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Watching the Pending Sale Category is Important

The pending sale category is important to watch in any real estate market; it is an indicator of the health of the market at any given time.  On California’s central coast, in San Luis Obispo county, I look at the number of pending sales to determine whether the market is waning, waxing or stable.  In Cambria, for example, I have noted the pending sale numbers in various markets, low and high.  At the bottom of the recession, we got to a low of eight pending sales, and four of them were short sales or bank owned properties!  In the high market of 1988/89 and 2005/2006 the number of pending sales was consistent at 36-38 in any given time.  Our healthy market over the last couple of years has yielded consistent pending sale numbers in the mid to upper 20’s, with some variability.  When pending sale numbers are consistent over several weeks, it indicates a stable market.  This means that as soon as a pending sale sold, an active listing has gone under contract to take its place.  In a declining market, homes are not going under contract, which contributes to a decline in the number of pending sales posted in the MLS’s. In an increasing market, the number of pending sales increase over the amount of closed sales. The California Association of Realtors released a report as to year-over-year pending sales on Sept 22, 2015 and I am including the link here.  It is very informative!

http://www.car.org/newsstand/newsreleases/2015releases/august2015pending#

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