Economic Snapshots and Stats

Boulder Valley Economic Snapshot - January '13

In taking literary license with Charles Dickens’ opening line in A Tale of Two Cities, the 2012 Boulder County real estate market wasn’t the best of times or the worst of times, but it did experience a marked improvement over the past several years. 

Single family home sales were UP 24.10% in 2012 when compared to 2011 (3,249 vs. 2,618). Attached unit sales were UP 20.48% for the same time periods (1,141 vs. 947). The collective market was UP 23.14% (4,390 vs. 3,565). This was the best year since 2007 for Boulder County sales activity, but it was still down 24.25% from 2005 when the market peaked (4,390 vs. 5,795).

The Absorption Rate (the length of time it would take for the market to fully turn) for single family homes ended the year at 91 days for Boulder County. 2011 ended the year at 156 days; 2010 at 189 days. Homes sold twice as fast in 2012 than they did in 2010. This was spurred my low mortgage interest rates and diminishing inventory. 

For Boulder County, the year ended with 814 active listings. This was down 27.39% when compared to the end of 2011 (814 vs. 1,121) and down 39.84% when compared to the end of 2012 (814 vs. 1,353). 

Below is an overview of sales activity for the past two years for single family homes in the various Boulder Valley areas, courtesy of IRES – the Northern Colorado MLS.

2013 promises to be a year of continued change. Here are some thoughts relative to what the Boulder County market may experience.

  • Lack of available inventory will further foster a seller’s market, with both the resale market and new construction benefitting. 
  • Land sales, once a dormant part of the real estate landscape, will experience a rebirth as production and custom builders seek out new opportunities. 
  • Home mortgage interest rates should continue to hover below 4.0% for the traditional thirty-year fixed rate mortgage as the economic impacts of the decisions surrounding the fiscal cliff become more apparent. 
  • Rental rates will continue to increase as the availability of rental units shrinks.