The number of residential sales in Flathead County for 2017 was down by 8.3 percent from the near record number in 2016.
Mortgage interest rates are starting to increase. The current average 15-year rate at around 3.3 percent, compared to 3.15 percent at this time a year ago. The average 30-year rate at around 4.1 percent compared to 3.75 percent in March of 2016. The increasing mortgage interest rate tends to decrease affordability.
There were 177 residential sales in Flathead County in January and February compared to 193 in the first two months of 2016. In the first two months, 53 percent of residential sales were on small urban or suburban lots, 23 percent were on half acre to three-acre lots and 12 percent were on three to 20-acre tracts.
The median sales price for January and February was $250,000, which is 6.8 percent higher than the same period in 2016.
The current overall inventory level is 20 percent lower that what it was in March of 2016. The median asking price of the active listings is $450,000. Only 15.8 percent of active listings are priced at or below the median sold price of $250,000.
In January and February there were 10 bank-owned or distressed sales, compared to 17 in 2016. Non-distressed sales represent 94.4 percent of the market, compared to 91.2 percent for the same period in 2016.
The combination of higher prices, decreasing inventory and decreasing affordability appears to be slowing the number of sales in 2017.