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Blog - San Luis Obispo Real Estate

San Luis Obispo Realty joins Haven Properties

Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate |  Haven Properties has joined forces with the company that I have co-owned for a decade, San Luis Obispo Realty. The combined company will do business as Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Haven Properties, doubling its agent count and market share to become one of the largest real estate firms in San Luis Obispo County. We have also acquired a Morro Bay Office, and so we are servicing Northern San Luis Obispo County with great coverage as a broker and top Central Coast agency.

By working collaboratively with Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate, the shared focus of market share growth, cost savings and cultural alignment helps ensure successful real estate transactions.

This latest union with our San Luis Obispo Realty office, will use the 441 Marsh St. office as the main BHGRE | Haven Properties'  headquarters, providing a modernized workspace and ample room to accommodate our real estate professionals, and any further expansion of our growing real estate company.

This realignment, combined with an increased market presence, enhances the brokerage’s ability to provide the luxury concierge service that has been integral to its success.

By joining the Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Network, San Luis Obispo Realty’s agents will benefit from the broad suite of resources, technology and marketing materials to fuel their businesses. As part of the San Luis Obispo Realty leadership team, I will remain with the company and continue in a leadership role, assisting our growing agent base as we lead the county in real estate sales and transactions. 

Affordable housing in SLO?

San Luis Obispo Housing Statistics - 2019

Fewer than 14% of homes on the market in San Luis Obispo are affordable for a median income family (Source: National Association of Home Builders). According to reliable sources such as ATTOM Data Solutions and the US Department of Housing and Urban Development; San Luis Obispo County has a population of 272,177, median home price of $589K, unemployment of 2.6%, average annual wage of $44,700, median household income of $59,628, 2019 rental affordability of 60.3% and 2018 home affordability of 107.1%.

Pictured below, see the population and median home prices of Paso Robles, Morro Bay, San Luis Obispo, Grover Beach, Atascadero, Pismo Beach and Arroyo Grande

Graph of area median home prices

Less than 25% of San Luis Obispo County residents can afford a median-priced home.

With all this in mind, our market in San Luis Obispo remains robust. We are seeing more homes for sale, but also very quick absorption of new listings and the market appears to be heating up since the early part of February 2019. The buying season for student rental properties begins NOW, so it is a very good time to list a home. 

Please consider Monique to give you a progressive market plan to list and get top dollar for your home, or contact her to find a home for yourself, investment home property (while your student goes to college), land, lot or commercial property in our very popular central coast area. Our area affordability may be low, but the desire to live here, remains very high!

2019 Home Market Update

What are San Luis Obispo Home Values in 2019?

In San Luis Obispo the median home value has gone up 7.2% over the past year (2018) to $738,500. The median price per square foot in SLO is $427. The other northern and southern county average is $372 per square foot (metro areas of Paso and Arroyo Grande). The median price of homes currently listed in San Luis Obispo is $754,450, while the median price of homes that sold is $709,300. Median rent prices of homes in San Luis Obispo is higher also at $2850. Other areas in SLO county average out to a median of price of $2,500 per month rent. Mortgage delinquency is down also at 0.3%. The national average is 1.1%. 

Generally US home values have fallen by more than 20% nationally from their 2007 peak and 2011 trough. As a result, many homeowners are now underwater on their mortgages as they owe more than their home is worth. San Luis Obispo homeowners that are underwater on their mortgage, stands at 3.1%; lower than the north and south county statistic of 3.2%. 

Overall, San Luis Obispo home market values have kept their worth and our economy remains strong, especially in comparison nationally. Please consider coming to one of the best places on earth, and allow me to assist you in buying or selling your San Luis Obispo real estate, homes, condos, mobile homesvineyards, ocean view / ocean front homes, lots and land. Contact Monique by email or phone for information on our area. She has decades of experience in our local real estate market and will give you her undivided, and full, personal attention to list or purchase your next property in this very desirable central coast area.

Stay tuned for the next update on our February - March Housing Market 2109

Home Market Update

Your San Luis Obispo Home Market Update for May 2018

As of May, there were 73 single family homes on the market in the City of San Luis Obispo. They range in price from $629,000 (for a 3 bedroom, 1 bath) to $3,280,000 (for a 5 bedroom, 5.5 bathroom, 8 acre property). There were 43 homes under contract and 34 that closed escrow in the 30 days prior. The sale price averaged around $475 a square foot. Homes are going into escrow within 47 days of being put on the market, which is the average over the last 3 months. It is a strong seller's market due to the lack of inventory with homes selling fast if priced fairly. It might be one of the best times in the last 10 years to sell as homes are at the all time highs since 2005-2007. Some are even higher! Please contact us for a FREE market analysis, especially if you are ready to take the big step toward selling your home and would like to know what your home's value is in this current market. 

