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Realtors sell almost 100,000 homes in Colorado

Highlights:

  • The Colorado Association of Realtors releases more details on statewide sales.
  • More than 96,000 homes sold last year.
  • The lion’s share of the sales were for single-family houses.

Realtors sold almost 100,000 homes in Colorado last year.A report by the Colorado Association of Realtors shows that 96,071 home sales took place in the state in 2013, 15.5 percent more than the 83,167 sales in 2012.

Of those, 78,138, or 81.3 percent, were single-family detached homes. Single-family sales rose by 14.6 percent last year from 68,163 in 2013.

Prices also were up, but not as much as the sales activity.

The median price of a single-family home that sold last year rose 8.8 percent to $253,500 from $233,000 in 2012. The average price was up 6 percent, year-over-year, to $317,957 from $299,869 in 2012.

When condos and townhomes were included, the median sales price rose 8.6 percent to $239,00 from $220,000 and the average price was up 5.6 percent to $303,709 from $287,536 in 2012.

Homes also sold faster.

Statewide, the average days on a market for a single-family home in 2013 was 89, 22.5 percent faster than the 69 days in 2013.

Consumers had 104,557 new listings for all single family homes and townhomes to choose from in 2013, an 11.3 percent increase from the 114,180 in 2012.

“It didn’t feel like it,” said Anthony Rael, the designated media spokesman for CAR and a broker with RE/MAX Alliance. Earlier, CAR released a report comparing the fourth quarter of 2013 with the fourth quarter of 2013.  At the request of InsideRealEstateNews.com, Rael also gathered statewide, year-over-year data.

Home shortage the big story

“Statewide, just about every district last year was really suffering from a lack of inventory,” Rael said.

“Overall, the Denver metro region was a very strong and stable market, but it struggled with the lack of inventory, which pushed prices up. That was very good news for sellers, who had multiple offers on their homes through the summer.”

There was more demand from consumers as the economy improved. The market was helped by historically low mortgage rates, which have since risen.

“Still, you can still get a 30-year fixed-rate loan for under 5 percent, which is fantastic,” Rael said. “I don’t see rates having that big of an impact on most consumers if they stay at this level.”

Demand still strong

Rael said he expects the strong housing market to continue in 2014.

“I don’t see any signs that demand is lessening,” he said.

There also remains a severe shortage of homes in the Denver area, he said.

“You drive around neighborhoods and you just wonder, “where are the homes? There is just not that much out there.”

However, he doesn’t think prices will rise as much this year as they did in 2013.

“I don’t think we are going to see 10 percent appreciation this year,” Rael said. “I think they probably will rise by 5 percent to 7 percent this year. I think most people will be happy with that. We don’t want prices to rise so fast that we have to worry about a bubble.”

Can a home sell too fast?

Another thing he has run into is homeowners who know they can sell their homes for top dollar, but worry the home will sell too quickly.

“It can be pretty difficult if the seller doesn’t know where they are moving,” Rael said. “That is when the Realtor has to have a serious conversation with their client to go over their options.”

In some cases, he said that means blitzing the market and consider homes that the seller might normally have rejected out of hand.

“Sometimes you have to find 10 or 15 homes and tour each and every one of them,” Rael said. “You can get a lot of information on the Internet, but nothing really replaces seeing a home in person.”

In some cases, consumers are surprised that they will find a house that meets many of their needs, which they expected they would hate based on what they had seen online, he said.

Have a story idea or real estate tip? Contact John Rebchook at  JRCHOOK@gmail.com. InsideRealEstateNews.com is sponsored by Universal Lending, Land Title Guarantee and 8z Real Estate. To read more articles by John Rebchook, subscribe to the Colorado Real Estate Journal.