Published 9 November 2019
According to a Nov. 5 report from the Las Cruces Association of Realtors, the 224 sales of new and existing homes, townhomes and condominiums booked in October set an all-time record for homes sold during that month. The previous record for October sales took place in 2017, when 180 properties changed hands.
If this year’s statistics follow the trend set over the past 3-years, the 1,854 homes sold through October will represent 84.0 percent of the total projected number of closed sales for the entire year. By my fuzzy math, that would result in a year-end total of 2,207-units, making 2019 the second-best production year since local record-keeping began. The highest number of closed-sales ever recorded by LCAR, 2,303-units, was achieved in 2006.
Viewed from a different perspective, there’s a distinct possibility that the total number of sales for the year could be lower. That’s because, for the past two years, the number of closed sales that took place over the November-December time period averaged 320 units. Should that trend be repeated this year, the total number of total sales would reach only 2,174 units, potentially making 2019 the third-best year on record.
Production wasn’t the only statistic that gained ground in October. When viewed as a group, the median sales price of the 224 new and existing homes, townhomes and condominiums sold during the month was $189,500, representing a $9,600, or 5.3 percent, increase over the $179,900 median price posted in October 2018. The median price is where half sold for more and half sold for less. As prices continued to rise, the average sales price of the grouping also increased, climbing to $227,528 from $206,268, for an increase of $21,260, or 10.3 percent.
Newly constructed, free-standing single-family homes accounted for 23 of the 224 October closings, registering median and average prices of $249,445 and $252,608, respectively. The median and average prices of the 20 new homes sold during October of 2018 posted a median price of $204,252 and an average price of $227,465.
Previously owned, free-standing single-family homes were responsible for an additional 188 closings. This year’s median price of $187,750 bested last October’s median price of $180,000 by $7,750, or 4.3 percent. At the same time, this year’s average price of $228,640 was an $18,088, or 8.6 percent improvement over the $210,552 average price reported one year ago.
The 13 sales of townhomes and condominiums rounded out the remaining October closings. Townhome sales accounted for eight of the 13 closings, while condo sales were responsible for the remaining five.
October’s median townhome price was reported to be $132,000, while the posted average price was $128,679. When compared with last October’s median and average prices of $127,500 and $137,840, respectively, the statistics revealed that the median townhome price rose by $4,500, or 3.5 percent, while the average price declined by $9,161, or 6.6 percent.
Condo buyers purchased more expensive units this year than they did last year, resulting in significant price gains in that sector. This year’s median price of $141,500 was a sizable improvement over 2018’s median of $121,000, while 2019’s average sales price of $143,475 aggressively surpassed last October’s average of $122,500.
Well, there you have it. With the exception of a lower average price for townhome sales, all indicators point to respectable rates of appreciation in the remaining categories. Let’s hope that trend continues.
See you at closing.
Gary Sandler is a full-time Realtor and the president of Gary Sandler Inc., Realtors in Las Cruces. He loves to answer questions and can be reached at 575-642-2292 or Gary@GarySandler.com.