In the course of two days, local Realtor Jacquie Kellogg would receive a total of seven bids for a house she listed in a downtown Flagstaff neighborhood last month.
The house was older but in good condition. So what sparked a bidding war that ended with the home selling for $17,000 above list price after being on the market only 48 hours?
The answer is, again, all about inventory, with demand for homes priced below a quarter-million dollars outpacing supply.
"If you have a home priced at $250,000, it will be gone just like that," said Kellogg, who owns WestUSA Realty in Flagstaff. "You just can't jump on them fast enough."
The median price for new and existing single-family homes in the greater Flagstaff area was $236,721 in November, down 9 percent from the same period last year and the lowest November median since 2002, according to information compiled by the Northern Arizona Association of Realtors Multiple Listing Service.
The price per square foot was nearly identical to the previous year, with smaller homes continuing to move quickly while sales of larger, higher-priced homes remained sluggish.
The median price -- half the homes sold for more, half for less -- continues a trend of hovering between $230,000 and $265,000 for the last year.
The sole exception was in the month of October, when the median price climbed to $306,000.
Stephen Brighton, a Realtor with Century 21 Flagstaff Realty, said a number of sales of high-end homes in Pine Canyon and Forest Highlands -- some worth more than $750,000 -- skewed the numbers last month.
"We are 23 percent down for the month of October," he said.
Brighton said that although competition is fierce among buyers in the lower end of the market, there are some real bargains to be had in the luxury home market.
With few buyers in that price range, sellers are slashing prices to make a sale, Brighton said.
Traditionally, the local real estate market is slow in the winter months.
Joe Ferguson can be reached at 556-2253 or email@example.com.
Flagstaff November Home Sales
Median # Sold per sq foot
2012 $237K 68 $137
2011 $259K 61 $138
2010 $242K 61 $139
2009 $305K 70 $148
2008 $323K 37 $171
2007 $347K 61 $200
2006 $379K 64 $217
2005 $360K 85 $199
2004 $272K 98 $154
2003 $239K 70 $141
2002 $202K 92 $118
Source: Northern Arizona Association of Realtors. Not all sales are listed.
Editor's note: This story has been modified from its original version.