July 2009 Newsletter
One down and one to go! I just had the best Father’s Day ever, as my daughter just got married at our home. It was a beautiful ceremony on a perfect afternoon. Heather married John Lovell, a Navy man from Tennessee. After months of planning, everything went off without a hitch. Next, my son will get married on September 12th in Steamboat Springs. In the mean time, I need to get back to work to pay for all these festivities!
The Real Estate market is staying pretty constant. Sales are steady, but still sluggish overall. Sales are down about 41% from last year, and inventory continues to rise. The recent increase in county property valuations (and therefore taxes) has hit a lot of people hard, and many are very upset. I have been pulling up comparable sales several times a day for the past two weeks for those who want to protest. The protest deadline was July 1st. In most situations, protesting will not do any good, because the “evaluation period” that the county is currently looking at is January 2007 through June 2008. During that period, sale prices were higher than they are today, and the county assessor is just doing the math mandated by state statute. Unfortunately for property taxpayers, not much relief is available. I hope the county saves and spends wisely because the next go round, taxes will be coming down and costs will probably be up.
I just spoke to my banker, and rates are still low at 5.37% with no points. This is up a little from when I refinanced at 4.75% a couple months ago.
I’ve been showing more property recently. Buyers are very particular and cautious, as they try to decide whether we have found a bottom to the market yet. I don’t know, but I think we are close. As I look over my stats, the most notable number is home sales over $400,000; we have had 6 this year, and we have 206 on the market. Throughout the whole county, we have had only 1 sale over $500,000. One factor contributing to these low numbers is the lack of availability of Jumbo loans, which are $417,000 and higher.
Another notable stat is condo sales; we have had 5 so far this year, and there are 135 on the market. With all this available inventory, buyers can have their pick of the litter. Again, the silver lining is, “It’s a great time to buy!”
Have a great summer, and call me with any of your Real Estate questions. Also, please keep me in mind if you know anyone looking to buy or sell. I promise to treat them like family.