September 2011 Low Inventory & Stabilizing Median Prices

This is a copy of a recent article I wrote for www.examiner.com.

September Northern Colorado Real Estate Market Report

Too often people assume that the real estate market is the same across the country. Real estate markets are more like the weather. Not every market is the same. Even in Northern Colorado there are differences between the Fort Collins, Loveland, and Greely markets. A recent article in the Northern Colorado Business Report provided a good summary of the real estate market. Overall, low inventory is helping stabilize our median prices across the region.

The number of condos on the market in Fort Collins is down 27.9% and a whopping 42.1% in Loveland

For Buyers

This is still a great time to buy but you may feel like there are not as many options available to you. You may also be surprised to see some homes going under-contract very quickly, and maybe even seeing multiple offers. With rising days on market, you wouldn’t expect this, but homes that are priced competively and move-in ready are in high demand since there are less of them available. The market above $350,000 is still a strong buyer’s market.

Interest rates are also still at historic lows. Now is a great time to obtain a fixed-rate mortgage. The principal + interest payment on a $200,000 mortgage at 4.5% for 30 yrs. is $1,221.70.

For Sellers

Although it’s not a great time to sell, some homeowners will probably be surprised to find that their home’s value may not be as low as they thought it would be. Everybody has very different perceptions. Some sellers may think this is the absolute worst time to sell and are pleasantly surprised to find that their homes value has not declined much or even appreciated slightly. Others, may be shocked if they have unrealistic expectations. The important thing to remember is to do a thorough market analysis and review what’s sold in your neighborhood before you make conclusions about whether or not this is a good time to sell.

If you’re on the market, it is important to make sure you’re home is in top notch condition. Buyers right now want move-in-ready homes and are less willing to comprimise when it comes to fixing small items. You also need to know that price is still very important. If you’ve been on the market a while, you probably need to consider dropping your price. Make sure you review comps of what’s selling in your neighborhood so you can evaluate how your home is priced and whether you need to do this or not.

September Market Statistics (2010 vs. 2011)

Fort Collins single-family residential:

# of homes on market: 1,243 (down 10.9%)
Average Days on Market: 115 (up 5.5%)
Median Sale Price: $242,460 (down 9.8%)
Fort Collins attached-dwellings:

# of condos/townhomes on market: 227 (down 27.9%)
Average Days on Market: 123 (up 4.2%)
Median Sales Price: $142,850 (up 3.5%)
Loveland single-family residential:

# of homes on market: 842 (down 18%)
Average Days on Market: 122 (0% change)
Median Sale Price: $209,275 (up 6.8%)
Loveland attached-dwellings:

# of condos/townhomes on market: 73 (down 42.1%)
Average Days on Market: 125 (up 15.7%)
Median Sales Price: $144,985 (down 9.4%)
Greeley single-family residential:

# of homes on market: 516 (down 24.8%)
Average Days on Market: 115 (up 26.4%)
Median Sale Price: $130,400 (up 0.3%)
Greeley attached-dwellings:

# of condos/townhomes on market: 81 (down 25.7%)
Average Days on Market: 115 (down 29.4%)
Median Sales Price: $103,000 (up 14.4%)