Brisk sales in March lead to tighter market in Bend

Home AppreciationBy Jason Boone

Buyers are off to a brisk start to the year apparently, leaving an almost historically tight market for single-family homes in Bend.

How tight is the market you ask? Through the month of March, the Bend market offered up about 2.3 months of inventory, according to data recently compiled by the Skjersaa Group. That is tied for the lowest mark in at least the last 10 years, equaling the 2.3 month of inventory in June 2013.

Part of the reason why the market is tight is that buyers appear to be getting a jump on the buying season. Bend saw 185 sales in March, up from 125 in February and 164 in March 2015. But sellers are moving a bit slower, though. In March, there were 383 active listings, the exact number as in February and down from 401 active listings in March 2015.

The math is relatively simple: a brisk sales pace coupled with fewer active listings equals a tighter market. And a tight market, not surprisingly, generally means an uptick in prices.

March sales

True to form, March delivered.

The March median sales price — the midpoint in which half the homes in Bend sold for more and half for less — landed at $346,000. That is up from $331,660 in February. Through the first three months, the year-to-date median stands at $333,045, up from $322,800 in the first quarter of 2015.

And as the weather warms, there appears no end in sight to the fast pace. March ended with 276 sales pending, which is on par with the 278 pending sales in March 2015. Only one other March in the last 10 years has topped more than 200 pending sales (209 in March 2013).

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

  • Interestingly, and perhaps counterintuitively, the average sales price was 95 percent of the average list price. That is the lowest average sales-price-to-list-price ratio since 2011 and breaks a four-month streak of a ratio of 99 percent. Most likely that is statistical noise, but it is worth watching in the coming months.
  • Buyers in the market for a homes priced at $625,000 or higher should find a nice array of choices. That price range offered up 120 active listings on April 1, the most of any price range. Predictably, the next heftiest market is with homes priced between $325,000 and $425,000. That range began April with 85 active listings.
  • The average days on market for a home was 130 days, a drop from 142 days in February. The average days on market was in line with March 2015, which boasted an average of 132 days.
  • Homes priced between $225,100 and $325,000 represented 69 of March’s 185 sales, easily the highest-selling price range. Forty-four homes sold between $325,100 and $425,000, the second-highest range.
  • The market for homes priced at $225,000 or less in Bend is almost nonexistent. In March, there were just eight homes sold in that range, and the month brought just five new listings in that price bracket.

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.

January another strong month for Bend home sales

Bend Oregon Home Price information

By Jason Boone

So much for freezing the Bend real estate market this winter. In fact, the local market pretty much started 2016 in the same way it ended 2015: with a record-breaking month.

According to data recently compiled by the Skjersaa Group, 155 homes were sold through January. That might not sound like much, but it is actually a remarkable number for this time of year. Looking at data that goes back to January 2007, the previous high for the first month of the year came in 2015, when 120 homes were sold. Otherwise, only one other January in the last 10 years has topped 100 homes sold.

The January report offers other evidence that the Bend real estate market remains robust. A healthy 170 sales were pending to begin February, which is up from 139 to end December. And 178 new listings were posted in January, up from 135 in December and 164 in January 2015.

Jan 2016 graphic

Meanwhile, the months of inventory on the market has remained well below four months.

Some interesting data from the Skjersaa Group’s January report:

  • The January median sales price — the midpoint in which half the homes in Bend sold for more and half for less — landed at $317,450. That is down from $325,275 in December, and a typical drop from December to January.
  • In January, there were 395 active listings, down from 461 in December.
  • January’s 3.4 months of inventory is up from 3.1 months in December. Roughly six months of inventory is considered a balanced market between sellers and buyers.
  • There were only 58 price reductions in January, which is the lowest in a January since 2013.
  • The average number of days homes spent on the market in January was 138 days, the lowest January since at least 2006.
  • Homes priced between $425,100-$525,000 spent just 101 days on the market, the shortest of any price range.
  • Homes priced between $325,100-$424,000 accounted for 74 of the 155 homes sold in January.

This all comes on the heels of summer-like performance of 214 homes sold in December, which was far and away the best year-ending month in at least 10 years. That put a cap on what was a truly remarkable year in the Bend real estate market.

