By Charlene Efird, guest writer

Optimism abounds in Lake Lure, and rightly so. The Lake Lure real estate market continues to be vigorous with 2015 showing overall increases in both residential and land sales. The brisk level of buyer activity has continued in January and February, 2016 in spite of a record January snowfall.

2015 market statistics show growth in several areas:

-33% increase in total home sales over previous year.

-Average days on market decreased by 22% in 2015.

-Average Sale Price increased by 26% and average $/square ft increased by 23%.

-Over 20 lakefront homes sold in 2015.

The above data was obtained from Carolina Multiple Listings Services.

The number of new residential construction projects has also increased. It is encouraging to watch the number of new homes currently under construction in the Lake Lure area.19_DSC_6458 copy

In October, 2015 Western NC Multiple Listing Services merged with the larger Carolina Multiple Listing Service (MLS). This merger afforded Lake Lure properties a far broader exposure to agents and buyers. The positive effects of this broader exposure are being felt throughout our local market.

Another interesting observation is the increase in the number of buyers seeking full time homes vs second homes in Lake Lure. Quality of life is frequently mentioned by Buyers as a top priority.

Historically Lake Lure has been known as a Second/Vacation Home Market. That trend is changing as more buyers are seeking the same quality of lifestyle that drew many of us. Most of us arrived serendipitously, fell in love with the area and opted to stay. We had a choice, and we took it. The lifestyle that drew us to Lake Lure remains irresistible. Access to high speed internet also attracts a more diverse range of buyers. Some may consider working remotely while others opt to fully retire. Lake Lure is growing towards a year-round community.

Several factors contribute to our market strength:

-Baby Boomers reaching their retirement era.

-September 2015 opening of Lake Lure Classical Academy campus on Island Creek Rd provides a greater sense of a year-round community.

-Chimney Rock State Park, including the Boys Camp Road Hiking Park and the Buffalo Creek Trailhead are major attractions for these active families.

-Events such as The Annual Olympiad, Dirty Dancing Festival, North Carolina Bicycling and National Rock Climbing events draw innumerable visitors who become enamored with Lake Lure.

-The presence and continued expansion of The Tryon International Equestrian in nearby Mill Springs, NC continues to bring prospective buyers seeking lake properties.

-Brutal winters in the Mid-Atlantic and Midwest regions and extreme hot weather in the lower Southern states also motivate prospective buyers seeking more moderate climates as offered in the Lake Lure isothermal area.

While Residential sale prices remain constant through early 2016, the volume of sales continues to maintain a brisk pace in Lake Lure.

Charlene Efird, Broker, CLHMS, CRS, Lake Lure Professionals Realty Group/Keller Williams, 2975 Memorial Highway, Lake Lure. Email her at charlene@kwlakelure.com or call 828-625-2552.