Cristal's Blog


May 16, 2024

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In the ever-changing world of Santa Barbara's real estate market, April 2024 emerged as a month of intrigue and promise. Amidst the broader market dynamics across California, our coastal haven stands out with its unique blend of resilience and opportunity, offering a distinct value proposition for buyers and sellers alike.

Cristal Clarke smiling behind a desk on her cell phone in front of a laptop and large window with sunshine coming through.

A More Balanced Outlook in the Housing Market

As we observe the overarching patterns of the housing market nationally, a distinct trend becomes apparent: a movement toward balance. In April, inventory grew, marking a 33.3% surge in available homes for sale compared to the previous year. This trend persisted for the 25th consecutive week, presenting homebuyers with more choices in the market. Despite this, the median price of homes for sale in April remained steady compared to last year. Homes sold in an average of 47 days, one day longer than the previous year, but 7 days shorter than pre-COVID-19 pandemic levels.

Navigating Market Dynamics 

April brought a notable increase in active listings statewide and locally across Santa Barbara communities. This recent surge in homes hitting the market fosters an environment ripe for transactions where buyers and sellers can engage with confidence.

Seizing the Moment

The present moment beckons with promise, offering a tableau of possibilities waiting to be explored. Now is the time to engage with Santa Barbara's real estate market and chart a course toward your personal aspirations.

Neighborhood Market Update

World class contemporary estate against a backdrop of a beautiful twilight sky and lush greenery


SOLD: 18

A story book looking Hope Ranch Estate with a kidney shaped pool and the ocean in the background.

Hope Ranch


A Mediterranean estate with a red tiled roof overlooking the ocean

Santa Barbara

SOLD: 58

A Hacienda-style Spanish Colonial estate reflected in the serene backyard pool


SOLD: 11

Casamar, an extraordinary Mediterranean estate lighting up the night.

Featured Property
LISTING PRICE: $ 21,900,000

Nestled within the sought-after Golden Quadrangle area of Montecito, Casamar stands as a prime example of Mediterranean elegance at its finest, located on approximately 2.12 acres. With sweeping ocean and mountain vistas, this palatial estate exudes sophistication and opulence at every turn.

A luxury living room with wood beamed ceiling and comfy yet elegant looking furniture in front of a floor to ceiling window with a view of the ocean.

Step through the awe-inspiring entrance adorned with a custom dome skylight into a realm of unparalleled luxury. The grand living room hosts a stunning stone fireplace, parquet floor, high vaulted wood beam ceilings, and breathtaking panoramic ocean views through glass fanlight-arched French doors.

A showcase kitchen with wood floors, an island, top of the line appliances and a beautiful ocean view.

The gourmet kitchen, bathed in natural light from skylights, features custom cabinetry, top-of-the-line appliances, and an intimate breakfast room opening onto an ocean-view terrace. The adjacent media room/library, complete with a dual-faced fireplace and projection system, offers a cozy retreat for relaxation.

A luxury primary suite with window paneled door open to reveal ocean views.

The primary suite, a sanctuary of tranquility, boasts a wood ceiling, dual luxurious bathrooms, spacious walk-in closets, and French doors leading to a private terrace overlooking the ocean. Additional bedrooms, each with en-suite baths, ensure comfort and privacy for all residents (and visitors).

A luxury backyard pool area surrounded by lush vegetation and a row of lounge chairs at the top of stairs.

Lushly landscaped grounds invite outdoor living at its finest. From the glistening pool and koi pond to the rose gardens and orchards, cascading waterfall, two elegant fountains, a charming arbor,every corner of the estate exudes serenity and charm. A farm-to-table patio off the kitchen provides an idyllic setting for al fresco dining amidst the natural splendor of the surroundings.

A large American flag overlooking an upscale community with the ocean and the Channel Islands in the background.

Further enhancing the allure of this exceptional property are amenities such as an expansive motor court, upper-level 4-car garage, generator, a private well, and a charming guest house with ocean views. Conveniently located near beaches, the Upper Village, and within the prestigious Montecito Union School District, Casamar offers unparalleled luxury and convenience in one of California's most coveted communities.

For those considering buying, selling, or investing in real estate in this area, I'm here to assist you every step of the way. Feel free to contact me at (805) 886-9378 or via email at to schedule a complimentary consultation. Stay ahead of market trends with my next market update. Let's make your real estate goals a reality.

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Client Reviews

“It was an emotional experience selling our mother’s home in Montecito that we all loved so much but Cristal made the process easier on our whole family by guiding us through the transaction every step of the way. She knows the market so well and everything she recommended was on point including the asking price, painting, and staging the home, which looked beautiful and helped the buyer envision her new home. We sold it the first day it hit the market with an offer above asking! Cristal did an incredible job communicating with us and the buyer to ensure that the transaction would run smoothly. We highly recommend using Cristal, she was a pleasure to work with! ”

- J & A

“Cristal is a pleasure to work with! Her knowledge of the local real estate market coupled with her amazing listening skills resulted in her showing us an array of homes that were all excellent choices. Her low-pressure patient attitude made us feel extremely comfortable with the whole process. I cannot recommend her highly enough.”

- M.F.

“Cristal Clarke is #1 in her field - and you don't become #1 by luck. Cristal works harder, and longer, and with more charm and patience than any real estate agent I have ever worked with in the past; her calendar has no weekend, her days have no clocks, her only concern is selling your property as soon as possible and for the best price on the market. Am I a fan? You bet!”

- P.B.

