SOURCE: ZipRealty

ZipRealty

October 21, 2010 13:41 ET

ZipRealty: Home Buyers From Florida to California Bid Above Asking Price Despite Slowing Homes Sales

ZipRealty's Q3 "Home Hunter Report" Identifies Hot and Cold Housing Markets Nationwide

EMERYVILLE, CA--(Marketwire - October 21, 2010) -  Some homes across the country at various price points are selling above asking price, according to the Q3 2010 Home Hunter Report released today by ZipRealty (NASDAQ: ZIPR) (www.ziprealty.com).

The report reveals that in Q3 2010, California was home to five out of the country's ten "hottest" ZIP codes, defined as those ZIP codes where the average home sale price is most above the average list price by percentage. This is down from that state having seven of the top ten hottest Zip codes last quarter. Similarly, the report found that five out of ten ZIP codes nationwide where homes were selling most below asking price for the same time period were located in Florida. That state is also down from seven of the markets selling most below asking price in the previous quarter, pointing to a diversification in both the highest and lowest sales-to-list price ratios across the country.

Other highlights from the ZipRealty Q3 2010 Home Hunter Report -- http://ziprealty.typepad.com/ZipRealtyThirdQuarter2010HomeHunterReport.pdf -- include:

  • The Chicago area's Greater Grand Crossing neighborhood (60619) is the country's "hottest" ZIP code, with homes selling on average for almost nine percent above the asking price. Another Chicago neighborhood, downtown's Loop (60603), also tops the list, with condos in this high-end ZIP code selling for an average of more than $1 million, or an average of more than five percent above asking in Q3.
  • A San Francisco proper neighborhood, the Excelsior, made the country's top ten list for the first time, with homes there selling for an average of more than $14,000 above asking price in Q3. While California no longer entirely dominates the country's "hottest" markets list, three of the ten ZIP codes selling most above asking price nationwide were located in the Bay Area, including two in Oakland and one in Berkeley.
  • In addition to California and Chicago, rounding out the "hot" list in Q3 are Covington, Wash., outside of Seattle, Fort Lauderdale, FL, -- both new to the "hot" list -- and North Las Vegas.
  • Overall, the hot markets are selling for significantly less above asking price than they were at the same time last year. Homes in the country's ten hottest ZIP codes sold for an average of five percent above asking price in Q3 of this year, as compared to an average of thirteen percent above asking price in Q3 2009.
  • In the country's "coldest" ZIP code, 27708 in Durham, N.C., homes sold for an average of only 81 percent of the list price in Q3.
  • The spread of the sales-to-list price ratio lessened significantly from one quarter previous, with homes in Q2's coldest market -- Winchester, Conn., -- fetching only 72 percent of asking price on average last quarter.
  • High-end housing markets continue to offer relative bargains for buyers, with homes in the 34102 ZIP code of Naples, Fla., selling on average for $370,000 below an asking price of almost $2.3 million, and homes in the 33480 ZIP code of Palm Beach, Fla., selling on average for $212,000 below an asking price of more than $1.2 million.

"While we've seen California top the list of the country's 'hottest' home sale markets for some time, we're now seeing signs that buyers in other markets across the country -- including hard-hit regions like Florida and Las Vegas -- may be taking advantage of the historically low pricing and interest rates characterizing today's market," said John Oldham, Director of Marketing for ZipRealty. "The gap between homes selling most above and below asking price appears to be decreasing, an encouraging sign that prices may be stabilizing and both buyers and sellers could be adjusting to the new market reality."

Hottest/Coldest ZIP Codes by Sale-to-List Price Trends
The country's ten hottest ZIP codes -- those with the highest sales-to-list-price ratios -- include the following:

Neighborhood/City   ZIP Code   Percent of List Price   Average List Price   Average Sale Price
Greater Grand Crossing (Chicago), Ill.   60619   108.68%   $60,817   $61,167
Oakland, Calif.   94603   105.95   130,744   136,051
The Loop (Chicago), Ill.   60603   105.04   954,842   1,021,657
Excelsior (San Francisco), Calif.   94112   104.82   489,521   503,563
Fort Lauderdale, Fla.   33309   104.44   83,789   85,205
San Bernardino, Calif.   92411   104.19   81,399   80,001
Oakland, Calif.   94621   103.69   117,150   119,660
Covington, Wash.   98042   103.60   239,701   244,798
Berkeley, Calif.   94702   103.26   450,746   461,632
North Las Vegas, Nev.   89030   103.22   53,284   54,090

The country's coldest ZIP codes -- those with the lowest sales-to-list-price ratios -- include the following:

Neighborhood/City   ZIP Code   Percentage of List Price   Average List Price   Average Sale Price
Lake Norman (Statesville), N.C.   28677   87.40%   $121,829   $111,872
Singer Island, Fla.   33404   87.06   565,770   484,636
Upper North Philadelphia, Penn.   19140   86.87   43,560   38,316
Boca Raton, Fla.   33434   86.59   173,878   154,874
Springfield (Jacksonville), Fla.   32206   86.54   68,817   63,419
Chester, Penn.   19013   86.04   42,490   36,907
Naples, Fla.   34102   86.04   2,274,246   1,904,444
Palm Beach, Fla.   33480   84.32   1,222,403   1,010,399
Reading, Penn.   19602   84.04   50,323   41,577
Central Durham, N.C.   27703   80.94   40,824   34,434

Hot and cold ZIP codes for all 33 markets that ZipRealty tracks in this report are available here: http://ziprealty.typepad.com/ZipRealtyThirdQuarter2010HomeHunterReport.pdf.

Phoenix is Nation's Most Popular City for Home Hunters
According to the total number of home searches on www.ZipRealty.com throughout Q3, the Phoenix area remains the most popular city searched for the second straight year, or eight consecutive quarters. Phoenix proper and its suburbs claimed eight of the top 25 most searched cities, while the Las Vegas area took ten of the spots on that list. Florida had a stronger representation in the top 10 most searched list than in quarters before, with Kissimee and Ft. Lauderdale joining Orlando in the top searches list.

For more information about the most highly searched cities for home hunters in Q3 2010, please see the full report: http://ziprealty.typepad.com/ZipRealtyThirdQuarter2010HomeHunterReport.pdf.

About the Report
Each quarter, ZipRealty compiles real estate listing and sales data from the Multiple Listing Services offered in 33 of the 35 major U.S. metropolitan areas in which the real estate brokerage operates. The data pulled and cited within this report is for the third quarter of 2010, beginning July 1 through September 30, 2010.

This report is intended to convey information on the general market conditions where ZipRealty operates, not on ZipRealty's operating results. ZipRealty's operating results may be materially different from the general trends shown in this report. Please do not draw any conclusions about ZipRealty's operating results based on the information contained in this report but instead refer to ZipRealty's earnings releases and periodic reports as they are made public. 

About ZipRealty, Inc.
ZipRealty is a leading full-service residential real estate brokerage that uses an innovative combination of a comprehensive online presence, robust proprietary technology and knowledgeable local agents to offer its clients fast, responsive and transparent service. The Company's award-winning, user-friendly website gives its users access to comprehensive local Multiple Listing Services home listings data, as well as other relevant market and neighborhood information and tools. The Company's proprietary technology, including its agent platform and customer relationship tools, helps it to enhance customer service while increasing agent efficiency and reducing costs, allowing the Company to pass on significant savings to consumers as permitted by law. Founded in 1999, the company operates in 35 major markets in 22 states and the District of Columbia. For more information on ZipRealty, visit www.ziprealty.com or call 1-800-CALL-ZIP.

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