Real Estate Market Report for Steamboat Springs, Colorado

Even though there’s a few inches of new snow on the ground in Steamboat as I write this, spring is here and things are improving in Steamboat real estate.  One indicators that tell me things are improving are the amount of properties that have gone under contract over the last few months.  This steady increase really tells me we’re headed in the right direction.

Sure there are many variables that continue to hamper home values (high inventories, foreclosures, etc.) and I don’t expect to see prices going up anytime soon here in Steamboat. But the sure number of showings, pending sales, and homes that have been sold over the last few months has affirmed what is viewed today on a national level.

If you’ve been waiting for rock-solid statistical evidence that the housing market — and the national economy — are well along into recovery mode, you definitely got it last week.

  • Sales of existing single family homes jumped by 7.3 percent in March, according to the National Association of Realtors survey released last Thursday, and were 13 percent above year-earlier levels.
  • Median home prices were up as well, despite the heavy presence of foreclosures and short sales being pumped into the listing inventory. Median single family prices were up by 9 percent year over year in the Northeast region, and by about 7 percent in the South, Midwest and the West. (Don’t read too much into this for prices in Steamboat – remember, we tend to lag behind the national trends)
  • Meanwhile, unsold inventory dropped by two percent in March, and is now 22 percent below its peak in July 2008.
  • Home builders are clearly getting the upbeat message about the recovery as well. March single family housing starts rose by 1.6 percent to their highest level since November of 2008.
  • New permits — a gauge of where builders expect market demand to be six months or more down the road — were up by 7.5 percent for the month, and are 34 percent higher than they were in March 2009 – the biggest year over year gain in permits since 1992!
  • The latest weekly measure of new home purchase loan applications, compiled by the Mortgage Bankers Association, jumped by 10 percent — which is attributable in part to the April 30 contract deadline for the $8,000 and $6,500 federal tax credits.
  • Consumer confidence and expectations about the national economy also are on the upswing, up by 6 points last month, according to the Conference Board. The board’s widely watched index of leading economic indicators registered a gain of 1.4 percent for the month. (this alone is a huge factor in the Steamboat recovery)
  • Fannie Mae’s economics department issued its forecast for the balance of the year last week – and the tone was moderately optimistic. Fannie projects national economic growth – as measured by the gross domestic product or GDP – to gain about 3.1 percent this year.
  • That won’t be enough to make a major dent in the jobless rate, said the economists, but it should reflect a slow but steady improvement in key employment sectors, including manufacturing.
  • Bottom line this week: Think positive. Because that’s where we’re headed in real estate and the economy overall.

Summary for the month:

  • Total Sales Volume for the month of March 2010 is 219% over the volume from March 2009.
  • Units Sold are up 231% for March 2010 compared to March 2009.
  • YTD Volume is up 225% compared to the same period in 2009.
  • Fractional/Interval Sales for the month of March 2010 consisted of 65% of the transactions.
  • Low end sales continue to dominate the market with 25 out of the 37 residential sales being under $600,000.
  • Again, while Volume and Units are up over last year, the number of loans recorded is down (cash buyers).
  • March of 2010 saw 174 loans recorded compared to 294 from March of 2009.


Notable sales for the month:


Sales over $1.5M:

  • 3/18/2010 $3,150,000 OSP Condo @ Apres Ski Way Unit 517 – 2250 Apres Ski Way – 4 Brm 4.5 Bath YOC 2009 – 2,731 SF @ $1,153.42 PSF.  This transfer is shown in the Steamboat Mountain Area and is a developer sale.
  • 3/4/2010 $2,850,000 Sanctuary Subd #5 Lot 142 – 2723 Whitewater Lane – 5 Brm 6 Bath YOC 2007 – 6,292 SF @ $452.96 PSF.  Landsize is .48 AC.  This transfer also included a transfer between the same parties for a Vacant Site in Running Bear, so it was sort of a trade – here is the info on the Running Bear lot: 1.87 Acres Vacant Land – Lot 34.  Both of these transfers are shown in the Steamboat Mountain Area and the Sanctuary sale is a developer sale.
  • 3/26/2010 $2,347,900 M&B: Sec 13,24,25,26-6-87 – No Address on File – This is a raw agricultural land sale that hasn’t been worked yet at the Assessor’s Office.  I do not have a solid land size, but to the best of what I can determine it is around 2,400 AC located in the Hayden Area. It is also known as (purchased by) Ghost Ranch.  It previously sold 7/28/2009 for $3.3M, but that sale also included land in Sec 27 & 34 so I believe that sale had a larger acreage.


Also Notable:

  • The Taco Bell sold: 3/26/2010 $1,312,500 Steamboat Village Commercial Center Replat Lot B Lot 2 – 626 Snapdragon Way – 3,084 SF @ $425.58 PSF.  Land size is .80 AC and the building was constructed in 1987.
  • There were three Trailhead Lodge condo sales totaling $2,510,000 or $836,667 per Unit.

I’m optimistic that we have seen the worst.