Something else to ponder is what this means for the rest of the year. Like most areas that enjoy all four seasons, the pace of the Bend market tends to follow the weather. That means summer typically brings the hottest sales. For instance, June 2015 saw 259 sales alone, the highest tally in a month in more than a decade.

The January numbers of relatively low inventory and high demand suggests that Bend will remain a seller’s market for the time being. And that will likely lead to continued upward pressure on home values.

If the brisk pace shown the last two months portends to a similarly hot summer, 2016 could very well bring another banner year in Bend.

But let’s not put the cart before the horse just yet.

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.

Bend median home price stays strong in October

Bend Oregon Home For SaleBy Jason Boone

The upward trajectory of the Bend, Oregon housing market continued in October 2015, extending a four-year recovery trend from the depths of the Great Recession. Bend’s October median home price came in at a robust $339,500, according to data recently compiled by the Skjersaa Group. The year-to-date median — the number where half the homes sold for more and half less — sits at $329,000.

Both median prices represent a significant year-over-year gain. In October 2014, the median sat at $290,000 both for the month and year to date. Of course, anyone with a memory remembers the scariest days of the recession, when the median home price in Bend bottomed out at $169,950 in February 2011.

Despite the dramatic gains, though, the Bend market is closer to balance than some might think. For one, the median home price is still well below the statistical high point hit in May 2007, when the median price in Bend hit $396,250.

And contrary to what many folks who see all those For Sale signs might believe, there is not a glut of homes on the market right now. In fact, that appears to be far from the case.

The number of active listings is significantly fewer than the waning days of the housing boom. In September 2007, 1,587 active listings were on the Bend market. And in February 2009, the months of inventory sat at 47.7 months.

Contrast that to today. Right now there are 565 active listings, which is less than the 638 on the market in October 2014. And in October, the Bend market had just 3.8 months of inventory of homes for sale. In fact, the market has averaged just three months of inventory year to date.

What does that all mean for buyers and sellers?

Six to seven months of inventory in Bend is considered a balanced market, which means the market still is favoring sellers. But there are signs that the Bend market does seem to be moderating after nearly four years of gains, which countered three years of losses.

Moderation, of course, is good news for most everybody.

Knowing what trends have developed can give both buyers and sellers an advantage in the market. Here are some other interesting tidbits that can be gleaned from the data:

  • The earlier in the year the better for sellers. More and more homes are hitting the market as the months get warmer. Since 2013, the first half of each year has produced far fewer price reductions. In April 2015 Bend saw 79 price reductions. In May, that number jumped to 138 and had climbed each month since before falling back to 145 in October.
  • The months of home inventory has held under six months during each month since September 2014. Until it reaches six months of inventory, though, Bend will be considered a “seller’s market.” The market for homes of less than $425,000 was the most competitive, with less than two months of inventory.
  • The average selling price so far this year has been 99 percent of its listing price. And the average days on market has been 120 days. Not surprisingly, in October homes between $125,000 and $225,000 (a small group that accounted for just 10 sales) spent the fewest days on market at just 85 days.
  • In October, there were 194 homes sold, which is fewer than the 207 sold in October 2014. So far this year there has been an average of 202 sales per month, which is up from the 183 per month through October 2014 and the 186 per month in 2013. The statistical low was in 2008 with a shocking average of just 68 sales per month.

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.

4 Questions to Ask Yourself before Buying a Home in Bend

Buying a home

By Jason Boone

You’ve been renting a Home in Bend for a long time and want to become a homeowner but are you really ready to make the switch from being a renter to a homeowner?

Here are 4 questions you must ask yourself so you can know if now is the right time for you to buy a home or not.

#1 – Is My Credit Score Right For Buying A Home?

To buy a home in Bend during 2015 you must have a credit score which is 700 or higher.

Your credit score is the most important part of buying a home since the higher the credit score means you will be able to qualify for a loan with a lower mortgage interest rate.

Since a mortgage loan will most likely be one of the top financial obligations you take on in your life why not do the work necessary to build your credit score before making the commitment to purchase a home?

#2 – Can I Save Money and STILL Buy A Home?

Yes, you want to buy a home in Bend but will you still be able to save money after the purchase has gone through?

Before making the commitment to buy a home you must do your budget and confirm that you will be able to balance a house payment with saving money, paying bills and meeting all of your financial commitments in the future.

#3 – Have I thought About All Of The Additional Costs With Owning A Home In Bend?

