The real estate market is becoming more and more difficult. See where sales have fallen the most and prices have risen the most.
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Home sales on the Wasatch front went from bad to worse last year as house prices soared from high to high and supply slumped ever thinner.
New data from the Salt Lake Board of Realtors shows a year-long sales slowdown that worsened in late fall, in part due to the pandemic. Nearly half the number of existing single-family homes changed hands in October, November and December from a year earlier, as sales fell 45% in the five-county region centered on Salt Lake County.
The demand is there, but not the houses for sale. In places like downtown Salt Lake City and neighborhoods in Central City, Taylorsville, parts of Lindon, Orem and Provo, and Centerville in Davis County, sales have dropped 60% or more due to depleted inventory and a housing shortage in the area that frustrated many potential buyers.
[Go to www.sltrib.com/homeprices to see home prices and sales in the five-county region by ZIP code.]
Prices also broke records in several localities as they continued a steady rise that pushed much of Utah’s housing stock out of reach of those earning an average salary by state standards. This persistent trend, which long predated the onset of COVID-19, has since been accentuated by falling interest rates, the influx of more and more people to the suburbs and the influx of people to the out of state.
New figures show an average year-over-year price gain for single-family homes of 23.9% in Salt Lake County; 25.5% in Utah County; 26.5% in Tooele County; 23.9% in Weber County; and 24.9% in Davis County.
“Demand is still going strong, but that’s driving first-time home buyers even further away,” said Steve Perry, new chairman of the Salt Lake Board of Realtors and chief operating officer of East-based Presidio Real Estate. in Pleasant Grove. .
“Low inventory makes such a big difference,” Perry said, noting a record shortage of active listings, also down double digits from a year ago.
Data shows the average home for sale was on the market between 18 and 23 days depending on the county, significantly below just a year ago. Anecdotally, real estate agents say some listings sell out in as little as four days, some with cash offers of $100,000 or more above the asking price.
And with the prospect of rising interest rates and the higher mortgage payments that come with them, Perry said, more residents are likely to be homeless or given the option to move from a starter home to a other.
Dominant estimates call for statewide home prices to rise at least another 8-12% over the coming year, with no longer-term slowdown in sight.
This overall picture and the state’s estimated shortfall of at least 40,000 affordable housing units has raised the question on many political agendas this year on Utah’s Capitol Hill.
“If you’ve spoken to anyone lately, they’re all feeling it,” State Rep. Steve Waldrip, R-Eden, recently told fellow lawmakers as he introduced one of a series of housing related bills. “Every income bracket of the market is an issue that we are facing increasing pressure on.”
The median home price in Utah County’s Alpine — which topped $1 million in early fall — soared to $1.278 million at the close of last year, making it the Wasatch Front’s most expensive zip code.
Draper had some of the highest prices in Salt Lake County, with the median for a single-family home hitting $790,790 in the fourth quarter of 2021. South Jordan had the second-highest prices in Utah’s most populous county, at $765,000.
In Huntsville, Weber County, median prices rose from $535,000 at the end of 2020 to $817,500 at the end of 2021, a gain of 52.8%. Davis County’s highest median price was in Farmington at $598,750, while in Tooele County, Stockton’s median home price topped at $565,000, up 28.5% from compared to the previous year.
Generally more affordable than single-family homes, condominiums and townhouses are also seeing big increases in median sale prices, with year-over-year gains ranging from 13.2% in Tooele County to 37 .7% in Utah County.
That pushed the median price for condos to $451,952 in Utah County’s American Fork, though the median price across the county was $378,689. The median condo price in Salt Lake County was $395,000, with the highest being in Emigration Canyon at around $550,000.
As with single-family homes, Huntsville had the most expensive condos in Weber County in the fourth quarter, at a staggering $770,000, while that county’s median condo price was $320,000.
Median condo prices were $355,500 in Davis County, according to new data, and $288,750 in Tooele County.
At the other end of the price scale, the cheapest single-family homes in Salt Lake County were in Ballpark and the Rose Park and Glendale neighborhoods on the west side. In Davis County, Clearfield, Layton and Woods Cross had the lowest prices.
Tooele County’s relative bargains were widely spread across the 84074 postcode, covering Lake Point, Stansbury Park, Erda and the town of Tooele.
The lowest median home prices in Utah County were in Goshen, east of Interstate 15 in Provo, and in Payson. And, in Weber County, the cheapest homes were in Farr West, South Ogden and Roy.