Half of new listings in March were under contract within eight days.
By Aldo Svaldi The Denver Post April 6, 2017
Like spring runoff surging from the mountains, new listings poured onto metro Denver’s parched market last month, causing home sales to blossom like daffodils and tulips.
The number of new listings for single-family homes in metro Denver shot up 53.5 percent in March from February and the number of new listings for condos rose 38.2 percent month over month, according to a monthly update from the Denver Metro Association of Realtors.
“Historically, there is always that bump from February to March,” said Steve Danyilw, a real estate agent who oversees the DMAR Market Trends Committee. “We were anticipating a jump, but it was a little surprising.”
The surge came after the number of homes available for sale reached a 32-year low at the end of February. The lack of selection frustrated buyers, pushed down sales and raised worries among agents that the supply spigot had rusted shut.
Normally, a 50 percent-plus surge in listings in one month would raise flood warnings. But buyers soaked up many of the new listings, especially on the lower end of the market, as soon as they arrived. The number of single-family home sales shot up 39.9 percent month-over-month, while the number of condo sales rose 27.3 percent.
The number of average days that listings spent on the market fell from 43 in February to 39 in March, easing concerns about an oversupplied market. But that doesn’t tell the full story. Half of new listings in March were under contract within eight days, Danyliw said.
The inventory of homes available for sale, both single-family and condos, rose 26.9 percent in March from February. The average increase in inventory between those two months over the past three decades has run closer to 4.6 percent, and last month’s gain was the largest spring jump on record, Danyliw said.
Some of that reflects timing. Typically, a listing hits the market on a Friday, is shown over the weekend, and offers are reviewed in the days that follow. March 31 fell on a Friday, which boosted the inventory of active listings, which are measured on the last day of the month. It’s almost certain some of the homes listed on March 31 are under contract.
Also, the 4,921 listings on the market at the end of March is less than a third of the 15,040 listings averaged in March over the past 30 years, Danyilw said. And it remains below the 7,000 or so that would help put more potential sellers at ease about finding a replacement home.
The additional supply didn’t suppress prices. The average price of a single-family home sold in March rose 4.9 percent month-over-month and 8.4 percent year-over-year to $468,889. The price of a median home sale was $406,000, up 2.8 percent from February and 7.9 percent from a year earlier.
The average price of a condo that sold in March reached $317,402, up 7.3 percent from February and 10.7 percent from March 2016. The median cost of a condo sold in March was $260,000, up 3 percent from February and 10.7 percent from a year earlier.