This is the moment we've been waiting for!! In 2017 we saw the hottest part of the selling season start (and end) earlier than ever, with a stark dropoff in the market occurring right about Easter weekend (less offers on each property, less Buyers bidding wildly over asking price, slightly longer average days on market though still a strong "Seller's Market" for the entire year 2017).

With 2018 Easter weekend behind us, will this year replicate last year? Will the hottest part of the selling season end in April like it did in 2017, or will it go into May/June like it did in 2015 & 2016?

 

Here you see 2017's full year price appreciation and 2018's appreciation to date. 2017 had nearly all it's appreciation occur in the first 3 months as we saw a 7% uptick in median price from January to March (then up another 2% in April before leveling off for the rest of the year). In 2018 we've seen a really similar pattern, with a 6.6% uptick from January to March. March this year was crazy, with double digit offers on homes being very common - so you can expect April to see appreciation, same as last year.

With this year's pattern mirroring last year's pattern so well, we are seeing things play out about as we've been predicting; expect the summer months to be a strong Seller's Market but the insanity of Buyers bidding wildly over asking price and prices going up seemingly by the minute should be nearly over - we're predicting that "slow down" where it settles into the Sellers Market we saw last year and prices leveling off will happen sometime in April or May this year.

Denver Metro Real Estate, All Ten Counties:

5,265 properties sold this month

  • Big uptick from last month but that's normal, February is always slow. For March, this is about the same as last year (though nearly 10% more sales than 2015 or 2016 in March). 

$425,000 median sale price for Single Family Homes this month

  • Up only 1.2% from last month; up 6.5% from March 2017. 

$296,000 median sale price for Condos/Townhouses this month

  • After a massive appreciation from January to February, we saw a touch of a correction here as the median price actually dropped $4,000 from last month. Still, this is an immensely strong sector with 12.3% appreciation since March 2017.

7,253 active listings available on any given day this month

7,613 new listings posted during this month

  • This is about 2,300 more new listings than we saw in February! But again, February into March always means huge upticks in Sellers & Buyers as the Selling Season begins. This is actually 4.5% less new listings than March 2017 which is concerning, and a big part of why we think the insanity of listings getting many over-asking-price offers will stretch about a month longer than it did last year (last year it ended right about Easter, this year it could possibly stretch into May). BUT this doesn't mean a crunch like 2015 & 2016, this number is still about 18% higher than the number of new listings we saw in March of '15 & '16.

99.6% was the average sale price, relative to the original listing price this month

  • This is up 0.7% from last month. The Selling Season is really here my friends! Price right, market right and you'll get asking price or above. This number is really a balance of those homes priced over-market-value and negotiated down vs those priced correctly and then bid up in a bidding war of multiple Buyers landing on the same house at the same time.

 

Summary: Things are playing out about as we've predicted for the last few months and the signs still point in the same direction. This will be another strong Seller's Market throughout the year; we're predicting somewhere around 6.5% appreciation by year's end with the vast majority of that appreciation happening before June and then the prices plateauing at that level.... Things are really really crazy out there right now, we've seen anywhere from 3-15 offers with winning bids being wildly over "fair market value" on homes priced correctly this month - but you can expect that to settle down in the next month or two as the early season Buyers find their homes and the appreciation hits that 6.5ish percentage and then plateaus for the Summer.

Denver City Limits:

1,171 properties sold this month

  • This is 267 more homes sold than last month but 34 less than March 2017, so within the statistical norms here for March.

$459,500 median sale price for Single Family Homes this month

  • This is huge. Denver single-family homes are up 12% year-over-year from last March, showing Denver city is still appreciating at a huge rate (and well surpassing the total metro numbers). This number is also up 3.5% from just last month. Looking like things in the city are going to be a bit hotter than the 'burbs again this year.

$365,000 median sale price for Condos/Townhouses this month

  • This is actually down 4.1% from last month but up 11% from March 2017. This validates what we were discussing with this sector last month, that this is being driven nearly entirely by all the cranes you see around town. Last month was a big month for new construction condos & townhouses closing, this month had more resale units sold. Just like we did last month, let's look at only condos & townhouses built prior to 2015: they've appreciated 3.6% from last month and 5.8% from March 2017. Looking at it this way, you've reduced the impact of the wild swings you see with new construction (one month a bunch of $300,000 condos close, the next month several $3,000,000 lofts/townhouses close and this will cause dramatic swings in the monthly averages). So when looking at just prior to 2015, the market looks to be moving along fairly similarly to the rest of the Denver Metro as a whole.

 

1,376 active listings available on any given day this month

1,759 new listings posted during this month

  • This is up almost 400 from last month but down about 40 units from March 2017. Nothing to see here, this doesn't really show anything significant - again just the shift as the Selling season gets under way.

100% was the average sale price, relative to the original listing price this month

  • Up ever so slightly from last month and last year, this has remained pretty steady the last few years.

 

Fun fact: The average sale price of a new construction stand-alone house in Denver so far this year is $1,150,000 and the average new construction condo/townhouse is $571,000. There's so much construction going on in Denver, and the new homes really set the standard for top-end prices. Taking out these new homes, appreciation is actually below 10% from last year. 

Luxury Market for The Metro Area (over $700,000):

531 single family homes sold this month

  • This number is huge, only 451 sold last March and under 400 sold in February. 531 represents the best March in the last 8 years and the sixth best month overall since before the crash in 2009. 

92 days was the average Days on Market this month

  • This is 2 weeks less than the average days on market for homes that sold last March but pretty well in line with what we've been seeing the last few years. Remember, luxury homes simply take longer to sell. 

4.125 "Months of Inventory" in March 2018

  • The number the pros watch most closely, this is what economists use to determine a seller's market vs buyers market. 6 months of inventory means a perfectly balanced market. This is a great shift that's occurring in our luxury market. This number is the lowest it's been since before the '09 crash! Things are really heating up as more homes climb over $700k and the high-end luxury Buyers are being more active.

$905,000 median sale price for Single Family Homes this month

  • This is up 5.8% year-over-year from March 2017 and up 1.7% from last month. This is a strong growth for the luxury segment, better than we've seen in recent year's past.

2,238 active listings available this month

  • Very similar to previous Marchs and very similar to last month.

96.7% was the average sale price, relative to the original listing price this month

  • This is very much in line with historical trends for this time of year. Remember, people in the luxury segment expect to be able to negotiate just a little bit (compared to the general market that gets near 100% close to list price ratios).