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Danville Express

Real Estate - July 4, 2008

Family Homes: Alamo, Blackhawk, Danville - which is the best?

Readers frequently ask, "Which area is the best, Danville, Alamo or Blackhawk?" In my own mind, each community is a wonderful place to live and I never thought about comparing them with one another on the basis of a specific dollar value in a given time frame. So for the fun of it I thought I would take a look and see if there are any meaningful differences in value among 4 bedroom, 2-3 bath single family detached homes between 2,400-3,000 square feet among these communities. For the purpose of this writing we will call this slice of homes "Family Homes" and compare them.

As of this writing there are 26 Alamo Family Homes listed as active, sold or pending. Fifteen homes are listed as active with an average list price of $1,389,866. These properties average 105 days on market and are listed at a square foot price of $522. Four properties are pending with an average square foot price of $560 and 43 days on market. Seven Alamo Family Homes have sold from Jan. 1-June 20, 2008. Average sold price is $1,264,468 and average square foot price is $458. On average they sold in 83 days.

During the same time period last year, 12 Alamo Family Homes sold for a 42 percent decrease in unit sales. Average selling price for these homes was $1,313,416 for a 4 percent decrease in average sales price. Median price dropped from $1,350,000 to $1,300,000 for a similar decline of 4 percent. Average square foot price in 2007 among Family Homes was $502 for approximately a 9 percent decline in the same year on year time periods. Days on market extended from 28 in 2007 to 83 in 2008, moving from a little less than a month to nearly three months.

Blackhawk is showing 15 Family Homes listed as active pending and sold. Ten are listed as active. They average 183 days on the market at an average list price of $1,120,690 and an average square foot price of $402. One home is listed as pending with a list price of $1,135,000 and an average square foot price of $419. Four Blackhawk Family properties have sold in 2008. Their average sales price was $1,108,750. They averaged 103 days on the market and fetched a square foot price of $417. During the same time period last year 4 Blackhawk Family Homes sold at an average selling price of $1,238,750. This represents a 10 percent decline year on year. However, the numbers are small and perhaps a little distorted. A better measure would be square foot price. During '07 the average square foot price was $449 compared to $417 for the current year. Although the same number of units sold as last year the price declined 7.2 percent on a square foot basis.

Sixty Danville Family Homes are currently listed as active pending or sold. Twenty-eight are listed as active with an average list price of $1,191,283. These properties average 89 days on market and are listed at an average of $433 per square foot. Seven properties are marked as pending with an average list price of $975,842 and an average square foot price of $372. They are reflecting an average 48 days on market. Year to date, 25 Family Homes have sold in Danville. They sold for an average price of $1,032,618, at a square foot price of $390. It's unusual to see pending sales listed at an average price below current sold properties. This is not a positive sign for the Danville market.

During the same time period last year 38 Danville Family Homes sold. The average selling price was $1,081,064. They sold in an average of 28 days at a square foot price of $407. Both sales price and square foot price have declined approximately 4 percent.

It is noteworthy that Family Homes in each of the communities of Blackhawk, Alamo and Danville have shed some value with Alamo continuing to command the greatest absolute value and Danville the least. Danville appears to be showing the greatest resistance to price declines while Alamo and Blackhawk's respective declines of 9 percent and 7 percent are significantly greater than Danville's 4 percent decline.

For a copy of our detailed Family Home Review, e-mail joecombs@thecombsteam.com with Family Home in the subject line, or call 989-6086.

Data presented in this column is based in whole or in part on data supplied by the Contra Costa and Alameda Multiple Listing 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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