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Real Estate

It’s Slim Pickings for Houses in Denver Right Now

For those looking to put their home on the market, now is a great time to sell.

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“It’s still a seller’s market.”

That’s according to Jill Schafer, chair of the Denver Metro Association of Realtors (DMAR) Market Trends Committee and Kentwood Real Estate broker. Her thoughts are in response to the decline in new listings this month—down 32.7 percent month over month, according to the latest report from the DMAR.

Schafer points out that activity typically slows down around this time of year. As the weather cools, so does the market. Even in the summer when Denver experiences significant heat—close to or over 100 degrees—the market slows, too. Essentially, people don’t like putting their home on the market in a snowstorm or heatwave.

“I don’t think this is anything to be concerned about,” she says of the plunge in new listings. “We had a surge in October, and we had bad weather in November. It’s to be expected.”

November’s drop in new listings was down far less dramatic year over year; 6.48 percent compared to November 2018. Schafer’s advice? It’s a great opportunity to sell.

“To sellers, I would say when the new listings go down, you have a better opportunity to get an offer more quickly,” she says. “It’s not a bad time to put your house on the market; people are watching very carefully, and looking for inventory.”

Meanwhile, if buyers see anything they like this holiday season, they should act fast. “A lot of people are watching and waiting,” Schafer says.

Other notable highlights from this month’s report include the average and median cost of sold homes, both of which were up more than six percent year over year, but less than two percent month over month. Homes also spent a little more time on the market in November than in October, at 35 days. This is up more than nine percent from November 2018.

The DMAR report also includes statistics for the luxury market—homes over $1 million—which has had a very strong 2019. Year to date, the luxury market has exceeded last year’s metrics. Sales volume is up 11.33 percent, and almost 10 percent more homes in this price range have been sold this year than in 2018. Part of the luxury segment’s strong year has to do with new construction, Schafer says. The $1 million mark is what a lot of new construction costs to build, she says.

These newly constructed homes are selling quickly, while dated ones in neighborhoods built in the 1980s or earlier are having a more difficult time on the market. If buyers are paying top dollar, they want an updated home that’s move-in ready.

The cost to build and the cost of land has moved a lot of the market up, Schafer says, which is just one factor behind the luxury market’s continued climb through the years.

“Year to date, there has been over $3.45 billion in sales, which is significantly higher than any of the previous five years,” says Andrew Abrams, a DMAR market trends committee member and Denver real estate agent. “Likewise, the amount of sold properties is higher as well. Considering the boom we have seen in Colorado throughout the last 10 years, the amount of luxury properties sold is not surprising, nor is the increase in sales volume.”

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