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Home Sales and Prices Improved Throughout 2012

Statewide Fourth Quarter 2012 Housing Statistics

January 18, 2013

The median sales price for single family homes, condominiums and town homes sold during the fourth quarter of 2012 increased in all areas of Colorado compared to the same time period in 2011, according to Quarterly Market Statistical Reports released today by the Colorado Association of REALTORS® (CAR). The number of homes sold during the fourth quarter increased in all areas of the state over the previous year, as well, while in most areas the number of new listings available for purchase decreased.

For the state as a whole, sales of single-family, condominium and town homes (taken together) increased nearly 16 percent to 20,229 units during the fourth quarter of 2012 compared to the fourth quarter of 2011. New listings dropped slightly more than 2 percent statewide, though some of the more rural areas of our state saw modest (3-8 percent) increases.

Home prices continued to rally, increasing about 12 percent to a median price of $223,500. Days on the market continued its downward trend dropping nearly 22 percent to 89 days on average. The statewide number of active listings was 29,669, representing a 4.2-month inventory supply.

"These figures are very encouraging and suggest that Colorado's place as a leader in the recovery of our country's housing markets is continuing," said CAR spokesperson, Duane Duggan. "Higher sales and increasing median pricing, combined with fewer days on the market, are all positive signs of good things to come. As the economy continues to recover, overall housing affordability will stay strong and we should expect to see more people entering the market in 2013."

The Colorado Association of REALTORS® Quarterly Market Statistical Reports are prepared by 10K Research and Marketing, a Minneapolis-based real estate technology company, and are based on data provided by Multiple Listing Services (MLS) in Colorado. The current Q4 2012 reports represent approximately 90 percent of all MLS-listed residential real estate transactions in the state. The metrics do not include "For Sale by Owner" transactions or all new construction.

Sales of lender-mediated properties (properties owned by banks and other mortgage lenders, along with short sales) dropped significantly in most areas of the state. Overall, such sales represented about 20 percent of all transactions in the fourth quarter of 2012 and were down 30 percent over the same period a year earlier.

The CAR Housing Affordability Index, a new statistical measure for Colorado's housing market, dropped about 3 percent to 167 for the state, a similar drop occurred in the third quarter of 2012 compared to 2011. An index of 120 means the median household income was 120 percent of what is necessary to qualify for the median-priced home under prevailing interest rates. A higher number means greater housing affordability.

In addition to cumulative statewide statistics, CAR has prepared six regional reports, using the same measures, whose content is summarized below along with local expert contacts.

Metro Denver Region
Denver, Jefferson, Adams, Arapahoe, Broomfield, Douglas
Contact: Michael Welk, 303-263-3217

Results for the six counties in the Denver Metro Region were slightly higher when compared with the overall statewide results. The number of sales rose 17 percent and median sales prices increased almost 13 percent. Days on the market dropped more substantially in Metro Denver (-32 percent) than any other area of the state while new listings of available housing were down 6 percent. As of the end of the quarter there were approximately 11,000 active listings representing only a 2.8- month inventory.

Northeast Region
Boulder, Larimer, Logan, Morgan, Weld
Contact: Duane Duggan, 303-449-7000

This region of Colorado is one of three in the study which showed an increase in the number of new listings (8 percent). Sales increased 21 percent, the highest quarter-to-quarter increase in the state. The median sales price grew 7 percent and days on the market decreased by more than 14 percent. The CAR Affordability Index increased slightly but stayed slightly below the state average of 167.

Southeast Region
Baca, Chaffee, Crowley, Custer, El Paso, Freemont, Huerfano, Las Animas, Otero, Pueblo, Teller
Contact: Jay Gupta, 719-785-4114

Southeast Colorado saw sales of homes increase by nearly 8 percent to 3,283 during the fourth quarter of 2012. Median sales price increased more than 10 percent and days on the market declined by nearly 16 percent, among the largest declines in the state. While the CAR Affordability Index showed a slight decline (-1.5 percent) the area's score of 200 is the second strongest in the state. At the end of the year, this region had nearly 7,000 active listings which represent an inventory that would last about six months.

Northwest Region
Delta, Hinsdale, Mesa, Moffat, Montrose, Pitkin, Rio Blanca
Contact: Sandy Borman, 970-256-9100

This region of our state saw a second consecutive quarter of increased new listings, up 2.9 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2011. Sales improved nearly 17 percent, median prices increased just over 10 percent and days on the market dropped 7 percent. This area of the state had the largest proportion of lender-mediated sales (36 percent) but also saw one of the largest drops in such sales compared to 2011 (-32 percent).

Southwest Region
Alamosa, Archuleta, Conejos, Costilla, Dolores, Hinsdale, La Plata, Mineral, Montezuma, Saguache, San Juan
Contact: Don Ricedorff , 970-375-7014

Median sales prices in this region increased approximately 13 percent, one of the larger increases in the state. Number of sales increased modestly (6 percent) and days on the market dropped slightly (-1.6 percent). The Affordability Index in this area dropped (-3 percent) but still remains strong at 170. New listings were down 15 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2011.

Mountain Region
Garfield, Grand, Gunnison, Jackson, Pitkin, Routt, San Miguel, Summit
Contact: George Harvey, 970-729-0111

Sales increased 20 percent in this region, which includes Colorado's ski resort communities, while days on the market declined nearly 10 percent. With 2,400 active listings, this region has more than a one year supply of inventory which, in these areas of the state, is not unusual. New listings of available properties declined substantially (-25 percent) while the median sales price rose by just under 3 percent.

Overall, the data indicates that Colorado continues to see a recovery from its low point four years ago with some areas of the state doing somewhat better than others.

Source: The Colorado Association of REALTORS®