An August Not To Remember

By: Mark Wisterman

My 2013 Photo-Web-Revised

I know that as of the posting of this blog the month of August is not quite done yet.

But I hereby make a motion to put the memory of this month’s Lake Oroville real estate market sales numbers behind us and never look back again!

With another paltry week of Oroville real estate sales in the books and with just a very few sales yet to be logged into the Oroville area multiple listing service, the number of Oroville homes that sold this month will be the fewest number of homes sold in nearly 4 years. Yes, you read that correctly, not since Nov.  2009 has the pace of Oroville area home sales been this slow.

Although interest rates are still  extremely low, the recent increase in the rates coupled with the lack of reasonably priced homes has apparently caused a pause in buyer demand.

There are however, a couple of bright spots in this weeks Oroville area home sales data. Continue reading

Bitten By The Back-To-School Bug?

By: Mark Wisterman

My 2013 Photo-Web-Revised


Sorry for being a few days late with last week’s sales information for the Lake Oroville real estate market.

I got caught up in “reporting” on the current fire situation in the foothill area just outside Oroville. What turned out to be taking a few photos of the fire turned into an hourly Facebook posting with updates from CAL-FIRE which took up most of my weekend.

In any event, here are the numbers for the week. One of the biggest challenges with reporting the Lake Oroville real estate market activity is that we are a fairly small market. As a result the weekly numbers have a tendency to be somewhat volatile making it difficult to really get a feel for what is going on.

As we have discussed here many times before , the week to week, or month to month, or even the year over year numbers tell only a small part of the story of the market. In my view, it is the TREND that is important to watch when attempting to gauge the market.  To help you spot how things are trending in the Lake Oroville home sales market, Continue reading

Market Activity Update

By: Mark Wisterman

My 2013 Photo-Web-Revised


Here is the latest market activity report for the Lake Oroville real estate market.

I apologize that I am not leaving much in the way of comments today. I have a pretty full schedule today that forces me to keep my comments to a minimum.

If there is one number to look at over the past couple of  weeks it is the pending sales numbers at the bottom of the chart. After running in the 80-90 range for the past few weeks it is now below 70 for the past 3 weeks. Look for August closing of Oroville homes to be lower than last year. The overall economy is still facing an uphill battle and the real estate market will continue to reflect this.


MLS Stats for Oroville Area Week Ending Week Ending Week Ending % Change
7/18/2013 7/26/2013 8/1/2013 Previous Week
# of Total Sales 9 12 16 33.33%
# REO/Short Sales Sold (SS) 2 5 6 20.00%
% Sales that are REO/SS 22.22% 41.67% 37.50% -10.00%
Avg. List Price $112,156 $180,675 $141,419 -21.73%
Avg. Sold Price $110,622 $170,692 $137,390 -19.51%
Sold Price % of Listing Price 98.63% 94.47% 97.15% 2.83%
Avg. Days On The Market 46 90 49 -45.56%
Total Sales Volume $995,600 $2,048,301 $2,198,237 7.32%
# of Single Family Listings 195 195 183 -6.15%
# Foreclosed On Market 22 25 19 -24.00%
% of Foreclosed on Market 11.28% 12.82% 10.38% -19.02%
# Short Sales on Market 9 8 7 -12.50%
% Short Sales on Market 4.62% 4.10% 3.83% -6.76%
Days of Inventory Left 152 114 80 -29.62%
# of Pending Sales 67 63 65 3.17%

Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride

By: Mark WistermanMy 2013 Photo-Web-Revised


Wow! Now that was quite a week in the Lake Oroville real estate market and beyond!!!!!!!!

The events of the week brought back a memory or two of the past when I worked with Bob Beever. Bob had a lot of favorite little sayings. One of them was, “It was like being on Mr. Toad’s

Wild Ride!” Now, I can’t really remember in what instance he used it, but I know what he meant, because I have been on Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. And, even if you have never been to Disneyland,  you have just experienced it for yourself  if you are currently attempting to buy a home, or sell a home right now.

Mr Toad Wild Ride

Unless you have been hiding under a rock, or camping out on Lake Oroville with no contact with the outside world, you know that mortgage rates took off faster than a speeding bullet this week. It is interesting, and somewhat disappointing  to me to see the reaction to what transpired this week.

Just a month ago, on this very Lake Oroville real estate market  blog site, we discussed the potential for rates to jump like this See my post of May 23, 2013. So what happened to make interest rates move like they did. If you listen to the media, you would think it was all Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s fault. Bernanke was quoted as saying that if the economy continues to improve as the Fed is projecting, that there could be reduction in the amount of bond purchases that that the Fed is making sometime towards the end of this year and it is possible that by mid-2014 they will discontinue the bond purchases all together. Remember, these bond purchases, of over $1 TRILLION per year, are being used to artificially keep interest rates low in an effort to help the economy improve.

