first 3 months of the year saw a reduction in same month sales; April
changed that trend. Even though we had 74% fewer properties available,
we sold 14% more units in April 2021 than we did in April 2020. Pending
contracts – contracts that are executed but not yet closed – were also
up 16% over the end of last April, promising the continuation of a
Although the number of properties sold in the first 4 months this
year were 3% lower than the comparable period of last year, the average
price was an astounding 31% higher and the median price was 28% higher
for sales during that period.
One surprising continuing trend is that the price per square foot of
resale homes is about 6% higher than the price per square foot of new
homes. Historically, new homes have sold for much more than resale
As a reminder, our data includes sales not only of detached single-family homes, but also of condominiums, townhomes and homes on acreages, covering all the expanded choices buyers enjoy in our modern market.
The table below shows a breakdown of units sold as well as the
percentage increase in average and median prices for each type of
residential property sold during the first 4 months of 2021 compared to
the same months in 2020:
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the pattern that began this January, sales in March were lower than
last March because of severely limited inventory. With only a 9-day
supply of available homes, buyers are competing with each other, pushing
average prices up 16.6% over the last 12 months. Multiple buyers,
escalation clauses and audacious offers have become regular stories in
our residential market.
The supply of resale or existing properties is so limited that the
price per square foot of existing properties has risen above the price
per square foot of new homes, a phenomenon not seen in my 40 years in
Anecdotal data reveals that many owners are holding on to their
properties for fear of not being able to find a replacement property.
The data below compares first-quarter results for the last 4 years of
limited inventory during which time the average sold price has
Same month sales – meaning sales this February compared
to sales last February – are down once again, continuing the trend
started last month. And it’s all due to lack of inventory.
As you can see from the chart below, Ada County housing inventory at
the end of last February was more than three times the amount of
inventory at the end of this February, thereby limiting buyers’ choices,
increasing competition among buyers, and causing prices to increase
more dramatically (the median sold price increased 14.8% over the last
Another unusual recent trend that has continued is that the price per
square foot of existing (resale) properties has exceeded the price per
square foot of new homes, $211 compared to $205. We don’t remember this
happening before. This could create the opportunity to sell your 2500
square foot home and buy a 2500 square foot new home for a lower price!
Be sure to contact your Group One Sotheby’s International Realty
agent to help you guide your decisions in this most unusual market.
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Our annual market summary for Ada County highlights some interesting and significant issues happening in the world of local residential real estate. In our report we offer side by side comparisons of statistics from year ending 2019 and 2020 for each MLS defined area. Learn which areas have increased the most in average price, which areas are most affordable over all, and get a glimpse of where the market may be heading in 2021.
Significant issues of the year are:
that housing inventory (properties available to buy as of December 31st) has decreased
that, in spite of the decrease in inventory, unit sales have increased, and
because of the limited inventory, prices have
increased by about 14%.
To dig even deeper, ask your Group One Sotheby’s agent to give you more specific information regarding your own opportunities in this market as it evolves.
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The story of Ada County real estate for the last five years has been
consistent: Increased sales (from 11,316 units in 2016 to 12,710 units
in 2020) in the face of decreased inventory (starting at 1,784 units at
the beginning of 2016 to only 379 units at the end of 2020).
of this year began with 379 housing units available for sale and ended
with 323 units, still consistent with the recent past. However, unit
sales during the month of January decreasedby 24% over those of last January, the first decrease in same month sales in many years.
For the future: Let’s keep an eye on inventory and sales in the next several months to see if this trend continues.
For the past: Ask your Group One Sotheby’s International Realty agent for our 2020 annual housing report to be issued February 15.
First, a reminder about what we cover. Our statistics are from our
database constructed from MLS statistics, covering single family homes
and homes with acreages up to 2 acres of land, townhomes and
condominiums. Some services that cover only detached single family homes
will have slightly different statistics. We believe it is more
informative to include all the main choices that buyers have, especially
as housing forms change over time.
The year ended with only 379 such properties on the market, the
lowest number we can remember. Inventory at the end of 2019 was 3.3
times more than it was at the end of 2020 and gives us approximately 12
days of available homes.
Despite the low inventory, sales during the month of December were 6%
higher than they were in December, 2019. Perhaps even more astounding
is that pending contracts were up 21% over the last year. Demand is
rising, sales are rising and prices are up. The average and median
prices of residential properties sold in 2020 increased by 15% over
properties sold in 2019.
Perhaps the most surprising statistic, however, is that the price per
square foot for resale properties, at $205, was higher than the price
per square foot of new homes, at $201. We don’t remember that ever
The charts below show the relationships between sales, prices and inventory every year since 2002.