Seller Expectations Not Matching Market Reality (Close Prices) in 2011 vs. 2010

Sometimes just a look at a month-to-month comparison will tell a whole story. Looking at December 2011 versus December 2010 is such a case. In December 2010 there were 3,399 active listings with an average list price of $554,845. While in December 2011 there were 2,880 active listings with an average list price of $612,171. In December 2010, the average close price was $499,792, while in December 2011, the average close price was $429,006. So in 2010 sellers were asking for less and getting more. Or, conversely, in 2011 sellers are asking for more but getting less, by a far margin. This is a case where sellers are thinking the market has improved and are asking for a premium (higher listing price) while in reality this is not the case, as close prices have actually declined over the last quarter of 2011.

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Barbara Ciment, Realtor