a dollar invested in Diablo is worth $1.14. Go figure!

To receive a copy of our annual Diablo Market Review including the complete detail, please send an e-mail to joecombs@thecombsteam.com and place Diablo Market Review in the subject line. You will not be spammed. No e-mail, no worries; call me at 989-6086 to arrange delivery. We will be posting this article and updates to our newest Web site,diabloneighbors.com

Data presented in this column is based in whole or in part on data supplied by the Contra Costa and Alameda MLS service and other quoted sources. Joe and Nancy Combs, Remax and the MLS service do not guarantee the accuracy of this information.


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