Sedona real estate buyers are seeing a different Sedona this spring - altogether different from past years.  For the first time in 6 years we're seeing a seller's market in homes under $400k.  This is a result of increased buyer activity leading to a decline in available homes - and this gives the sellers the confidence to hold firmer on price than they'd been able to in past years.  There are currently 44 homes within the Sedona city limits currently tied up with buyers - and an additional 33 in escrow in the VOC.  The current number of homes in escrow has dipped a bit since it's highs a few weeks back - I believe we almost hit 100 homes.  Many of these have already closed and new offers have not kept up with the number of closings.  As of the end of March, we were 17% busier YTD in 2012 than the prior year (in # of units sold).  For more geeky stats - go to to the full site with complete report on Sedona Home Sales

The market's still hot - and buyers of Sedona homes don't have a major advantage anymore under $400k. Inventory has dropped enough that it's transitioned to a sellers market under this price and we've already seen some sellers holding firm to their list prices over the last few weeks.

Whoa... 92 homes in escrow with 17 closings already this month.  The number of homes on the market is down 16% over the last 12 months, but Vacant Land listings are up 9% over the same timeframe.  It's still a good time to be a buyer of any Sedona property as we haven't seen any major price increases across the board - so prices are low and interest rates have dipped beneath 4% again per our local lenders. (for a owner occupied SFR at least)

I'll be updating the official site for all Sedona Real Estate sales figures later today - check it out!

Spring is in full swing here in Sedona after our unexpected snow day earlier this week.  When the good weather comes around, Sedona home buyers open their wallets and start making offers on homes.  There are 111 homes in escrow right now - which makes this the busiest time for Sedona Realtors in years.  There are approximately 350 residences (SFR, condos, patio homes, and manufactured homes included) that are truly available (active in our MLS system) in the Sedona area.  There are 26 foreclosed homes on the market and 14 of these are already tied up by other buyers.  Short sales are also in decline with 42 on the market and 24 of these are have been committed to other buyers.  We're seeing less foreclosures and short sales on the whole - and lots of activity in the sub $300k price point for Single Family Homes.  We currently have 72 homes in Sedona priced under $300k - and of these - 34 are already tied up with buyers - making a whopping 47% of the homes in this price range are already tied up.  Almost half of all homes in Sedona under $300k are already gone!  If you're looking in this range you'd do best to get prequalified by a local lender (of have a stack of greenbacks nearby) and start shopping NOW!

Whoa - the busy season has struck the Sedona real estate market right on time.  We always tell clients that the busiest season in Sedona real estate starts on Valentines day.  Depending on the weather, it may end up not getting busy until the 1st of March.  This year was unusual, because we've had bad weather for the last week (until today) and right now we have 75 properties tied up in escrow across Sedona.  We haven't seen that sort of activity level in years.  Many people have mentioned a feeling that the market is making a quick transition, but I guess only time will tell. 

Back to the facts - we currently have 444 residential properties on the market and 75 are tied up with buyers.  According to the statistics on www.sedonaforsale.com it's the lowest number of properties available anytime in the last 2 years (each December 10-20% of the listings expire and are renewed in January)  Short sales and foreclosures still affect the market, but their numbers are dwindling as well.  Distressed properties are down by approximately 10% from their steady 40% market share of SOLD Sedona properties.  It's a start in the right direction - so we'll keep an eye on those number and make sure to keep you aware of the current market trends here on this site. 

Vacant land is still floundering however, but I'd expect to see an upswing in sales as the residential properties tick upwards and price per square foot numbers start to rise.  It's still a much better deal to purchase an existing house than to purchase land and build, but if you're a person that only buys new cars and likes new houses - then you can still command a great deal on vacant land in town. 

The next 3-4 months should be busy if this week is any indicator of the start of the season - so if you're looking to get a good deal, have your cash ready or have your loan officer prepare a Loan Prequal so that you're prepared and can act on short notice.   The best deals are selling in days - not weeks or months!

It's a little late, but the list of Top Agents in Sedona was recently posted, and I'm on it yet again.  It's a way of seeing who are the busiest real estate agents in town, so if you're looking to buy and sell, these agents have a proven track record and can assist you in your search or sale.  It's a scrambled list, meaning that they're not in any order, so have a look and find an agent that you think you'd want to meet or that resonates with you and give them (or me) a call!

Wrapping up 2011 - this Sedona real estate market update should give you a fair picture of the last month's activity but stay tuned and I'll do a year-end version in early January to summarize "the year that was".

We currently have 489 residential units on the market (includes single family homes, condos, manufactured homes, etc) and 69 of these are already tied up with other buyers.  This makes 420 homes on the market at this instant... of these homes the breakdown is as follows:

322 Single Family Homes - 69 Condos/Patio Homes/Townhomes - 29 Manufactured homes

I don't have the breakdown for the number of homes available in December of last year, but I can tell you that the total number of homes on the market was 530 - so we're looking at an 8% decline in the number of available homes compared to this time last year. 

Everyone always seems to be interested in the number of Distressed sales (short sales and Foreclosures) - so let's evaluate our current marketplace and sales level.  Of the 489 residential units on the market - 69 of them are Distressed sales - so this makes up about 14% of our current market.  This number has slid downwards over the past year - if you're a dedicated reader, you've heard me quote 17-19% over the past few years.  This decline seems to have been fairly steady - with investors getting back into the market to pick up the best deals.  The sales percentage has also fallen - in November the percentage of sales that were distressed was only 30% - down from 40% over the last 2+ years.  This could signal a shift in the marketplace - teamed up with less inventory - so watch the sub-$400k market over the next few months to see if this balanced market shifts to a sellers market. 

Investor activity has been picking up, but rental units are getting gobbled up by Sedona residents.  I'm not sure whether the increase in renters is due to - but there isn't much inventory of rental homes in the city of Sedona in particular.  In recent conversations with the property managers around town - they need more homes to rent - so if you're thinking about rental property - now might be the time!

In December's closing days I'd like to take the opportunity to thank the few dozen readers that tune in regularly and even email to ask about my next post.  Feel free to contact me when you need personal assistance and I wish you all a Merry Xmas and a happy new year!