Indian Ridge CC 2009 Annual Report

Dear Indian Ridge Resident:

While sales in Indian Ridge are down from 2008, the good news is those homes that went pending or sold in the 4th quarter represented nearly half of  the homes sold in 2009. We haven't seen that kind of activity in the 4th quarter since 2005 and I am proud  to say I have represented buyers and sellers in nearly 40% of all homes sold in 2009.

The good news/bad news in the real estate market is that 2009 has been a difficult year. If you refer to the 24 quarters of residential sales in Indian Ridge, it is evident of what is actually taking place in the desert market place. The attached 7 year history of all residential sales this past year shows that 97.3% of the homes sold in the Coachella Valley were under $1 million and homes under $500,000 represented 87.8% of the market. Properties over $1 million represent 2.9% of the market (unchanged from 2008)and .07% for those homes over $2 million. So while the inventory may not be as high, the supply for the more expensive homes is certainly greater than the demand. The California Association of Realtors show the numbers to be slightly different when looking at the November sales. Sales under $500,000 represented 75% of all sales in November, 15% for those homes between $500,000 and $1 million and 5% for those over $1 million. These numbers have changed since the first of the year, a sign that things may be improving in the desert real estate market. These are significant changes from the August 2007 numbers where homes under $500,000 represented 43% of all sales, those between $500,000 and $ 1million represented 42% and the over $1 Million sales were at 15%.

Year to year sales continue to rise in our state, increasing 4.7% with sales soaring above the 500,000 unit threshold for the 15th consecutive month. Statewide median priced homes showed a 5.8% increase from 2008 to $304,520. This is good news after experiencing an average 59% drop from the peak of California median prices in February of 2007.

According to my lender, the main constraint in sales is the lack of funding compounded by higher underwriting constraints. Jumbo loans, normally .2% to .4% higher than conforming loans, currently run two to three times the normal interest rate difference. The passage of the economic stimulus package could have a positive affect on the market as the proposed plan would increase the conforming loan limit from $417,000 to $729,750. The limit depends upon county. Conforming loans for Riverside is $500,000 while Orange County is $729,000.

The national real estate market forecast remains in question as the market heads to a slow down in other areas during the winter months with some forecasting a double dip with our recovery in 2009 dropping again in 2010. Others expect the housing market to limp along even as the rest of the economy continues to grow stronger. This is based on a sharp decline in pending sales from October to November of 2009. That said, pending sales were down 26% in the northeast and Midwest, 15% down in the south and only down 3% in the west. The National Association of Realtors say the sales decline during the winter months will begin to rise in the spring. The California Association of Realtors (CAR) projects the average home price in California to rise 3.3% to $280,000 in 2010. Leslie Appleton Young, CAR's Vice President and Chief Economist, says that unlike the rest of the country, home sales in California reached its bottom 2 years ago and median price reached its low point in February of 2009.

While the real estate market appears to be improving in California, those properties priced to sell will receive multiple offers while over priced homes will remain on the market with few showings and no offers as a result of those showings. Now more than ever, it is important to know the true market place so as a buyer or seller, offers and sales become more indicative of the true market.

Buyers should focus on purchasing a home that meets their wants and needs and is priced with regards to the market place and degree of upgrades and location. We often learn the bottom of the market has passed some 9 months later. It would appear we  

have reached the bottom and should begin the slow rise in price appreciation. History shows that in the past 40 years, those homeowners who purchased and lived in their home for at least 5 years have averaged a 5% annual rate of return.

Included with this letter are the following (to see reports click "View PDF Document" under my photo):

· 7 year history of the % of Market Share of Homes sold by Price Range

· 7 year history of Homes Sold in Competing Country Clubs

· 7 year history of Median Sales Price of Homes Sold in Competing Country Clubs

· 7 year history of High/Low Price range of Homes Sold in Competing Country Clubs

· 24 month Sales History in Indian Ridge

In reflection of the Indian Ridge market place, for a number of years a tour of homes was hosted twice a year with minimal positive results. I began to reflect on why people pick a club. It isn't the home, but the club that fits their wants and needs; then they find a home that they like in that community. My husband asked me this summer, "if you could join any club in the desert, where would you go?" After a very short delay, I said I wouldn't want to live anywhere else-that I loved the golf courses, the great members and friendly atmosphere and all the many events on and off the golf course that are available to us. From there came the idea for the "Party at the Ridge" which the club immediately adopted as a great program. We are excited to offer such an exciting program the last weekend in February. Stay tune for e-mails and announcements. Invite your friends who are thinking about moving to the desert and/or Indian Ridge or volunteer to show off our great club. 

I want to thank you for all your referrals and continued confidence in my team. As I mentioned, I represent over 30% of all active listings and nearly 40% of all sales that took place in Indian Ridge in 2009. I attribute this to my expanded marketing program. While I would love to send out just listed and just sold postcards, my quarterly reports provide you with that information. I use that money to draw more potential buyers to our community. As a result, I am representing buyers who are referred to me by past clients, friends, and real estate professionals throughout the country; buyers who find me on my website, through Windermere, Zillow, Trulia and Realtor.coms; through my advertisements in the Desert Sun, Daily Pilot in Orange County, and the Home and Lifestyle Magazine distributed to all Windermere Real Estate offices throughout the West as well as real estate companies in Canada. The results are evidenced in the success of the program. My website alone attracts on average 70+ new visitors a day with over 80% saving me to their favorites.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns or just to talk about what is happening in the real estate market in general or throughout the Coachella Valley. While I have many listings in Indian Ridge and Toscana,  my knowledge base of all country clubs in the desert gives my the opportunity to help find just the right club and home for those wanting to make this valley their home.



Diane Williams
Associate Broker/Executive Premier Director
Windermere Real Estate

Information is compiled by Diane Williams using multiple resources including the NAR, CAR, Desert Sun, Wall  Street Journal, John Seymour's "What's Hot What's Not", and the Multiple Listing Service. If your home is currently listed with another Broker, please disregard. It is not our intention to solicit other Broker's listings.