Park City area real estate prices rose in 2016 |

Park City area real estate prices rose in 2016

Official says market growth remains sustainable

Old Town was among the hottest neighborhoods in the Park City area for real estate sales in 2016. Overall, Sara Werbelow, president of the Park City Board of Realtors, says the industry is poised for more success in the future.
(Park Record file photo)

The Park City area’s real estate market offers plenty of reason to be excited for the future.

That’s what Sara Werbelow, president of the Park City Board of Realtors, is taking away from the industry’s performance in 2016. The Board of Realtors, which covers Summit and Wasatch counties, recently released its year-end report, detailing a market that, overall, saw a relatively flat number of sales but experienced a sharp increase in median prices.

“The feeling in general from my peer group of Realtors in the community is one of optimism,” said Werbelow, who is the principal broker of Chateaux Realty, a Stein Eriksen Lodge Management Corporation business.

The report’s most notable finding is that median sales prices of single-family homes, condominiums and vacant land rose by roughly 15 percent in 2016, an increase over the previous several years, which saw growth in the 7.5 percent range, according to data from the Board of Realtors. Werbelow called the sharp rise a “little bit of an anomaly” and attributed it to the performance of a few neighborhoods that skewed the final number, such as lower Deer Valley, one of Park City’s most expensive areas, where median prices for single-family homes jumped 15 percent, to $2.2 million.

Overall, Werbelow said, the Board of Realtors was encouraged to see prices in most neighborhoods grow at the same kind of steady rate that has defined the Park City real estate industry since it first began to climb out of the recession.

“What has been important to us as we’ve looked at the culmination of the year is a multi-year analysis,” she said. “… What we have been comforted to see is that our growth has been a sustainable figure.”

The data released by the Board of Realtors includes several notable findings. In Park City proper, the median sales price of single-family homes grew to $1.48 million in Old Town and $1.59 million in Park Meadows, though both areas saw a decline in volume of sales. Old Town experienced the most condominium sales, with 118, at a median price of $568,000, a 26 percent rise.

One of the hottest areas outside city limits was the Heber Valley, where 359 single-family home sales went for a median price of $394,000. In the Snyderville Basin, Trailside saw 46 closed single-family home sales — 12 more than in 2015 — with a 13 percent increase in median price, to $723,000. Condominium sales jumped in the Jordanelle area, which experienced a 28 percent increase in volume of sales, at a median price of $479,000.

Beyond the numbers detailed in the Board of Realtors report, Werbelow said there are several other factors contributing to the optimism of the industry. Both the local and statewide economies are becoming more diverse, and real estate agents are seeing new visitors come to the area who may want to return to buy property.

“There are new indicators that have cropped up over the last six, nine, 12 months that have brought the Realtor community to a place where they’re feeling great about our growth potential,” she said.

One factor the Board of Realtors remains concerned about, however, is affordability for average families. Werbelow said the organization backs efforts from City Hall and the County Courthouse to provide more affordable housing, both within city limits and elsewhere. She said keeping the community vibrant depends on the ability of people of all means to find housing.

“We want to be able to have people living in the 84060 ZIP code,” she said, referring to Park City proper. “We’ve got massive growth going on in the Heber Valley and Midway, and that’s exciting to see these growth opportunities. They are very attractive median price points. We’re hopeful there will be continued ways to have 84060 and the greater Park City community be diverse and attract families of all kinds.”

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