Home to employers such as Seventh Generation, Fletcher Allen Health Care and University of Vermont, Burlington saw steady demand for residential property in 2013.
With a vibrant arts and restaurant scene, the city is attracting a diverse base of professionals and students. That, in turn, is helping to maintain the city’s appeal with residential homebuyers as well as multi-family home investors.
Residential sales – meaning single-family homes and condominiums – rose 1% last year. The median residential sale price also gained 1%, reaching $246,500.
Demand for single-family homes showed improvement, with sales rising 4.5%. Still, the median sale price for stand-alone homes slipped 2.4% to $259,000. That may indicate a shift toward properties priced in the sub-$250,000 range and a reflection of available inventory on the market.
Condominium sales dipped 3.3%, while median sale pricing declined 5.5%.
Pending listings, or the number of homes going under contract in 2013, rose 2.1%, perhaps indicating strengthening consumer confidence.
Homeowners required 78 days to market their properties, little changed from 2012’s 75 days.
Seen as the economic hub of Vermont, Burlington is benefiting from a diverse professional base. At the same time, local educational institutions such as University of Vermont and Champlain College are boosting enrollment. Those two trends are creating a tight rental market, which is attracting investors to the city’s multi-family properties.
Our agents cite a lack of available inventory as one factor that’s hampering sales of duplexes and three- to four-unit buildings. Because demand remains high, that’s pushing up prices on the available multifamily homes.
Last year illustrated those trends. Burlington’s multi-family home sales were unchanged, at 54 sales, although the median sale price rose 16.7% as investors competed to buy the available property.
Given still-low mortgage rates and continuing low inventory, median sale prices may see more upward pressure in 2014. Only 65 new multi-family listings went on the market in 2013, a decline of 8.5% from 2012.
Burlington, which recorded two-thirds of Chittenden County’s multifamily sales last year, is attracting buyers from both out-of-state and internationally. Part of the city’s appeal is its low vacancy rate, which typically ranges between 1% to 2%. That was far below the fourthquarter U.S. apartment vacancy rate of 4.1%, according to Reuters.