Missoula, MT Real Estate News

By Paul Griffin
(EXiT Realty of Missoula Montana)
Standing under the "M" at Kiwanis Park near downtown Missoula this morning I realized how "different" life in Missoula really was. People are so laid back and impartial to whats happening around them in many ways and very caring and willing to give in others. The "M" shown in the picture brings many visitors to the area to hike up to and take in the views of Missoula and the surrounding areas. If you look closely you will even see the hiking trail leading up to the giant "M" where so many have traveled before. If I would have zoomed in on the picture you would actually see people walking up the trail. Rich with history and with the diversity of the University, people from all walks of life converge to create an almost surreal atmosphere unlike any place else I've ever lived. Located dee...
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By Brint Wahlberg, The Wahlberg Team
(Windermere Real Estate)
I just typed up a report for the Montana Association of REALTORS(R) yearly end of business meetings, it's all relevant stuff about what's been going on here and so I thought I'd share it here!  Message as follows:   Residential market, urban Missoula area:   YTD sales: 595, which is almost exactly on point to where it was last year at this time which was 597 sold homes.  The difference is that the current YTD median sales price for this year is $199,900 while at this same point last year it was $214,000.  This reduction in the median sales price, 6.6% is the largest decrease in a 12 month period that Missoula has seen since the begin in declining pricings stemming from the national housing market collapse.  A few encouraging signs of returned activity beyond the first time home buyer ar...
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By Paul Griffin
(EXiT Realty of Missoula Montana)
So, I'm sitting in my office today working on a CMA for a client and I get a call. A voice comes through the line and says,   "I'd like to look at homes in the Missoula area!"   Great!! I thought to myself, let's start looking for a home for him in the Missoula area and get a contract drawn up as soon as possible! I'm just getting started in the Real Estate world again and could use a deal or two!   The conversation continued...    "I'm starting a new business dealing medical marijuana." the gentleman stated.   "Ok." I said cautiously.   "It's all legal and I have an attorney to back me up. I won't be doing anything illegal or under the cover and I've been prequalified." he continued.   "What would you like to find in a house Mr. Buyer?" I asked remaining completely neutral.    "I would...
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By Brint Wahlberg, The Wahlberg Team
(Windermere Real Estate)
Recently the Missoula City Council proposed a new special district tax on certain areas around town to help fund their upcoming budget shortfall.  The story is gaining ground as the protest provision is in effect right now.  Just yesterday Mayor John Engen was on CNBC touting the special districts to help Missoula's budget, and in this http://missoulian.com/news/local/article_b3421fa4-ab4b-11df-a18f-001cc4c03286.html article there's more talk of how the tax-exempt properties in town will not be part of the special districts. The issue is this - the special districts are not what they seem, they go to the general fund, so even though the name of them makes you think they're funding parks and streets, they certainly might not.  The other argument is that it's just $12 or $13 now, but they...
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By Brint Wahlberg, The Wahlberg Team
(Windermere Real Estate)
As the REALTOR(R) image continues to slip in many aspects leaders of associations, brokerages, and the industry find themselves facing a critical junction as the new market emerges.  Gone are the days where the phone rang with new prospects almost every day, the lack of need for broker accountability, and endless association funds - instead those who skated by on new business and burned bridges are finding other lines of work, brokers are looking at quality over quantity, and REALTOR(R) associations are having to make tough choices in terms of services and benefits to local agents and the public.  The market is changing too, dramatically.  Over the last 10 years the primary demand was boomers wanting bigger homes for their family and their possessions, now those same boomers with their ...
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By Brint Wahlberg, The Wahlberg Team
(Windermere Real Estate)
This is the the second attempt of a blog post, the first was a little narrow-focused and upon writing it I got to thinking about a listing practice in Missoula (and probably a lot of the US) that is now DOA.  The old trick, "Lets price it up and we'll negotiate down when a buyer comes along."  So that said, I'd like to thank you all for reading this eulogy for a dead practice that worked in NINA (no income, no asset) loan-era. Pricing up to negotiate down had a good run, it was an awesome technique in an age when people could just state they made more income to fill the gap, and were happy to over-pay.  Now, almost 3 years after the collapse this strategy and many other practices led to, that technique is dead.  It had people questioning REALTOR value at an all-time high (and rightfully...
