Metro Denver home listings drop in October
For months now, the question in metro Denver’s real estate market has been where have the buyers gone. But in October, a whole bunch of sellers went missing in action as well.
Sellers listed 5,425 homes on the market last month, a decline of 10.1% from September, according to the latest market trends report from the Denver Metro Association of Realtors.
That’s the lowest number of homes to hit the market since February, which has three fewer days than October.
“The fewer new listings added to the market may have contributed to the drop in homes sold in October,” Jill Schafer, chairwoman of the DMAR Market Trends Committee, said in comments accompanying the monthly report.
Sales of single-family homes and condos dropped 6.4% in October from September to 4,654, which is still 1.62% above the number of closing in October of last year. Condo sales fell nearly 9.5%, while single-family home sales were down 5.1%.
Sellers have had a tougher time in recent months, with four in 10 having to drop their price after coming in too high.
When a listing hit the market priced right, it spent 14 days to go under contract. When it faced a price reduction, it lingered for 59 days, nearly two months, Schafer said.
What is different this year compared to last is the heavy presence of instant buyers in the market.
OpenDoor and Zillow Offers, along with some smaller competitors, offer sellers of homes they want an up-front price they claim is competitive with a traditional sale with commissions and repair costs.
They now account for about 2,000 purchases a month, a hefty share of the sales volume. Instant buyers clean up and repair the homes they acquire, saving the original seller those chores.
And they often sell them empty of furnishings. There are some signs that buyers seem to prefer that more spartan approach.
Schafer said buyers are increasingly more prone to pop in and out of homes with clutter, deferred maintenance and dirt.
“There is no statistic for this but from experience, I can tell you that today’s buyers want a home that is move-in ready,” Schafer commented.
Fewer new listings also contributed to a decline in the overall inventory of homes available for sale at the end of the month. That stood at 8,557, down 7.85% from September, and nearly on par with the inventory levels seen a year ago.
The mix of inventory, however, is skewing more towards condos. There were 15.4% more condos available for sale than a year ago, while the number of single-family homes is down 5.6%.
Tribune Content Agency