As some of the nation still struggles to recover from the housing market crash of nearly a decade ago, a recent Trulia study that analyzed 100 housing markets in the United States put Denver at the top of the list of cities that have recovered most fully.
The Trulia study reports that 98.7% of homes in metro Denver have regained or surpassed their prices from the pre-recession peak, contrasted with only 34% of homes nationwide. Las Vegas had the lowest number of homes recovering their pre-recession value, at 0.6%
Prices in metro Denver have, indeed, increased dramatically over the last decade. The Denver Post notes that the pre-recession high was $237,071. The average sold price for a residence (single family home or condo) in April was $439,161, according to the Denver Metro Association of Realtors’ monthly market report.
Meanwhile, the DMAR report notes that homes in Denver and Seattle are the fastest-selling in the country. In April, single family homes and condos in the Denver area spent an average of 33 days on the market, 6 days less than the average of 39 days in March.
Steve Danyliw, chairman of DMAR’s Market Trends Committee, notes in DMAR’s monthly report that the increase in housing prices is outstripping the rise in local wages, raising concerns in the industry. “[T]he affordability gap is getting wider,” he writes, noting that the situation isn’t sustainable over time. “A healthy market needs a good balance of buyers and sellers combined with modest price growth.” Danyliw believes that the Denver area prices are entering a “high plateau,” and that they will gradually level.
Overall, he is optimistic, at least in the short term. “…[W]e are still experiencing a fairly strong market,” he writes.