Market Summary: July 17 – July 31

Mammoth Lakes Multiple Listing Service reports 10 sales/closings in Mammoth for the period ranging from a low of $85,647 to a high of $560,000. A total of seven of those closings were REOs/foreclosures.

At the period’s end there were 249 condominiums listed for sale in Mammoth Lakes of which 31 are Westin Monache units. There are 71 single-family homes on the market in Mammoth Lakes proper and 4 cabins on Forest Service leases available in the Lakes Basin, and 48 lots of which 44 are residential lots. Seasonal inventory appears to be just about peaking although I would expect more listings in the next 30 days.

Market Updates and News

Empirical observation is property showings have increased this past week (I was out there quite a bit) and many properties listed as active currently have offers with ongoing negotiations. There is a good selection of properties on the market in all price ranges. If the volume of potential buyers shopping this past week continues into the coming weeks, then it would appear that the pre-winter buyers are here a bit early this year. Maybe the forecasts for an early and heavy winter have them motivated.

Besides the 70% of the period’s sales coming from the REO/foreclosure segment of the market, this office experienced several full pice offers on newly listed REOs. These offers have not been fully ratified by the sellers as of this point, but they will be. One property (hint: it was a Foreclosure of The Week) had so many early offers that the asset manager called for a seven day “cooling off” period and will ultimately call for “highest and best” from all the potential buyers. Meanwhile, some REOs are just sitting.

Those watching the local inventory on one of the local broker’s websites continue to be frustrated by properties that show active while they are actually under contract as short sales. This a glitch in the IDX (Internet Data Exchange) between the Multiple Listing Service and the online presentation. I have tried to fix this. Some of these properties that appear to be lingering on the market have in fact been under contract for months as short sales.

Noteworthy Sales

The sale of Juniper Springs Lodge #406 at $398,000. This was not an REO and I wasn’t involved in the sale. I almost wish I had bought it at this price. I always talk about buying the best locations in a condo hotel building. This was it: top floor 2 bedroom/2 bath with the big south facing panoramic view of the Sherwins and Mammoth Mtn., overlooking the pool area. But as a bonus the sellers had done some very nice upgrades including hardwood floors, flat panel TVs, new furniture and lots of little touches. Original list price was $489,000. You can lead a horse to water…

The sale of 519 Majestic Pines for $560,000. This was a REO 4 bedroom/2.5 bath 2-car garage home located in a nice neighborhood down by where Mammoth Creek flows into the top Snowcreek Phase III. The location is not for everybody but pretty nice. Over 2800 square feet of modern construction in good shape. Sold for less than $200/square foot. Mathematically a great deal but many potential buyers balked at the location.

The sale of 217 Manzanita at $285,000. This was another REO, 3 bedroom/2 bath (no garage) home located in Mammoth’s “historical district.” This home was in pretty rough shape but was vacated during the height of a record winter and showed no leaks or compromises due to the heavy snow load. This is a pretty good example of low-end price support in the single-family segment. This property had multiple offers in the low $200ks before this offering price made the transaction.

The sale of Viewpoint #124 for $200,000. This REO 1 bedroom + loft/2 bath is the basic 70’s Dempsey built “Four” floorplan. Nothing really special here besides some cosmetic upgrades, no furniture, wasn’t even a front row unit at Viewpoint. Maybe strong price support for Village periphery.

The sale of Sierra Manors #46 for $85,647. This REO 1 bedroom/1 bath had new paint and some tiled countertops but no special location in a low-end project. Pretty good “crashpad” price support. A similar unit, #111, is up for online auction in August.

Other Real Estate News

Thanks mostly to the efforts of the local Wells Fargo loan office, more and more of the condominium projects with active onsite rental programs are getting approved for financing. It has been at least a couple of years since conventional financing was available in some of these projects due to FannieMae classifying them as “condo hotel.”  The latest to receive approval: Mammoth Creek Condos, Mountainback, Seasons Four, Discovery Four, and Horizons Four. The lack of financing has not helped values in these projects, there might be opportunities in the short run.

The new Nike Outlet next to the Charthouse looks like it is close to opening. Nice to see a vacant space of several thousand square feet filled by a strong national brand.

The pain of repaving Hwy. 203 that we endured only three years ago is about to be relived. Minor work has already begun and the grinding and paving is due to begin in a week. The asphalt laid three years ago failed from the beginning and that was blamed on the “mix.” Too bad we have to have Main St. tore up during the busiest summer month.

Mammoth has experienced some nice thunderstorms and light but steady rain today. The trails and roads will be in great shape the next week as sunshine is slated to return. No new snow on the Mountain, yet!

Thanks for reading!

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