Generally speaking, market activity – as measured by the number of listings going into contract – continued to pick up rapidly in May, bouncing back from the steep plunge following the first shelter in place orders. However, activity in May, which is typically among the busiest selling months of the year, remained below May 2019 (except for the higher price segment, in which activity soared in May). With the easing of shelter in place, as well as the market learning to adjust to new circumstances, it is expected the recovery will continue to increase closer to normal. In fact, based on the strength of buyer demand, some analysts believe the coming months may be busier than in 2019, as sales activity that would have occurred in spring gets pushed into summer instead.
Interest rates hit another historic low at the end of May.
Some of the more suburban counties, such as Marin, have been rebounding more quickly than counties with large urban areas (like SF, Oakland, San Jose), which were most impacted by COVID-19. There may be a number of factors at work, which are discussed in a chart within this report. But it is still too soon to reach definitive conclusions about major demographic shifts.
Note: Any statistics derived from closed sales – such as median sales prices, sales volume and days on market – reflect the state of the market 3-6 weeks ago when the offers were negotiated and accepted. They are lagging indicators, and May closed-sales data to a large degree reflects the much softer market in April.