Today, I’m here with my buddy Scott to bring you an update on what’s been happening in the Sacramento real estate market. Scott has a lot of questions, and I want to provide him (and you, by extension) with the answers.

“What trends are you noticing that affect buyers and sellers?”

It’s true that the market here in Sacramento is good. We don’t have snow, obviously, so the season doesn’t really shut down so much as it slows down a little bit in the fall. But right now, the market is still active.

In our transactions, the slowing that we’ve seen manifests in the way that homes are sitting on the market a little longer. Homes for which we would expect to receive early multiple offers aren’t getting as many as we would have thought.

We had a home that sold earlier this spring for $15,000 over the asking price and that had 12 offers on it. Just recently, we sold a similar home in the same area that only received four offers and sold for $5,000 over asking price.

The market is good, and yet, it’s changing. We’re not seeing as much activity as we were just a few months ago. Bear in mind that certain areas are still very hot, though; Elk Grove is still very active. A couple of our buyers there were consistently outbid on four or five different properties, despite their aggressive offers. This might have to do with an influx of Bay Area buyers.

“What can sellers do to make their properties stand out?”

Obviously, you’ll want the standard marketing tools—professional photos, exposure to all possible websites, and so on. A large portion of people are starting their home searches by just browsing on their phones; the mobile phone is a huge source for generating activity, and we know that 97% of people start their home searches online anyway.

You never know where your buyer is going to come from, so having your listing on as many online platforms as possible with as many professional photos as possible is key to making sure that your future buyer will see your listing.

“The market is good, and yet, it’s changing.”

Beyond that, make sure that you hire an agent who is proactive about prospecting for business. This means that they’re calling around the neighborhood, knocking on doors, and promoting your listing to their entire database. For example, a listing that we just got under contract was found by a person who had given up on the market and was about to settle for renting. The agent happened to reach out to them in time, and their offer on the property was accepted.

The problem isn’t just finding buyers to go under contract—it’s about keeping them under contract. You’ll need a really skilled agent to negotiate requests for repairs on issues that come up in reports and to navigate the transaction to keep the deal alive.

“What conditions have you noticed that are relevant to buyers and sellers?”

The market conditions for both buyers and sellers are great. For sellers, if you look at the trends over the last six to seven years, the market has only gone up. The bottom of the market here was probably in 2012, so the people who bought a home then and are selling now have accrued a lot of equity in their homes. It’s an opportune time to move up for growing families, and a great time to sell in general.

For buyers, interest rates are still really good compared to historical numbers, meaning you can buy a home for the same cost that might be for a rental; it just makes sense to own in our market if you plan to stay long term. For those who don’t think they can commit that long, it might not be a wise idea to purchase a home just now.

“If someone is thinking about entering the market, what is the next step for them?”

I recommend that they reach out to me. We can set up a consultation in order to understand your goals so that we can customize our game plan to help you succeed.

If you have any questions or are thinking of joining the market soon, contact me right away. I’d be glad to assist you however I can.