Market Update for May 2016 – Flat, but with some trends

How is the market in Mammoth? In a word…Flat.  Since when?…2014

The real estate market in Mammoth Lakes has been fairly flat.  It is neither a buyers’ market nor a sellers’ market.  Here are a few characteristics of our market…

Price per SqFt: We looked at $/sqft for condos and homes over the last few years and segmented them different ways (by location, age, price range) and some segments rose a tad, like newer homes (less than 25 years old) and non-Intrawest condos, and some segments dropped.  Overall, the $/sqft is fairly flat but trending slightly in the upwards direction.  Admittedly, $/sqft is not always the best indicator, as many factors are not always incorporated into $/sqft.  Let’s look at some other characteristics:

Price per sq ft condos + homes


Time to Sell: Homes are taking longer and condos are selling more quickly  Condos usually sell more quickly than homes, and right now they are selling a month and a half more quickly (97 days from listing date to contract date versus 141 days).  The difference can probably be explained by the difference in price points.  It takes longer to find a buyer for a $1.5M home versus a $200k condo (the pool of buyers is smaller)…

DOM2What is selling: 80% of the 120 condos sold in 2016 are below $465,000.  And you can barely find a house for less than this (only seven of the 30 homes sold in 2016 so far were below this mark).  In both segments, all cash financing are seen in a little over 1/3 of all transactions.




Inventory: Late spring is the time of year when sellers list (or re-list…or even sometimes pause their listing for 30 days to re-set the days on market to zero). In 2014, between the middle of May and the 4th of July, inventory shot up by 25%. In 2015, it shot up by 20% in the same span.  We expect to see a similar increase this spring.  Condos that were taken off the market in order to max out rental income will come back on the market. Homes and lots that emerge from the snow will also emerge on our active inventory.  On another note, our foreclosure inventory is basically non existent and we only have a few short sales.


Condo Sales Pace

Sales Pace: As you see in the graph, the pace of sales was strong in 2013 (the year after we bottomed out and had an uptick in the market), but then has been slightly slower since then.



Bright Spots: The bright spots in our market include the following:

(1) Lower-priced homes.  Half of the homes selling are considered ‘affordable’ in the under $599,000 range.  (The $700k-800k range has been struggling with only one sale so far this year).

(2) GrayBear: New development of single family homes along Sierra Star Golf Course with the rare ability to be rented out nightly.  These are priced $1M-$1.5M and the developer has been swamped with sales and construction activities along East Bear Lake Dr.

(3) Snowcreek Phase IV and Westin studios are among the most frequently purchase properties in 2016 so far.

Sellers who have had their properties on the market throughout the ski season without seeing them sell are really hoping the summer will bring them a buyer.  We do tend to see a new set of buyers during summer, as well as those winter enthusiasts who were not able to see many condos for sale because they were always rented during our recent successful ski season.

We believe that the drought has a lot to do with our sluggish market.  Buyers are skeptical (rightly so) that one good winter will lead to a trend of several good ski seasons in a row.  While Mammoth’s success definitely depends on the ski resort, our town has much more to offer and has been drawing tourists (and real estate buyers) for many other reasons.

Feel free to email us if you have any questions or comments!

-Dennis Cox & Tara Peterson