This is our first look at where prices are going in 2013. We have mixed news in the Northwoods with prices in Vilas increasing slightly and prices in Oneida County falling. In Vilas County, 50 lake homes were sold since January 1 with the average price of $305,806. That is an increase of 0.4% over 2012. Off-water there were 42 homes sold with an average price of $117,447, an increase of 3.5%.
The news out of Oneida County is not quite as positive. There were 39 lake homes sold in 2013 with an average price of $285,869. That is 1.4% below 2012. There were 66 off-water homes sold thus far in 2013 with an average price of $94,115 and that is a drop of 12.2% from last year.
I would not put a lot of weight on these early figures. For one, it is statistically inaccurate as the sample size remains quite small. A sale over $1M or a few sales under $20K can skew the figures. The other issue is that the Northwoods’ real estate market is more price sensitive in the first half of the year than it is the last half. Why is that? I have a personal theory but I will not attest to the accuracy. It is simply harder to sell homes that are under snow and ice and buyers leverage that advantage. In the last half of the year, there are more visitors in the area and thus more interested buyers.
While the figures appear to be disappointing, it is too early to get overly excited. With the exception of Oneida off-water homes, the other segments appear to be flat. We are not headed into negative direction and that is a good thing!!