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Snyder Donegan Real Estate Market Report for 1st Quarter 2011

Snyder Donegan Real Estate Market Report 1st Quarter 2011 Greater Woodstock VT Real Estate - The 1st quarter of 2011 brought a continuation of improved real estate sales that began in the 4th quarter of 2010.  Because winter is typically slower for real estate sales, the best insight can be gained by comparing the 1st quarter of 2011 versus the same quarter of 2010.  On that basis, over the same period last year, with twenty (20) house sales in the quarter compared with only thirteen (13) in the 1st quarter of 2010.  While most of these sales were of lower priced houses (evidenced by the median house price of $288,000), there was a private (non-MLS) sale of a home on Elm Street in the Woodstock village for $3.6 million, continuing the positive tone for high end sales that began in the 4th quarter of 2010.

Further, the ratio of the Sold-Price to the Last-Listed-Price improved from 88% in the fourth quarter of 2010 to 90% in the first quarter of 2011.  Said differently, sellers only conceded an additional 10% to get their houses sold vs 12% in the prior quarter.  This is nearly in line with the 10-year average of 91% and  a dramatic improvement over the 84% experienced in the 1st quarter of 2010.  This improvement can be explained both by stronger offers and by more realistic listing prices as sellers have more fully accepted that prices have fallen from the peak levels of 5 years ago.  Competitive pricing has been key to selling your home in this market.

As of April 4, 2011, there were 255 houses for sale across the seven towns that comprise the Greater Woodstock real estate market, which is an improvement from year-end 2010 when 284 houses were actively listed for sale.  This decrease is partly explained by good sales during the first quarter, and partly by sellers taking a "listing pause" during mud season to avoid showings during the messiest time of year.  Based on our own conversations with potential sellers, we expect the number of houses for sale to increase further as we come into summer.  Thus our forecast continues to call for ongoing, modest improvement in real estate sales during 2011.  We believe pricing will remain flat for at least two years because of the ongoing imbalance in supply and demand:  255 houses are actively on the market - and more to come this spring - versus the 10-year average number of homes sold per year at 112.  So, there is still more than two years' worth of homes for sale.    (It is worth noting that the real estate industry generally considers a six-month supply of homes for sale to be the balance-point between a "buyers" and a "sellers" market.) We are still safely forecasting that the local real estate market around the Greater Woodstock area will continue to be a "buyers" market during 2011 and likely into 2012.  The segment of the market that is in the greatest supply-demand imbalance is in the market for homes priced over $1 million, where there are forty-eight (48) homes for sale versus six (6) sales last year and seventeen (17) in the peak year of 2007.  Depending what you use in the denominator, there is somewhere between a three (3) and five (5) year supply of $1 million+ homes for sale in the Greater Woodstock area.

For buyers, we continue to believe that right now is the best buying opportunity of a lifetime - with reduced prices, an excellent selection of properties for sale - and historically low interest rates.    We strongly believe that real estate and particularly Vermont real estate is a very solid long-term investment.

On a personal note, John and I continue to find success selling homes, have four (4) homes contingent for sale and are actively working with our own buyers across all price ranges, and have several buyers looking for land.  We continue to invest heavily in our online marketing technology and recently added the 12-year old domain name to our web presence.  We offer sincere thanks to our many clients and friends for their continued support.  We look forward to a mutually profitable 2011.

Please contact either of us at any time.   John Snyder's cellphone is 802.280.5406 and his email is  Our office phone is 802 457-2600.  We are happy to consult on any real estate related matter.

We are taking new listings and look forward to hearing from you.

With best regards,


John Snyder                    

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