Welcome to the 2019 Q1 Coldwell Banker Carlson Real Estate Market Report; our current examination of the real estate market in the Stowe area. This report uses market-wide data based on transactions that closed in during 2018 in the Multiple Listing Service and compares them to sales that took place during 2018.
2018 Market Trends Continue in Q1 of 2019. The first quarter of 2019 was marked by one of the best ski and ride seasons in recent memory, and a whopping 10 feet of snow which was still at the top of the mountain. Skier days were surely up to this winter, and memories of epic powder days will definitely endure. Whether all this influenced rising home sales and prices in both Stowe and Waterbury we can’t say for sure. We can confidently report that due to continued buyer demand, and inventory levels still dropping in most areas, the market overall remains strong and steady.
According to the National Association of Realtors existing home sales and pending sales have fallen in many parts of the country over the last few months, yet much of the Northeast has remained healthy. The lack of inventory available, and affordability remain challenging for home buyers, but as we get closer to the spring and summer seasons, more properties will be listed for sale. Overall, buyers continue to benefit from low-interest rates which have in some ways helped to offset rising prices. Residential home sales are still on the upswing for the most part. An increase was seen in both Stowe and Waterbury for the first quarter as compared to last year’s. The number of sales was up as much as 46% in Stowe and 11% in Waterbury for Q1. In northern Lamoille County, home sales were actually down slightly, and there was an increase in the amount of inventory there, counter to recent trends.
Strong Market Conditions Revealed for 2018. As 2018 came to a close and broader economic markets showed signs of volatility, consistency in the real estate market continued to offer comfort. Some large residential markets across the country have been negatively affected by weakened buyer demand, and as a result, declining prices. Stowe and the surrounding region continue to show signs of overall strength, and in most cases, increased demand. As we’ve seen over the past few years, lack of inventory remains a consistent theme impacting our local markets. Buyers patiently wait as new listings flow into the market, and sellers who are pricing their properties according to demand, are selling more rapidly than seen in recent years. The average days on the market for home sales in Stowe has declined steadily over the last 3 years. The average days on market for 2018 was 113 as compared to 188 in 2016.
Some recent national reports show more people are moving into Vermont than almost all other states. Although interest rates crept up slightly through 2018, they are still historically very low and provide buyers with the rates that are still satisfactory. Overall indicators show that real estate remains a sound investment in our area.
Home sales in Stowe and the rest of Lamoille County were up in 2018, despite a continual decrease of inventory in Stowe. This is likely due to how quickly homes are moving off the market. Not so for Waterbury which is more adversely affected by extremely low inventory. By the end of 2019, there was only a 2 months’ supply of homes on the market in the Waterbury area. This is likely the main factor affecting the number of sales that occurred there.