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2/10/2013 6:01:00 AM
Home sale signs positive in Kingman
Improved home sales bode well for the owner of this residence on Comanche Drive in Kingman.
Improved home sales bode well for the owner of this residence on Comanche Drive in Kingman.
Doug McMurdo

Home prices in the Kingman area were up more than 50 percent in January over the same month in 2012, leading at least one expert to breathe a little easier.

Statewide, home prices over the last 60 days spiked higher in Arizona than in any other state.

"This is the best January we've had in three years," said Les Boomer, a senior vice president with Coldwell Banker of Arizona.

Boomer provides monthly analyses through Coldwell Banker's website,

The reports include information on property sales, prices, inventory and time on the market.

"It all looks very healthy," said Boomer. "We're not out of the woods yet, but I believe we're getting there."

Sixty-two homes sold in the Kingman area in January, up 19.2 percent over January 2012 and 3.3 percent over December, according to Boomer.

The median sale price was $97,500, up 54.8 percent from $63,000 the prior year and up 3.8 percent over the $93,950 price posted in December.

Boomer sees the increases as a positive sign a recovery is under way.

"In general, looking back, January 2012 was when we hit our low point," said Boomer, "but we've steadily increased since then."

Better homes

One reason prices are rising has to do with what the type of home is on the market, said Boomer.

Last year, 48 percent of the homes were considered distressed properties, meaning they were foreclosed and bank-owned or were a short sale.

"Those two types of sales are traditionally the lowest and second lowest in sale prices," said Boomer. So far this year, the percentage of distressed homes shrank to 36 percent.

Boomer cautions homeowners not to misinterpret what current prices mean.

"I don't want people to think their home's value increased 54 percent last month," he said.

To better understand a home's value absent an appraisal, Boomer said to determine the selling price per square foot.

"This is a great indicator for the direction of property values," said Boomer.

Since the mix of high- and low-end properties on the market can affect the median sale price, a more accurate valuation is found through the per-square-foot analysis.

In January, homes sold in the Kingman area at a price per square foot of $64, down nearly 10 percent from December but up 12.3 percent from a year ago, when the average was $57.

The number of days a home spent on the market has decreased significantly, another "positive sign," said Boomer.

In Kingman, homes averaged 59 days on the market in January. This is down about 18 percent from last month's figure of 72 days and down more than 30 percent from a year ago, which was 85 days.

The total inventory of homes for sale in Kingman was one statistic that separates the city from most of the state.

From a percentage perspective, more homes are on the market here than anywhere else. Phoenix has about a month's worth of inventory, said Boomer, while Kingman's inventory is good for more than four months.

Markets tend to favor the buyer when inventories are high. "It's basic supply and demand," said Boomer.

The 278 homes on the market in January were up 9 percent from the 255 that were available last year.

Another sign that it's still a buyer's market relates to the selling price versus the listing price.

According to Boomer, the price of the average home sold in January was 3 percent less than the price the seller listed.

Still, the news is not all bad for sellers.

Boomer said the January reduction was about half a percent less than the previous month and four percent higher than a year earlier, so the gap is closing.

"It's been a long dry spell," said Boomer of the brutal recession and a recovery that has at best been lethargic.

Not surprisingly, the Phoenix Metropolitan Area is leading the way in price increases with Tucson a close second, said Boomer. "Phoenix usually leads our recoveries followed by Tucson and then the outlying areas," he said.

He attributed the rebound to a variety of factors such as lower interest rates and consumer confidence, for example.

"People are more comfortable with their lives than they were," said Boomer. "The unemployment rate has dropped.

"Everybody is looking forward to a real good spring."

Boomer said the recovery is going to be gradual, something he thinks is necessary in order for it to take hold.

"Slow and steady is what we want to get back to," he said. Historically, he said, growth was modest and predictable, but not spectacular.

"The spikes cause people to think of investments. Then it's all about the home versus the piggy bank."

He neither expects nor desires to see another home buying and selling frenzy that helped lead the nation to the Great Recession.

"We were more stable when most people bought a home so it could be a home and a place to raise a family," he said.

"That was very beneficial to the economy and to the country as a whole."

