Early Spring brings early bargain hunters

Spring has arrived in north Idaho with crocuses, daffodils and tulips popping up everywhere. With the departure of the last low level snow folks from and foreign to North Idaho are beginning to show more interest in getting out and in investing in some of the great real estate values in north Idaho.

Certainly more affordable homes are low interest rates are reasons that home sales continue to accelerate as reported here last week. The early spring weather and escalating prices in California and Western Washington are driving out of State buyers earlier this year.

Interest in waterfront properties is on the rise. Our statistics which we reported in some detail last week show that in the first two months of 2016 are over 160 percent of 2015 sales the previous year. That is comparing 21 sales to eight at this time in 2015. While we do not segregate waterfront inventory for purposes of reporting residential inventory we do know that inventory is down by seven percent. A quick search on Friday showed a total of 224 waterfront homes ranging from a $96,000 home on the Pack River to a $10,000,000 home on the Spokane River. Only 170 waterfront listings were available for less than a million dollars and only 78 available for under $500,000. This could be a year where we see escalation in those prices.

True, as the calendar dictated Spring arrives, more properties will come on the market, waterfront and common residential but the supply appears to remain short in all market segments.

With the State entertaining new regulations on submersible pumps for domestic use lake water, no doubt there will be some owners who, no matter the cost, will not want to hassle with replacing pumps if required and will put their properties up for sale rather than make that improvement.

Once again we are pleased to report that, of those properties on the market, we are seeing plenty of activity and for waterfront at least, that activity is earlier than expected albeit welcomed.