First Quarter 2011 Market Conditions

Boise Home for SaleSpring is finally here which means we have completed the first quarter of 2011.  The latest and greatest news on the Boise Real Estate market is mixed.  We have some bright spots, but the market still has a long ways to go before we can start celebrating.  Typically, the first 3 months of the year are slower for our cyclical buying seasons in Idaho and this year was no different.

The good news overall is that the total number of sales are up.  In Ada County, which includes all Boise, Meridian, Eagle, Kuna, and Star properties, the number of sales has increased by 4.36% over the same quarter in 2010 levels and has consistently improved over the last several quarters.  However, the bad news is that prices are still declining.  Median prices went from $163,300 in 2010 to $138,500 in 2011, representing a 15.19% decline for the first 3 months of 2011.

However, it is not all gloom and doom.  The new construction market is improving slightly and median prices have increased by 15.69% in Ada County. Most notably—compared to other Idaho communities— the Northeast Boise area has remained relatively stable throughout the downturn. Right now, 1 in 3 sales are new construction. The median price of new homes in this area is a whopping $323,515, representing the highest median home prices in Ada County, though this is mainly because of its limited number of homes. Its level of desirability remains high, although it represents a very small percentage of sales in the county.  Northwest Meridian has also experienced a welcome bump in the number of new construction sales, with a total of 31 new home sales during the last quarter.

 The Sun through the Idaho CloudsAnother bright spot in 2011’s first quarter stats is the decreasing number of homes on the market—not only that, but we are experiencing consistent drops in inventory levels over all price ranges.  This is important for an eventual recovery, as demand will eventually outpace supply levels and prices can then begin to stabilize.  For now, what is still having impacting Idaho Real Estate’s decline in median prices is the huge number of distressed sales.  With such a large percentage of bank-owned foreclosures and short sales, the prices have a huge downward pressure.  In many parts of Ada County, the percentage of distressed properties is over 50% of all sales, but the rate varies by area.  The average number of days on the market has increased slightly to 96 days on market, an increase of 3 days per sale over the same period last year.

Boise Real Estate has bright spots ahead, but it is not out of the woods yet. Luckily though, interest rates have remained relatively low and there are still some fantastic buying opportunities on Boise, Meridian, and Eagle properties and throughout the region.

Kevin Hughes

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