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Median home price soars in Jackson County

Jamie Lusch / Mail Tribune A home is for sale Monday on Willow Brook Drive in Medford.

High demand and limited supply of houses have sent home prices soaring in Jackson County.

Since May last year, the median price of existing homes across the county increased by 24.6% — from $305,000 to $380,000.

In the same time frame in Ashland, the median price rose from $444,000 to $535,000, in Phoenix it increased from $282,000 to $365,000, in Jacksonville it grew from $491,500 to $562,500, and in Talent it went up to $375,000 from $316,500.

The situation was similar across the county. In west Medford, the median rose from $210,000 to $265,000, in east Medford the median shot up from $325,500 to $410,000, in Central Point it climbed from $287,000 to $355,000, in White City it went from $252,000 to $295,000, and in Eagle Point the median grew from $332,950 to $405,000.

During the same period, the number of home sales increased by 21% — from 557 to 674 — and homes are selling, on average, in 19 days as opposed to 42 days last year. At the same time, the number of homes on the market is down from 719 to 354.

“(There is) half the inventory, yet the total number of houses being sold is greater,” said Scott Lewis, broker with John L. Scott. “It’s the purest form of supply and demand.”

On the demand side, says Colin Mullane, a spokesperson for the Rogue Valley Association of Realtors, low interest rates on mortgages allow people to afford more expensive homes.

Lewis believes another reason for the increase in demand is that being stuck inside during the pandemic made some people rethink living in cities.

“(People) can move here and have a really good quality of life without having to deal with the hassles of bad traffic and overcrowded cities,” Lewis said.

Barring a recession or interest rates increasing, Mullane doesn’t see the situation changing much in the near future.

“I expect it to be 12-18 months of this type of market, minimum,” Mullane said.

Lewis said he doesn’t anticipate housing prices continuing to rise at the current rate.

“The appreciation will be pricing a lot of people out of the market,” Lewis said.

Lewis said the current trend of rising prices is not sustainable, but he doesn’t anticipate housing values depreciating.

Both Mullane and Lewis agreed that the current situation differs from the lead-up to the financial crisis of 2008.

“It’s dramatically different,” Mullane said. “There's no comparison between the two.”

Reach Mail Tribune news intern William Seekamp at wseekamp@rosebudmedia.com.