Buena Vista – It’s a seller’s market for homes in Buena Vista, according to local real estate agents.

“It’s the healthiest I’ve ever seen for sales,” Bill Lockett with Collegiate Peaks Realty said.

“You have sellers that are getting a premium for their houses while still having buyers that are paying for them – and wishing they had bought five years ago.”

Ritchie Molitor, an agent with Re/Max Mountain Vista properties, said, “The market saturation as of June is leaning toward a 3,” referring to a measure of how long real estate property stays on the market as inventory; “6 is more of a buyer’s market.”

“It continues to be strong,” Molitor said. “It hasn’t really dipped in the past four years … land sales have spiked in the last three years.”

Town planner Mark Doering reported that, as of June 7, 33 single-family dwelling-unit building permits have been issued by the town, as well as three apartment-unit multifamily building permits and nine condominium-unit multifamily building permits.

Mary Kale, also an agent with Re/Max, said the move to building on vacant land is the result of home inventory being so low.

“Our markets have gone up,” Kale said. “They started going up quite high in 2017, 2018, 2019.”

During that period, particularly in 2018, Kale said, the local real estate market sold much of its home inventory. Now, the low inventory and steady demand have caused prices to rise substantially. They have now reached what she sees as a point of stability.

Because the home market doesn’t seem to have many buyers, Kale doesn’t anticipate prices will rise, however, “because the economy is so good and the demand is so high, people still want to live here, we don’t anticipate it going down, either.”

For the entire year of 2018, 57 single-family building permits were issued in Buena Vista, The Times reported in April. In the six-year span of 2010-2015, 66 single-family building permits were issued by the town in total, according to data from the county Building Department.

“There’s been more of an increase of people looking to invest in rural communities,” Lockett said. “It’s a place that has resonated with them for years, and they’re trying to make their way back here.”

The Chaffee County Times in Buena Vista is published by Arkansas Valley Publishing Co., the parent company of The Mountain Mail.

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