A mid-year look at the local real estate market

Home prices have risen throughout Plumas and Sierra counties during the past year, while the volume of sales is slightly down and inventory is lower.

As of the end of June 2018, 203 residential properties had sold in Plumas and Sierra counties, with a median sales price of $258,000, according to statistics from the Plumas Multiple Listing Service. The average sales price through the end of June 2018 was $296,273.

Last year at this time, 228 residential properties had been sold and the median sales price was $228,250.

At the beginning of July there were 408 residential properties for sale in Plumas and Sierra counties: 385 single family homes and 23 condos and townhouses.

That inventory is lower than past years, say local Realtors.  Using the Lake Almanor Country Club area as an indicator, Chester/Lake Almanor broker Billy Taylor pointed out that there were over 100 improved properties for sale there last year while currently just 49 are on the market.

“We are potentially making the switch from a buyer’s to a seller’s market,” Taylor said. “And overall, the market is very active and things are really busy.”

Quincy broker Jan Fletcher echoed Taylor’s comments.  “There were 90 homes for sale in the 15-mile radius of Quincy during the summer a few years ago. Now there’s only 52,” she said.

However, the lower-end homes under $250,000 in Quincy are selling very quickly, within 30 days, she said.

Countywide, the median time on the market for a home is 129 days, according to the California Association of Realtors’ research reports.

Home inventory typically rises in the local market at the beginning of summer, and this trend is expected to continue over the coming months. More inventory bodes well for interested buyers and savvy investors. While interest rates are rising slightly, real estate investors can still take advantage of the market and acquire property in many of Plumas County’s communities.

“Compared to markets in Reno and Truckee/Lake Tahoe, buyers are finding properties in Plumas County to be a tremendous value,” said Blairsden Realtor Herschel Deardorff.

The past month was National Home Ownership month, which recognizes the value of home ownership to individuals, families, communities and the nation’s economy. Increasing home ownership is a top priority of the Plumas Association of Realtors (PAR).

“The association’s 140 members believe that anyone who is able and willing to assume the responsibilities of owning a home should have the opportunity to pursue that dream,” said the association’s 2018 President Juli Thompson of Portola.

Through ongoing policy efforts, PAR keeps attainable home and property ownership issues on the forefront of policy debates.

“Home ownership changes lives and enhances futures, and many see it as one of their greatest hopes to grow their financial future and build wealth,” said Thompson.