Thursday, April 02, 2015

The Over-Under in Boulder Real Estate [Analyze This]

by Osman Parvez


One of our competitors marketing letters hit our mailbox this morning. As usual, it contained the usual "I'm #1" sales pitch and some charts that might have been relevant a few months ago.   

If you're buying or selling real estate in Boulder, you can't rely on old market data. You need to know what's happening right now. You need actionable, relevant information.   

Here's the skinny.



118 houses, town homes, and condos sold last month in Boulder. 34% sold for more than asking, 26% sold for asking, and 40% were sold at a discount.  

That's right. Despite the Realtor hand waving, not everything on the MLS is getting a bidding war. Only about a third of the market is receiving a premium. 

Of course, if you're shopping for a house, you don't care about condo sales.   Here's what house sales looked like over the last month in Boulder.





Slightly more homes (47%) were sold at a discount and a substantially lower percent were sold at asking (19%). Again, about a third of the market received a premium.

By the way, this data isn't even enough if you're seriously in the game. If you're shopping for a house in South Boulder in Table Mesa within a certain price range, for example, we need to drill down deeper. If you're considering a downtown luxury condo, it's an entirely different analysis. To make a well educated decision about real estate in Boulder, you need market information specific to your unique real estate situation. Generic analysis doesn't cut it. Call us. ph: 303.746.6896. 

Tale from the Trenches
In this market, negotiation skills matter. I was in a recent bidding war where my buyer would have gone $100,000 over the winning bid. The seller's agent didn't check to see whether we would increase our offer price. They assumed my buyer had submitted their "highest and best." They hadn't. The seller lost $100,000 because their agent didn't pick up the phone to return my calls. My buyer found another home and the seller was never the wiser of how much money they left on the table. 

What's at Risk 
Here are the facts: For houses that sold for less than asking last month, the median discount was $35,000. For houses that sold for more than asking, the median premium was $20,000.  

These aren't trivial numbers.     

Does your Realtor choice impact the bottom line? You bet it does. 

In December, I watched a clueless Denver broker misprice 2649 Juniper. There was a bidding war and it sold for $20,000 over asking. One month later, it was back on the market with only cosmetic improvements. It quickly obtained a sale price nearly $90,000 higher (facts, not hand waving).  

Not a bad return for 2 months. That's the power of knowing the market. 

There's a lot of smoke and mirrors out there. Choose your Realtor wisely.



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The ideas and strategies described in this blog are the opinion of the writer and subject to business, economic, and competitive uncertainties.   We strongly recommend conducting rigorous due diligence and obtaining professional advice before buying or selling real estate. 

note:  The data for March is preliminary.   Although Realtors are required to enter data into the MLS promptly, it's not uncommon for a handful of transactions to trickle into the data well after closing. 

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