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By Brint Wahlberg, The Wahlberg Team
(Windermere Real Estate)
A Blog I read quite often is called The Calculated Risk Blog, in this story: http://www.calculatedriskblog.com/2010/07/existing-homes-double-digit-months-of.html the story I've linked to talks about expected supply of double digits in the months to come regarding re-sale homes.  CRB expects supply of existing homes to get into double digits and stay there for a while.  Usually when we talk supply 8 months or less is considered a "healthy" market.  Based on this blog I thought I'd see how Missoula stacks up. Missoula active listed inventory: 941 Sales to date: 522 Using the CRB math for supply: 941/522 * 7 = 12.62 months so a slightly over-stocked market.  That's the total market though, lets pull apart new construction from re-sale, and look at them side-by-side. Active listed (new - re...
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By Brint Wahlberg, The Wahlberg Team
(Windermere Real Estate)
Two weeks back in Washington DC for the Realtor mid-year meetings I was pretty surprised to hear both Lawrence Yun and an economist with Moody's talk about an upcoming new construction housing shortage.  Yun talked about on average the US needs to be building about 1.6 million new homes per year, however in the last 3 years new builds are non-existent, and that currently the US is about 2.35 million homes short of meeting that need.  So what does that mean in the future?  A big shortage, and in doing a simple Google search I can see it's not just the US who is dealing with this, it's also the case in these stories in Austrailia, the UK, and Sweeden: http://www.nuwireinvestor.com/articles/australias-housing-prices-heading-higher-due-to-shortage-of-development-54891.aspx, http://2020citie...
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By Brint Wahlberg, The Wahlberg Team
(Windermere Real Estate)
Forgive me on the choppy post, but I thought I'd cut and paste two of my most recent blog posts regarding the market in the Missoula, Montana area.  The 1st post was put online on April 23rd, the 2nd one I put up today. 4/23/2010: With 1 week to go before the tax credit expires things are frantic to say the least, buyers are making offers left and right, and some houses are getting quite a bit of activity right now! I thought it would be interesting to see how our market holds up with new buyer activity once this tax credit has expired.  So, I took a quick look at the numbers today.  Right now in our MLS as of the 23rd of April, we've got 831 active listings in Missoula, 190 under contract homes, and 67 sold in the last 30 days.  That's a market absorption rate of about 15 months, sugge...
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  Ever wonder what all those abbreviations mean behind a real estate professional’s signature?  We did too, which is why for the past year we have collected all designations and their definitions/criteria that have come across our radar.  We call this list “Alphabet Soup”. The list below may be useful to you; if you find any designations we’re missing, please add a comment to this post with as much info as you can and we’ll keep on top of updating the content.  If you are re-posting this list, please give credit where credit is due and link back to Goomzee's Mobile Marketing Blog.To view the list in its entirety, either click the following link or cut and paste it into your browser's address bar:  - http://blog.goomzee.com/2010/01/28/alphabet-soup/  
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We recently received a letter and window decal in the mail from Google Maps stating Access Realty Missoula is a Favorite Place due to the number of searches for our business listing and the number of times people requested directions to our office. "Because you're so popular, we're enclosing a window decal that shows customers you're a 'Favorite Place on Google'. The sticker includes a special bar code that potential customers can scan with cameras on their phones. Then they can see your business listings on Google, read and write reviews, and add you as a favorite right there." Access Realty on Google Maps If you want to increase traffic to your Google business listing, Google suggests three things: Use your Google account to login at google.com/localbusinesscenter. Keep your hours, we...
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Missoula Real Estate Foreclosure Auction - 6 Bedroom House, Starting Bid $50,000 FORECLOSURE AUCTION Description6 bedrooms, 6 bathrooms 5149 finished square feet + 3300 sq. ft. drive-under basement Built 1997 Approx .314ac lot. Large deck, atrium, large bedroom Auction Date:  Monday, February 15, 2010 Starting Bid: $50,000 We will be working as a Buyer's Broker at this event. Note: A Buyer’s Premium will apply for this property. Please see Terms of Sale for details. BUYER ACKNOWLEDGES THAT SELLER WILL RE-KEY THE EXTERIOR DOORS TO THE PROPERTY PRIOR TO CLOSING AND FUNDING AT THE BUYER'S EXPENSE TO BE PAID AT CLOSING. REGARDLESS OF LOCAL CUSTOM, THE BUYER UNDERSTANDS AND AGREES THAT THE SELLER WILL PAY FOR THE OWNER'S TITLE POLICY AND LENDER'S TITLE POLICY (IF ANY) AND THAT THE BUYER WILL...
