Existing home values on rise in county

By Kristina Jackson

Right on pace with the values of residential property in Riley County, which were announced last week, the average value of existing homes in the county is also on the rise.

Greg McHenry, Riley County appraiser, said there has also been a jump in new construction, a trend that has been occurring for the last few years.

The average value of an existing home in Riley County is $179,850, up from $175,800 in 2013.

There was $58,802,000 of new construction last year, which accounted for 1.8 percent of total residential value in the county.

McHenry said he was struck by that fact that apartments made up $13 million of new construction in 2013.

“We’ve seen a significant amount of new apartment buildings, which we’ve seen for the last two or three years,” McHenry said.

He said that although some of his office’s sales numbers indicate a strong market in the area, another positive indicator has been the length of time a residential property is on the market.

“We’re comparable to the national numbers,” he said.

According to McHenry, this is often because of limited supply, large demand or a combination of the two.

He said that Geary County experienced a mirror image of this situation a few years ago, and the situation shows that Riley County’s current market is stable.

“They overbuilt and their market suffered,” McHenry said. “Demand remains strong.”

These trends are consistent with what area Realtors have been noticing, according to Tara Claycamp, president of the Manhattan Realtors Association.

A study by Washburn University that the association uses calculated that sales rose 3.7 percent in Manhattan during the fourth quarter of 2013.

“Recently, homes have really been starting to move,” Claycamp said.

Claycamp said this does tend to be an active time of year in the real estate market, as families and students usually prepare to move during the summer months.

“We’re seeing multiple offers on some properties, which is always a good sign,” she said.









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