Happy 2020 everyone! Its been a more less proper Colorado winter in Paonia thus far. Temperatures are seasonal, that is COLD, and snows have been regular if not a bit on the scant side. Lots of grey days keeping ice from melting. The high country is looking good for snow pack if not slightly behind the average as well. February and March usually make up for early losses. Think snow! In Paonia lots of “dog on the loose” complaints as of late, as well as complaints about the lack of affordable housing for rent or purchase. The potholes in Paonia this winter have been teeth rattling, suspension destroying chasms. Subway is closing its doors along with the newish upscale cafe Salt Pollen. Hate to hear of diminished eating options in Paonia! Property taxes for 2019 look to have taken a giant leap for many residents of Paonia and last but not least voters in Paonia enacted a moratorium on the sale of new water taps until proper analysis on the state of our current water system can be completed.
The cold weather has hasn’t seemed to affect new listings in the North Fork for the month of December. We recorded a 100% rise in new properties on the market compared with December 2018 (7 vs 14!) but curiously a 61% DROP in sold properties for the same 30 day period. Not even the median sales decrease of 34% helped bolster sales! These month over month comparisons are more curiosities than meaningful but when we look at the overall trend of the past year they do reflect similarities. 2019 total new listings on the market compared with 2018 are stagnant. Sold listings are down 9% in the N.F. and median sales price is DOWN 6.6% to end the year. This is the first significant median decline in 4 years save for a strange blip at the close of 2016 (Election year possibly?) Median sales prices in 2019 have hovered in the mid $250k’s in the North Fork Valley with the decline beginning last Fall. To a certain extent homes sold closer to Paonia tend to increase this data point. For perspective the beginning of the most recent rally began in October 2014 when the median price was $157,500 in the N.F Valley. Increases continued nearly constantly until September of 2019 when we reached a median price of $260k. Delta County wide median price trends have similarly reflected the North Fork albeit lower values.
Will September 2019 be the high water mark for real estate values in the North Fork? In my opinion we seem to be in a definite plateau. I’m no soothsayer but the recent volatility in the stock market stoked by fears of a chinese snake flu pandemic and political upheaval in an election year may keep things stagnant or even drive down prices further for 2020. I don’t see a bubble bursting per se but rather a healthier leveling out of the steeply escalating values of the past 6 years.
If you are considering selling your property keep this in mind…it can be very difficult to sell a property when you overshoot a declining real estate market. Employ a real estate agent and let them do their job! A good one keeps close tabs on where the market is headed and can set you up for a timely sale when assigning a value to your real estate.
Meanwhile high demand for property in the North Fork continues, with particular interest within walking or biking distance to Paonia town limits. Hotchkiss however, has been seeing increasing interest as people look down valley for better inventory and value. At the RE/MAX office in Paonia 84% of our buyers in 2019 came from within the state of Colorado with nearly a quarter of those buyers already living in Paonia itself. 14% are from the Front Range. Gonna be another interesting year on the western Slope! Stay warm and please give me a ring if you have any questions about whats going on with the market or just wanna say hi!