|I meet a lot of people going about my daily activities. I am fortunate to live in an area where people desire and can afford to purchase lake property. They want to know what is going on with property prices: are prices rising or falling, are properties moving, and are there any deals. I have an opinion but I went and researched this on my MLS which represent about 80% of all lake homes sold. Here is what I found:
Are prices rising or falling? On average, prices are down. I think it is a buyers market on existing homes. The new homes are commanding closer to asking price as they are typically in desirable areas and have the amenities most are looking for. I ran an analysis of selling prices and two things stuck out:
1) price/sq ft averages $161 with a range from the $80s to the high $200s. These prices include the house, lot, dock, and in many cases furniture/boats/etc. It will cost you $150/sq ft to build a quality house and that does not include a dock, lot. Bottom line, there are deals out there if you are willing to do your homework and be flexible.
2) the selling price averages 9% below listing price. 39% of the houses had a discount of 10% or greater, 15% had a discount of 15% or better and 7% had a discount of 20% or better.
One thing to keep in mind, many second homeowners can afford to carry a house through the tough times. Anyone who was unable to was washed out in the recession. If you are waiting on a deal then you have to be patient and I recommend having a good realtor watching for you.