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The Rocky Mountain High that Colorado’s pricey Aspen-area housing market experienced in 2015—with sales breaking the $2 billion barrier—was followed by a significant drop-off.
According an analysis by the Aspen Times and Land Title Guarantee Co., Aspen-area home sales totaled $1.4 billion in 2016. And while that is no one’s idea of a puny housing market, it is still a considerable drop from one year earlier— Aspen, the core of Pitkin County’s real estate industry, ended five consecutive years of increased sales volume in 2016.
Still, it is hardly a puny market: Aspen’s average single-family home price was nearly $6.6 million through from January through November 2016. But for the entire year of 2015, that level was nearly $7.7 million. And the condo market took a hit, too: sales were down 27 percent in 2016, with 134 transactions accounting for $268.4 million in sales last year, versus 187 transactions totaling to $368.5 million in 2015.
“On the surface, the Aspen stats are somewhat concerning and there’s little question the tide has shifted from a market that was improving year over year for five-plus years to a slowing market,” said broker Andrew Ernemann, who covers the Aspen market via a monthly newsletter. “It’s critical to dig below the high-level stats and understand almost all of the negative trends were set during the first seven-plus months of 2016 and the latter part of 2016 actually tracked fairly closely to the year prior.”