Denver Metro Area’s Luxury Housing Market Flat in January 2012

Luxury home sales in the Denver Metro Area were essentially flat in January after strong year-end gains in December, according to Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, Colorado’s leading provider of luxury real estate services.

A total of 41 homes sold for more than $1 million last month, exactly the same number as December and one more than January 2011. There were five multi-million-dollar sales in January, down from six a year ago and nine in December.

Meanwhile, the median sale price for a luxury home dipped to $1.25 million last month, down 2.4 percent from a year ago and 7.4 percent from December. The median price is the midpoint in which half of the homes sold for more and half for less.

The figures were derived from Multiple Listing Service data of all homes sold for more than $1 million last month in the Denver Metro Area.

“The luxury market in the Denver metro area continued to be fairly strong in January,” said Chris Mygatt, president of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in Colorado. “Once again, the challenge we’re facing in this market is a steady decline in inventory. We need more homes on the market to meet buyer demand.”

Some key findings from this month’s Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage luxury report: The most expensive sale in the Denver Metro Area last month was a four-bedroom, eight-bath 4,537-square-foot home in Denver that sold for $2,562,500; Denver boasted the most million-dollar sales with 12, followed by Boulder with eight and Cherry Hills Village with five; Homes sold in average of 190 days, down from 207 days the previous month and 144 days a year ago; Sellers on average received 91.6 percent of their asking price, up from 90.5 percent a year ago but down from 92.3 percent the previous month.

The Denver Metro Area Luxury Home Report is produced by Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, a specialist in high-end real estate sales. Through its internationally renowned Coldwell Banker Previews® program, the company is recognized around the world for its expertise in the luxury housing market.

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Mortgage Rates Rise but Fear Not

Feb 23rd, 2012

Mortgage rates came off historic lows this week, but remained appetizingly low as sales of previously owned homes picked up steam last month.

Fear not if you don’t feel ready to refinance or buy, or if you don’t qualify. Mortgage rates likely won’t move too much over the next year, says Paul Edelstein, director of financial economics at IHS Global Insight.

“Housing is really the laggard in the economic recovery,” he says, “so the (Federal Reserve) will continue to prop up the mortgage market to induce people to buy houses.”

The central bank’s policymaking committee promised last month to maintain its benchmark interest rate near zero until late 2014, making borrowing cheap for consumers (and for businesses). The Fed also continues to buy longer-term Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities to help keep a lid on mortgage rates.

Ancillary factors such as Europe’s ongoing debt saga may flick rates up or down several basis points as investors hedge risk by buying safer investments such as Treasuries. (The 30-year mortgage rate often tracks the yield on the 10-year Treasury bond.)

But the situation overseas would need to unravel for mortgage rates to dive further, Zandi says. The more likely scenario is slow growth in the economy and a crawl upward in rates.

“They will drift higher. They will be a little higher a year from now and definitely much higher two years from now,” he says.



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