Front Range real estate watch: December 2012
I hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving. I was thankful that I was able to finish writing this article prior to a relaxing weekend. We should all be thankful for the change the market has undergone this year.
Over this entire year, the word on the street has been, “There is no inventory!” While this is undoubtedly true, it really is only half of the story. The other half, the story that hasn’t been as publicized, or at least I haven’t heard it as much, is that there are also more buyers. This combination, less supply and more demand is what has goosed the market this year.
While most would agree that the market is much more active, and many would argue that we are seeing price appreciation, the market strength is patchy. We’ve talked before how the market has become hyper-local and even though the market has dramatically changed from what we’ve seen over the last few years, this hyper-local effect remains in place. Another way of saying this is to say that not all sellers are sharing in the changing market.
Let’s look first at how many additional buyers there are as of November 19th. In Table 1A below, you can see that some areas, Louisville and Superior, have twice as many homes under contract right now as they typically should when compared to the 5 year average. Other areas, while up, are not showing as dramatic a change. Boulder and Erie are only experiencing 22% more buyers than typical.
Lack of inventory is still a story however. As of November 19th, we’re seeing anywhere from 40-58% fewer homes in the different areas within Boulder County. What’s interesting is that the lower inventory levels seem to be more consistent across the County, while the higher buyer activity seems to be more focused. See Table 1B below showing the differing inventory levels.