2018 Flathead Lake Real Estate Sales
Flathead Lake Sales Hit All-time High in 2018!
As predicted throughout most of the year, 2018 sales broke records for both transactions and total volume on Flathead Lake, eclipsing a mark set 14 years ago in 2004.
Last year’s numbers included 75 posted sales and just over $76M in total volume, including one transaction over $10M. In comparison, 2004 yielded 71 transactions with just under $75M in volume with that year’s highest single sale at $13.5M.
The three years that followed 2004 produced lower total sales number for the lake as inventory was tightened and prices soared. The adjusted average price per foot on the lake in 2007 was well over $8,000. In comparison, the annual average for 2018 was just over $4,000.
While we expect strong sales to continue into 2019, prices are not expected to spike as they did in the last cycle due to the lending bubble. Modest price increases and a healthy sales pace should make 2019 another great year for Flathead Lake real estate sales.
Annual Sales Data
Prices based on a per-waterfront-foot have continued to increase to around $4,000/ft for the entire lake after adjusting for improvements in the past few years.
Annual Sales Data:
Sales by Region
The increase in waterfront sales was evident in nearly all regions around the lake with the exception of Polson. It was the only region of the lake that actually posted a decrease in both transactions and sales volume from the previous year.
Distribution of Waterfront Sales – 2018
Active Waterfront Listings
Residential waterfront listings for this month are up compared to the inventory at this time last year (87 listings vs 84). The number of land listings has decreased from 33 to 24. Total listings on the lake historically peak in August and bottom out between January and March.
With the increased activity in waterfront sales, more owners have decided it is the time to sell and are listing their properties. As a result, listing inventory for residential waterfront properties remains higher over last year even as it should be diminishing with increased sales.
Median list prices for residential listings rose dramatically over the 2017/2018 winter months fueled by a record low inventory. Prices peaked at $1.45M in February, dropping back below $1.3M in April due to new listings coming on the market. As the inventory of lower-priced properties continues to sell, the median price of active listings continues to rise. The current median price is just under $1.6M.
Median waterfront land prices also rose last year during the colder months to the $800k range due to the lower inventory and have settled back to just over $600k. We are not seeing the increase in land prices this year compared to 2017/2018.
Flathead Lake Condominium Market
With over a dozen waterfront condominium communities around Flathead Lake, there are plenty of options for buyers who want the waterfront lifestyle without having to worry about maintaining a lake home. Below is a list of all of the current condo listings for the various communities around the lake, along with a report of total sold units and average prices since the first of the year.
The waterfront condo market is maintaining compared to last year with 31 posted sales on the lake to date. With 42 active condo listings, we have approximately 15 months of inventory currently on the market. This is down from highs over the past few years where we saw as much as a three to four year inventory on the market.
Sold prices continue to move upwards, and listing prices downward to meet realistic market values. This has resulted in an increase of sales – especially in the Bigfork market.