Real estate markets in the East Bay seem to be defying Economics 101 as the supply of homes for sale and sales prices are both on the rise.
"Sellers are getting the message that real estate is back," said Jennifer Branchini, president of the Bay East Association of Realtors. "It really is a good time to sell for homeowners who are looking to make a move up to a larger home, or to 'downsize' into a smaller home or even move out of the area."
The inventory of single-family homes for sale during May increased throughout the region compared to one year ago.
"While there are more homes on the market it doesn't mean that real estate is on sale," Branchini said. "Even with more homes for sale there is still really strong demand from buyers who have been actively shopping and bidding."
The strong demand is driving prices up in all markets.
"The real estate world has certainly changed, but what hasn't changed is that people really want to own a home in the East Bay," Branchini said.
The high sales prices are having a mild chilling effect in some markets as sales activity has stabilized or actually slipped compared to a year ago, even with more homes on the market.
In the Tri-Valley, Danville, San Ramon and Dublin all saw a slight reduction in the number of homes sold compared to May 2013. In Danville's case this drop could be driven in part by the fact that the median sales price for a single-family home topped $1.1 million in May, explained David C. Stark, Bay East's public affairs director.