Mid-year real estate market report: Down slightly but still very healthy
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Colorado Properties
The mid-year Vail Valley real estate numbers paint a picture of a healthy market but one not immune to the ebbs and flows of trends and macro-economic influences. While the valley’s real estate market is down slightly compared to a year ago, this is primarily driven by a decline in the luxury market volume ($5 million plus). Overall, unit sales are down about six percent and dollar volume about eight percent.
Currently, the valley is teeming with activity, with pending sales up almost 17 percent (accounting for $87M in volume) from a year ago and an increased level of inventory compared to this time in 2018. If history is our guide, the increase in inventory will yield more sales throughout the valley.
The Vail Valley’s market diversity is a blessing when it comes to opportunities. If you look at the pricing and community options available, there is something for everyone. Heading into the second half of 2019, we’re looking at a very strong market, including very favorable interest rates. The expectation is for the market to stay busy through September for both buyers and sellers.
What it means for buyers: be realistic and ready
The increase in listings bodes well for buyers, who now have the opportunity to not just buy whatever they can find, including more newer homes.
Rick Messmer, one of the managing associate brokers for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Colorado Properties, does issue a word of caution for buyers. “Be realistic. There are rarely homes that check every single box on a buyer’s wish list. I call these halo homes — before a buyer even walks in the door of a prospective home it must be absolutely perfect. Rarely does this happen, even in markets with a lot of listings.”
Messmer also notes that in hot markets, increased listings generate more buyer interest so he advises buyers to be ready to buy with a pre-qualification letter in hand. “If a home is priced fairly and the floor plan fits more people’s desires in neighborhoods that are relatively hot, a listing will not last long. A buyer must be ready to write the offer because someone coming in on their heels will be ready.”
What is means for sellers: price right
According to Page Slevin, an associate broker for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Colorado Properties, a property must be priced right to sell. “Buyers are not writing offers on properties that are priced above market,” Slevin said. “The increased inventory of either newer or remodeled homes provides more options and typically take priority over older homes, particularly if a home will require updating. It is not a seller’s market anymore and it’s important to price based on recent sales, not above.”
Working with a knowledgeable broker can certainly help buyers. Sometimes before listings even get to market, if a broker knows it fits what you need, they will contact the listing broker or owner to get you in before the home even hits the market.
Michael Slevin is the owner and president of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Colorado Properties