The residential real estate market in Montezuma County is off to a hot start this summer, with a 52 percent increase in sold listings for the month of May compared with the same month last year, according to data from the Colorado Real Estate Network.
According to the latest data from the CREN, there were 35 home sales in May 2015 compared with 23 in May 2014. June saw 32 home sales, bringing the year-to-date total to 115 - a 6 percent increase.
The percentage jumps can seem extreme because of the small sample size, the CREN states, but on the real estate agent's view, the data points to stability.
"It's not really too different from what we saw last year, but it's definitely been a good year so far," said Terry McCabe, of Century21. "I think that it's important to note that inventory is beginning to lessen, and as inventory depletes, you'll see the effects of supply and demand. Prices will probably will start to increase. ...We're still pretty stable now."
McCabe notes that inventory of active listings in all classes of available property (commercial, residential, land) last year was 852, and this year is currently 713.
The inventory price increase effect could start revealing itself in the next month or so, McCabe, posits.
Looking at May data, median sale prices of residential listings were also up to $192,500 and crept up to $193,450 last month. The average sales price was in May was $214,479, and it tapered off slightly to $209,958 in June.
The inventory of homes for sale was down about 20 percent for May and June, coming in at roughly 347 on the market.
Looking at regional CREN data, within the Four Corners Board of Realtors area - which includes markets from the San Luis Valley to Cortez and north almost to Grand Junction, excluding Telluride - the region saw an 11.6 percent spike from the same period last year.
"Forecasting market trends can be as dicey as the weather, but with interest rates managing to remain low into the summer months, the outlook is promising, even if rates go up later in the year," the report states.
The prevailingly low interest rates could be a dominating factor driving the strong numbers, but Bonnie Leighton, of Southwest Colorado Properties, says she's also noticed more cash sales than previous years.
"All of that tells me that our buyers are being able to sell their homes in other areas and can now move here and purchase, either with cash or enough down to get good loans. I've also seen our local banks turn loans in 30 days or, in one instance for one of my buyers, basically in two weeks," said Leighton.