Real Estate Sales Transition from Summer to Autumn

Activity slowing overall as October arrives but still plenty of time and more homes available to sell!

Des Moines Residential Real Estate
3 Quarters Down & 1 To Go

Fall has officially arrived, and the Des Moines real estate market is also entering the final three months of the year. Overall, the 2019 real estate market has been strong, although constantly playing catch-up from a weather delayed start of the year. As we begin the last quarter of 2019, we will take a look at where the most activity has occurred in the metro and also review the year over year quarterly sale price trends.

Year to Date Metro Market Leaders – How Many, How Much & How Fast

For those of you that follow my reports, it should be no surprise that Ankeny tops the number of sales of all properties combined year to date. With over 600 homes sold in the first nine months of the year, Ankeny is ahead of the nearest competitors (West Des Moines & Des Moines Northwest) by 200 sales.

However, the number of sales does not automatically equal the highest average price of homes sold in the metro. That honor belongs to the tiny but mighty community of Cumming, where the average price of a home sold there is over $387,000. Johnston & Clive come in 2nd & 3rd both averaging $335,000 and $330,000 respectively.

If it’s speed of the sale that you are looking for – which translates into how long a home stays on the market before being snapped up by a buyer, head back to the Des Moines Northwest area of the city (think Beaverdale). Year to date, homes there are only on the market 33 days on average. During the peak of the buying season, that number dropped to 20 days.

Price Trends of The Four Market Subcategories

When all of the category types are combined, some important market data is missed. By looking at each subcategory, you get a better view of sale price trends and other key data.

Single-Family Residential Existing Home Sales – At the end of this year’s 3rd quarter, the Median Sale Price is a strong $205,000. The same period a year ago, the Median Sale Price sat at just over $190,000. That’s a 7.6% increase year over year. This does not mean that home values are up by that percentage, but rather buyers are spending more due to higher wage earnings, consumer confidence and low mortgage interest rates.

Condo/Townhome Existing Home Sales – Much like the single-family category, condo/townhome Median Sale Prices have also gone up compared to last year at this time. At the end of the 3rd quarter in 2018, the Median Sale Price was $152,250 compared to end of 3rd quarter this year at $163,250, a 7.2% increase.

Single-Family New Construction Sales – The local builder market saw competition from national builders DR Horton and Wade Jurney Homes in 2019 that specialize in a lower (and welcomed) price point for new construction. It’s no surprise that the Median Sale Price in this category has dipped from $319,900 to $316,563. What is not as well noticed in this 1% decrease in sale prices are the added incentive concessions across the board by builders wanting to get as many of their properties under contract as possible by years end.

Condo/Townhome New Construction Sales – One of the biggest drops in median sale price is this final category. The end of the 3rd quarter last year saw a median sale price of $256,490 vs the current year 3rd quarter pricing at $239,900. This category also makes up the least number of sales in our market (traditionally right around 400 sales per year).


Here is a recap of real estate activity in the month of September

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September Metro Single Family Resale Data

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September Metro Condo/Townhome Resale Data

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September Metro Single Family New Construction Data

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September Metro Condo/Townhome New Construction Data

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Click This Link for the 2018 Des Moines Real Estate Year End Market Recap

~Les Sulgrove, Vice President
VIA Group REALTORS


If you are interested in selling your home or purchasing a home, give me a call! I will help you determine your best strategy based on your local market data.

About Les Sulgrove

Les is an Iowa native born in Des Moines and raised in the southwest Iowa town of Bridgewater. He has been a resident of Des Moines since 1982 and has been married to his wife Linda for over 35 years. Together they have 3 grown children, 7 grandchildren and make their home on Des Moines south side. He has been a licensed REALTOR® since 1990 and is Vice President at VIA Group, REALTORS®. Les is the 2011 Past President of the Des Moines Area Association of REALTORS® (DMAAR) and received the award of Salesperson of the Year by DMAAR in 2007 for his involvement and service to the Association. Additionally, he is active at the Iowa Association of REALTORS® and serves on local, state and national committees. He also owns and operates the national technology networking group CyberProfessionals. This group of real estate professionals meets twice annually across the United States to learn from each other and share new marketing ideas with heavy emphasis on current and future technologies and their use in the real estate business. Les’ hobbies include golf, photography and sarcastic humor. He and Linda spend many Saturday mornings from Spring to Fall at the Des Moines Downtown Farmers Market. He enjoys spoiling his grandchildren at every opportunity.

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