Friday, January 24, 2014

2013 Housing Market Statistics for Lawrence KS

Hello and Happy New Year! This is my first blog of the New Year 2014. Last year was another strong year for the local housing market. I thought I would share with you the Lawrence Board of Realtors "Release of Homes Sales Figures" in order to provide you with a complete picture.

Lawrence Board of RealtorsÒ
3838 W. SIXTH ST., LAWRENCE, KANSAS 66049 / (785) 842-1843 /

January 24, 2014

Lawrence Board of REALTORS® Releases Home Sales Figures for December 2013.

Residential Home Sales in Lawrence show strong gains in 2013!

According to Susan Bonham, 2014 President of the Lawrence Board of REALTORS®,
“The December statistics show there was a slight drop in the sales volume and in the total units sold for the month. However, overall for the year, we are very encouraged about the fact that the 2013 housing market continued to show growth.  There was a 17 % increase in the number of homes sold, and the dollar volume was also up by 26% for the year.  We’ve now seen a strong and steady pattern of improvement, year over year, for the past two years.”

Despite strong results for the entire year, homes sales fell by 19.7% in December compared to the prior year. Sales in December 2013 totaled 57 units, down from 71 in 2012.  Among existing homes, 56 units sold in December, a decrease of 6.7% from 60 units that sold in 2012. The average sale price of existing homes was $195,397. This represents a decrease of 1.8% from the December 2012 average price of $199,031. For new construction, just 1 sale occurred in December, down from 11 units the prior year, a decrease of 90.9%. The average sale price of new homes in December was $339,900, up 30.5% from the same period last year.

Bonham added, “Another exciting statistic we observed last year was the list price to sales price percentage.  Sellers welcomed the improving trend and realized an average of 97% of the asking price for resale homes, and 100% of the list price for newly constructed homes.  The inventory is still one aspect of our market that needs to be increased. As a result, this is a great time for sellers to call their REALTOR to sell their home.”

The inventory of active listings in the City of Lawrence stood at 303 units at the beginning of December, which is down from 369 homes that were on the market at the beginning of December last year. At the current rate of sales, this figure represents 5.3 months' supply of homes on the market.  Typically, a 6 month supply of inventory represents a balanced market.  A shortage in inventory causes upward pressure on home prices.  Inversely, an abundance of inventory puts downward pressure on home prices as Sellers compete for interested Buyers. 

Looking ahead, “the forecast for the local housing market in 2014 predicts steady growth” according to Bonham.  

A total of 46 contracts for sale were written in December 2013, up from 45 in December 2012. This is an increase of 2.2%. Contracts written during the month reflect, in part, sales that will close in the near future.

Complete summaries of MLS statistics for the City of Lawrence & Douglas County are available at:
·         City of Lawrence Home Sales Statistics -
·         Douglas County Home Sales Statistics -

For questions and/or comments, please contact LBOR President Susan Bonham at or 785-373-7070. 

Rob Hulse, RCE
Executive Vice-President
Lawrence Board of REALTORS®
Lawrence Multiple Listing Service

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LBOR ID - 4150
3838 W. 6th St., Lawrence KS  66049
Phone: 785-842-1843
Fax:  785-842-0673

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Latest Trends in Lawrence KS Real Estate

The spring and summer of 2013 will most likely be remembered, by those of us in the Lawrence KS real estate business, as one of the best sales seasons since before the housing market crash of 2007-2008. Additionally, it's ushered in a new and refreshing wave of optimism for many agents and sellers. The selling frenzy was a long awaited one for those sellers who'd been trying to sell homes during the extended buyer's market.
Just this past Friday, the Lawrence Board of Realtors (LBOR) released it's latest sales data for Lawrence Ks homes market and I must say, it was more good news. The Lawrence KS real estate market continues to show signs of strength and stability. Lawrence Ks homes for sale are selling at increased numbers and elevated prices. Here are the statistics just released:
Home Sales Rose for 15th Straight Month in June
Total home sales in the city of Lawrence rose by 4.9% last month to 149 units, compared to 142 units in June 2012. Total sales volume was $29.9 million, up 5.7% from a year earlier. The median sale price in June was $167,750, up from $165,450 a year earlier. Homes that sold in June were typically on the market for 32 days and sold for 98.7% of their list prices.
The one problem that continues to plague Lawrence Ks Real Estate agents is the lack of homes to offer the buyers still out there combing through to find their "perfect" home.
Lawrence Inventory of Listings Down at End of June
The total number of active listings in the city of Lawrence at the end of June was 428 units, down from 536 at the same point in 2012. This represents a 2.9 months' supply of homes available for sale. The median list price of homes on the market at the end of June was $161,250. During June, a total of 85 contracts were written down from 107 in June 2012. At the end of the month, there were 187 contracts pending, compared to 170 at the end of June 2012.
The message I'd like to leave you with today is, if you have a home to sell, please don't wait to call a realtor. Now is still a great time to get it on the market!

