Unexpected News – Missoula Real Estate

Big Changes in the Missoula Real Estate market

For the third straight month Missoula’s year over year sales have trended to a higher level than we have seen in the last five years.  September 2012 real estate sales were 55.8% higher than the same month in 2011 and 31.8% higher for the year compared to this time in 2011.

An even more encouraging sign of a rebounding Missoula real estate market can be found in the under contract numbers.  Typically around August and September we see under contract properties and sales start to decline going into winter.  At the end of September there were a total of 132 properties under contract for the highest level this year by almost 30 properties.  Under contract numbers indicate more buyers staying in the market and strong sales heading into winter.

The health of the Missoula real estate market is recorded by absorption rates which is the correlation between the numbers of homes active on the market compared to the number that sell on average per month.  According to the national association of realtors, a normal market is 6 months of inventory.  Missoula’s current absorption rate is at 6.5 months for a normal market and is the healthiest we have seen in over 5 years.

5 Year Missoula Home Sales by Month:


Five year sales trends for home sale in the Missoula Metro area. Includes monthly under contracts for given year.












Under Contract volume continues to increase and, although sales have begun the seasonal descent into the fall season, home sales over the last three months have outpaced each of the last five years when compared to the same month in prior years. According to the Missoula MLS 81 homes were sold in September 2012, which is the highest number of homes sold during the month of September over the last five years. The following chart provides a snapshot of total homes sold, by month, since 2008. (Green columns represent Under Contract properties for the current year.)

Inventory of Missoula’s Homes Listed for Sale:


Williams & Associates

Since the month of April, inventory levels have been lower than they have been in the last two years, however, lower inventory levels can be one of the first signs of a rebounding market. Watch for inventory levels to continue to decline as we continue into the fall months. The following chart presents the total inventory of homes listed for sale, by month, since January 2010.

 Absorption Rate:

Williams & Associates

Absorption rate is the rate at which homes sell in an area; the lower the absorption rate, the faster homes are selling. Assuming a “normal” market absorption rate of 6.0 months, Missoula’s overall housing market is very near normal, with an average supply of 6.5 months in September. In general, homes priced below $350,000 performed at a better rate than a normal market whereas homes priced over $400,000 performed significantly slower than in a normal market.

Overall Summary:  With low inventory and higher sales anticipated moving into the Fall market, now is a great time to Sell Your Home.

Jeremy Williams

Williams & Associates | Keller Williams Realty

Please contact me at [email protected] for a full version of our real estate report.