October 14th, 2009
IT'S THERE - THE LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL! I can't say that the Door County real estate market suffered the extreme collapse that we witnessed in other markets. We all saw markets where property values plummeted 50% or more, sales came to a virtual standstill, and foreclosed homes could be found on almost every block. We were lucky. Values decreased, but 10% of value would be a worst case scenario. Only a small percentage of the properties on the market are foreclosures. The worst thing we experienced was a dramatic drop in the number of sales as compared to the peak years of 2004 - 2006.
But now, slowly but surely, sales are picking up. What is selling? Moderately priced non-shorefront homes are selling; and in northern Door County, the majority sold this year in the $100,000 to $300,000 price range. Shore home sales were relatively few and not clustered in any price range. Condominium sales are slow, but resale condos in the $150,000 to $300,000 range are selling. Vacant land sales were down dramatically this year, and almost all sale prices have been under $100,000.
If those price ranges seem low to you, they are; and it's good news and bad news. The good news is that contrary to popular opinion, there are moderately-priced vacation properties to be found in Door County. If there ever was a time to buy Door County property, it is now! The bad news is for sellers of the high-end properties that are just not moving. But again, that is good news for buyers who can now find some pretty fabulous properties - especially homes - at great prices. So, there is light at the end of the tunnel. It just shines brighter for some segments of this market than for others. And it is definitely shining brightly for buyers!