According to real estate site Redfin, Oakland’s housing boom has taken a big leap towards the end of 2016, with a 12.5 increase in home tour requests, and a 62.7 percent increase in people writing offers on houses between October and December.
One reason for the latest rush may be that news of rising home prices is pushing people to purchase now, before home costs increase even further.
“Now that rates are finally rising, some buyers feel that if they do not buy now, they will not be able to afford a home in the East Bay as prices continue to rise,” said Redfin real estate agent Dylan Masella. “What was supposed to be a slow autumn has turned into a market full of unprecedented activity.”
In addition, couples and individuals from other cities throughout the Bay Area are looking at Oakland for home purchases, as the prices are cheaper. For example, the median sale price across the Bay in San Francisco is $1.1 million, whereas in Oakland it’s only $635,000.
“Over the past few years, a large percentage of our buyers in Oakland and Berkeley have been professionals and couples who rent in San Francisco and started their home searches there,” said Redfin real estate agent Noah Manning. “These buyers found significant competition and very high prices in San Francisco, so they switched their focus to the East Bay, causing Oakland’s market demand to continue to increase.”
This theory is backed up by home sale data in San Francisco: housing demand in San Francisco fell 10.8 percent in November.