Market Update Boulder County January 2012

Posted by Greg Smith on Monday, January 16th, 2012 at 8:30pm.

Here is the latest economic update from our good friend Dan Johnson with RE/MAX Alliance in Louisville, CO.  Dan gives some insight into last year and a glimmer of hope for the year ahead.




That light at the end of the tunnel may not be another train coming this way. For the Boulder County real estate market that light may be the end to the darkness the area real estate market has experienced since the end of 2005.

For the past three years sales activity has been approximately the same. In 2009 there were 3,665 single family/attached unit sales across Boulder County. In 2010 that number was 3,660 and in 2011 the number was 3,539.

When comparing 2010 to 2011, here are some end-of-the year numbers: Active Listings – 1,353 vs. 1,121 (17% fewer listings); Absorption Rate – 189 days (6.3 months) vs. 157 days (5.2 months). (The Absorption Rate is the time it would take for the market to absorb itself assuming the sales rate stayed the same and no new inventory came into the market.) Based on these numbers, homes were selling at a quicker pace in 2011 than in 2010, and at the end of the year there was less available inventory.

Home mortgage rates continued at historic lows throughout 2011, with the traditional thirty-year fixed rate loan vacillating around 4%. New home builders took advantage of the reduced inventory of resale homes and began to build spec inventory; something that hasn’t happened for the past few years as lenders have been wary of providing financing on homes that don’t yet have a buyer in hand. Look for this element of the local real estate market to continue to expand in 2012 as builders develop land they purchased at rock-bottom prices during the lean years.

In the past, corporate relocation was an important aspect of the Boulder County real estate market. Local companies would search across the country (world) for qualified individuals to fill local positions. For the past few years, those positions (if there were any) were filled with qualified individuals who were already living here. Look for that to continue as the cost associated with relocating individuals and their families has become economically prohibitive for many companies.


Below is an overview of sales activity for the past two years for single family homes in the various Boulder Valley areas, courtesy of IRES – the Northern Colorado MLS.

2010 2011 % 2010 2011 %

Area Solds Solds Change Average Price Average Price Change

Boulder 623 615 -------- $649,726 $663,911 +2.18%

Louisville 195 201 +3.07% $440,176 $412,121 -6.38%

Lafayette 228 244 +7.01% $357,129 $373,017 +4.45%

Superior 107 108 --------- $426,358 $423,365 -0.70%

Longmont 831 828 --------- $256,084 $244,525 -4.51%

Sub. Plains 450 408 -9.33% $549,136 $553,996 +0.88%

Sub. Mtns. 232 252 +8.62% $412,176 $393,435 -4.55%

Broomfield 343 349 +1.75% $379,432 $354,616 -6.54%

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Totals … 3009 3005 ---------- $433,427 $425,719 -1.78%

Greg Smith

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