Buying a home in San Diego is a huge decision. Whether you're a first-time home buyer or current homeowner, the home buying process can seem complicated and overwhelming. There are many choices to make, from determining the best mortgage lender to finding the right place to make your new home.
Prospective home buyers should understand more about the market they're purchasing in and know a few key factors, like the best time to buy in San Diego. The real estate market tends to fluctuate from season to season, so figuring out when home prices are at their lowest is important.
Don't pull the trigger on buying a new home in San Diego without reading through this guide to determine the best time of year to buy, the best areas in the city to live in, and find out how a real estate agent can help simplify the buying process.
Best Time of Year to Buy in San Diego
In general, late spring is considered to be the time when the largest amount of homes are on the market, which tends to lead to the highest prices. Winter is generally the best time to find homes at the lowest prices, although mortgage rates might be at their highest.
The real estate market in San Diego is extremely hot right now, with some homes selling in as few as 11 days. Most homes typically receive multiple offers and sell for approximately 2% less than the listing price. Home values average around $613k, up 3.9% since 2018, and are expected to continue rising. Mortgage rates are also expected to continue rising throughout 2019.
Following the national predictions, April is generally the worst time of year to buy in San Diego, with home prices at their highest. While winter does see fairly low prices in the city, late fall, specifically October is often the best time to buy. Buyers can expect to save around $7,800 on a $300k home. Plus, buyer competition is at an all-time low, making it easier to close on the home you want for a low price.
The Best Places to Buy a Home in San Diego
Now that you know the best time to buy, you'll want to narrow your search to some of the top-rated neighborhoods in San Diego. There are many great areas to call home in this bustling city, but these five are the highest-rated neighborhoods.
1. Del Mar Mesa
This top-rated San Diego neighborhood is home to 20k residents and boasts A+ school systems. This urban area offers a good selection of restaurants, night clubs, and coffee shops, while also offering a good selection of parks and family-friendly amenities.
Typical Home Value - $975k
2. Miramar Ranch North
This urban neighborhood houses approximately 19k residents and is one of the best places to live in the city. With A+ school systems, a diverse nightlife, great amenities for families, and slightly more affordable homes, Miramar Ranch North is a great place to call home.
Typical Home Value - $651k
3. Pacific Highlands Ranch
Those looking for a neighborhood with more of a suburban feel should look into Pacific Highlands Ranch, home to 12k residents. This suburb offers A+ schools, a good mix of restaurants and bars, and excellent amenities for families.
Typical Home Value - $1m
4. Torrey Hills
This urban neighborhood is home to 16k residents and boasts A+ schools. Torrey Hills has a great selection of restaurants, bars, and coffee shops while balancing great family-friendly activities.
Typical Home Value - $1m
5. Sabre Springs
Sabre Springs is home to 15k residents and has an urban vibe. This neighborhood also has A+ schools, has a good selection of restaurants and coffee shops, and has a good selection of parks and other family-friendly attractions.
Typical Home Value - $566k
4 Ways to Get a Great Deal On a Home in San Diego
Now that you know the best neighborhoods and months to buy in San Diego, it's good to find a few other buying strategies to ensure you receive the best possible deal on your new home. Here are four of the best tips to improve your odds of getting a great deal on your San Diego house.
Find a Great San Diego Real Estate Agent
A real estate agent is absolutely crucial, particularly in a fast-moving marketplace like San Diego. Agents will help you navigate through the buying process quickly, without missing a beat. A great real estate agent will know your local buying market well and help you make qualified buying decisions.
Agents can also help you with financing questions while acting on your behalf during negotiations. Some even offer home buyer rebates that can reimburse you at the time of closing.
Learn More: What Does a Real Estate Agent Do for a Buyer?
Assess Your Needs and Lay Out Your Goals
No two buyers are the same and a great agent will help you determine what's important to you in a home. From the number of bedrooms and bathrooms to layout, your agent can help create a specific search that meets your individual needs. They can also search for option amenities, like green energy add-ons, pools, and finished basements, all within your budget.
Great agents can send you homes the moment they hit the MLS before they hit search sites like Zillow. This can give you a competitive edge over other buyers, and since the San Diego market moves quickly, making an offer even 24 hours before other buyers can make a huge difference in buying price.
Learn More: What to Look for When Buying a Home
Find a Lender and Secure Financing
Financing is an important step in the buying process that your agent can also walk you through. Whether you have an idea of how you want to finance your home or not, it's important to review financing options ahead of time, so you're pre-approved by the time you start hunting for your new home.
Work with your agent to review all available financing options. Your agents can also put you in touch with local lenders and loan officers.
Negotiate for the Best Possible Price
One of the most important jobs an agent has is negotiating on your behalf. Your real estate agent knows best how these negotiations work and will act on your behalf to ensure you receive the best possible deal on your new home.
From helping you determine the fairest offer to place on a home to help you negotiate changes following the home inspection, an agent is an invaluable resource who will prevent you from overpaying throughout the buying process.
Ready to start looking for your dream home in San Diego? Get matched with a Clever Partner Agent in your city today. Partner Agents can provide on-demand showings to help you view a home before other buyers. In addition, Clever Partner Agent can offer a $1k rebate to help with closing costs.
Get started by filling out the online form and a representative will be in touch to schedule your no-obligation consultation.