In the Bay Area, Sellers Take All

Including the fixtures.

Better than any data point ever could, the Bay Area’s housing market was recently summed up by the recent sale of a burned-down house in Walnut Creek. Which sold for $1 million. After a bidding war.

Most homes on the market in the Bay Area do include, you know, walls. But, SFGate reports, some sellers are using their upper hand to strip their houses of built-in fixtures, from countertops to cabinets — sometimes in the middle of a sale. They’re also leaving stuff behind. Buyers and agents now often have to figure out how to get rid of an old couch abandoned by sellers who know they can get away with it.

It’s the latest sign of a dysfunctional relationship between buyers and sellers, enabled by the market itself. Home prices in the Bay Area dipped slightly in July, to a median price of $1.3 million. But inventory is still extremely low, at ~1.4 months, and a higher percentage of homes (7.4%) in the Bay Area are selling for more than 30% above list price than anywhere in the country. Hopefully for buyers, those houses have not been ransacked or burned down by their previous owners.

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