The rental vacancy rate declined from 4.4% in December 2016 to 2.5% in June 2017

South Village Rental Units in South Burlington. | SouthVillage.com

The rental market in Chittenden County is rapidly changing due to a surge of newly constructed apartment buildings.

With almost 700 newly constructed apartment units coming online in 2016, the rental market is showing more favorable signs for renters. A slight increase in the vacancy rate is giving renters more options in their apartment searches, while also prompting some landlords to offer more flexible terms or incentives to attract new tenants – most often in the “off season”.

New rental buildings include Bartlett Brook, a 63-unit building in South Burlington, and the 67-unit Bayberry Commons in Burlington. South Village, a community of single family homes and townhomes in South Burlington, also offers a limited number of townhomes for lease. Demand has been high for these spacious two level units with private entrances and underground parking.

Our Rental Specialist is forecasting that rent increases will moderate in 2017. Rents may decline on some older apartments that lack the amenities offered by newer competition. It’s likely that the pressure on rents will continue throughout the year, given that another 323 apartment units are projected to come on the market in 2017, according to real estate consulting company Allen & Brooks.

Even though the vacancy rate has eased, our Rental Specialist continues to recommend an apartment search no more than 30 to 45 days before a move.

The following are some trends that are impacting the rental market:

Decline in Vacancy Rate
The vacancy rate declined from 4.4% in December 2016 to 2.5% in June 2017, according to Allen & Brooks. While this is a slightly higher rate than past years, it remains a competitive market for renters.

Wider range of choices

The construction surge means renters have more options than in previous years. The newly constructed buildings typically have higher rents, yet some renters prefer them because of the amenities, such as parking, gyms, recreation trails, storage, pet grooming, and swimming pools.

Because our rental expert has extensive contacts with landlords, Realtors, and associations, Coldwell Banker Hickok & Boardman Realty is well positioned to help clients find the most recent properties on the market.

 

Chittenden County “Days on the Market until Sale” has dropped to under 80 days for single family homes

Stunning 3+ bedroom home with lovely mountain views on a beautiful 14.95 acres in Charlotte. | MLS# 4639851

Single Family    
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:Newly Listed:Days on Market:
$319,000 (+2.94%)$354,560 (+0.1%)540 (-4.76)879 (-5.8%)77 (-6.1%)

Condo    
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:Newly Listed:Days on Market:
$232,200 (+3.11%)$262,870 (+7.26%)279 (-9.71%)374 (-5.79%)97 (+27.63%)


The residential property market in Chittenden County continues to see strong demand from buyers while inventory remains tight. 

The number of newly listed, single-family homes continued a 3-year decline adversely affecting the number of homes sold in the county – which declined by nearly 5% for single family and nearly 10% for condos over the same period last year. While these results reflect the County overall, there were some increased sales in specific cities and towns.

Burlington, South Burlington, and Winooski witnessed increases in single family homes sold and newly listed property. However, this is a recovery from a soft 2016 – where these cities suffered declines before the surrounding areas. South Burlington leads the county in the number of homes and condos coming on the market – a result of new construction in developments such as South Village, Rye Meadows, and some smaller projects along Dorset Street. Towns a bit further from the greater Burlington area continue to draw buyers searching for affordable options such as Milton, Underhill, Huntington, and Westford.

The majority of Multi-Family sales in Northwest Vermont are in Chittenden County which suffered a sharp decline of 11.8% in the median price of closed sales. This is a result of the 31% drop in units sold as investors opted to hold on to their properties.

Throughout this report, we reference Median price. The median price is defined as – “half the houses sold for more and half sold for less”.

After years of little growth, Addison County is seeing an increase in Median Sale Price

Imagine year-round living with Lake Champlain views in this recently renovated 2 bedroom Long Point home. | MLS# 4646554

Single Family    
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:Newly Listed:Days on Market:
$248,000 (+11.96%)$270,269 (+7.84%)138 (0%)335 (-3.74%)158 (-0.63%)

Condo    
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:Newly Listed:Days on Market:
$191,000 (+28%)$262,253 (+51.83%)11 (+83.33%)7 (-53.33%)103 (+25.61%)

After a number of years with little to no growth in the median and average sales price for single family homes, Addison County saw an increase in 2016 with the trend continuing into 2017.

The majority of residential property in Addison County is single family homes versus condominiums. Therefore, a small change in the number of sales of condominiums can have a large impact on the data.

Middlebury, Ferrisburgh, Bristol, Monkton, and Vergennes draw buyers attracted to the quaint Vermont feel enhanced by vibrant downtowns with restaurants, galleries and community events.

 

Franklin County offers Buyers the lowest median sale price in Northwest Vermont

Built in 1830 on 5 acres with rolling mountain views this home boasts 6 bedrooms, 3 fireplaces & 3 wood stoves | MLS# 4642075

Single Family    
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:Newly Listed:Days on Market:
$200,000 (-2.68%)$207,617 (+2.16%)220 (-17.91%)420 (-9.87%)118 (+18%)

Condo    
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:Newly Listed:Days on Market:
$206,750 (+8.39%)$214,419 (+14.65%)22 (+37.5%)32 (-17.95%)135 (-33.5%)

With a surge in home sales during 2016, the decline in single family homes sales in 2017 may be viewed as a “normalizing” of the market versus a decrease in buyer interest. Sales are still up over 2015 and prior years. 

