At the recent Vectra Bank Business For Breakfast the Colorado economy was the prime topic. One of the state’s leading economists, Dr. Phylis Resnick from the Center for Colorado’s Economic Future, says that we can expect to experience a “new normal” for the time being. This translates to slower growth in most economic variables and slightly higher long-term unemployment rates. The good news is that Americans are saving again, with personal savings rates returning to levels not seen since the 1908’s. Colorado real per capita personal income dipped a little in 2009-2010 but is forecast to see a slow but steady upward climb. The bad news is that there will be a continued gap between Expenditures and Revenues for the State of Colorado with no end in sight. This means our local communities will continue to be challenged to maintain the amenities and services we have been so accustomed to.
Approximately every other week Colorado Landmark provides detailed information on the real estate activity in Boulder and Broomfield Counties from the past two weeks. Hopefully our analysis will help reveal what properties are selling, at what prices, how long they are are taking to sell, and other relevant information about what’s going on in OUR local area – Boulder County and Broomfield County.
For the two week period from February 15 through February 28, 2011 here are the numbers:
•148 properties sold (compared to 197 for same period in 2010)
•Price range of properties sold during this period: $60,000 – $2,500,000
•Median price: $287,000
•Average price: $389,586 (down from $420,907 for last period examined)
•$0-199k = 34 sold this period
•$200-299K = 41 sold
•$300-399k = 24 sold
•$400-499k = 17 sold
•$500-599k = 10 sold
•$600-699k = 9 sold
•$700-799k = 1 sold
•$800-899k = 5 sold
•$900-999k = 2 sold
•$1.0-1.9M = 4 sold
•$2.0M+ = 1 sold
Top Ten Listings Sold during this period:
Information obtained from MLS and public record.
Each period’s Top Ten numbers continue to point to the potentially fatal ramifications of over-pricing. This period the glass-half-full view is that 5 of the top 10 properties examined sold for 90% or more of their original asking price. The flip side of that is that the remaining five sold for 77.5% or LESS than their original asking prices. The property on Bellevue Dr. sold for a dismal 56.8% of it’s original 2007 asking price. The key here is the 2007 … it took 1000 days for this property to sell. Now we expect that properties of this caliber can take a year or more to sell, but almost 3 years? That’s a total miss on the pricing mark from the get-go. 2539 Briarwood sold for 77.5% of it’s asking price after a ridiculous 1334 days on the market.
The other part of the glass-half-full is that only NONE of the above properties sold for less than what the owners paid for it. That is great news! It is impossible to tell if these owners put in any improvements that would have increased their basis significantly, but if not then all of these lucky folks did a little better than break-even. As I said last time, homeowners can’t assume that their housing is going to be a big money-making investment – key word = housing, when it comes down to it that is what your home is. Homeowners also should not be surprised if they encounter a few more realtors out there that are willing to turn down the opportunity to list their house. You know a good realtor when they turn down your listing because you can’t agree with them on price. No amount of marketing and internet exposure can make up for pricing too far beyond what the market can bear.
Your takeaway here is the following advice on Selecting a Listing Agent:
- If you are considering listing your home, interview at least 3 realtors. Ask each about their experience selling homes in YOUR SPECIFIC neighborhood. If they don’t have it, show them the door. What different skill sets do they bring to the table? How will they alter their marketing strategy if your home doesn’t sell quickly?
- Ask each for an opinion of likely sale price and therefore best list price. IMMEDIATELY throw out the high one. Seriously! Don’t get sucked in to overpricing your home by a realtor that just wants another listing in their inventory and will tell you what you want to hear. If you hear what you want to hear, consider that a big red flag.
- Don’t necessarily choose the realtor that you “like” best. The goal here isn’t to make a life-long friend, it is to sell your house, for the highest price, as quickly as possible so that it is the least inconvenience to you.
Until next time …