Owning a home is awesome but don’t forget about all of the additional costs which come with home ownership each year.

It’s important for you to be prepared to pay for unexpected expenses like buying a new water heater or new roof for your home when they occur by establishing a savings account which you will use to save at least 4% of your home’s value each year for future expenses.

#4 – Am I Committed To Being A Homeowner?

Last of all, but most important, ask yourself if you’re really ready to become a homeowner because once you buy in Bend you won’t want to sell your home for at least the next 5 to 10 years or else you risk losing money in the long run on your investment.

To learn more about buying a home in Bend or to view the latest homes for sale across town contact me today by calling (541) 383-1426 or click here to contact me online.

How To Buy A Home During The Holidays

Buying a home

By Jason Boone

It’s officially the Holiday Season and over the coming weeks more people than ever before will be busy with family events, parties and getting ready for the end of the year.

Although the coming days might be busy for you it’s still possible to buy a home during the holidays if you follow these simple tips:

Tip 1 – Don’t Feel Rushed

Yes, we are in the Holiday Season, but remember you have time on your side, so don’t feel rushed into making an offer on a home that you don’t really love.

Tip 2 – Avoid Major Purchases

Don’t forget that during the Holidays maintaining your credit score and finances are still important so hold off on making major purchases (cars, trucks, boats, RV’s or farm equipment) until after you’ve purchased a home.

Tip 3 – Choose a Home Which Fits YOUR Lifestyle

Although you may be tempted to buy a home which looks beautiful covered with snow, and has a fire burning in the fire place, make sure the home really fits your lifestyle and has everything you’ve been searching for.

Tip 4 – Ask These Home Buying Questions

Does the home have the right amount of bedrooms, bathrooms, and square feet?

Is it close to your ideal school district, stores, parks and other amenities you love? If not, don’t settle for second best, take the time to really search for a home you will really love.

To learn more tips you can use when buying a home during the Holidays or to schedule a tour of the latest homes for sale in Bend, Redmond or Sunriver contact me, Jason Boone, Principal Broker with  Duke Warner Realty | Skjersaa Group by calling me at (541) 383-1426 or by clicking here to contact me through my website.

8 Questions to Ask Yourself before Buying a Home

Bend Oregon Home Buyer

By Jason Boone

Buying a home in Bend can be an exciting process but it’s important to move past the initial home buying excitement and focus on the actual work involved with buying a home by asking yourself these 8 questions.

Is Your Income Stable?

Lenders will first be reviewing your income before anything else because, they want to have confidence you will be able to make your monthly mortgage payments.

Do You Have A Steady Employment History?

You must have a stable employment history of at least two years with the same company.

What Is Your Debt To Income Ratio?

Your debt-to-income ratio must not be more than 30% of your monthly income.

Have Your Reviewed Your Credit Score?

Before applying for a mortgage loan make sure you pull your credit reports and review your credit score because, it’s important to confirm that the 3 major credit bureaus are reporting accurate information about you and you have a credit score which meets your lenders requirements.

How Much Money Do You Have Saved For Down Payment?

Are you able to put use a down payment of at least 20% of a home’s purchase price? 20% is ideal because, this what most lenders expect from someone who wants to purchase a home.

Is The Home You Want To Buy Worth The Sellers Asking Price?

Once you’ve been pre-approved for a mortgage loan it’s important to ask yourself if the home you want to purchase is worth the seller’s asking price. You can confirm its price by asking your Realtor to do a comparable analysis of other homes which have recently sold in the same area.

How Flexible Is The Seller When It Comes To Their Asking Price?

You should always have your Realtor ask the listing agent how flexible the seller is on their asking price because, they could want to stick to their price and be insulted if you submit a low ball offer.

Do You Know What’s Wrong with the House?

Although a home may look great on the outside it might have problems which you can’t see from the street that’s why it’s important to ask the seller what’s wrong with the home and ultimately have a home inspection done should you decide to submit an offer.

Learn More

To learn more about the questions you should ask before buying a home or to view the latest Bend Oregon Homes for sale contact me, Jason Boone, Principal Broker with Duke Warner Realty | Skjersaa Group by calling me at (541) 383-1426 or email me at Jason@sgbend.com.

The Skjersaa Group pledges at least 1% of revenue to the preservation and restoration of the natural environment