The local real estate market is obeying the economic law of supply and demand which dictates that when fewer options exist, the price goes up.
Average prices in April 2017 are higher than the same time period in 2016, according to a report from the Alaska MLS (multiple listing service) regularly used by real estate professionals to track market performance and to identify potential properties for clients.
The average list price for all properties on the market on April 17, 2017, was $359,705. In 2016, that number was $331,560.
“The pricing has gone up, but the amount of listings is down,” Heather Maidl, an associate broker with Herrington and Company, LLC.
Laura Hamilton of Eagle River Homes Realty Group has the same observation of current market conditions.
“Right now you cannot find anything decent for less than $350,000,” Hamilton told the ECHO News. “Prices are high and properties are selling. It is nearly impossible to find anything in Chugiak. As soon as it is listed, it is sold right now.”
May movement in the local real estate market is not a news flash, however, both Realtors say.
May is the time when sellers put out the for sale signs in hope of closing the deal before the end of summer. Sellers want to market their properties when the yards look the best, Hamilton said. Seller and buyers alike seek to complete transactions and make their moves long before school resumes in the fall, Maidl said.
“It’s that time of year,” Maidl said in reference to the increased number of for sale signs that seem to have popped up in front of local homes in similar fashion to the emergence of spring’s flowers. “You are going to see for sale signs pop up now all over the place.”
She hopes local inventory increases.
Even though the past couple of weeks have seen an increase in listing, as Mon., May 15, the number of listings on the local portion of the Alaska MLS was uncharacteristically low for this time of the year, Maidl said.
Hamilton believes listings will increase through the summer months. She hears that some longtime locals are opting to leave the state and its pending economic downturn. They are headed mainly for the Southwest where property taxes are lower, she said.
“If our economy does not improve, you could see some exit,” Hamilton said.
As of now, the fact that the homes available are moving quickly is validated by numbers from the Alaska MLS. On April 17, 2017, the average days on the market for a listed property were 67 days. A year ago, that number was 81 days.