From time to time I get questions about Kansas City real estate investments. The Kansas City area is a great place to invest in real estate. I have helped many saavy buyers invest in Kansas City real estate through outright purchase, or using a 1031 exchange to get into our affordable housing market in Kansas City. Rental income and demand for rentals is increasing with the credit crunch so it's a great time to buy rental property in Kansas City.
Our market has historically seen steady appreciation, not subject to wild swings up or down. While our current market is a little slower than it was a couple of years ago, we are still not faced with extreme conditions. Sellers do need to be competitive in price, condition and location. Well priced properties in good locations and in great condition are still selling relatively quickly, sometimes with multiple offers. I recently sold a home that had 4 offers come in on the same weekend--and it had been on the market about 60 days. We didn't change anything to elicit the offers. Our strategy just seemed to kick in at once.
As of the end of October, overall, in the Heartland MLS that serves the greater Kansas City real estate market, we have almost 6% more inventory than we had last year, with about 9% fewer buyers. Agents are seeing buyers write lower offers and having higher expectations in neogtiating for repairs during the inspection period. Prices are generally down somewhat, varying by county. For the Heartland region in total, the average selling price in 2007 was $176,751 compared to $184,719 in 2006. In Johnson County, KS real estate market, the average selling price in 2007 has been $260,552 compared to $258,444. In Wyandotte County, KS real estate market, the average selling price in 2007 is $103,758 compared to $108,772 in 2006. On the Missouri side the average sales price in Jackson County dropped to $141,429 in 2007 from $148, 574 in 2006.
Properties that are selling, generally are selling quickly, with 51% of the properties being sold within the first 60 days. On the other hand, 26% are taking more than 120 days to sell. These statistics point out the importance of being competitive in the market place if you want to sell. Buyers, too, need to realize that in this market not all properties are lanquishing on the market. Some buyers have the idea that a low ball offer will buy any property and that's just not the case.
All in all, the Kansas City real estate market is a little slower than it has been. It certainly is a more normal market than many other parts of the country are experiencing. If we do have a freeze on the adjustable mortgage rate increases, I would expect to see our market normalize a bit more and pick up a little. Sellers who found themselves between a rock and a hard place in needing to sell to avert the higher mortgage payments, but unable to sell because of inadequate equity will find a breath of relief and probably stay in their homes until appreciation does work on their behalf. I am expecting to see an uptick in the market this spring, especially if interest rates stay low. They are currently below 6%, and that's a good deal historically. Kansas City offers some of the most affordable housing anywhere and that fact is quickly being recognized acorss the nation.