According to REcolorado’s monthly report, listings of single-family homes were up 33% over February. While that might seem like good news for buyers, the uptick is typical at this time of year; the market actually showed a 1% decline in inventory from March of last year.
Meanwhile, the average sold price of a single family home in March rose 9% over a year ago: $387,547 this year vs. last year’s $354,611.
With such market shifts, data from the Market Trends Committee of the Denver Metro Association of Realtors (DMAR) shows that homes priced below $300,000 are becoming scarce.
According to Denver Real Estate Watch, which analyzed the DMAR data, there were only 300 single-family homes listed below $300,000 at the end of March. That represents a 34.2% drop from March of 2015, when 456 homes were listed in that price range. “And it is a whopping 70.8% drop from the 1,029 homes priced below $300,000 in March 2014,” notes Denver Real Estate Watch.
Such factors may be driving some buyers looking for second homes or investment properties to search beyond the city and into mountain communities.
“We’re definitely seeing a spike among the Front Range residents and their desire to buy a second home,” said Bank of America Regional Sales Director Ann Thompson, who told the online news site Real Vail that rising Denver home prices may be one of the reasons.
“Denver metro has seen about 16% gains in home prices, and now that they’ve [homeowners and investors] got that equity going, they look at that and say, ‘I can improve my home, or I can also use that equity to make a down-payment on a second home,” Thompson told the Vail site.
In Eagle County, surveys show that 17% of the 2015 fourth-quarter homebuyers were from the Front Range, as were 57% in Grand County, 38% in Summit County, according to Real Vail.