The Kootenai County home sales market fell off its pace in October, ending a surprising rebound felt through August and September.
Home sales dropped 5 percent compared with the number of sales last October, according to the Coeur d’Alene Multiple Listing Service.
A 25 percent jump in sales in the Dalton Gardens/Hayden area helped push the market forward, according to the numbers.
Continued strength in Post Falls and Coeur d’Alene made up for a 54 percent drop of homes sold in outlying areas of the county.
Excluding the often-variable outlying areas home sales, the market rose five percent in October.
Lower prices for existing homes continue to make the market move, said Brian Stranger, president of the multiple listing service.
“People are being more realistic for prices,” he said. “It’s still looking pretty good.”
But the average price of homes sold this October rose 14 percent over the same month last year. New construction may have been a factor in higher prices, which rose the most in the Coeur d’Alene area.
The market still has about 700 homes for sale, which is a lot of inventory for this time of the year, Stranger said. Though activity may slow as winter hits, the market will remain strong, he said.
“It used to be that things slowed down in the winter, but for the last few years it has remain steady,” Stranger said. “You used to be able to drive downtown in the winter and not see anybody. Not anymore.”
Volatile sales of homes with acreage or on the waterfront increased 14 percent from last October. Those homes are rarely out of demand and hold their value well, brokers say.
Stranger’s information shows that the 1995 market, now only about 4 percent off its record 1994 sales volume, shows the number of sales this year compared with the number of units on the market has stayed near a record pace.
, DataTimes ILLUSTRATION: Graphic: Home sales