Moving Out Before Selling: Contra Costa - Myth #1

Aalto Insights Team
Nov 24, 2021

Moving Out Before Selling: Contra Costa County 680/24 Corridor Deep Dive

Below, you'll find our deep dive into Contra Costa County 680/24 Corridor for Real Estate Myth #1: To move out or not to move out?

Time on Market

Result: In the 680/24 Corridor Contra Costa County, owner occupied homes sell faster (!) compared to unoccupied.

As crazy as it sounds, occupied homes in the 680/24 Corridor (also sometimes called the Diablo Valley or San Ramon Valley) sell consistently faster than those which are unoccupied, so moving out before selling would not be the best way to increase speed of sale.

Looking at 78,103 sales across the 680/24 Corridor and going city-by-city (minimum 1,000 total sales) there is some variation, but the trend is consistent across the region: owner occupied homes sell faster across home sizes and price points than do unoccupied properties.

*Note that only cities with over 1,000 homes sold are listed. County total includes all cities within the county.

The gap between time on market for owner occupied and unoccupied homes has narrowed as the real estate market has heated up, but unoccupied Contra Costa County homes have consistently been listed for 40%-60% longer prior to sale than those occupied by the seller.

Interestingly, these trends have been largely consistent across home sizes and price points within each region.

Further, the speed at which the median property clears the market in the present environment is an additional strike against the wisdom of an early move. If a house in the 680/24 Corridor is going to sell in around a week under any circumstances, going through the hassle and expense of a preemptive move would only be justified in most cases by a significantly higher sales price.

Price per square foot

Result: Occupied homes in the 680/24 Corridor, Contra Costa County sold for a roughly $49 higher price per square foot as compared to unoccupied, similar to Marin County.

For this analysis we looked at 78,103 sales of homes with square footage between 1,000 and 10,000 sq. ft. across the 680/24 Corridor, Contra Cost County between 2007 and 2021.

While the difference was most evident in 0-2 bedroom homes ($55 higher ppsf for owner occupied properties), homes with 3+ bedrooms also sold for more ($30 higher ppsf) when occupied as compared to unoccupied.  

This trend held true across all cities in the 680/24 Corridor, while being most prevalent in Walnut Creek.

*Note that only cities with over 1,000 homes sold are listed. County total includes all cities within the county.

Aalto is a real estate broker licensed by the State of California, License #02062727 and abides by Equal Housing Opportunity laws. This article has been prepared solely for information purposes only. The information herein is based on information generally available to the public and/or from sources believed to be reliable. No representation or warranty can be given with respect to the accuracy of the information. Aalto disclaims any and all liability relating to this article.

More articles

Real Estate 101

Aalto vs Traditional Real Estate

Nick Narodny
Feb 22, 2022
Read blog post
Real Estate 101

Interest Rates vs Home Prices

Chelsea Ialeggio
Feb 1, 2022
Read blog post