Monday, November 28, 2005

LA House Market Hits Slowdown

By Emily Crawford
Journal Staff Writer

The Los Alamos real estate market has slowed this year, affecting home prices and leaving properties to sit empty longer as buyers and sellers anticipate a decision in the competition to manage Los Alamos National Laboratory, local real estate agents say.

With the winner of the bid originally scheduled to be announced on or around Dec. 1, some agents predicted that the market would pick up. But the U.S. Department of Energy announced last week that the announcement would be delayed, and although that delay was not expected to be significant, no deadline was announced.

"I think people will finally know what direction the lab is going in and what they want to do, whether to stay or to go," said Colleen Van Tiem, a qualifying broker with Los Alamos Properties, a new company in the city. "They will be more willing to make a permanent decision."


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This is just not accurate...

See for the real information.
Devorah Gavron's graph shows a steep drop from a peak of 274 houses on
the market (June) to a current 180. However, the steep inflection point
in June looks strange to me. It's too sharp, and there hasn't been a
big influx of new people into Los Alamos over the summer. I've been
noticing just the opposite (ie, an increase in the number of "for sale"
signs sprouting up in my neighborhood). Anyone else out there have a
spouse or friend who is a realtor who can confirm Gavron's data. Has
this data been manipulated in any way (ie, removing houses that have
stayed on the market greater than 180 days)? Some peer review of this
data would be helpful.
The data is correct at the dates listed. It includes all houses in Los Alamos and the Jemez that are for sale on that date (regardless of duration of listing), including "pending". The data comes from the Realtors' MLS service (Santa Fe Board of Realtors).

You can go to and count the houses yourself, if you know exactly how to do it. The numbers are usually slightly different between the MLS-SF-BOR data base, and that takes them from the SF BOR but does some processing.

There has been an influx of people into LANL. That is why the "hiring freeze" was initiated!
Thanks for the info, "SciTec"! This is all very interesting. Perhaps
we are headed for a housing boom in Los Alamos in the next few years
with the expected influx of new managers for the LLC. That would be a
nice change of pace. One thing I have noticed is that the local Smith's
grocery store seems to be more crowded with younger families of late.
Maybe it's a sign of the influx of new jobs (mostly non-tech) that
were created by LANL over the last year. Also, I'm wondering if the
drop-off from 274 (June-2005) to the current 180 level may have been
caused by some sellers pulling their houses off the market. A graph
showing the actual number of homes sold would help clarify this point.
Nancy Mroz has a good rundown on the stats in graphical form:
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