Some quick facts about about our median values in San Luis Obispo

  • Median home price - 2 bedroom in SLO - $595,5000 
  • Median home price - 3 bedroom in SLO - $710,500
  • Median home price - 4 bedroom in SLO - 961,000
  • Median condo price in SLO - $448,500
  • Median SLO county sale price - $597,000
    (average over the last 3 months)

Are we headed toward a housing bubble?

It has been 8 years since the "Great Recession" ended, and the California economy has performed very well. Unemployment has dipped below 5% for the first time in a decade, the stock market near all time highs, interest rates remaining at historical lows and the state government running a budget surplus. Defaults on home mortgages and foreclosures have decreased substantially in SLO County with only 16 completed foreclosures occurring since the beginning of 2018. Rapidly rising home prices and 54% homeownership, is making California dangerously close to becoming a majority-renter state. This could lead to long term challenges and has led many to wonder if home prices have reached an unsustainable level, especially with interest rates starting to climb over the last couple months. Are we reaching "a bubble?" California has experienced 68 months of year after year growth. Sellers in San Luis Obispo are getting a median of 99% of their listed price while the number of days on market has dropped to approximately 20 days. If sellers put their home on the market today, they can expect to sell it quickly and for top dollar. The increase in home values has created a significant amount of wealth with once in a lifetime mortgage rates. Unfortunately the rapid growth has outpaced income growth to the point that the median house is 8 times the median household income... making the gains worrisome from an affordability and sustainability standpoint. Currently, 72% of CA households can NOT afford the median priced home in California. Are we headed towards a bubble? Could be. For sure there will be a correction coming down the road (there always is), but we aren't quite there yet. It may be a good time to act, and if you do, I hope you contact me, with decades of real estate experience through the highs and lows of the economy and the local real estate market.

*NOTE: This is a summarize report published by the California Association of REALTORS Chief Economist.

The good news is, we live in paradise, next to the coast, with the best weather arguably in the world, with TOP schools and new and growing technological and "clean air" businesses, ...  PLUS our county's median home prices are still half of the Bay area's (San Francisco) and half of Southern California's (Orange County) median home prices. The quality of life on the Central Coast is becoming everyone's dream for coming to school (Cal Poly State University), starting a business, relocating to a new business (MINDBODY, Amazon, other major employers), or retiring from the crazy, competitive business, high traffic and crowded areas of the Northern and Southern coastal, industrial cities. Remember, San Luis Obispo is the Happiest Place on Earth!

Have a great Memorial weekend, honoring our great country and the personal and veterans that have served it. The Central Coast has many fun-filled and heart-felt festivities honoring this great holiday~

Monique Carlton - Your Central Coast REALTOR® and part owner of San Luis Obispo Realty
Cell - (805) 471-6921
Email - moniquecarlton@gmail.com

SLO Home Prices

San Luis Obispo County Housing Data Comparison - Median Prices remain the same as a year ago, December 2015 to December 2016

"The median is the midpoint at which half of the houses sold for more and half for less. Figures are compared year over year because of the seasonal nature of home sales."

This just in from Telegram Tribune and Corelogic: The number of homes sold in San Luis Obispo County in December matched the number sold in the same month the previous year, while the median sales price of those homes also remained the same, $500,000.

Total sales, including new homes, resale single-family homes and condos, tallied 389 in December, the same number of homes sold in December 2015, according to Irvine-based data company CoreLogic. The median price of those homes remained steady at $500,000.

In San Luis Obispo County, 73.9 percent of all sales in December were resale single-family homes, according to CoreLogic. Resale single-family home sales increased 0.4 percent to 286 units sold in December from the year-earlier month. The median price of these resale homes rose by 2.1 percent to $515,000.

The number of condos sold in the county was 47 units, up 9.3 percent from December 2015. The median price for condos was $400,000, up 22.3 percent from a year ago.

Sales of new homes decreased by 8.2 percent in December, with 56 units sold, compared with 61 the previous year. The median price of new homes sold increased by 4.9 percent year over year to $584,500.

Why Invest in San Luis Obispo?

What Makes San Luis Obispo the Best Place to Live, Buy a Home or Invest?

San Luis Obispo County provides you many ways to experience the superior quality of lifestyle, which makes all our real estate here a valuable investment and asset. Who wouldn't want to live in any of these incredible Coastal Communities of San Luis Obispo County?