Because Franklin County has the lowest median sale price in Northwest Vermont, with many cities or towns easily accessible from I-89 – homebuyers have been turning to the county over the past 2 years as they seek available inventory and more home for their money.

The construction of condominiums, particularly in St. Albans Town, Swanton, and Fairfax, has given buyers additional choices to own a newly built home. For the first time, the median and average sale price of condominiums surpassed that of single family homes in Franklin County.

The median price of condominiums reflects the costs of brand new product often with upgrades and features desired by today’s consumer.

The pace of the market is reflected in the “Days on the Market until Sale” which shows that it will take approximately 4 months from listing to close for the average home. Sellers and Buyers alike need to be prepared to act when they decide to enter the real estate market.


Grand Isle County Sales were likely bolstered by the lack of affordable homes in Chittenden County

Enjoy Summer days in Isle LaMotte. Well cared for seasonal home on .73 Acres with 3 bedrooms 1 bath with views! | MLS# 4618031

Single Family    
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:Newly Listed:Days on Market:
$209,500 (-5.84%)$258,674 (-0.3.6%)56 (+24.44%)178 (0%)170 (-24.44%)

Condo    
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:Newly Listed:Days on Market:
$246,00 (64%)$246,00 (64%)1 (0%)3 (+200%)6 (-96.76%)


In terms of single-family homes sold, Grand Isle had the strongest start in many years  – likely bolstered by the lack of affordable homes in nearby Chittenden County.

As prices have increased in North Hero and South Hero, buyers have identified Alburgh and Isle La Motte as options for affordable property on or close to Lake Champlain.

New homes coming on the market have remained remarkably stable as indicated by our chart.

The decline in “Days on Market Until Sale” combined with the decrease in sale price may indicate that buyers are looking for affordable properties in Grand Isle and are ready to act.

* With only one condo sale reported in Grand Isle County, the data is not statistically relevant.

The majority of luxury sales were away from the lake and closer to greater Burlington

Exquisite home offering 177’ of sandy beach on Lake Champlain. This custom home offers a summer kitchen, serene pool, & sunset views beyond compare. MLS# 4646487
Luxury Home Market  
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:
$985,000 (-2.85%)$1,095,980 (-16.3%)13 (-13.3%)

Of the 13 properties that sold during the first half 2017, 11 are located in Chittenden County, 1 property is in Grand Isle County and 1 property is in Addison County.    

A Country home with mountain views, luxury condominiums, a contemporary lakefront dwelling near downtown Burlington and an antique lakefront home in Ferrisburgh are just some of the sales that closed during the first 6 months of 2017. The majority of the luxury sales were away from the lake and closer proximity to amenities offered in the greater Burlington area.

With a small number of transactions, the average sold price can be dramatically affected – which is the case this year. In the first half of 2016, 4 of the 15 units closed were priced above $1.5 million; two of those closed priced over $2.0 million. In 2017, the highest priced property sold (as reported in the MLS) has been $1.395 million.

With more than 105 properties for sale, the Luxury market in Northwest Vermont provides plenty of options for buyer seeking properties in the range of $850,000 and higher. And sellers have grown more flexible in their expectations on prices and negotiations.

The Multi-Family market is experiencing steady buyer demand, tempered by lower inventory levels.

One 2-bedroom unit plus three 3-bedroom units with separate utilities, ample parking, and storage, coin-op laundry in basement. | MLS# 4641648
Multi-Family    
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:Newly Listed:Days on Market:
$274,500 (-22.84%)$319,358 (-13.26%)56(-12.5%)114 (+3.64%)108 (+31.7%)

The Multi-Family market, largely driven by Chittenden County, is experiencing similar trends as the residential real estate market: steady buyer demand, tempered by lower inventory levels.

Over the past year, historically low vacancy rates have eased a bit. However, Investors continue to show strong demand for multi-family properties given the growing and diverse professional base and expanded hiring by local institutions and businesses – both positive trends in the market.

The decline in average and median sold prices is a result of less properties sold in 2017 coupled with a multi-million dollar sale in 2016 which has a strong effect on the data. The decline is not a result of depreciation.
Our agents report that larger, high priced properties are not coming to market as investors choose to hold on to those properties.
With well positioned, multi-family units selling quickly – some buyers are considering single family homes in renter friendly neighborhoods as an investment.

