The Anchorage real estate market has remained fairly flat over the past couple of years. We didn’t see quite the number of foreclosures that other states saw, partly thanks to the location and partly thanks to the more active employment market. While Anchorage was certainly not immune to the downturn, or its effects, there was an element of insulation that worked in our favor.
Properties are slowly beginning to see multiple offers, something we haven’t seen for a while. This is generally in the lower price brackets, but shows a positive sign as more than a single buyer is in the market for a given property type. As long as this continues in a controlled manner and agents don’t take advantage, this should pay dividends in the longer-term.
Residential Real Estate
The median prices for homes in Anchorage was $203,744 for Apr-Jun 2012. That’s a slight decline of 2.1% over first quarter figures and over this time last year. Average prices are down too, with the average home in Anchorage priced at $333,732, down 1.7% over first quarter.
The average price per square foot at the moment is $123, which is down 9.6% over this time last year.
Location is everything in Anchorage, with some neighborhoods seeing more activity than others. Hotspots for home sales right now include Abbott Loop, Sand Lake, Northeast, Rabbit Creek, Scenic Foothills, and Turnagain.
Pending sales for the first half of 2012 up 53% for the month (May) and are up nearly 22% for the year. Inventories are still way down, with -27.3% in May and down 6.1% for the year. New listings hitting the market are up 13% in May but still down 5.7% for the year.
The average sale time for a residential property is 50 days, which is pretty good by national standards. That depends entirely on where the property is located and the condition it is in. In the more popular neighborhoods, it isn’t unusual for a house to sell within that 50 days, other, slower areas take a little longer.
Commercial Real Estate
The picture for commercial real estate is similar in that there have been reductions in values across the board, but nothing serious.
The asking price for office property is currently flat, at just under $160 per square foot. Rentals are down slightly for office space, currently sitting at $21.36 per square foot. Demand is slight, but showing small signs of recovery.
Industrial property has fluctuated somewhat over the past year. Prices in the metro area have seen an increase since this time last year, with an average of $126 per square foot. City areas saw a similar increase, to $128 per square foot, while country-based industrial space remains stagnant at $118 per square foot.
The overall picture of Anchorage looks slightly better than the national average. With steadying employment, low volumes of distressed properties and a normalizing of the market, it’s as good a time as any to buy and sell as there has been over the past 5 years.