Polaris Pacific, the leading real estate sales and marketing group for new residential communities, announced today the introduction of a weekly, real-time market trend dashboard that measures changes to the condominium sector of eight core West Coast markets and provides data to navigate the complexities created by COVID-19 on these condominium markets.
Of the eight West Coast markets, Phoenix-metro has been the most robust market through the pandemic in terms of sales volumes and prices, according to the latest report. The Phoenix/Scottsdale condo market has been remarkably resilient through the pandemic. We never saw the same steep drop-off in this market as we did in all others. Weekly transaction values briefly leveled off slightly below pre-pandemic levels before roaring back six weeks later, beginning in mid-May.
Updated every Tuesday, the Polaris Pacific COVID-19 Dashboard provides real-time statistics and insights that reveal a rare, data-driven vantage point on the ongoing effects of the pandemic. Currently, no other research reporting tool exists that analyzes specific condominium data on a weekly basis. The core cities monitored in the dashboard include San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, Silicon Valley, Oakland/Emeryville, Phoenix, Seattle and Denver.
“Polaris Pacific’s goal was to develop a tool that provides real-time data on the condominium segment of the markets in which we operate in order to help our clients, and the public at large, make informed and educated decisions during this unprecedented time,” said Garrett Frakes, managing partner of Polaris Pacific. “Our experience with COVID-19 indicates that the various segments of the housing market are acting in radically different manners. Broad-measure tools like Case Schiller have worked in the past to assess the total housing market, but are not working effectively in the current situation. The weekly data that we are providing highlights how various markets operate independently of one another and how local pandemic conditions affect sales.”
Since shelter-in-place ordinances began in February 2020, most markets have suffered a decline in transaction volume. While median sales price in many markets has remained close to the pre-COVID levels, the reductions in sales volumes are a leading indicator of potential price declines. In recent weeks, most West Coast markets have experienced a sales volume rebound, however volumes remain volatile as cities battle varying coronavirus caseloads.
“The biggest surprise that we have seen is the resilience of certain markets relative to others,” said Paul Zeger, partner of Polaris Pacific. “Phoenix is a prime example. Arizona experienced a serious COVID-19 caseload spike in June and July, yet the condominium market conditions there remained healthy. Silicon Valley also fared well during this crisis, which is a testament to the need for housing in that region. The other welcome surprise is the relative optimism that most have relative to 2021 and beyond. This is reflective in the number of closings at various new communities. Very few buyers are reconsidering purchase decisions currently.”