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Mile Post 2020: Virus can’t slow real estate market

Buyers have flocked to Park City during the pandemic

Jeff Dempsey
The Park Record
Woodside Park’s first phase, unveiled in September 2019.
Tanzi Propst/Park Record

When the novel coronavirus spread around the country in March, resulting in stay-at-home orders and fear and anxiety among the public, nearly every industry was hit hard. The Park City area was not spared. Restaurants closed their doors, concerts were can- celed, businesses shut down. One industry that remained sturdy, however, was real estate.

Mark Jacobson, president-elect of the Park City Board of Realtors, said that, with the exception of a brief slowdown in March and April, the real estate market in Park City has been strong throughout the pandemic.

“With the continuing ability for people to work remotely the market began picking up at a significant pace,” he said. “Mountain resorts across the West have shown significant interest including Park City. Sales progressed throughout the summer and the inventory is continuing to dwindle.”

Jacobson said Realtors are seeing interest from a variety of buyers, for a variety of reasons.

“Some are coming because their kids may be able to go to in-person school,” he said. “Some want to be able to enjoy the ability to work remotely and use our trail systems for biking, hiking and the upcoming ski season. We are also seeing people that may have wanted to move here in the next five years or so and have decided to make the change quicker.”

In her most recent updates to the Board of Realtors membership since the pandemic arrived in the spring, CEO Jamie Johnson Hoppe has described 2020 as “a banner year in sales in all areas.”

In mid-September, residential new listings year-to-date totaled 2,589 compared to 2,514 in the same period in 2019, which Johnson Hoppe said is still not enough to keep up with demand. During a 13-week stretch in the summer, for example, Park City Realtors closed 900 transactions, up from 638 during the same stretch in 2019.

And perhaps most tellingly, in mid-September, available inventory dipped to 1,468 units, an eight-year low.

Johnson Hoppe’s conclusion: “We need new listings.”

As for what the winter holds, Jacobson said he doesn’t see anything changing, with the caveat that the coronavirus pandemic could still change the situation.

“There are quite a few great projects coming out of the ground that are available and the developers will be fortunate,” he said. “The rest of our inventory is continuing to diminish and the interest in Park City is continuing to grow.”


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