Archive for January, 2012

Southern Utah Real Estate Market Review 2011

Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

Well the numbers are in and all in all last year was a good year for real estate in Southern Utah.  My report deals with Washington County which includes the Greater St. George area and all of the surrounding cities and towns.  This is an overall view of the area and not specific on any one area.  That being said that overall numbers compared with 2010 are very positive.  The total sales of residential real estate was up 10.5% county wide.  There were some areas that sales were better than that and other areas where they were a little worse.  Pended listings for the year were up 9.6 % over 2010.  The average sale price dropped by 3.32 % over 2010.  In December 2011 it was actually up .62%.  Although that number isn’t huge it is a reflection of what is going on in our market.  The biggest statistic for the year is the absorption rate.  The average for the year was 8.8% and in December it was just under 7.2 months.  In December of 2010 the absorption rate was 10.96 months  If you take single family residential without condo, town homes, and manufactured homes there is under 7 months of inventory.  This is a great sign that are market is going in the right direction.  What this means to those looking to purchase a home or sell a home is that home prices will be going up in the coming months and the competition for nice homes will be greater and sellers will be less likely to have to negotiate as much as they have in the past.  New construction is also on the increase throughout the county.  There were approximately 292 new homes that sold in 2010 and 341 that sold in 2011about a 15% increase.  Prices on lots have started to go up as the demand for lots has gone up.  There are several areas where new development is going on.   If you would like more up to date market data or if you would like the data for your area please contact me and I will be happy to provide you with the data.  My out look for the coming year is prices will go up as inventories shrink and as demand also increases.  The bottom line is it is time to get off the fence and purchase a home if you are looking to get the best deal in the St. George market.My market report Washington county December 2011

Buy versus Rent?

Wednesday, January 11th, 2012

I was listening to a radio station yesterday morning and they were talking about a recent presentation by Suzie Orman who supposedly said that it is better to rent than to purchase a home.  I thought his would be a good topic to discuss.  The first question that I asked was do you think that Suzie Orman rents the home she lives in?  Do you think that she has sold all of her rental properties?   The thought crossed my mind about all of the old arguments that we’ve heard over the years about renting vs. purchasing.  I also thought about those people who invest in the stock market.  I have always been taught that if you buy low and sell high that you can make a lot of money!  If you purchase stocks at the bottom of the market and sell when it is at the top, you will make a good return on your investment.  In real estate I assume that you should buy when prices are low and  sell when prices are high.  Well prices are low, and contrary to the advice of some people, there are many people taking advantage of the low price to purchase homes.  It only makes sense that if you want to own a home that you would want to buy it at the bottom of the market.  In our market we have already experienced the bottom of the  market especially in the lower price ranges.  Home ownership has many benefits to the individual as well as the communities they live in.  Home ownership brings stability to families and also gives them a sense of belonging in the community.  Aside from the tax benefits of home ownership, there are also great opportunities to invest in property.  I have often wondered why people are out buying gold and paying ridiculously high prices for something that has mostly intrinsic value.  At over $1800.00 an ounce it just makes me think that the doomsday people have really suckered people into purchasing gold.  The only ones that are making money on gold are those who are selling it at the ridiculously high prices.  I remember many people that purchased homes on speculation driving the prices through the roof, and the roof came tumbling down as the market couldn’t sustain the over inflated prices and now you can buy homes for half of what you could 6 years ago.  Even though those homes have dropped dramatically in price, they still provide a place for people to live and it is also an investment that is insurable.  Eventually the prices will go back up and those that have purchased homes in this down market will make a lot of money.  If you are looking to invest and have the money to get into rental properties, right now is the time.  In the past most people who purchased residential rental properties had to supplement what they were getting for rent to cover the mortgage, but in todays market they can actually purchase the homes with a little down payment and the rents will support the payments on the properties.  Because of all the people who have lost their homes to foreclosure the rental market is booming.  Think about it, you can buy the homes that people have lost and rent them back to them, have the rent cover the payment and in a few years when prices have gone up and they have restored their credit you can sell it back to them at a good profit.  I know it sounds a little vulturous but that is how millionaires become millionaires.  To those who have lost homes I am sure if you asked them they would have much rather purchased those homes at the bottom of the market, chances are most of them would still be in them.

Southern Utah Real Estate Market is Hot

Monday, January 9th, 2012

If you have looked at the St. George area in thoughts of purchasing a home now is a great time to buy.  The market has really taken off in the past year.  We are 10% above what we did in 2010.  The amount of inventory is at the lowest since the days of the run up in 2005.  We are currently at a 6 month absorption rate and with the amount of buyers in the market things are sure to get exciting.  I had two homes listed under $190,000. and had multiple offers on both homes in a very short period of time.  On one of the homes I had over 20 showings in less than 2 weeks.  We had 4 offers on that home and more people wanting to purchase it.  This is great news if you are trying to sell a home in the St. George area.  For the past few years home sellers have taken a beating.  Now they will be able to price there homes without feeling like they have to give it away to sell it.  If you are looking for a home in the St. George area it is time to get hooked up with a great agent (me) and let me help you hone in on a great home before the picking is really slim.  We are no longer in a strong buyers market, the market is really a neutral market.  That being said, there are still some really good deals to be had, because not every one is up to speed on what is going on.  In the next few months that will change and prices will start going up noticeably.  You can check out the listings that are currently available by clicking on the washington county property search button on the home page or at www.southernutahhousefinder.com.  If you would like up to the minute information please feel free to contact me anytime during business hours.