On Sunday, January 3rd, The Santa Fe New Mexican rang in the new year with the article Promising Signs in Santa Fe’s Housing Market Slide. Statistics compiled by Alan Ball, a title officer with Southwest Title and Escrow, showed the number and price volume of Santa Fe residential home sales at their lowest point in decades. Comparing 2009 with 2005, the peak market of the last decade, showed a 56% decline over the 5 years –from 1.2 billion to $540 million. Indeed, the sales volume of 2009 ($540 million) was even lower than the sales volume at the start of the decade ($578 million.)
Still, Santa Fe fared far better than many markets. And there’s good news for both buyers and sellers.
Low interest rates and abundant inventory collectively offer a point of entry for many buyers shut out in the past. A search for single family homes within the Santa Fe city limits, shows the following:
Under $200K = 33 homes
$200K-300K = 120
For those who qualify, the pot sweetens with the addition of the Federal Housing Tax Credit. Not just for first-timers, homebuyers who have “…owned and lived in their previous home for five consecutive years out of the last eight years” also may qualify for a $6500 move up credit. Follow the link for a clear presentation of the incentives’ details.
Sellers face tougher competition on the market. At present, the absorption rate–the number of months it would take to sell all the homes on the market at the pace at which they are currently selling–is 29.71 months. Add to this the fact that homes are selling at roughly the prices they were in 2005, meaning a net loss for those who bought at the market’s peak. To sell now demands realistic pricing, excellent presentation and smart marketing, if not patience.
Sellers can console themselves that Santa Fe is still a good investment. Just one year ago, the absorption rate was a grimer 34.3 months. Plus, median prices have risen 50% over the decade, from $296,000 in 2001 to $447,000 at the end of 2009. We don’t hit the crests of California, neither do we spelunk down to its cavernous lows.
Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow;
The year is going, let him go…
Real estate agents Malissa Kullberg and Joshua Maes, AKA Changing Gallery, use their listings, where appropriate, to showcase the art, photography, sculpture and other creations of emerging and independent talents. Artists receive 100% of the proceeds from any sale. Currently displaying work by Mark Frossard, Laird Hovland, Jonathan Tercero at 133 Sombrio in Casa Solana, downtown Santa Fe. To schedule an appointment, call: 231.7598. For up-to-date market info and full access to the MLS, visit: Santa Fe Real Estate Downtown.