After surging in December, million-dollar home sales in the East Bay eased in January while the median sale price remained flat, according to Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, the Bay Area’s leading provider of luxury real estate services.

A total of 49 homes sold for more than $1 million in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties in January, down 17 percent from the same month last year when 59 units sold. The median sale price was flat year over year, standing at $1.22 million last month.

Sales were down sharply from December’s robust level of 107 transactions. Sales typically drop substantially from December to January with many buyers and sellers rushing to close deals before year-end.

The figures were derived from Multiple Listing Service data of all homes sold in Alameda and Contra Costa counties for more than $1 million last month.

“We saw a rush to close sales before the end of the year, which resulted in much of the drop-off in January,” said Rick Turley, president of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage. “But there seems to be renewed interest among buyers to get back into the market, which could result in closed sales in the coming months.”

Turley said many of his East Bay offices are hearing from buyers who have been sitting on the fence and are now deciding to begin looking for a home in earnest. “I think consumers are feeling more confident every day that the economy is picking up and the job market is improving,” he said. “That translates into greater confidence in real estate investments.”

Turley added that buyers of high-end homes are also greatly influenced by the financial markets, and with the stock market continuing to gain strength, many investors have the capital to move ahead with larger real estate purchases.

Some key findings from this month’s Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage East Bay luxury housing market report:

  • The most expensive sale in the East Bay in January was a six-bedroom, eight-bath 11,000-square foot home in Blackhawk that sold for approximately $5 million;
  • Danville boasted the most million-dollar sales with seven, followed by Fremont, Lafayette and Pleasanton with six each, and San Ramon with four;
  • It took an average of 85 days to sell a million-dollar property in the East Bay last month, up from 76 days a year ago and last month;
  • Sellers received on average 96 percent of their asking price, up from 94.5 percent a year ago and the same as the previous month.

Through its internationally renowned Coldwell Banker Previews® program, the company sells more multi-million dollar properties in Northern California than any other company. Last year, Coldwell Banker sold more than 27% of properties over $3 million and more than 33% of homes priced above $5 million.

Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage has 10 East Bay offices serving Berkeley, Castro Valley, Danville, Fremont, Livermore, Oakland, Piedmont, Orinda, Pleasanton, and Walnut Creek. For more information, please call 925-275-3085.