By Mark Huffman Jackson Hole Daily Posted: Saturday, November 29, 2014 People with a lot of money have continued to push the Jackson Hole real estate market in 2014 and in the third quarter, no matter what happened in any other segment of the market. The people at the NeVille Group — associated with Jackson Hole Real Estate Associates and Christie’s International Real Estate — shared their recent stats and noted that the Hole “is synonymous with luxury and is an international marketplace for luxury real estate.” There were 26 sales above $3 million during the third quarter, according to NeVille Group’s figures, and the average price in the sector was actually well beyond that, hitting an average of $5.7 million. The number of transactions was up 18 percent over the same period last year, and the total dollar value of the sales was about $160 million, up 11 percent over the same period in 2013. Other people recorded some of the same trends. David Viehman of Re/Max Obsidan Real Estate wrote in the third-quarter update of his Jackson Hole Report that the upper end is strong, but not without its problems. On the strength side, during the first nine months of the year, Viehman wrote, 73 deals were done in the $2 million-plus market, and 11 of those were for more than $5 million — impressive, but down by his calculations by 21 percent from the corresponding nine months in 2013. He noted that while $2 million-plus sales were only 14 percent of all transactions they accounted for 52 percent of total dollar volume. The third quarter showed, though, a bit more weakness in lower-priced segments — and perhaps the end of the bounce-back caused by short money and big inventory following the 2008 crash. Viehman put the number of listings down 15 percent in the quarter, and the dollar volume down by 10 percent. That’s after years of fat inventory and, subsequently, a boom in sales when things began to look up. Add to that decline in listings a fall in total transactions of 11 percent and a drop of 9 percent in the number of properties under contract and you have the explanation for something happening at the same time: Prices continue to rebound. Average sale prices were up 7 percent, Viehman wrote, and median prices were up 13 percent. With inventory surpluses of two years ago largely depleted, that’s caused a rise of 39 percent in the median sales price of property under contract. As David NeVille and his people note, the median sale price of single-family homes in Jackson Hole hit $1.1 million in the past few months, up $300,000 from a year before. At the same time, sales in the under-$500,000 home market, hot a year ago, were down 73 percent since mid-year. Compared to last year, NeVille said, sales in the $500,000-and-under sector fell from 33 last year to just nine this year. All of which seems to indicate that after the Great Recession and then the recovery of the past two or three years the market is finally looking to settle into a new level.

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