The median value of homes in La Plata County increased by 0.5% in the first quarter of 2019 compared with the same period last year, powered in part by a more than 20% increase in median value for townhouses and condominiums near Purgatory Resort.
Despite decreasing median property values for Bayfield and Durango in-town homes, the median value of properties in La Plata County increased by $1,750, from $365,000 to $366,750, according to statistics from the Durango Area Association of Realtors. Durango in-town homes lost 4.9% of their median value, a decrease of $26,950. Bayfield in-town homes lost 3.2% of their median value, a decrease of $10,500.
Much of the value lost in urban areas was made up by the increased value of townhouses and condominiums near Purgatory. The median value for those properties rose nearly 21%, from $140,000 to $169,000, during the first quarter of the year. Realtors and brokers sold 24 properties near Purgatory in the first quarter of 2019, three more than were sold in the first quarter of 2018.
But overall, people bought fewer homes in La Plata County in the first quarter of 2019 than they did in the first quarter of 2018 – down from 203 to 188 – a difference of 15 or about 7.4%, statistics from the Durango Area Association of Realtors show.
Realtors and brokers sold 13 fewer “country homes” in Durango, a difference of 18.3%, and six fewer properties between 1 and 10 acres, data show.
Heather Erb, a managing broker with Coldwell Banker, said in a statement that 79 fewer homes were listed for sale in early 2019 compared with early 2018, part of the reason for the decrease in the number of properties sold.
“Generally speaking, people don’t like to move during the winter and will wait for warmer weather to put their home on the market,” Erb wrote. “In a market that struggled over the last few years with low inventory, fewer homes for sale puts more strain on those looking to purchase.”
But April looks promising, she said. More than 170 new homes have been listed for sale in the first two weeks of the month, Erb said. With tourist season just around the corner and all the water that’s making the region look lush again, more sellers “are waiting on the sidelines,” Erb wrote.
The Realtor’s association, in a synopsis analyzing the data it collected, suggested the numbers could be a sign that “things are leveling out, but it probably has more to do with the difference in weather” from early 2018 to early 2019.