Monday, April 29, 2013

Strong Homes Sales Showing Signs of Continuing

If you've been waiting for the market to pick up for Lawrence KS Homes for the latest from the LBOR.

"Lawrence Board of REALTORS® Releases Home Sales Figures for March 2013

Residential Sales in the city of Lawrence were on the rise for a 12th consecutive month! 
Home sales rose by 28.8% in March compared to last year’s March figures.  Specifically, there were a total of 76 home sales in March, up from 44 in 2012.   

Among existing homes sold, 70 sales occurred in March, which is a 37.3% increase from 51 existing homes last March.  The average price of existing home sales was $202,191.  This represents a 4.3% increase from the March 2012 average price of $193,926.    

For new construction homes, 6 sales occurred in March, which is a decrease of 25% from 8 new construction sales in March of 2012.  The average price of new construction home sales in March was $374,884.  This represents a 16.1% increase from the March 2012 average price of $322,975. 

Recent housing market activity in the city of Lawrence continues to be on the rise with 123 contracts written in March of 2013, as compared to 98 contracts written in March of 2012, an increase of 25.5% over last year.

Residential housing inventory in the City of Lawrence stood at just 408 homes on the market at the beginning of March, which is down considerably from 578 homes that were on the market at the beginning of March last year." 
According to John Esau, 2013 President of the Lawrence Board of REALTORS®,
"Average days-on-market has dropped significantly, largely aided by recently listed homes that have sold quickly.  Also, our inventory of homes for sale is down more than 25%, so clearly we have worked our way through a lot of homes that had been on the market for some period of time.  We need more new construction homes and resale home listings to satisfy the demand.  It's been a long time since we could say that.  Perhaps the most encouraging data included in this report is that it represents 12 consecutive months in which we have had an increase in home sales versus the previous year."

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

April Flowers Bring Snow Showers?

Okay...this is getting a little crazy. Could someone message mother nature and tell her it's spring? Homes in Lawrence, Ks were dusted with snow and ice pellets today. The crocus and other April flowers look very pretty covered in the white stuff. However, I'll bet they'd prefer to be basking in the sunshine.
The temperature outside our Lawrence, Ks homes has hovered around 35 degrees most of the day. I don't know about you, but I'm looking forward to the warm sunshine and lots more flowers!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Focusing on the Light in the Housing Market!

Finally some news that we all can feel positive about. It looks like the housing market for those who have Lawrence KS Homes for Sale and for Real Estate for Sale in Lawrence KS in general, may finally be seeing some signs of light at the end of the long tunnel. According to the Kansas Association of Realtors there's certainly news to feel positive about in the state of Kansas. The home sales were up in Kansas in January 2012.
This might very well be the time to get your home listed if you've been waiting for the right time to add your home to the list of Homes for Sale in Lawrence KS. The buyers are out and are actively looking for the right home. I held a Open House for a Homes for Sale Lawrence KS on February 25, 2012 at 403 Lincoln and had over 45 buyers come through from 1pm to 3:30pm. That's amazing and a very strong showing. That indicates that buyers are getting out early this year looking for their dream homes. Please don't wait too long to list your home. Call me today for a free comparative market analysis on your home. Your Lawrence Home for Sale could be featured on this site.

