Inventory short in Vail Valley home market, both resort and western valley
By the numbers
$461.3 million: Eagle County real estate sales volume in the first three months of 2018.
433: Real estate transactions for the same period.
10: Sales of $4 million or more in March 2018.
$10.5 million: Largest single residential sale in March, at The Lion in Vail.
Source: Land Title Guarantee Co.
EAGLE COUNTY — The local real estate market showed no signs of slowing down in the first quarter of 2018, with brokers still worried about a lack of inventory.
The latest figures from Land Title Guarantee Co. show the first quarter of 2018 out-performed the same period in 2017. Those results come despite a January drop from 2017 in dollar volume — the value of all transactions.
Despite that dip — due largely to a couple of large sales in January 2017 — the number of transactions continued to climb, with numbers solidly above those recorded in 2017.
As is always the case in the area, most of the transactions — 60 percent — came in the market below $1 million. Transactions of $500,000 or less accounted for just more than a quarter of the total.
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On the dollar volume side of the equation, the dollar volume from just seven sales of $5 million or more — just 5 percent of the transaction total — accounted for just more than a quarter of the county’s $199.7 million in March sales.
Lack of inventory
In both the upper and lower reaches of the market, brokers tell some similar stories — primarily about the lack of inventory.
Chad Cremonese, of Fortius Realty, is the listing broker for the Two Rivers Village neighborhood in Gypsum. Cremonese said despite new construction in the lower valley, demand is still greatly outpacing supply.
That supply-and-demand imbalance is creating some increases in prices in the under-$500,000 market, Cremonese said.
Prices at the Red Canyon Townhomes in Eagle — where there have been 12 sales in the past 12 months — have shown increases from the $330,000 range to the $380,000 range today.
Still, Cremonese said, this market isn’t like the current super-hot market in Denver.
“The (local) opportunities are there,” he said. “The best thing you can do as a buyer is be prepared by getting pre-qualified” for a mortgage. That way, if the right deal comes along, then a potential buyer can act quickly.
A lot of interest in homes
Craig Denton, of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Colorado Properties, said inventory is also tight in the valley’s resort areas. And, he added, despite a sub-par snow year, there was a lot of interest in homes over the winter.
People may have been looking at real estate instead of skiing, Denton said.
“And there are people who are just deciding (to buy),” he added.
In terms of March dollar volume, Lionshead Village was the single-busiest spot in the resort areas, including five sales at The Lion, a new condo complex. The biggest single March sale — $10.5 million — was at that complex.
Beaver Creek, which for some time had lagged behind sales in Vail, had the most resort-area transactions, with 14. Those sales averaged $2.1 million each.
Denton said while interest in Beaver Creek still lags that in Vail, there were still “some really good sales” over the winter.
In some cases, though, prices for units at Beaver Creek had to dip slightly, since a number of single-family homes are older, and new owners intend to take on renovation projects in those units.
“At these prices, people want turn-key homes,” Denton said. Still, he added, an attractive price can also make a renovation project attractive.
In addition to the activity in Beaver Creek, Denton said interest has been strong in Vail Village, with some winter activity turning into spring and summer closings.
Activity is also increasing in Eagle-Vail, Denton said, with increasing prices on both new and renovated homes.
“It’s a really solid, active market right now,” Denton said. “If people price (homes) right, they’re going to sell.”
Vail Daily Business Editor Scott Miller can be reached at 970-748-2930 and firstname.lastname@example.org.
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