Real Estate Market Report: Buckle Up! East Bay Homes are Selling Faster

Real Estate Market Report: Buckle Up! East Bay Homes are Selling Faster


Yeah we’re saying it, and we mean it. The state of the East Bay real estate market is off the chain, in spite of – and because of – the pandemic.

The latest market data shows East Bay homes for sale are getting snatched up at lightning speed in nearly all the cities we track in Alameda and Contra Costa counties. Many single-family homes sold faster and at higher prices in July 2020 versus July 2019 with the greatest jumps in Pleasant Hill, Moraga, Concord, Lafayette, and Oakland.

In Pleasant Hill, for example, homes sold about 54% faster this July than last July. Houses flew off the market in just 12 days on average last month compared to 26 days in July 2019. Meanwhile, the median sales price rose from $794,000 to $945,000 year-over-year – a nearly 20% jump.

Fewer days on the market? Yes please...

  • Albany: 15 days - 52% decrease Y-O-Y
  • Walnut Creek: 16 days - 24% decrease
  • Concord: 15 days - 21% decrease
  • Alameda: 15 days - 12% decrease
  • Berkeley: 17 days - 6% decrease

(Scroll down to see our charts with additional city data about days on the market, median sales prices, and number of homes sold in July.)

"I’d call the market incredibly hot,” says Abio Properties Realtor Nicole Platt. “Just when we thought values would plateau, they went up more and got more competitive.”


SF exodus to the suburbs is real


As we told you last month, East Bay suburbs are especially hot. A record number of people from dense and expensive cities like San Francisco are hunting for greener pastures – big yards and bigger houses. They’ve been working remotely from home for months and figure if they can work from anywhere, why stay in a crowded, pricey apartment in a city that’s mostly shutdown?

“You can fry an egg on the suburban single-family home market!”

- Abio Realtor Larry Jacobs

In fact, the number of homes listed for sale in SF this summer has stunningly risen 96%, according to a new report released by Zillow. As the San Francisco Chronicle proclaimed, “the San Francisco exodus is real and historic.”

Sales prices in the famously expensive city reflect the changing tide. While median prices increased throughout the Bay Area in July year-over-year, they rose the least in SF  – by just 4%. Prices rose 19% in Contra Costa and 8% in Alameda counties, according to a new California Association of Realtors report.


East Bay residents are moving, too


Abio agents are noticing another trend: East Bay residents are selling homes they bought only two or three years ago, bucking the average five- to seven-year stay in one place.

Why? Abio co-founder Cameron Platt suggests that some sellers no longer see the value in homes they bought during a market high. Abio partner Linnette Edwards says many folks are disillusioned by the Bay Area’s and California’s cost of living and commutes. Clients are moving to rural towns in the Sierras, Sacramento, other states including Oregon and Colorado, and even Mexico.


Buyers navigate stiff competition, first-timers spend more


While it’s a sellers’ market in the East Bay, would-be buyers face competitive multiple-bid situations because the number of homes for sale doesn’t match demand. An Abio agent recently helped a buyer write an offer on a property that received a whopping 20 bids!

The Bay East Association of Realtors reports that far fewer homes are listed for sale compared with last summer.

Historically low interest rates continue to spur buyers, especially first-timers willing to bid on more expensive homes than they considered before, says Abio Realtor Rosie Papazian.

“I’m seeing first-time buyers who are looking at properties they would never have before in the $750,000-$1 million range.”

- Abio Realtor Rosie Papazian

This has been quite the ride. We’ve gone from idling in March to zooming at 100 mph in July and August despite a pandemic, skyrocketing unemployment rates, social justice protests, and a recession.


We asked our agents to sum up the state of the market in a few words, and here’s what they said:

And now for the numbers

For detached single-family homes. Sources: Bay East Assoc. of Realtors, Contra Costa Assoc. of Realtors


Alameda County


Contra Costa County


Read more on the Abio Properties Blog:


Want to know more about how the East Bay real estate market is behaving during these uncertain times? Abio Properties is always here to answer your questions and tell it straight. Contact us at at 888-400-ABIO (2246) or