February Steamboat Springs Market Report
Steamboat Springs’ real estate market set the bar high in January with $42.6M+ in sales that included one large $17.6M sale of the Yampa Tailwaters property. So while February ’12 solidly beat February ’11 by 6.7%, at just under $22.5M, February sales might seem a little anti-climatic.
To find the icing on the cake we need to look at the number of Pending Steamboat Springs Sales on the books. Here’s a snapshot of how pending sales are trending upward and should yield healthy numbers in the next two months as these sales close:
- January 1, 2012: 71 Pending Sales
- February 1, 2012: 77 Pending Sales
- March 1, 2012: 102 Pending Sales
- March 21, 2012: 121 Pending Sales
Other good news from an economic supply and demand perspective: It’s been over 2 years since the number of listings in the Steamboat Springs MLS has been this low.:
- March 21, ’12 # Listings in Steamboat Springs’ MLS = 1,771
- March 1, ’11 # Listings in Steamboat Springs’ MLS = 1,873
- March 1, ’10 # Listings in Steamboat Springs’ MLS = 1,969
As home inventory supply tightens, laws of economics will tell you that the real estate market and home prices will heat up.
There’s a mixed bag of news all over the country; Steamboat Springs is not the only real estate market sending mixed signals among different metrics and price points:
- The Phoenix market has been pummeled as the Case-Shiller Price Index points out month after month, but in the lower price points (under $200K), the selling atmosphere mirrors that of the Phoenix market’s peak 2004-2005 years with multiple offers coming the same week a property is listed resulting in sales prices above list price. So even though the market is currently competitive in only the lower end segment, the market dynamics are signaling the buyer’s market may be over.
- Late last month the National Association of Realtors reported that nationally, pending home sales are on an upward trend, and the January Pending Home Sales Index is the highest since April 2010 (when buyers were rushing to take advantage of the home buyer tax credit).
- The National Association of Realtors just reported that February existing home sales slipped, but are up strongly (+8.8%) from February 2011.
So what’s the take away? Back to the icing on the cake…the past 5 years have not been kind to the Steamboat Springs (or any city’s) real estate market, but no business cycle is sustainable forever, and that goes for a down market having to turn around and rebound at some point too. It’s my belief that the Steamboat Springs’ turn-around point is here. There is pent up demand:
- first time home buyers who have been waiting to buy
- investors who have been waiting to buy and/or sell
- home owners who have been waiting to sell
- renters who have enjoyed low rents for the past few years who are now seeing rents rise to the point of not being worth passing up the lowest mortgage rates in history.
All these things combined, indicate to me that there is going to be a turn-around this year in Steamboat Springs’ real estate, and it will positively impact more than just the lower price points. Just like the spring weather has come to Steamboat Springs a little early this year, I’m feeling a warming up in our Steamboat Springs real estate market.
Highlights from the February 2012 Steamboat Springs Real Estate Report
- February’s sales at just under $22.5M were 6.7% better than February 2011
- There were 10 Bank Sales, down from 14 in January, 18 in December and 15 in November
- 50% of Residential Improved Units Sales were under $300K and 71% were under $500K
- The Mountain Area was top in % of $ Sales with 43.9% of February’s $ Sales
- There were 3 sales over $1M