ICT - Hummingbead of Kingman

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Reader Comments

Posted: Thursday, February 14, 2013
Article comment by: Thank You Once More

Doing Research, that was exactly my intent.

Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2013
Article comment by: Origional Kingman Resident

@ Doing Research

What concerns me is not that Obama could try for a third term because that won't happen. What concerns me is the lack of knowledge and understanding that Thank You Mr President and many other people have of the Constitution and the way our government works.

It's nothing to "have a heart attack" over. It's a matter of trying to educate people about the structure and function of our government. It's a shame that generations of Americans no so little about the Constitution that protects their freedom.

Posted: Monday, February 11, 2013
Article comment by: Origional Kingman Resident

@ Ano Ano

Let me explain to you how the comments work.

If a comment begins with @, it means that the commenter is replying to an earlier comment made by the person who's name follows the @.

In the case of my comment, I was responding to a comment made by someone using the name, Thank You Mr President.
Hence the "@ Thank You Mr President " at the beginning of comment.

If you scroll down you will find the comment posted by Thank You Mr President, and if you read the comment you will find that he or she commented favorably about the possibility that the president could change the law governing the number of terms a president could serve. My comments relate directly to that post.

I hope that this explanation will make it easier for you to follow the conversations on this web site.

Posted: Monday, February 11, 2013
Article comment by: Doing Research

Oh, good - the best solution to get back on our feet after a housing bubble is to try and hope for the housing bubble to come back again!

@anon anon

It was because someone posted a sarcastic message about how housing prices are back up because Obama is great, and that he should run for a third term. I imagine that at seeing those works O.K.R. might have been so horrified that he forgot to use his "critical thinking" hat and took the post at face value. He also likely thought he was having a heart attack.

Posted: Monday, February 11, 2013
Article comment by: anonymous snonymous you have that incurable condition called Obamaitus? I fail to see any connection to Obama and this story! No doubt your obsession with democrats invades every waking moment you have!

Posted: Monday, February 11, 2013
Article comment by: Origional Kingman Resident

@ Thank you Mr President

There isn't a law that limits the president to 2 terms. It is a constitutional amendment and even the great and mighty President Obama can't change that, (thank goodness!).

By the way, the president doesn't change laws either. Congress writes laws. The president is limited to either signing them, or vetoing them.

Posted: Monday, February 11, 2013
Article comment by: anonymous anonymous

I guess media reporting is amusing, fore sale signs on homes unless they are newly constructed means someone is or has moved, is in or about to go into foreclosure, for sale signs on homes can mean many things but older existing homes means someone is leaving Kingman/Mohave country! I would not want to be a real estate agent, mortgage broker in this economy right now, many need a second a job!

Posted: Sunday, February 10, 2013
Article comment by: Hey Now

All this is great news for Kingman!

Posted: Sunday, February 10, 2013
Article comment by: Just Wondering

Why are rising home prices a good thing? Home sales, yes. This whole mess started with so-called affordable housing.

Posted: Sunday, February 10, 2013
Article comment by: I Don't Think So

What a crock. How can they say that the market is up and at the same time send out lower appraised values from last year? Sounds to me like someone is trying to manipulate the market. More of Mohave County's corruption at it's finest.

Posted: Sunday, February 10, 2013
Article comment by: V Stokes

I always love statements like "This is the best January we've had in three years" from people like realtors and loan officers. Best for who? The people still losing their homes or the people making commissions?

Is it because they are misrepresenting things to clients...or did people suddenly start making more money? Unemployment is still bad...but more houses are being sold for more money? Who's buying? Investors? In 5 years, only one house sold on my street has been owner occupied. That's out of about 5-6. I don't have an issue with people buying and renting out....but it's not a true indicator of a recovery.

Posted: Sunday, February 10, 2013
Article comment by: Thank You Mr President

Thanks Mr. Obama even Mr Boomer agrees with your slow and steady leadership on the economy. Keep up the great work. Rumors on the other side is you're going to change the laws (like our governor wants to do) so you can have another term - go for it.

Posted: Sunday, February 10, 2013
Article comment by: the first time and not the last time

this is good i hope the city of kingman will lower our water bills now ! just dreaming

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