“We have used Cristal now several times and cannot express how grateful we are for her expertise, dedication, and unwavering support throughout the entire home-buying process. Cristal is knowledgeable, patient and attentive. Her attention to detail is remarkable, and she consistently went above and beyond to provide us with all the information and resources we needed to make informed decisions. Cristal is a skillful negotiator and advocate. She can navigate complex negotiations with professionalism and grace and felt like a true partner to us in the home-buying process. Cristal has a genuine passion for real estate and a deep commitment to her clients' satisfaction. I cannot speak highly enough of Cristal and her exceptional service. She is a true expert in her field and her dedication to excellence, combined with unwavering support is the reason we choose to work with her for all our real estate buying needs.”

- T.C.

“Cristal is a top-notch realtor who sold my home before it ever went on the market. I had two competing offers that enabled me to get top dollar for my home. Not only is Cristal superb but her team is extraordinary. I cannot say enough about Cristal and her team. They are simply phenomenal, the consummate professionals, who took care of every possible detail, making the sale and transition period, smooth from our end. They are also lovely, caring people, who knew all the right professionals, to get the job done. Thank you, everyone!”

- D.R.

“I could list lots of cool adjectives to describe Cristal. All good by the way. But, that is not why I or anyone should hire Cristal. My reason for hiring her, which proved to be correct, is very simple. She got the job done. And, she does it time and time again and with zero issues. And, that is why she is one of the top agents in the country. End of subject. ”

- M.A.

“Working with Cristal was a complete pleasure. Cristal was extremely patient with us as we evaluated nearly 2 dozen homes over a span of 2 years. Her knowledge of the market is unmatched. Cristal provided us with exceptional counsel as we evaluated opportunities and negotiated pricing. The closing process was handled thoroughly and efficiently. We could not be happier with our purchase and even more happy to now call Cristal our friend.”

- D.K.

“Cristal Clarke has conducted numerous real estate transactions for me beginning 13 years ago with the purchase of a Lemon Ranch. She has handled both large and small purchases and sales with equal dedication. As a negotiator, you can’t find anyone better. Her transactions are always conducted in the most appropriate and professional manner. Cristal has considerable knowledge of the Santa Barbara market.”

- S.N. Decker Ph.D.

“Living in Europe, we were to say the least, unaccustomed to the nuances of Real Estate acquisition in California and Cristal steered us through the process with absolute professionalism and personal attention to detail at every turn. Her in-depth knowledge of the market place combined with enthusiasm and drive was the only reason we secured the property of our dreams and will be forever grateful. If you are looking for personal discrete and private representation of the highest quality we suggest you look no further than Cristal Clarke.”

- Johan and Paula van den Berg

“Cristal is very straightforward, cheerful, helpful, professional and trustworthy….we felt very lucky to work with her.”

- John and Lacey Williams

“After considering our many choices, we are grateful it was Cristal Clarke of Sotheby’s International who represented the sale of our Montecito cottage. We are familiar with Cristal’s reputation of hard work and dedication to clients, but it was her attention to detail that made our experience so positive. She offered suggestions for staging the property, worked in harmony with potential buyers and was even able to secure back up offers. The sale of our cottage was completed much sooner than we expected, due in great part to Cristal’s professional skills and support. We highly recommend Cristal as a first choice for anyone needing representation with real estate.”

- Michael & Nancy Lee

“Our experience in working with Cristal Clarke resulted in the successful and discrete acquisition of a property which was not yet on the open market. Her knowledge of the Montecito/Santa Barbara area and vast expertise blended with her passion for real estate and architecture, provided us with the very highest level of professionalism and personalized services. Cristal exhibited a rare combination of excellent communications, attention to detail, creativity and patience.”

- Richard and Catherine Frinier

“Cristal really breaks the mold. She knows every nook and cranny of this real estate market, understands value, and follows up on everything, all the time. She was incredibly patient with our two year quest to find the perfect house. Every house hunting trip from across the country was well planned, and our time was never wasted. On top of her professionalism and expertise, she is delightful to spend time with. We are thrilled with the home we purchased, and grateful to Cristal for so wisely advising us through this process, right through to the close and beyond.”

- Laurie Siegel

“We met Cristal first in the course of renting a winter home (for three years), then buying a house using her as our agent. She was amazingly good at listening to our wants and showing us homes that fit our needs. Her mastery of the paperwork was perfect. Most importantly, there was never a situation where we doubted her straightforwardness or integrity. If we do another real estate transaction in Montecito (which I doubt, we’re happy with what we purchased), without question we’d use Cristal again.”

- Ken Saffir

“Susan and I just want to thank you for your efforts in the sale of our home. You are really quite amazing. Your competence, persistence, optimism and humor made the entire process effortless. Every problem that arose, you somehow fixed; any obstacle, you overcame. We have bought and sold many homes. It has never been such a painless and enjoyable process!”

- Michael & Susan Marquart

“A little something about “our” realtor, Cristal Clarke. My wife and I came to Santa Barbara about fifteen years ago looking for a seasonal home from which to enjoy the weather and amenities of the central coast. Being in the real estate business myself I was familiar with agents and brokers so entered the market with open eyes. We “flipped” a few houses in the early years, dealing with various agents and finally ended up in Montecito. That’s when good fortune put us together with Cristal. To say we were impressed is to put it mildly. Cristal really knows the market. She is familiar with the area, its history and trends. When we have questions about a particular property she either has the answers immediately or gets back to us by phone or email. There is no waiting or wondering with Cristal. She is an agent who is “on top of it.” Her recommendations as to price points, contractors, inspectors and title agents have proven to be exceptional, showing great insight and the highest professional standards. We consider ourselves exceedingly fortunate to say that Cristal Clarke is our realtor and would recommend her services to any serious buyer or seller.”

- Rob & Judi Kelch