Real estate holds steady in 2001 |

Real estate holds steady in 2001

For the first time in more than five years, Roaring Fork Valley real estate did not take a huge price jump.

The number of sales increased modestly, but average sales prices in 2001 held steady compared to 2000, according to a year-end report from the Glenwood Springs Board of Realtors.

And after the national economic slowdown in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks, that’s a good thing, said Jack Pretti of Starr Western Real Estate, president of the board of Realtors.

“There hasn’t been any growth for several months. Hopefully, if everything stays on track, I think we will start to see it come back,” Pretti said of valley real estate prices.

In Glenwood Springs, average sales prices climbed slightly, while the number of sales rose nearly 10 percent.

The board of Realtors reported 257 Glenwood Springs home sales in 2001 compared to 234 sales in 2000.

The average 2001 selling price was $223,104, about 2 percent less than the asking price. In 2000, the average selling price was $222,568, also 2 percent below the asking price.

In Carbondale, real estate agents sold 231 homes and collected the county’s top dollar.

The average 2001 selling price was $426,736. In 2000, 234 homes were sold in Carbondale for an average of $416,771.

Selling prices came in at less than 1 percent below asking price in 2001, a narrowing margin from the 2 percent difference marked in 2000.

Good values continue to be found west of Glenwood Springs in New Castle, Silt, Rifle and Parachute.

“The affordable western area is still attractive to people. Those ends of the market are holding pretty well,” Pretti said.

A total of 84 homes were sold in Parachute in 2001 with an average price of $153, 886. In Rifle and Silt a total of 272 homes were sold for an average sale price of $168,618. In New Castle, 130 were sold and averaged $207,304.

Richard Montrose, managing broker with Mason and Morse Real Estate in Glenwood Springs, broke out the numbers and average selling prices of single family homes, the priciest residential category.

In 2001, 111 single family homes sold in the Glenwood Springs area for an average price of $300,204. In 2000, 106 were sold for an average of $297,231.

“We’re not seeing the big appreciations like we’ve seen in the last five years,” Montrose said. “I’ve been watching (the market) since 1968 and seen it go up and up and up. There were a couple of plateaus in the early ’80s and ’90s. That’s probably what’s happening now. Overall the market is holding its own.”

People may perceive that the market is declining, when it is simply leveling off, Montrose said. He noted there have been declines, however slight, in the number of higher priced homes for sale and more expensive house lots.

Pretti said houses appear to sell close to their asking prices if they are priced in line with the prevailing market. Homes with high price tags often take longer to sell and go through one or more price decreases, he said.

Pretti predicted housing sales will gradually increase later in the year.

“In early to late spring we’ll see more activity,” he said.

Low interest rates have also spurred selling, he added.

“We’ll have good, reasonable interest rates through the rest of the year,” he predicted.

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