Eagle County real estate sales surpass record
EAGLE COUNTY – Real estate sales have broken records in a big way.Sales in November were $361 million. With $2.57 billion in sales this year, Eagle County has now surpassed its record year – and December totals are yet to be tallied.Annual sales in the county may come close to doubling in a matter of two years. Sales in 2003 were a mere $1.47 billion. RE/MAX owner and managing broker Bill Wilto said a big reason for the increase is the growth of the Vail Valley.”The pie is simply getting bigger,” he said.Eagle County’s population is expected to grow 59 percent by 2025, according to the state demographer’s office. Wilto said redevelopment in Vail and elsewhere upvalley also is a major factor in the record-setting sales.”If you were just talking Vail and looking at those numbers, that would be phenomenal,” he said.Upvalley and downvalley actionDemand remains strong for both high-priced second homes and cheaper downvalley homes, real estate brokers said.”I think the real estate market is still very strong,” Wilto said. “There’s always going to be demand for properties in areas that people perceive to be safe and have a strong tourism economy as we do here.”Kurt Davis, owner/partner at Amsden Davis and Fowler real estate, said second-home owners are putting money into what they think is a good investment. And second-home owners are paying more than ever, Davis said.”They still believe they can make money,” he said.Meanwhile, Eagle and Gypsum had the most transactions – 61 and 60, respectively.Davis said interest rates continue to be attractive, and people are spending more money than they’re saving. And Wilto said he doesn’t think the market will burst soon even though he’s concerned about speculation and overly optimistic real estate agents.”I don’t think there’s a bubble,” he said.
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