Search homes and real estate available here:

See informative links below that will take you to places of interest and reasons to invest in SLO……

A HAPPY PLACE:  Click here to see why San Luis Obispo has become known as the “Happiest Place on Earth”

SURFING: San Luis Obispo has some of the top surf spots for all skill levels. Cal Poly was even placed in the top three of the “10 best surf schools in America” by www.Surfline.com. (Scroll down to #3.)

HIKING: San Luis Obispo is famous for its hiking trails, especially on five of the Nine Sisters, or Morros, a stunning string of volcanic peaks stretching from Morro Bay across San Luis Obispo. Links to these hiking trails:

MORE HIKING TRAILS: There are several other places to hike around San Luis Obispo, including Montaña de Oro State Park and Morro Bay State Park, two gems on the California coast. Lists, including printable maps, can be found at www.hikespeak.com or find Trails of SLO County at www.alltrails.com

FARMERS MARKETS: You can find a local farmer’s market on any day of the week in San Luis Obispo County. Find a list at slocountyfarmers.org and northcountyfarmersmarkets.com. With an abundance of locally grown fresh produce, meats and seafood, and celebrated restaurants serving our counties award winning wines and handcrafted micro brews, it’s not hard to savor the Central Coast.

WINE, BEER, ADVENTURE, SAILING, WHALE WATCHING, KAYAKING, ZIP-LINING, RANCH AND CASTLE TOURS: See Exclusive Wine Tours (visitcentralcoastwine.com), Beer Tours (hoponbeertours.com), and Adventure Tours (whale watching tours, sailing, and kayaking tours, Zip-lining and Ranch Tours at Margarita Adventures), even castle tours (Hearst Castle, Hearst Ranch in San Simeon) and many other private group tours offered to behind the scenes venues throughout the county.

FESTIVALS, FAIRS, AND PARADES:  We love hosting our parades, fairs and festivals here on the Central Coast! Annual festival themes have included the Wine Festival, the Olive Festival, the Apple Festival, Lavender Festival, Wildflower Festival, the Harbor Festival, the Harbor of Lights Festival, the Clam Festival, Harvest Festival, a Scarecrow Festival and of course festivals in observance of any major or minor holiday! Find year round events and the communities that are hosting them within San Luis Obispo County at www.visitsanluisobispocounty.com

The third largest producer of wine in California, wineries and wine grape growers here in SLO County generated a total of 13,627 jobs last year earning $388 million in wages and wine-related tourism brought in expenditures of $194 million (study from UC Davis; The Tribune, June 9, 2016).  Approaching soon, the third weekend in October, is the Harvest Wine Weekend celebrated at near every winery in the North County.

Also in October, marvel at thousands of black-and-orange Monarch butterflies as they make their fall migration to temperate Pismo Beach, one of California’s last quintessential beach towns. This year’s epic butterfly season begins with the Monarch Grove Grand Opening Celebration (Oct. 22) featuring family friendly activities, interesting booths, and close encounters with the winged wonders (approximately 10,000 to be exact).

San Luis Obispo County is home to one of the nation's top rated universities: California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly). Find information about Cal Poly, Cuesta College, and local public schools here.

NOW you know why you might want to call the Central Coast your home!  Please contact us to assist you in finding the Central Coast Home of your DREAMS!


San Luis Obispo top college town

SLO ranked as "Best College Town"

Not only is San Luis Obispo the “happiest city in America” — at least according to “The Oprah Winfrey Show” when it was still on the air — it’s also now the best town in the nation for students to spend their college years. That’s according to website College Rank, which says it helps prospective students choose a college based on various criteria, including general lifestyle categories and academics.

Author Kara Mayer Robinson researched hundreds of college towns based on factors such as outdoor space, the number of boutiques and cafes, pedestrian friendliness, culture, nightlife and “the general vibe” when creating the list that included communities in 33 states.

When it came to San Luis Obispo, Robinson wrote that the “stress you endured while applying to colleges will instantly melt away.”

“This collegiate town on California’s scenic Central Coast has a contagious kick-back-and-relax vibe,” she wrote. “It’s not just college students who love the SLO life. Many people settle in here because of its culture, entertainment and surroundings.” Search San Luis Obispo Housing HERE!

Other California college towns that made the list include Santa Cruz, which ranked ninth, and Berkeley at 11.

“These top 50 cities offer college youth and energy while also providing a wonderful place to call home for life,” College Rank wrote about the assessment.

Molly Kern, San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce’s director of communications and business education, cited San Luis Obispo’s attractive “rolling hillsides, breathtaking ocean views and spectacular beaches” in the article.

Kern said Thursday that it’s great to see the city so highly touted, adding she believes the accolade was chosen from a combination of offerings: culture, arts, athletics, the outdoors, the Cal Poly campus and more.

