Central Oregon home market expectedly cools in February

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abode-987096_1280By Jason Boone

A leap year and seasonably mild weather made February 2016 in Bend a bit different than in most years. One thing that was typical, though: a relatively slow home sales month in Bend.

In February, 125 single-family homes were sold, according to data recently compiled by the Skjersaa Group. That is down from the 155 homes sold during a relatively hot-selling January.

No need to worry. A comparatively slow real estate market in February has been about as predictable in February as powder days at Mount Bachelor. In fact, February has been the lowest-producing sales month in Bend in each year since 2012.

In other words, February really has been the calm before the summer real estate storm, which usually begins to show its teeth in March.

Monthly sales

A closer look at the February data actually reveals some strong underlying numbers. For one, February ended with 242 pending home sales. That is the highest February tally in at least 10 years, and well more than the 210 pending sales posted in February 2015. And with 206 new homes listed, the most in a February since 2013, the market remains active.

If there has been anything holding back the market so far this year, it has been a lack of overall inventory. That has had some buyers sitting on the proverbial fence. In February, though, the months of inventory on the market ticked up to 4.9 months from 3.4 months in January. Roughly six months of inventory is considered a balanced market between sellers and buyers.

This all portends to a potentially strong March.

Some more interesting data from the Skjersaa Group’s February report:

  • The February median sales price — the midpoint in which half the homes in Bend sold for more and half for less — landed at $331,660. That is up from $317,450 in January. Through the first two months, the year-to-date median stands at $325,016.
  • The average days on market for a home was 142 days, roughly in line with the 138 days in January. February 2015 saw homes on market for an average of 150 days.
  • Even with 206 new listings, the market in Bend remains relatively tight. At the end of February, Bend had 383 active listings. That is down from 395 in January and the fewest since June 2013.
  • For the fourth consecutive month, the average sales price was 99 percent of list price.
  • Homes priced between $225,100 and $325,000 represented 51 of February’s 125 sales, easily the highest-selling price range. Thirty-six homes sold priced between $325,100 to $425,000, the second-highest range.
  • With 124 listings as of March 1, the heftiest market is homes priced $625,000 and up.

In all, Bend’s market fundamentals remain strong. Good recent news on the jobs front, gives some reason to believe that the broader economy is still on relatively solid footing. And interest rates that remain historically low.

Knowing how the data applies to each buyer or seller takes expertise. I can help navigate the market and find the perfect Bend, Oregon home.

To learn more about Bend home prices, get started with listing your Bend home, or to view area homes contact me call (541) 383-1426, or visit Bend Property Search to connect with me through my website.

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