by Scott Neuffer

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October 9, 2012
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Home values continue upward momentum

Even if homeowners are still feeling slighted in what has been an historic bubble-burst, home values in Carson Valley are following an upward swing.

According to data released by the Douglas County Assessor's Office, the average sales price of a home in the East Fork Township jumped to $255,430 in third quarter of the year, and the median sales price rose to $207,025.

Both figures are the highest of the calendar year thus far, which saw a low average price of $215,410 and median price of $169,950 in the first quarter of 2012.

The third quarter also posted gains year-over-year. The median price is up roughly 15 percent from $180,250 in the same quarter last year, and the average price is up 14.6 percent from $222,896 in the same time period.

Volume of sales is up as well. In the third quarter of the year, 226 homes were sold in the East Fork Township, which stretches from north Minden to Topaz Lake. That number is up from a low of 163 sales in the first quarter of 2012, and it represents a more modest increase from 213 sales in third quarter of 2011.

Although positive in trajectory, the latest figures are still far from the peak of the housing bubble in 2006, which saw an annual median sales price of $398,000 and an average sales price of $467,252.

But the third-quarter numbers are an improvement over what appears now to be the trough of the housing crisis. In 2011, the annual median sales price of a home was $189,900, and the average sales price was $233,695 - the lowest home values in Carson Valley since 2001.

Annual numbers for 2012 will be released at the end of the fourth quarter in December.

John Fisher, owner/broker of Re/Max Realty Affiliates in Gardnerville, reported that prices have been picking up steadily since spring, especially for homes below the $250,000 mark.

"That house that was $150,000 in March and April is now $180,000. If you have something under $200,000, you're going to get multiple offers," he said. "Personally, I felt that we overcorrected, and prices got too low. There is still a little more room to improve, and then things might level off a bit. When you factor in interest rates, where someone can borrow $200,000 for $850 a month, it's pretty incredible."

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The Record Courier Updated Oct 9, 2012 05:45PM Published Oct 9, 2012 05:43PM Copyright 2012 The Record Courier. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.