Brevard, NC, area real estate market report

by Carol Clay

    There were 20 residential closings in the Brevard market in July.  The average list price was $258,695 and the average selling price was $241,255, or roughly 94% of asking, which is really encouraging. Sellers are adjusting their prices to fit the market. This same time last year, there were 25 closings and those sales prices were a good bit more.  (Full July data is due in the coming days.)
    From personal experience, we have had a very, very busy summer.  Our listings have doubled in the last 6-9 months and we have been very busy working with out of town buyers.  As has been the case most of this year, what is selling is in the $200-$300K range.  But we have seen a real uptick in people getting back into the vacation home market. Plus, in the last 30 days, we sold two homes to people who were relocating here from various places. The vacation homes are still in that $200-$300K market, but it makes me optimistic that those second home buyers who are such a huge part of our economy are returning to the market place.
    The other uptick is in foreclosures.  I've seen more in all price ranges.  In fact, you might be interested to know that we just listed a foreclosure in Champion Hills in Hendersonville, with a Tom Fazio design course.  This home is over 7,500 square feet on three acres.  The tax-assessed value is $2,131,100 and the bank has started the list price at $1,239,900.  It is a phenomenal opportunity for anyone who wants a big house on the golf course.  This type listing demonstrates that the foreclosure issue affects all price ranges.
    The real estate market in western North Carolina, specifically the Brevard area, is very seasonal and typically ebbs and flows in synch with the volume of visitors.  The selling season will begin in the spring, usually around May, followed by a peak during the summer months.  Business slows after the kids start going back to school but peaks again during the leaf season.   After Thanksgiving, or the end of leaf season (whichever comes first), the streets are quiet until the following spring when we ramp up once again.
    This year has been no exception, and while the overall numbers are reflective of the downturn in the economy, the pattern is the same.  In June, there 25 residential closings, a marked uptick from May when there were only 14 homes closed.  For the first time since February, homes in the $200K to $300K price range outpaced any other bracket with a total of 9 closings.  In the $100K-$200K range, the numbers dropped off slightly from 9 closings to 5. There were 5 closings in the $300K-$400K range, the most significant increase in that price range since October 2008.  Two homes closed in the $400K-$500K range, an increase from the month before.  And 3 homes closed in the $500K and up price range, marking the best month in that price range since December 2008.
    As a result, the average closing price in June increased to $292,280, a 42% increase over May.  It is also nearly a 13% increase over June 2008.  The median price was $274,000 for a 39% increase over May and a 29% increase over the same time last year.

Carol Clay is a real estate agent with Keller Williams Realty in Brevard, NC.  She and her husband Robert publish a blog on local real estate and lifestyle issues in the western Carolina mountains at  Carol can be reached at 828-551-6290.  If you contact her, please mention that you read her article here at Golf Community Reviews.

There are some signs of life in the real estate market in the western Carolina mountains, which is good news for communities like Balsam Mountain Preserve.  Its Arnold Palmer layout is one of the most scenic in a great array of local courses.


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