Another Average Denver Home Price Record, Up $100K in a Year

This five-bedroom, two-bath, 3,360-square-foot home at 3200 Locust Street is listed at $629,900, just above the average price for a detached home for sale in Denver during January.
This five-bedroom, two-bath, 3,360-square-foot home at 3200 Locust Street is listed at $629,900, just above the average price for a detached home for sale in Denver during January. Google Maps
The February Denver Metro Real Estate Market Trends Report, released this morning, February 3, by the Denver Metro Association of Realtors, reveals that detached single-family homes in the area set yet another record for average price, exceeding $629,000 in January.

That's a nearly $100,000 increase over the same period a year earlier.

The development is even more astonishing given its timing. January is traditionally a time when the housing market in the Denver area slows down, since fewer people tend to be looking to relocate during the winter months. But 2020 has defied expectations at every turn, blowing past an average price of $600,000 for the first time in August and remaining above that threshold even when the temperature dipped.

DMAR's analysis points to another record to explain the phenomenon: Housing inventory is at the lowest level ever recorded by the organization. Active listings for detached properties in January stood at 1,263, down from 1,316 in December and 3,297 in January 2020. Those digits translate to a month-over-month decline of 4.03 percent and a year-over-year plunge of 61.69 percent.

The following graphic from the report, which covers the period from 2008 to January 2021, shows just how historic these current trends are. The yellow line corresponds to active listings, while the blue line pertains to sales that closed during the respective months.

The number of listed properties typically goes down in January, but that wasn't the case this year, when more sellers responded to the legions of house hunters in the market. Last month, DMAR counted 2,781 new listings, a 36.12 percent jump from the 2,043 in December. But the January 2021 total of available houses was still 14.46 percent lower than the 3,521 new listings in January 2020.

With demand outstripping supply once again, the average detached home price hit $629,159, a 2.89 percent increase from December's $611,459. But that's nothing compared to the climb from January 2020, when the average price was $530,092.

Meanwhile, properties continue to be snapped up at a dizzying pace. The median number of days a detached home for sale appeared in the area's Multiple Listing Service, or MLS, was just five days in January, down from six days in December and 24 days in January 2020 — a staggering 79.17 percent swing.

And DMAR's experts don't see this scenario changing in the near term, describing it as the "new normal." Which doesn't resemble the old normal in the slightest.

Click to read the Denver Metro Association of Realtors' February 2021 market trends report.
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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts