I need a new cliche. I’ve blogged in the past about the different types of averages. And I’ve also blogged about apples and oranges and whether or not price per square feet is a meaningful metric in San Francisco real estate. And I had planned to sit down today and write a quick market update about the Castro neighborhood. But something happened on the way to finishing that blog post… which is mainly that the numbers were so skewed I wanted to take a moment and talk about that instead.
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As you can see from the chart above (click for a larger image if you are having a hard time reading it), I’ve plotted out the November 2011 and November 2012 sales for district 5k in San Francisco, formally known as Eureka Valley/Castro. Why Eureka Valley? Read why Eureka Valley… I’ve charted out both median and average sizes, list prices, sales prices, and days on market (DOM). I’ve done this both in absolute amounts, and also calculated the corresponding price per square foot calculations in the columns for median list price, average list price, median sales price, and average sales price.
About the only useful comparison we can use this data for (IMHO) is in comparing the number of sales. And no surprise, we’ve had tight inventory all year so sales are down from 22 to 14. However, the average and median square footages that sold in November of 2011 are substantially different from those that sold in 2012. Which means that the data really isn’t useful to tell us anything about the neighborhood market in general. These market stats are also for all residential property types (single family homes, condos, TICs, and 2-4 unit buildings), so a skew in the mix of property types could also easily skew the data in one direction or the other, presenting a false conclusion for the other market types.
Since the numbers are relatively low (22 and 14, respectively), I’ve actually pulled the reports that show the individual properties that make up these two data points in time. However, it is a violation of rules to present that much sold data on the internet without having a client relationship, so I can’t just post the reports (odd, I know… but that’s a whole ‘nother ball of wax). However, if you are interested in them, feel free to email or leave a comment and I can share that information with you.