A total of 177 homes sold for more than $1 million in May in Alameda and Contra Costa counties. That was up more than 40% from the same month last year and 33% from April, when 126 and 133 million-dollar properties changed hands, respectively. Last month was the highest level of luxury sales in nearly two years.
The upper end of the luxury market enjoyed a robust May as well with 13 sales in excess of $2 million, up from 10 the previous month and nine a year ago.
While sales were spiking, the median sale price of $1.26 million for a luxury home was up fractionally from the $1.25 million median a year ago and down just 1.2% from April's median price of $1.275 million.
The figures were derived from Multiple Listing Service data of all homes that sold for more than $1 million last month in Contra Costa and Alameda counties.
"The East Bay is showing all of the signs of a classic seller's market with strong buyer demand, a severe shortage of home listings to choose from and multiple offers on many properties," said Rick Turley, president of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage. "With inventory levels remaining near record lows, I suspect we'll continue to see this scenario play out, at least for the near term."
In many areas, inventory is down 30-50% from just a year ago, leaving the scales of supply and demand tipped in favor of sellers. Multiple offers are becoming the norm in a number of communities, and homes are often selling for more than the asking price.
Some key findings from this month's Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage luxury report:
* The most expensive sale in the East Bay last month was a six-bedroom, six-bath 7,347-square-foot home in Lafayette that sold for $3.69 million;
* Danville and Fremont boasted the most luxury sales with 24 each, followed by Pleasanton with 22, Lafayette with 15, Oakland with 13, and Orinda and Piedmont with 11 each;
* Homes sold in an average of just 38 days compared to 41 days the previous month and 49 days a year ago;
* Sellers on average received 100% of their asking price compared to 99% the previous month and 97.2% a year ago.
The East Bay Luxury Housing Market Report is a monthly report by Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage.