On a local note, median sales prices rose in five out of the six markets that we track when comparing through June 2013 versus 2012. In the Bozeman city limits, there was a 7% increase to $279,900; Bozeman area outside city limits improved 15% to $344,000; Belgrade rose 12% to $190,000; Manhattan/ Three Forks grew 16% to $201,750; and Park County/ Livingston increased 39% to $180,000.
New home construction is a key to even out the supply and demand which also attributes to price stabilization. Glancing at the City of Bozeman building permit report shows that we will be experiencing construction starts that we have not seen in some time. Through June 2013, there have been a total of 947 permits issued, including those for 210 new housing units, with total project valuation estimated at $82,889,986. These are the highest numbers in all categories since 2007.
The National Association of Homebuilders shows similar good news with a 25% increase in the number of building permits nationally through the first two quarters of 2013 over last year.The forecast for the remainder of 2013 varies somewhat comparing NAR to Fannie Mae, though both give good news. NAR which is generally more accurate in an upward moving market predicts an 8.7% increase in number of units sold and 10.2% increase in average price. Fannie Mae which is generally more accurate in a downward market is looking for units to rise 6.8% and average sales price 5.1%.
To compare with our local numbers, through June of this year, the Bozeman area number of sales units has grown by 20% and average price by 7%.
International buyers are making a big difference as of late with the biggest impact in Florida, California, Arizona, Texas, and New York. They reportedly comprise 6% of total sales and 50% of second home sales. The other noteworthy fact is that 63% of the transactions are cash with the most buyers coming from Canada, China, Mexico, India and United Kingdom. With a robust international tourism season and the ability for private jets to clear customs at Bozeman-Yellowstone International airport, we may see this trend start to impact our region.