Given the sub-prime mortgage issues and other economic factors, Denver has been hard hit by foreclosures. I know a few Realtors, and whenever I see them I ask how sales are going and how prices are holding up. The answer that I invariable get from Realtors is that the real estate market is a neighborhood market, and not a citywide market. I’ve always found this plausible, but have never been thrilled by this generalization. It doesn’t give me a real sense of my surroundings.
I live in the new sustainable urbanism development of Stapleton, which is an ambitious redevelopment plan at only 25% build out. So, like most people, I want to see the housing momentum continue, and I don’t want to see my property value tank.
Sure, I’ve tried Zillow, but what about average prices in the popular Denver Highlands neighborhood vs. Park Hill vs. Stapleton. I was eager for the big picture, and really wanted to be put at ease by knowing the overall market trends.
This weekend The Denver Post published a feature about foreclosures with an accompanying interactive map that gave me what I was looking for. The map shows average price for neighborhoods, price change, number of homes sold, days on the market and the percentage foreclosed/sold below purchase price. It’s an interesting picture that dramatically reinforces the “neighborhood market” that I’d been hearing about.
In my neighborhood we’ve seen a 4.4% increase in prices, while prices in other neighborhoods surrounding ours have seen price drops of as much as 14%, with as many as 82% of the homes that turned over either foreclosed or sold short.
The neighborhoods will smaller and older homes seem to be the worst hit. A few neighborhoods that I looked at have price drops of more than 20%, but average prices of just $110,000. That makes sense to me given that first-time mortgages were the most likely to default, and the homes in these areas were among the most affordable.
It’s a dynamic map that’s worthy of perusing, particularly if you live in the Denver metro area.