The median price for houses sold across Santa Fe County, N.M., was $462,000 in the third quarter, a 10.3% increase over the same period last year, the Santa Fe Association of Realtors reported Thursday.

But the story differs from the city to the county. City median sales prices in July-August-September ticked up 3.6% to $399,000, while the rest of the county saw median sale prices soar 17.7% year over year to $559,000, according to the association’s statistics.

Robust home sales in the county fueled rising prices with a 14.4% increase in the number of homes sold, while the number of homes sold in Santa Fe dropped 3.4% from a year ago.

Rising prices are the result of a combination of increasing demand — especially from second-home buyers — and the eroding inventory of homes for sale. The number of homes on the market has dropped consistently since a high of more than 2,000 in 2008 to 582 in the third quarter, according to the association’s statistics.

“It’s such a small market to judge a lot on a quarterly basis,” said board president Beth Stephens. “But you can see trends over multiple quarters.”

Stephens said she’s seeing more situations where buyers sell their homes after a few years. “I do see a trend that people are not staying as long as they did before,” Stephens said.

The sector with the third quarter’s lowest median home price, at $305,000, is west of St. Francis Drive as far as Cerrillos Road and Lopez Lane, bounded on the north by West Alameda Street and on the south by Interstate 25.

“Based on the income needed for the lowest price, a family of three would have to be at 120% of the area median income to buy a home,” said Daniel Werwath, chief operating officer at New Mexico Inter-Faith Housing, a Santa Fe affordable housing developer and property management firm. “That’s $75,000 for a family of three.”

Homes outside the city limits saw home sales increase over last year at rates of 28.6% on the north, 14% on the northwest, 5.3% on the southwest and 18.9% on the southeast.

The metro’s highest median price at $875,000 was in the northwest sector that includes Las Campanas, La Tierra and La Serena developments — an increase of 25.2% over the $699,000 median price in third quarter 2018. In the city, the highest median price of $850,000 was along Bishops Lodge Road and Hyde Park Road.

In the city, the number of homes sold in the third quarter dropped across town except for a 9.3% gain in the area between Canyon and Zia roads that includes St. John’s College and the Old Santa and Old Pecos trails fork.

Condos in the city soared in price by 26.9% from $257,250 to a median of $326,000, with the number of sales increasing 9.5% to 162.

“Condos are being bought up by a surge of second-home buyers,” Stephens said.

Tribune Content Agency

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