Property sales steady, dollars up through September |

Property sales steady, dollars up through September

Real estate sales in Garfield County through three quarters of the year have resulted in 20 percent more money from just slightly more transactions compared with last year.

According to the latest real estate market analysis compiled by Land Title Guarantee Co. of Glenwood Springs, transactions across the county through September were up about 0.9 percent at 925.

But that small increase in properties sold resulted in $341.4 million in sales volume, compared with $284.4 million for the same period in 2013.

For September alone, transactions were up 3.7 percent at 111, resulting in $41.9 million in sales for a month-over-month increase of 28.3 percent, according to the monthly compilation of real estate statistics for Garfield County.

The average single-family home in the county has been selling for $373,235 this year, which is up 17 percent from the full-year average for 2013.

The Glenwood Springs area has seen more transactions than other parts of the county, at 237. Carbondale-area sales were a close second at 216.

But Carbondale sales account for a larger percentage of the total sales volume, at $114 million compared with $98.6 million for Glenwood-area sales, according to the report.

The latest numbers good for sellers and a positive sign for the recovery of the local real estate in the years following the Great Recession.

But a lack of new inventory for those wanting to buy a home remains a concern, especially on the lower end of the market, said Erin Bassett of Coldwell Banker Mason Morse in Glenwood Springs, who is the president for the Glenwood Springs Association of Realtors.

“That’s the biggest concern at the moment, because we just don’t have a lot of inventory,” Bassett said.

Currently, there’s about a six- to seven-month inventory of houses on the market, she said. But much of that is priced above where most of the buyers are, she said.

“Anything that is listed under $350,000 sells within weeks and usually has multiple offers,” Bassett said, adding the rental market also remains tight.

That inventory did improve some this past quarter compared with last year, according to the latest market update issued by the Colorado Association of Realtors.

Carbondale had a 10.9-month inventory of single-family houses on the market during the July-September period, up from 9.8 months during the third quarter of 2013. A total of 150 single-family units were listed during the third quarter this year, up from 110 for the same period last year.

For townhouses and condominiums, Carbondale had a much lower a 5.8-month inventory during the third quarter this year, compared with 4.7 months worth during the third quarter last year.

In Glenwood Springs, the number of single-family houses listed remained at about a 7-month inventory, at 76 houses, which was slightly less than the 2013 numbers for that three-month period.

The number of townhouses and condominiums on the market increased during that period, however, from 13 units and a 2.4-month supply last year to 28 units and a 5.9-month supply this year, according to the Association of Realtors report.

Bassett said the lack of inventory could boost builder confidence. However, while lending may be loosening, the cost of construction continues to go up, she said.

A look at the real estate market in the middle Roaring Fork Valley communities of Carbondale, El Jebel and Basalt revealed $212.2 million in sales on 351 transactions through September, according to Land Title’s latest compilation.

That represented a 3.3 percent increase in total transactions and a 13.7 percent increase in sales volume, according to statistics compiled from Garfield, Eagle and Pitkin counties for that area.

During September, the midvalley area had exactly the same number of sales as for the same month last year, at 41. But that figure brought in 7.3 percent more in terms of sales volume, at nearly $25.7 million.

On the commercial property front in Garfield County, 70 total sales through September this year added up to $74.1 million, compared with $47.5 million on 68 commercial sales through the first nine months of 2013.

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