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San Francisco Real Estate Market Report for August 2021

Key takeaways:

  • The first half of 2021 saw historic sales of San Francisco real estate, with a total $ volume nearly 50% above its previous peak in 2018.
  • Home values have risen across the board: single-family homes to record highs, and condos up but not to their recent-year peaks.
  • New listings and pending sales have fallen since the spring, indicating a return to normal seasonality of slower summers.
  • Overbidding (sales price above list price) is once again the norm, due to both higher demand and a return to strategic pricing.
  • Luxury home sales (single-family homes $3m+, condos $2m+) continue at a record pace, though numbers fell during the summer.
  • Mortgage interest rates remain at or near historic lows.

From January through June 2021, nearly $7 billion in home sales were reported in San Francisco, a total 49% higher than the previous historic high for the same period in 2018.

First half of 2021 dollar-volume home sales in San Francisco

New listings and closed sales shot up in late 2020/early 2021. Closed sales data typically lags one month behind, so their numbers remain high while new listings have dropped off.

New listings and sales volumes, longer-term trends since 2005 in San Francisco

Sales prices for San Francisco single-family homes have appreciated considerably in 2021 to reach a new historic high.

San Francisco median single-family home sales price trends

Sales prices for San Francisco condos have also appreciated in 2021, but not quite to their highs of 2019/2020.

San Francisco median condo sales price trends

Seasonality in SF Real Estate

San Francisco real estate follows seasonal trends. In 2020, however, the predictable seasonal curve of new listings and sales was turned on its head (along with so much else). Thus far in 2021, we appear to be back on track with normal seasonal swings: up in spring and down in the summer.

San Francisco short-term real estate market dynamics & seasonality, new listings coming on market
San Francisco short-term real estate market dynamics & seasonality
San Francisco short-term real estate market dynamics

Overbidding — ie. sales closing above their list price — has long been the trend in San Francisco. Amidst the early pandemic and an uncertain market, sellers and their agents opted for more transparent, “buy it now” pricing. In 2021, that trend has reverted back to the norm of sales closing for well above asking.

San Francisco real estate buyer demand and overbidding

San Francisco Single-Family Home Price Trends By Neighborhood, 2012–Present

Median San Francisco single-family home sales price trends, by neighborhood
Median San Francisco single-family home sales price trends, by neighborhood
Median San Francisco single-family home sales price trends, by neighborhood
Median San Francisco single-family home sales price trends, by neighborhood

San Francisco 2-Bedroom Condo Price Trends By Neighborhood, 2012–Present

Median 2-bedroom condo sales price trends

San Francisco Luxury Real Estate Trends

Sales in the past year vs the number of listings on the market, by price segment.

San Francisco Luxury House Market Sales & Active Listings

Sales of San Francisco luxury real estate have absolutely skyrocketed in the past year.

San Francisco Long-Term Luxury Single-family Home sales
San Francisco Long-Term Luxury Condo, Co-op, TIC sales
San Francisco Short-Term Luxury Market Dynamics

San Francisco’s post-pandemic real estate recovery comes in spite of shrinking sales numbers to foreign buyers, which have been falling since 2017 among the top 5 buying countries.

Decline in Foreign National Homebuyers

The boom in homebuyer demand is due in no small part to historically low mortgage interest rates.

Mortgage Interest Rate Trends

By comparison, the stock market is also performing historically well.

S&P 500 Stock Index, 1995-2021

SF REAL ESTATE MARKET UPDATES AND INSIGHTS

We hope this August real estate market update for San Francisco will help you in planning your next move or investment.

If you have questions about the market or your next steps to buying or selling, let us know! We’re always happy to help you and anyone you send our way.

If you are considering selling a home in San Francisco, fill out our Seller Worksheet to tell us more about your situation.

If you want to buy a home in San Francisco, tell us your goals and timeframe in our Buyer Worksheet. Or send us a message with any general inquiries.

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(Footnote disclaimer: Statistics are generalities, essentially summaries of disparate data generated by dozens, hundreds or thousands of unique, individual sales. They are best seen not as precise measurements, but as broad, comparative indicators, with reasonable margins of error. Anomalous fluctuations in statistics are not uncommon, especially in smaller markets with fewer sales. Data from sources deemed reliable, but may contain errors and subject to revision. All numbers are approximate.)

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