"The sky isn't falling" : New Colorado Housing Report Signals Trend toward Normalcy

                                    “The only thing that is reliable is change.”

Median prices for a single-family in the Denver metro area have dropped for the fourth straight month, according to the newest report from the Colorado Association of Realtors (CAR). 

At $620,000, that median price for Denver-area homes has fallen by $40,000 since April’s record high, but it’s still up by approximately 10% from August 2021. Likewise, the condo/townhome market has also seen a decline in median pricing to $405,000, a $38,000 decrease from this April, but still 8% higher than August 2021. 

Across the state of Colorado, median single-family prices also dropped for the fourth straight month in August, to $570,000, representing a $30,000 fall from April, and a 9.6% increase from last year. Median condo/townhome sales increased from July to August statewide to $414,961, which is still a $20,000 decrease from April, the CAR report states.

The close-to-list-price dropped below 100% for the first time since early 2020 for single-family Denver-area homes in August. With the number of days on the market also increasing, Colorado home buyers are perhaps demonstrating a more cautious approach to purchasing homes, according to the report. 

The median price for a single-family home in Denver County decreased by 9.5% from July to August, representing a historically seasonal drop in pricing from past years. Last year saw a 7.5% decrease, while 2020 saw just a 0.4% increase. The four years prior to that saw between 2.5% and 6.7% decreases.


“The sky isn’t falling, there isn’t some explosive market change as the market itself is always in motion, always in a state of flux and is about as reliable as a 1973 Ford Pinto,” Denver-area realtor Matthew Leprino said in the report. “The only thing that is reliable is change and the fact that, year-over-year, market-over-market, values always increase with the wisdom of a historic perspective.”


Despite signs favoring a buyer’s market, inventory still remains well below the four- to six-month range that represents a balanced market. Across the state, the month’s supply of inventory — meaning the amount of time before all existing inventory runs out if no new listings hit the market — was 1.3 months for the townhome/condo market and two months for single-family homes. 


In its report, CAR noted the affordability challenges in the state, with housing affordability remaining at its lowest ever, according to the Housing Affordability Index. CAR’s index takes into account interest rates, county median income and median sales prices.


CAR also offers insight into what’s happening in specific cities and counties throughout Colorado. In the city of Aurora, inventory rose 40% year over year, with one particular zip code reporting a huge 128% increase. 


Similarly, Douglas County inventory was up as well, with 70% more homes on the market compared to August 2021. While median prices for Douglas County homes dropped for the fourth straight month, those prices are still up more than 10% from last year.


The Boulder and Broomfield counties demonstrated a common theme of big-time price reductions on listings, while other categories saw big increases. Home prices have increased 11% since the beginning of the year, and the list price-to-sale price ratio is at 104%. 


Realtors are “counseling their clients to price their homes closer to the end of 2021’s sales, not to those that sold six months ago. The demand is still there and the local economy is still strong. The real estate market is still moving, as long as it’s priced right,” Broomfield and Boulder realtor Kelly Moye said in the report. 


CAR uses a Minneapolis-based real estate tech company to compile its reports from multiple listing service (MLS) data. 

By   –  Reporter , Denver Business Journal