Nationally, the gap between first-time homebuyers and distressed property supply continues to climb, with the sale of distressed properties accounting for nearly half of the real estate market. Although the price of bank owned and short sale listings are at bargain basement levels, many of them are damaged or uninhabitable, making them ineligible for mortgage financing. That situation has left the door open for investors, who in April accounted for 55% of REO damaged purchases and 23% of total housing market sales. The soft market has made it difficult to flip these properties and the result has been an increase in rental inventory.
Teton County, Wyoming has a unique real estate climate compared to the country as a whole. The lack of private land for development, less than 3% of its 4,000 square miles, has traditionally kept property values from plummeting in a down market. Despite this fact, the combination of a poor economy, distressed real estate in the country as a whole, and consumer confidence, the average value of properties has inevitably decreased and lender owned and short sale listings have begun to make their appearance in our market.
Of the 529 residential properties offered for sale in June, 2011 in Teton County, Wyoming, seventeen of these are short sale opportunities, and sixteen are lender owned. This is barely 4% of the residential real estate listed yet its presence is not ignored. Properties that have sold in the first five months of 2011 spent on average 16% less days on the market; these successful sales in a buyers market have been aggressively priced with a realistic seller.
Opportunities exist for buyers in all categories. In the short sale inventory, prices range from $95,000 for a two bedroom condominium to $2.3 million for a four bedroom log home on 34 acres. Lender owned properties range from $26,000 for two weeks in a Teton Village fractional condominium to $9 million for a twenty acre horse property on the Snake River with an 8,000 square foot home, barn and pond. Non-distressed properties have been regionally affected. South of Wilson, and south of town have seen the greatest depreciation in property values, with sold prices as low as 44% of list. Although the town of Jackson saw the steadiest values, the average sales price of $460K was the lowest in Teton County.
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