Median sales price continues rise, but is a ceiling near?

By Jason Boone

The median sales price of homes in Bend has increased every month this year.

The median sales price of homes in Bend has increased every month this year.

The median price of homes sold in Bend, Oregon, in May was the second-highest in the last 10 years, but there are signs that prices might be nearing or at a peak.

At $374,000, the median sales price in May 2016 trailed only that of May 2007 ($396,250) in the time span covered by the Skjersaa Group’s data, which dates to the start of 2007. May’s figures represent an increase of 2.8 percent from April’s median and marked the fourth month in a row the median sales price has increased.

May’s sales data pushed the year-to-date median sales price to $349,500.

Of the 243 homes sold in May, nearly one-fourth (60) were priced at $525,100 or more, which contributed to the rise in the median price. The percentage of May’s home sales priced in that range was similar to the rate in May 2007 (31 of 118 homes, 26 percent) and was a high for 2016.

Housing inventory in May declined from a record-low 2.1 months in April still further, to 1.7 months, even as active listings rose to 462 homes, a high for 2016. Months of inventory estimates how long it would take to sell all of the homes for sale if no new properties went to market. Six months is commonly used as the boundary separating a seller’s market and a buyer’s market.

Among the other figures from May:

• The number of pending sales at the end of the month numbered 266 homes, fewer than the previous two months.

• The average days on market was 114 days, the lowest since the 109 days in October 2015.

• Nearly one-fourth of the active listings in May had a price reduction. That is the most for any month this year.

In the last three years, the number of homes sold in June was no lower than the second-most of any month that calendar year. The robust number of pending sales and the low inventory at the end of May 2016 indicate another busy month probably lies ahead.

Still, the reductions in price last month indicate the market might be reaching a zenith with pricing. Current conditions make it imperative for sellers entering the market to price their homes exceptionally well to garner the attention of buyers as competition becomes greater.

My experience in the Bend market can help you market your home in our current conditions, or if you are looking to buy a home, I can help you find the right home at the right price.

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

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.

Central Oregon home market expectedly cools in February

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.

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.

2015 ends with a banner month of home sales in Bend

mortgage interest ratesBy Jason Boone

What was already an impressive year in 2015 ended on a particular high note in December. In fact, an almost shocking number of homes were sold during the last month of 2015, pushing the year into record-breaking territory.

How good of a month was it?

Through the month of December 214 homes were sold, significantly more than the 141 homes that sold in November and the 169 homes that sold in December 2014, according to data recently compiled by the Skjersaa Group. The December pace was closer to the busy months surrounding summer (from May through September monthly sales landed between 225 homes to 259 months) than a typical winter month.

The strong December might actually portend to another big year in 2016, even if there are hunches the end of the year might bring a moderation of the market.

One key piece of data from the report is that the year ended with just 3.1 months of inventory, which is well down from the 5.2 months that were live in November. The tally is the lowest since just 2.4 months of inventory sat on the market in June 2015 and more than a full month less of inventory than in December 2014.

The median price, the midpoint in which half the homes in Bend sold for more and half for less, was $325,275 in December. That is up from $321,275 in November and $290,000 in December 2014. And the sales price of each home was on average 99 percent of listing price, suggesting pricing power for sellers.

Some of the December spike might be explained by the Federal Reserve’s decision to hike interests rates, which may have pushed some potential buyers off the fence. The rental market remains tight. And Bend remains a desirable choice for relocation, making it among the fastest-growing metropolitan areas in the nation.

Regardless of the explanation, it appears that Bend’s real estate market remains strong as we begin 2016.

Some more interesting year-end data from the Skjersaa Group report:

  • In 2015, there were 2,370 homes sold in Bend, the most since at least 2006. To compare, 2,145 homes sold in 2014 and 2,171 sold in 2013.
  • The annual median price was $327,500. That is up from $290,000 in 2014.
  • The average days on market in 2015 was 122 days, which is down from 130 days in 2014 and 127 days in 2013.
  • The average inventory was just three months in 2015, which is down significantly from five months in 2014 and four months in 2013. In fact, only twice (February and November) did the monthly inventory rise above four months.
  • In all, an average of 198 homes sold per month in Bend, which is up from 179 homes a month in 2014 and 151 in 2013.

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.

November housing data moderates in Bend as winter approaches

downloadBy Jason Boone

The residential real estate market in Bend, Oregon tends to slow during the winter months. Typically beginning in November, the colder weather combined with the holiday season often sends potential home buyers and sellers into temporary hibernation, leading to fewer new listings and the whittling down of inventory.

November 2015 was no exception, according to data recently compiled by the Skjersaa Group.  The median sales price in Bend on 141 sales in November landed at $321,500, down from $339,950 in October and the lowest monthly median since April. The year-to-date median — the number where half the homes sold for more and half less — fell from $329,000 in October to $328,000 in November.

This is no surprise. A closer look at the data reveals an ongoing winter trend that has developed since the Bend market began to pick up steam in 2013. The monthly median — which fell from $295,000 in October 2014 to $290,000 in November 2014 — has dropped from October to November for three straight years.

Nov 2015 Median

More than that, the number of active listings in Bend slipped from 565 in October to 508 in November, continuing a trend of October-November inventory declines that also began in November 2013. And the number of new listings slipped to 143 in November from 236 in October, while the total months of inventory increased to 5.2 from 3.8.

By now you probably get the idea.

Why is it important? A knee-jerk reaction might lead someone to mistake the moderations in the November data for something more troubling. But in reality, such predictable trends give a sense of normalcy to the market. And predictability is often a good indicator of a healthy market.

In addition, the slower market can also present unique buying opportunities, even if there are fewer active listings. Fewer listings are typically met with fewer buyers, and the average days on market hit 138 days in November, up from 109 in October.

Of course, there is more to learn from the data. Some other notable items from the report include:

  • The most competitive segment of the market remains homes priced from $225,100 to $325,000. That price range saw 68 homes sold in November, down from 78 in October. With 115 active listings, there was just 1.7 months of inventory in November and the average days on market for each home was just 110 days, the shortest of any price range in Bend.
  • Conversely, there were just 11 sales of homes listed for $625,100 or more in November, down from 20 in October. There are now 143 homes listed in that range and 13 months of inventory, which is up from 7.8 months in October.
  • Homes priced from $425,100 to $525,000 saw the only month-over-month decline in inventory, dropping from 6.1 months in October to 4.8 months in November.
  • For the entire market, the average sale price was 99 percent of the average listing price, up from 98 percent in October. The November tally is equal to the average for the year. In November, homes priced from $125,000 to $225,000 (101 percent) and homes priced from $325,100 to $425,00 (100 percent) beat the annual average.
  • For the 14th consecutive month home inventory was held at less than six months, the time considered to be a balanced market. But the 5.2 months of inventory in November crept closer, and is a full month more of inventory than the 4.2 months in November 2014.

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.

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