Read the entire article from the Kansas Association of Realtors below:

"January 2012 Kansas home sales rose by 15.5% percent in January 2012
compared to January of 2011, according to new figures released by the
Kansas Association of REALTORS®. Sales totaled 1,609 units in January,
up from 1,393 units in 2011. In comparison, sales on a national level rose
0.7% for the month.
Across the state there were 16,090 active listings at the end of the
month. Supply of new and existing homes on the market -- which is
determined by taking the number of active listings and dividing it by
the number of sales -- represents 10.0 months.
"We're seeing a really strong start to the new year," said KAR
President, John Brocker with Allen County Realty, Inc., in Iola. "Sales
were up more than 15 percent in January, and it looks like it will be a
very solid spring selling season."
The statewide average sale price last month was $138,180, compared to
$144,552 in January 2011. This represents a decrease of 4.4%. The
statewide median sale price last month was $120,000 compared to $124,000
for the same period last year. According to the National Association of
REALTORS®, the median home price in the Midwest fell 3.9% to $122,000.
The national median existing home price was $154,700 which is 2.0% below
last year. The median price is where half sold for more and half sold for less.
According to Freddie Mac, the national average commitment rate for a
30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage was a record low 3.92 percent
in January, down from 3.96 percent in December; the rate was 4.76
percent in January 2011; recordkeeping began in 1971. For more
than 90 years, the Kansas Association of REALTORS® has been the “Voice
for Real Estate” in Kansas. Working for Kansas property owners, the
Association provides a facility for professional education, research and
information exchange among its 8,000 member licensees, as well as to
consumers, government and the media. REALTORS® agree to abide by a
strict code of ethics, and are held to a high ethical standard by their
peers through their association membership. The term REALTOR® is a
federally-registered trademark owned by the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF
REALTORS®, and denotes membership in the non-profit Association."

Thursday, February 2, 2012

            HARP Program Offers Refinance Options!

There's no denying that there are many homeowners out there with "under water mortgages" . Fortunately, there is hope for these people through the HARP program. They can still refinance their loans with a lower cost affordable mortgage by utilizing the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP). This program was recently revised and extended until December 31, 2013.  This should be seen as welcome news to many individuals who currently have their Lawrence KS Homes for Sale and are either selling on a "short sale" basis or are facing a foreclosure.

Established in 2009 for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac-owned mortgages, the HARP program provides this option for homeowners to refinance "under water mortgages." The program addresses situations where the home owner's property value has fallen below the mortgage balance causing the owner to no longer qualify under traditional underwriting criteria. This could be a better option for those thinking about how they can sell their Lawrence KS Homes when they owe more than the market value shows.

New HARP guidelines were recently announced by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Both of these (Government Sponsored Enterprises) GSEs have posted details of the program modifications and procedural changes on their websites. Please contact your preferred lending institution for more information. The guidelines on the websites will assist the lenders with getting your refinance completed correctly.
If we can slow down the number of foreclosed homes hitting the market and then being sold for less than market value, then we will have an increased chance of seeing the home values go up. For those currently marketing Homes for Sale in Lawrence KS area, this would come none to soon. 

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

New Home Sales Stiil Sluggish

The next time you see a home builder, please be careful to show some compassion. These people have been the hardest hit in the housing market crash. In the entire year of 2011 there were only 302,000 new home sales nationwide. That's the current data we in the real estate industry have been given and it's realy sad for buliders. For those of you looking to build Lawrence KS Homes to live in or to those of you wanting to buy brand new Homes for Sale Lawrence KS, you'll find the choices are limited.

The new home sales in the Southern regions of the country were the lowest they've been since 1996. However, it gets worse . Both the East and the West areas of the country saw the absolute worst new home sales in recorded history in 2011. 

Part of the problem for Lawrence home builders and home builders in general, comes from a continuation of foreclosures on the market. This results in deeply discounted homes. I personally assisted buyers in 2011 with purchasing several "foreclosure sales" in 2011. I also helped several buyers with the purchase of Lawrence KS Homes for Sale and Lawrence KS Homes that were being marketed as "short sales". These homes are seen as "bargins" or "deals" by buyers looking to purchase Lawrence Ks Real Estate for Sale.

The threat of further price declines, continues to frighten buyers away from paying premium prices for new homes. Even though, there is evidence that a slight pick-up in home sales will be seen in 2012, buyers are still being cautious.