Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Have We Reached the Peak of the Selling Season? [Analyze This]

by Osman Parvez
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This is a follow-up to yesterday's analysis of Boulder inventory and digs a little deeper.    Consider it part #2 of the inventory analysis.  We'll also expand by analyzing neighboring cities including Longmont, Louisville, Lafayette, and Superior.  

The key question for buyers and sellers is whether we've reached the peak of the summer selling season.  It's a question that impacts selection, pricing, and negotiation strategy.    Let's take a look. 


This busy first chart shows percentage of inventory under contract over the past twelve months.    Note: 

- A far lower percentage of houses in Boulder are under contract compared to surrounding cities.   Demand is higher in places like Louisville, Longmont, and Lafayette - which often surprises buyers and sellers.   It also surprises more than a few Realtors who don't really know the market. 

- At this time last year (left side), inventory under contract ranged from about 45% for Boulder to approaching 65% for Louisville.  This June, (right side of chart) it ranged from about 50% for Boulder to about 70% for Louisville.    This year has been a substantially stronger market.


This chart shortens the time period to just the past three months, more relevant for buyers and sellers.     

Note: 

- Inventory under contract (a.k.a. absorption) peaked at slightly different times for each of these markets.     This is one of the reasons we emphasize an analysis of the market specific to your unique situation.   If you're shopping for an agent that leverages real-time market analytics to drive intelligent real estate decisions, contact us.  

-Absorption is now clearly declining in most markets, suggesting that we've reached the summer peak.   It's always possible that more sellers will enter this market, but it seems unlikely. 

- Boulder is trailing the L's and Superior by a substantial margin.    


This chart shows growth in total inventory (available and under contract) since the beginning of the year.   Longmont has the highest inventory, which reached a peak of about 330 houses.   234 Boulder houses are on the market.    179 town homes and condos (attached dwellings or AD).    In Boulder, condo inventory grew 14.7% since early April while house inventory grew at 32.2% over the same time period.  

As discussed before, the condo and town home market is far more aggressive than the house market in Boulder.  The ease of renting out property on AirBnB and the associated low maintenance cost of attached dwellings may be influencing this market. 


To complete the series, this chart shows total inventory for Louisville, Lafayette, and Superior.    We would have put it on the same chart as Boulder, but a different scale made sense.   Louisville and Superior are the smallest of our local markets.   Lafayette is running about half the size of Boulder.   All three markets show the expected seasonal trend.   More evidence for being at or very near the 2015 seasonal peak.  



This final chart shows the historical peak for Boulder real estate (single family houses) going back to 2004.   This year is an estimate.    Inventory is down a massive 61.4% from June 2009.    This is the 6th consecutive year of declining inventory.  


Don't you wish you bought in 2009?

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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. 

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