I have wondered for a while now how Bernanke is going to extract the Fed from this bond buying without tanking the housing market and the economy. Taking a trillion dollars out of the economy without sending it spirally out of control is going to take more magic that even David Copperfield can conjure up.

Here is my take on this: 

There is NO WAY that Bernanke can just come out one day, cold turkey, and say that the Fed has actually begun to pull back.  He has to ease into this. To do otherwise would be an utter disaster. In my view the stock market would probably drop 20% in a day if he just announced the end without any warning.  His testimony to Congress last month and his press conference this week is his way of  trying to avoid a meltdown.

Which brings me back to my comment about my disappointment with the reaction to all of this.

It seems that everyone is blaming Bernanke for the jump in rates and the drop in the stock market. Now, although I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night, I am not smart enough to know if Bernanke has handled this absolutely correctly. But you could have stayed at a Motel 6 last night and still figured out that this program has to end sometime and the end was getting closer. But no!! Wall Street’s reaction was like that of a spoiled kid having his allowance taken away!  In reality Bernanke didn’t change anything with regards to the bond buying, but the market absolutely ignored the “facts on the ground” and reacted with pure emotion sending rates on an upward spiral that still continues today, yet at a much smaller pace.

As with all reactions of this magnitude you should expect to see rates moderate in the coming few weeks and may even back track a bit as the market sees that the economy, while stronger, is far from strong and may even weaken in the 2nd half of the year which, in my opinion, will keep rates in the 4.25%-4.75% range.


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Almost Weekly Sales Report

By: Mark Wisterman

 I know, I know, I can’t keep calling it the weekly Lake Oroville housing report if I don’t actually report WEEKLY.  So, my phrase of the day is: Better late than never.

On the whole, there is not anything too earth-shattering in the Oroville real estate numbers over the past couple of weeks.  Unit sales are remaining fairly steady and the inventory of homes for sale in the Oroville market is sustaining the low levels that we have seen for a few months now. Oroville buyers are still having a tough time dealing with these low inventories in the face of rapidly rising interest rates, while sellers continue to hold back from listing their homes for sale waiting for the market values to climb higher.

And speaking of sellers: Continue reading

My Latest Market Minute

By: Mark Wisterman

Here is the second installment of the newest feature that was recently added to this Lake Oroville real estate market blog.

I call this video feature “Mark’s Real Estate Minute (or 2). Why the “or 2?” Because I have quickly found that I talk to darned much and there is NO WAY that I will every be able to limit these spots to 1 minute!!!! The latest and greatest of these spots will always be on the sidebar of this site for easy access.

I will periodically produce these spots to provide my perspective and advice on a wide array of topics including those you may like to hear about. A lot of changes are once again taking place in the Oroville real estate market and I think it is absolutely essential that you have as much information about Oroville market conditions, as well as market conditions in the greater Butte County real estate market area.

As the old saying goes, “Information is Power.”  And this is exactly what I want to provide to you; the power to make the right decision regarding your real estate needs.  It is my hope that I can pack enough info into each one of these ‘minutes’ to make a difference.

To make this little corner of  this blog site work I am going to need your help. Please e-mail or text or IM me at my Facebook page with any questions or topics that you would like to have addressed.

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News Flash: More Completed Transactions To Report

By: Mark Wisterman

Congratulations to our agents who worked so hard to complete these transactions in the Lake Oroville real estate market. View the video for details.


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Lake Oroville Weekly Home Sales Update

 Home sales for the Lake Oroville real estate market had somewhat of a breakout week this past week as there were significant improvements in the major valuations area of the data.

In addition to big increases in the average list price and the average sold price of the Oroville homes that sold this week, there was a doubling of the total sales volume of homes that closed escrow this week. The sale of distressed homes in the Oroville real estate market (those that are bank owned or were sold for less than was owed on them) continues to hold at levels that have not been seem since the depths of the mortgage mess.

Inventories of Lake Oroville  area homes for sale continue to be constrained which seems to be causing, for lack of a better term, a mini-frenzy among Oroville home buyers who seem to think that there will never be any other  Oroville homes on the market and have allowed themselves, often with the prodding of their agent, to get sucked into the unenviable position of having to engage in auctioneering to buy a home. In an upcoming post I will give you my take on why I have a concern that there may be a mini-bubble developing in the market right now.

