Cristal's Blog


October 19, 2023

Back to Articles

As autumn ushers in its delightful decorations and daylight begins to wane, the Santa Barbara real estate market remains relatively steady and even robust in the luxury segment. Our ongoing inventory challenges continue, although those numbers were up over the summer months. And that lack of inventory is keeping our prices stable. So, if you’ve been on the fence about selling your Santa Barbara home, I recommend you list now.

A captivating pool court inside a mid-century home, with a lapiz blue pool in the center, surrounded by deck and glass-fronted rooms of the home. A fire pit is ablaze in the foreground.


The housing landscape in September 2023 painted a fascinating narrative proving real estate's fundamental principle: "location, location, location." Even in the face of interest rate challenges, the real estate market here continues to maintain a relatively steady course.

According to the latest housing data, September 2023 saw a 4% decline in the number of homes sold compared to the previous year. Furthermore, although fewer homes were listed, there was an increase of 0.4% in the median price. Those stable pricing trends are believed to be the result of a continued limited supply. The good news for luxury home sellers here is that this segment of the market remains robust, reflecting a sense of optimism and confidence within the high-end real estate sector.

Neighborhood Market Update

A two-story contemporary home with a pool and lush landscaping in the foreground and mountains in the background.

New: 16
Pending: 11
Price Changes:8
Sold: 17

A birds eye view of a sprawling estate in Hope Ranch with the ocean in the background and pool and lish landscaping in the foreground

Hope Ranch
New: 4
Pending: 2
Price Changes: 3
Sold: 3

The great room of Spanish White living room of contemporary home with soaring white beam ceiling and a wall of windows looking out to the ocean

Santa Barbara
New: 47
Pending: 50
Price Changes: 31
Sold: 37

A sundet birds eye view of one of the grandest estates in North America, illuminated from within, with its 125-ft-long pool and polo field in the foreground and mountains in the background...

New: 7
Pending: 8
Price Changes: 8
Sold: 3

Featured Property

A beautiful sparking blue pool surrounded by a mid century home.

Jack Warner Mid-Century Architectural Masterpiece
238 Miramar Avenue, Montecito CA
Listing Price: $11,850,000

This mid-century gem, showcasing modernist influences, reflects the architectural brilliance of Jack Warner and the seller's creative flair. It's elegantly updated, seamlessly blending artistry and functionality. The mesmerizing glass gate at the end of a private drive leads to a captivating pool court and a Victorian-style glass pavilion, emphasizing the home's uniqueness. The "quiet luxury" concept is embodied by the minimalist design, white walls, marble floors, and ample natural light.

A white and light grey mid-century living room

Living areas and bedrooms open to the pool court, creating a seamless indoor-outdoor experience. The manicured grounds offer a space for relaxation, contemplation, and entertainment, near Montecito's attractions, including the beach, Coast Village Road, and the Forbes 5-Star Rosewood Miramar Beach Hotel and Spa. As seen in Montecito Style by Monacelli Press (2022).

The manicured grounds of a mid-centruy estate

In this data-centric real estate environment, staying well-informed is paramount. If you have particular inquiries or require tailored advice to achieve your real estate objectives, don't hesitate to get in touch with me. I have a deep understanding of our unique region and stay up to date on the intricacies of our real estate market.

By the way! . . .

2023 Santa Barbara Half Marathon is Coming…..
In my continued commitment to the Santa Barbara community, I’m proudly serving as the exclusive real estate sponsor of the Santa Barbara Half Marathon, coming up on November 5. Since 2021, I’ve been contributing regularly to local non-profit groups, causes, and events dedicated to advancing health, education, and the environment. Watch this video for more information.

If you're looking to buy, sell, or invest in real estate here, don't hesitate to call me at (805) 886-9378 or send me an email at for a complimentary consultation. And remember to stay apprised of the market trends with my next market update.

More Resources:

Back to Articles

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