“Whether you’re a resident, a student or a visitor, San Luis Obispo is not only a place to go to college but the best town with a university to enjoy everything it has to offer,” .

If you are looking to buy a home, apartment complex, condo or rent an apartment or home, please consider contacting Monique. Let your investment in popular San Luis Obispo real estate pay off your student's debt or invest in your own home or retirement home in one of the best places on Earth! Monique is fortunate to have bought and sold real estate in San Luis Obispo County for several decades.

Read more in the Tribune Sept. 2, 2016.

Real Estate Market Update - May 2016

Is it time to sell your home? Within the last twelve months, the median sale price of a single-family home in San Luis Obispo has increased by 10%.

In San Luis Obispo there were 87 single-family homes on the market through April, 2016. They ranged in price from $495,000 to $3.25 million. There were 80 homes in escrow and 30 that closed escrow in the 30 days prior. The average sale price hovers around $405 per square foot and homes are going into escrow within 72 days of being put on the market (3 month average). From February to March, there was a 31% increase in the number of homes on the market and a staggering 126% increase in the number of homes in escrow. It is expected the next 6 months will be a very active buying/selling period as Cal Poly parents start looking for a property for their children to live in while in college and annual lease turnover at the end of June. If you have considered selling your property, it is my belief that 2016 is the year to sell (either cashing out OR exchanging into another investment property). With a gradual increase of interest rates projected, housing affordability will continue to be a major concern for buyers entering the market.

Here are some QUICK FACTS on Median Home Prices in San Luis Obispo:

  • Median 2 bedroom in SLO    $ 607,500
  • Median 3 bedroom in SLO    $ 638,500
  • Median 4 bedroom in SLO    $ 865,000
  • Median Condo in SLO           $ 459,000
  • Median County Sale Price     $ 541,500

So to answer the question, "Is it a good time to sell your home in San Luis Obispo?"   Judging by the data, YES!

Please register or fill out a form to have a FREE market analysis of your home (with no obligation). Search all homes in San Luis Obispo and San Luis Obispo County HERE. View all my home buying and selling tips here.


San Luis Obispo Market Update - April 2016

San Luis Obispo County sees continued rise in Home sales and prices over 2015

San Luis Obispo Real Estate, Homes Market Update


  • Overall San Luis Obispo median home price rises to $473,500, up 5.5 percent from the same month a year ago.
  • Overall San Luis Obispo home sales in the county increase to 268 in February, up 1.5 percent from a year earlier.
  • Both the overall number of home sales in San Luis Obispo County and the median home price rose slightly in February from the same month a year ago, while dipping marginally from January’s numbers.
  • Total sales, including new homes, resale single family homes and condos, were 268 in February, up 1.5 percent over the same month a year ago when 264 units were sold.
  • The overall San Luis Obispo median home price rose 5.5 percent to $473,500 in February from $449,000 a year earlier. (The median is the midpoint at which half of the houses sold for more and half for less. Figures are compared year over year because of the seasonal nature of home sales.)
  • The California Association of Realtors reported that closed escrow sales of existing, single-family detached homes in the state totaled a seasonally adjusted 393,360 units in February, up 6.4 percent from February 2015.
  • The association reported the median price of a resale single-family detached home in California was $446,460 in February, 3.8 percent higher than the revised $429,930 recorded in February 2015.
  • In San Luis Obispo County, 68.3 percent of all sales in February were resale single-family homes. Resale single-family home sales decreased 16.1 percent to 183 units sold in February; the median price of these resale homes rose by 8.9 percent to $488,750.
  • The number of condos sold in the county was 37 units, up 42.3 percent from 26 in February 2015. The median price for condos was $370,000, down 0.7 percent from a year ago.
  • Sales of new homes increased by 140 percent in February, with 48 units sold, compared with 20 the previous year. The median price of new homes sold increased by 7.8 percent year over year to $553,500.

Please read more from the San Luis Obispo Tribune News in the Apr. 7, 2016 edition

Please contact Monique to find real estate and homes for sale in San Luis Obispo. Take advantage of a housing market that continues to rise in one of the best places in the world!


Monique Carlton - REALTOR®
Top San Luis Obispo Real Estate Agency

Top San Luis Obispo Real Estate Agency on the Central Coast!
441 Marsh Street
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
Phone: (805) 471-6921
Email: moniquecarlton@gmail.com
DRE # 00184228

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Monique Carlton - REALTOR ® | Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate, Haven Properties | 441 Marsh Street San Luis Obispo, CA 93401 | Your number ONE resource for buying and selling San Luis Obispo Real Estate and Homes on the Central Coast of California!

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