First Quarter 2017

This gorgeous 3 bedroom, 3 bath Townhome overlooks the Vermont National golf course. MLS# 4618773

Single Family    
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:Newly Listed:Days on Market:
$249,500 (+3.2%)$282,469 (+1.6%)350 (-10%)652 (-19%)110 (-6%)

Condo    
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:Newly Listed:Days on Market:
$247,650 (+20.8%)$280,063 (+21.2%)120 (-5.5%)159 (-5.9%)117 (+30%)

Historically the first three months of the year represent the slowest period for real estate sales in Northwest Vermont.  As the landscape changes with the arrival of spring and summer, so might real estate trends as more sellers and buyers enter the market.  Stronger than normal sales in the 1st quarter of 2016 coupled with tight inventory continuing into 2017 have resulted in a decline in year over year sales for the first quarter of 2017.

Tight inventory levels still continue to put pressure on the real estate market in Northwest Vermont. In the first quarter, fewer homeowners have chosen to put their homes on the market. Buyers may have fewer choices especially in the sweet spot of housing – the mid-priced range of $200,000- $400,000. In addition, the National Association of Realtors reports the median tenure for sellers living in their home has increased to 10 years from a historical median of 5 to 7 years.

Over the past 3 years the number of single family homes available for sale during the first 3 months of the year has declined from 2256 to 1680 – a 26% decline – while closed sales have increased 15% during the same period. The results are homes being on the market for fewer days and, in many cases, multiple offers driving the prices up with both the median and average prices showing increases during the first quarter. Our Realtors advise buyers to be well prepared to make strong offers, with their financing in order. In some circumstances, Agents are advising their buyers to look at homes priced lower than their threshold in the event of a multiple offer situation. In a fast-paced market, Sellers need the expertise of their Agent to help them navigate the incredibly complicated process of lining up a contract for a purchase as well as the contract for a sale of their current home.

While both the median and average sold prices are showing increases, single-family home prices appear to be more stable than the healthy increases demonstrated in the sold prices of condos. In general, the increase in prices of condos comes from new construction projects that have come on the market versus appreciation of existing inventory.

Cities, towns and developers have increased density in their planning and zoning strategies in order to preserve open green spaces. These Planned Unit Developments (PUDs), including condos and single family homes, are becoming more popular as homeowners look to “right size” their lifestyle with housing options that provide ease of maintenance and, in some cases, affordability. New construction can be more energy efficient and many new communities offer amenities such as community gardens, walking trails, parks, and proximity to conveniences.

Mortgage rates are being watched closely. After a climb in late 2016 and some volatility during the first 2 months of 2017 – many predictions are that the rates will remain steady for the remainder of the year. Changes to mortgage rates can affect buying power when affordability remains an issue. For example, an increase of .5% (one-half percent) in interest rate may reduce purchasing power by 4-5%. So, even though prices are rising slightly and inventory is limited, buyers who are serious about realizing their goal of homeownership this year should be ready to make an offer sooner – with the advice of their Agent.

As always, it remains that both sellers and buyers need to reflect on their personal situation. Utilizing the local knowledge within this report and the advice of your Agent – you can make an informed decision about your next move.

“Days on the Market” has dropped from 150 days to 80 days for Single Family homes in Chittenden County

South Village, a neighborhood of single-family homes and Townhomes in the heart of Vermont’s beautiful Champlain Valley.

Single Family    
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:Newly Listed:Days on Market:
$289,000 (+1%)$332,990 (-1.3%)178 (-10.1)333 (-14.6%)80 (-46.7%)

Condo    
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:Newly Listed:Days on Market:
$252,200 (+19.2%)$287,334 (+22%)102 (-14.3%)143 (-5.3%)105 (-18.6%)


The residential property market in Chittenden County continues to see strong demand from buyers while inventory remains extremely tight especially for single family homes. 

The pace of the market is reflected in the “Days on the Market until Sale” which has dropped from 150 days to 80 days for single family homes during the first quarter of 2017. Sellers and Buyers alike need to be prepared to act when they decide to enter the real estate market.

The median and average sale prices for condominiums showed heathy gains due to new construction and higher priced units selling rather than increases in the prices of existing units.

With residential sales flat in 2016 and the continuing decline in inventory in early 2017, the median sale price for single family homes may rise more than the 1% we’ve seen in the first quarter.

Addison County saw an increase in 2016 and is continuing that trend into 2017.

Custom post and beam home with Easterly Mountain Views in Monkton | MLS# 4627500

Single Family    
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:Newly Listed:Days on Market:
$232,000 (+14.3%)$259,481 (+6.4%)51 (-8.9%)111 (-16.5%)135 (-38.6%)

Condo    
Median Sale Price:Average Sale Price:Units Sold:Newly Listed:Days on Market:
$194,500 (+28%)$269,321 (+57%)7 (+133%)1 (-85%)113 (-9.6%)

The growth in the median and average sold price for residential property in Addison County continued into the first quarter of 2017.

The majority of residential sales in Addison County is single family homes; therefore a small change in the number of sales on Condominiums can have a large impact on the data.

New homes coming on the market continue to decline, with demand increasing as buyers are extending their searches to Addison County because of Chittenden County’s shrinking inventory and higher prices.

After a number of years of little to no growth in the median and average sales price for single family homes, Addison County saw an increase in 2016 and is continuing that trend into 2017.