Santa Fe Home Prices Surge

Santa Fe Home Prices Surge

Santa Fe Home Prices Surged in First Quarter
  • By Joseph Ditzler | The New Mexican
  • Updated 
  •  (1)

Falling inventory is a concern as the spring selling season gets underway, said Kurt Hill, association president. The number of homes of all types listed for sale in the city and Santa Fe County at the end of March dropped to 953, down from 1,254 at the end of December and 1,391 in March 2017, the group’s quarterly reports show. That number has steadily declined from nearly 4,000 in mid-2008.

 

“My biggest concern is inventory. We have built very little since 2008,” Hill said Wednesday. “We can’t help but see prices go up without building.”

Housing affordability continued to decline, the association said. In the first quarter, the median household income in the Santa Fe area was 85 percent of what is necessary to qualify a buyer for a median-priced home under current interest rates. The affordability index was 90 percent one year ago, according to the association.

 

Hill said demand for affordable housing is increasing as employers such as Meow Wolf and Presbyterian Healthcare Services, among others, bring new workers to the city. On the other hand, the conversation around affordable housing in Santa Fe is becoming more urgent and involves more sectors of the community, he said.

 

“We’re going to get to a critical situation soon unless we have some bust in the dam,” he said. “What that is, I don’t know.”

 

The $360,000 median price of a single-family home sold in Santa Fe during the first three months of this year was 11.6 percent higher than the first quarter of 2017, according to the data released Wednesday. The median was 10.8 percent above the fourth quarter 2017 median, $325,000, the data showed.

 

In Santa Fe County, the first-quarter median sales price rose 7.9 percent to $441,685 over the first quarter of 2017. However, it fell 13.2 percent from the fourth-quarter median, $508,750.

 

In the city, 225 single-family homes were sold in the first quarter, 19 more than sold in the same period last year. In the county, 158 homes were sold, seven more than first quarter 2017, according to the Realtors association.

 

Homes of all types in the city and county spent less time on the market, an average 90 days, than the same period in 2017, an average 140 days. That number has declined steadily from a high of 220 days in first quarter 2012, according to the association report.

 

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Report: Santa Fe-Area Home Sales Remain Strong

 

Halfway through 2017, home sales remain robust in the Santa Fe market, with closed transactions up more than 9 percent through June and median prices in both the city and county up over last year’s numbers.

The Santa Fe Association of Realtors said Wednesday in its quarterly market report that second-quarter sales — in April, May and June — rose 7.2 percent in the city of Santa Fe, with a median price of $325,000, up 7.4 percent from a year earlier.

During this same period, county home prices rose by 10 percent to $465,000.

The second quarter was especially strong for sales of condominiums and town homes, one indication that baby boomers are still looking to downsize. The share of the market for those units is small in Santa Fe, but closed sales during the quarter increased 25 percent from a year ago, to 116.

While the number of new listings in the Santa Fe region has declined recently, the total inventory of homes for sale in the Santa Fe market stands at 1,711. That is up slightly from the end of March but about where it was 12 months ago.

Alan Ball, the qualifying broker at Keller Williams Santa Fe, said the market is balanced in most price ranges.

“Overall the market is somewhat balanced, with the usual strong and weak pockets. One who wishes to sell a home should find enough of a pool of buyers to make a deal,” he wrote in a recent blog posting about Santa Fe home sales. “Prospects who are considering our area will have a reasonable amount of inventory to shop.”

But there is one sign that less inventory might be having some impact. The count of properties for which contracts have been accepted, pending sales, dropped 25 percent in the second quarter, to 560 from 753.

If that trend continues, it would dampen sales for the remainder of the year.

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