The new year got off to a strong start with prospective homebuyers getting back into the game. That’s according to the latest market trends report from the Denver Metro Association of Realtors (DMAR). Libby Levinson-Katz, Chair of the DMAR Market Trends Committee, notes that 2024 kicked off with buyers “ready to put themselves back in the real estate market as they finally have more choices.”
More specifically, buyer activity for single family homes listed under $600,000 picked up “drastically” in mid-January with a sudden uptick in showings for homes listed during the holidays paired with multiple offers for new listings.
New residential listings increased 14.73% over last January, totaling 3,280, with a particularly significant rise of 17.94% in new listings for detached properties, amounting to 2,301. Pending home sales have also seen an uptick, increasing by 6.5% to 3,294.
However, closed sales show a lag of 6.26%, a trend attributed to the typical delay in reflecting homes sold in January that went under contract in December. Notably, this comparison is preferred over month-to-month analysis, considering December traditionally registers the lowest inventory, thus skewing statistics.
The average close price for residential listings, encompassing both detached and attached properties, has seen a significant uptick. Year-over-year, there’s been a 5.43% increase, while compared to the previous month, there’s a 0.63% rise, reaching $660,127. Delving into specific property types, detached homes exhibit a noteworthy increase, with the average close price at $734,836, up by 4.48% over the preceding year. Furthermore, the median close price has grown by almost 5% over last year and 2.73% over last month, standing at $565,000.
DMAR also reports that homebuyers budgeting $3,000 to spend on monthly mortgage payments gained $40,000 in purchasing power this past month, as mortgage rates began to drop.
Looking forward, Levinson-Katz also anticipates a strong spring selling season “due to pent-up demand and more favorable lending terms.” She also notes the importance of real estate agents acting as advisors to their buyers, as people who may be waiting for interest rates to drop could end up paying more in the long term if they end up in a bidding war once the market heats up. The potential for interest rates to drop could lead to tighter inventory and heightened competition, emphasizing the importance of strategic decision-making for buyers.