MLS Stats for Oroville Area Week Ending Week Ending Week Ending Week Ending % Change
2/7/2013 2/14/2013 2/21/2013 2/28/2013 Previous Week
# of Total Sales 9 8 6 9 50.00%
# REO/Short Sales Sold (SS) 5 2 2 3 50.00%
% Sales that are REO/SS 55.56% 25.00% 33.33% 33.33% 0.00%
Avg. List Price $90,756 $122,516 $117,100 $144,367 23.29%
Avg. Sold Price $86,278 $117,138 $102,525 $140,861 37.39%
Sold Price % of Listing Price 95.07% 95.61% 87.55% 97.57% 11.44%
Avg. Days On The Market 66 178 51 64 25.49%
Total Sales Volume $776,500 $937,100 $615,150 $1,267,750 106.09%
# of Single Family Listings 158 155 150 150 0.00%
# Foreclosed On Market 20 20 18 19 5.56%
% of Foreclosed on Market 12.66% 12.90% 12.00% 12.67% 5.56%
# Short Sales on Market 8 7 7 9 28.57%
% Short Sales on Market 5.06% 4.52% 4.67% 6.00% 28.57%



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I Hope This Doesn’t Cause A Headache

Well, hello again, everyone! It is good to be able to take the time to update you on the real estate market in the Lake Oroville market area.

It has been a very long time since I last provided any meaningful stats on the Lake Oroville real estate market and I hope to be doing this on a much more frequent basis now that we are beginning to see new trends emerge in the number of Oroville homes that have sold as well as the number of Lake Oroville home listings that are currently on the market.

Probably the biggest news when in comes to the Oroville real estate market has to due with current inventories of homes available. Since the depths of the market crash we have seen a steadily decreasing number of  Oroville homes come to market. When you view the slide show that is included with this post, you will see that the number of homes available was just over 400 in March of 2009.  According to our Multiple Listing Database, as of this past Friday, there are now only 150 single family homes for sale in the greater Lake Oroville real estate market. This low inventory is making it extremely difficult on buyers as it causes a little bit of a “feeding frenzy’ whenever a home that is in move-in ready condition comes on the market in that some of the prices get bid up to the point where some buyers can no longer qualify.

You can expect this inventory shortage to continue until values recover to the point where homeowners, who are “underwater” and would like to sell but can’t, finally see that their homes are once again worth more than they owe on them. Barring anything that the government will do to screw things up, we should begin to see more news reports of significantly fewer of these upside down situations in the 2nd half of this year, which should provide the impetus towards an increasing number of Oroville CA homes for sale.

Below is a 4 week chart of the sales in the Lake Oroville CA market and below that is  a slide show that provides a little more overview on the current state of the Oroville Ca housing market.

As always, I appreciate your comments and questions.


MLS Stats for Oroville Area Week Ending Week Ending Week Ending Week Ending Previous %
1/31/2013 2/7/2013 2/14/2013 2/21/2013 Change
# of Total Sales 11 9 8 6 -25.00%
# REO/Short Sales Sold (SS) 6 5 2 2 0.00%
% Sales that are REO/SS 54.55% 55.56% 25.00% 33.33% 33.33%
Avg. List Price $130,550 $90,756 $122,516 $117,100 -4.42%
Avg. Sold Price $125,768 $86,278 $117,138 $102,525 -12.48%
Sold Price % of Listing Price 96.34% 95.07% 95.61% 87.55% -8.43%
Avg. Days On The Market 56 66 178 51 -71.35%
Total Sales Volume $1,383,450 $776,500 $937,100 $615,150 -34.36%
# of Single Family Listings 162 158 155 150 -3.23%
# Foreclosed On Market 22 20 20 18 -10.00%
% of Foreclosed on Market 13.58% 12.66% 12.90% 12.00% -7.00%
# Short Sales on Market 8 8 7 7 0.00%
% Short Sales on Market 4.94% 5.06% 4.52% 4.67% 3.33%



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Introducing Mobile Connect

Seaching for homes in the Oroville real estate market, the Chico real estate market, and the Paradise real estate on your mobile device just got a lot easier and more convenient with the recent release of REALTY WORLD’s Mobile Connect home search program.

 This new platform allows buyers to obtain listing information, nearly instantly, on any residential property for sale in the area in which they are currently located by simply texting  as siImage representing iPhone as depicted in Crunc...mple two letter code. There is even a QR code available for you iPhone and Android users.   No more searching through cumbersome apps like, Zillow and Trulia looking for a specific property that you are standing in front of trying to get updated information. And no more hassles when calling the phone number on a yard sign and getting hold of an agent that has no idea of what property you are asking about.

With this new system you get not only the information on the specific home you are texting for, but you also have the option of seeing the 5 other homes for sale that are closest to the home you are looking at. I have included a couple of links here that will provide further information on this awesome new system. The benefits to buyers and sellers alike are explained in the flyers.

To sign up for this program just give me a call or drop me an e-mail with your cell phone number and I will get you enrolled. As always there is NO CHARGE for this service and there is NEVER any abuse of your contact information. In fact, I will make you this promise: I will not ever call you about any home you inquire about through this system unless you ask me to.

Mobile Connect for Sellers

Mobile Connect For Buyers

Happy House Hunting!!!!!!!!!!!!

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