The East Bay’s luxury housing market turned in a stellar month in May as high-end property sales soared from the previous month and year ago levels, according to a new report by Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage.

A total of 177 homes sold for more than $1 million in May in Alameda and Contra Costa counties. That was up more than 40 percent from the same month last year and 33 percent from April, when 126 and 133 million-dollar properties changed hands, respectively. Last month was the highest level of luxury sales in nearly two years.

The upper end of the luxury market enjoyed a robust May as well with 13 sales in excess of $2 million, up from 10 the previous month and nine a year ago.

While sales were spiking, the median sale price of $1.26 million for a luxury home was up fractionally from the $1.25 million median a year ago and down just 1.2 percent from April’s median price of $1.275 million.

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

“The East Bay is showing all of the signs of a classic seller’s market with strong buyer demand, a severe shortage of home listings to choose from, and multiple offers on many properties,” said Rick Turley, president of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage. “With inventory levels remaining near record lows, I suspect we’ll continue to see this scenario play out, at least for the near term.”

In many areas, inventory is down 30-50 percent from just a year ago, leaving the scales of supply and demand tipped in favor of sellers. Multiple offers are becoming the norm in a number of communities and homes are often selling for more than the asking price.

Some key findings from this month’s Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage luxury report:

  • The most expensive sale in the East Bay last month was a six-bedroom, six-bath 7,347-square-foot home in Lafayette that sold for $3.69 million;
  • Danville and Fremont boasted the most luxury sales with 24 each, followed by Pleasanton with 22, Lafayette with 15, Oakland with 13, and Orinda and Piedmont with 11 each;
  • Homes sold in an average of just 38 days compared to 41 days the previous month and 49 days a year ago;
  • Sellers on average received 100 percent of their asking price compared to 99 percent the previous month and 97.2 percent a year ago.

The East Bay Luxury Housing Market Report is a monthly report by Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, a specialist in high-end real estate sales. Through its internationally renowned Coldwell Banker Previews® program, the company is recognized around the world for its expertise in the luxury housing market. 

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