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Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, Denver home sales have soared during 2020, and so have their prices, with the average tag on a single-family, detached house in the area hitting a record high over $625,000 in October.

But these developments haven’t taken place in a vacuum. Over the past five years, the median price for homes in the heart of metro Denver has gone up by nearly 35 percent. And while common wisdom suggests that this year’s jump was fueled mainly by inventory shortages, figures assembled for Westword show that there have been many more homes for sale in 2020 than during 2015, when the market was among the hottest in the country — but incredible demand has resulted in them being snapped up almost as soon as they’re listed.

The stats shared here were compiled by Jim Smith of Golden Real Estate, a longtime local broker spotlighted in our recent post explaining how the novel coronavirus is putting a damper on condo sales. Using figures from REcolorado, Smith culled data intended to give a better idea of the market specific to Denver.

The federally defined Denver metropolitan statistical area, or MSA, actually consists of eleven counties, including such outlying regions such as Elbert, Clear Creek, Gilpin and Park counties. But Smith zeroed in on the zone within a 25-mile radius of the State Capitol. Moreover, he focused not on the average price of homes, which he sees as being inflated by the most expensive properties, but on the median price, smack dab in the middle of all houses sold during any particular period. Smith sees median price as a truer indication of what a buyer is likely to encounter.

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