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Missoula Real Estate Market Stats for December 2009 for Zip Code 59808 Missoula’s 59808 zip code continues to struggle.  While it has, by far, the most sales of all areas of Missoula, its numbers for 2009 were significantly below those of 2008.  2009 finished almost 5% below last year in the number of homes sold, well over 12% below last year in total value of homes sold and more than 8% below last year in average sales price. At the end of December 2009, there were 182 homes for sale in Missoula’s 59808 zip code with an average list price of almost $319,000. Homes for sale in Missoula’s 59808 zip code, range from $68,000 to $1,800,000. View Real Estate Market Reports for all of Missoula Montana  
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Missoula Real Estate Market Stats for December 2009 for Zip Code 59804 Missoula’s 59804 zip code was one of the top three best performing areas in Missoula so far as the number of homes sold, the total value of those homes and the average sales price of homes.  So it can be argued that 59804 was Missoula Montana’s best performing zip code.  One of 3 zip code which actually outperformed 2008 in many aspects. At the end of December 2009, there were 61 homes for sale in Missoula’s 59804 zip code with an average list price of just over $548,000, this number is inflated due to some very high priced homes. Homes for sale in Missoula’s 59804 zip code, range from $119,900 to $5,850,000.   View Real Estate Market Reports for all of Missoula Montana
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Missoula Real Estate Market Stats for December 2009 for Zip Code 59803 Missoula’s 59803 zip code was by far, the best performing zip code in Missoula, with both the total number of homes sold and the total combined value of those homes in 2009 exceeding the numbers for 2008.  2009 saw 168 homes sold as opposed to 148 homes sold in 2008. At the end of December 2009, there were 99 homes for sale in Missoula’s 59803 zip code with an average list price of just over $397,000. Homes for sale in Missoula   View Real Estate Market Reports for all of Missoula Montana’s 59803 zip code, range from $119,500 to $1,500,000.
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Missoula Real Estate Market Stats for December 2009 for Zip Code 59802 Missoula’s 59802 zip code has been one of the best performing areas in Missoula so far as the number of homes sold. With the exception of only a minor slide in May and June of 2009, this area stayed strong and showed sales numbers very close to last year, in fact 2009 met or exceeded 2008 in six of twelve months in sales volume. Believe it or not, 2009 ended with 2 mores homes sold than in 2008!! At the end of December 2009, there were 152 homes for sale in Missoula’s 59802 zip code with an average list price of just over $325,000. Homes for sale in Missoula’s 59802 zip code, range from $99,500 to $997,500.     View Real Estate Market Reports for all of Missoula Montana
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Missoula Real Estate Market Stats for December 2009 for Zip Code 59801 For three months in a row now, Missoula’s 59801 zip code has either met or exceeded 2008 number of homes sold.  After a rough start this year, 59801 came back pretty strong at the end and finished up about 10.25% under 2008 in number of homes sold and considerably worse, about 15.26% under 2008 in total value of homes sold for the year. At the end of December 2009, there were 184 homes for sale in Missoula’s 59801 zip code with an average list price of just over $260,000.  Homes for sale in Missoula’s 59801 zip code, range from $97,000 to $964,000. View Real Estate Market Reports for all of Missoula Montana
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By Monica Bourgeau, Business Coaching
This was a real sign on a street we were on recently looking at houses in Missoula's Rattlesnake neighborhood. We just had to stop and take a picture. I guess they really don't want people driving on their street to turn around! :) The sign says it all! Happy Sunday!
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By Brint Wahlberg, The Wahlberg Team
(Windermere Real Estate)
Not the official numbers as our MLS database is user-maintained.  Recorded sales are entered by the selling broker, and sometimes there is a bit of a delay with that data. Pulling things up today, here's what I see for the Missoula Urban area: Sales - 899 (down 1 from 900 in 2008) a flat trend, the peak was 1374 in 2006 so a 35.5% decrease off the peak. Median Sales price - $209,000 (down $6,000 from $215,000 in 2008) continued downward pressure is on our median, the peak median price was $216,700 in 2007 so from that 2009's median sales price is 3.55% down from the peak. So, volume is flat for the year but as shown in my last post it's up in the 2nd half.  This evidence suggests the tax credits, market affordability, and low interest rates have had a good impact on our market, and it h...
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Home buyers in North Carolina will soon be able to receive for-sale home pricing information, and photos, sent directly to their phone using text messaging (SMS) thanks to Goomzee. The Wilmington Regional Association of REALTORS® recently joined the growing number of REALTOR® associations, multiple listing services (MLS), brokerages and real estate agents choosing Montana’s Goomzee http://www.goomzee.com as their text message marketing solution provider. Goomzee’s real estate text message marketing solution, Realty Connect®, combines integration with MLS data systems and innovative features to help connect buyers and sellers. Real estate professionals place signs or ads prompting home buyers to send a text message with a unique property code, or Gcode, to receive for-sale property infor...
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