Colorado added 62,000 new jobs over the past 12 months, an increase of 2.4% over this time last year. All of the metropolitan markets included in this report saw annual employment growth, with substantial growth in Boulder (4.7%) and Fort Collins (+4.1%), and more modest growth in Grand Junction (0.3%).
In May, the unemployment rate in the state was 2.3%, matching the prior month and down 3.4% from a year ago. The lowest unemployment rate was in Fort Collins at just 2.0%. The highest rate was in Grand Junction, though it was still a relatively low 3.3%. It is reasonable to expect these markets will see above-average wage growth given the tight labor market.
HOME SALES ACTIVITY
- There were 17,581 home sales during the first quarter of 2017, a solid annual increase of 3.9% over the first quarter of 2016.
- Jefferson County saw sales grow at the fastest rate over the past 12 months, with a 9.4% increase. There was also an impressive increase in Douglas County (+6.3%). More modest sales growth was seen in Denver and Weld Counties.
- Even with the rise in sales, listing activity is still running at well below historic averages, with the total number of homes for sale in the second quarter 7.6% below a year ago.
- Sales growth continues to trend higher, but inventory levels remain well below where they need to be to satisfy demand.
- Due to solid demand, home prices continue to rise with average prices up by 8.5% year-over-year to an average across the region of $438,980.
- Boulder County saw slower appreciation in home values, but the trend is still positive.
- Appreciation was strongest in Denver and Weld Counties, where prices rose by 12.4% and 10.6% respectively.
- Economic growth is driving job growth, which is driving housing demand. Given the relative shortage of homes for sale, expect to see home prices continue to appreciate at above-average rates at least through the rest of the year.
DAYS ON MARKET
- The average number of days it took to sell a home dropped by three days when compared to the second quarter of 2016.
- Homes in all counties contained in this report took less than a month to sell. Adams County stood out as it took an average of only 11 days to sell a home.
- During the second quarter, it took an average of just 17 days to sell a home. This is down by a substantial 13 days compared to the first quarter of this year.
- The takeaway here is that demand remains robust as evidenced by the remarkably short amount of time that it is taking to sell a home.
This speedometer reflects the state of the region’s housing market using housing inventory, price gains, home sales, interest rates, and larger economic factors.
After the second quarter of 2017, I have moved the needle even farther in favor of sellers. Mortgage rates remain very competitive and, with the specter of lending standards easing a little, demand will remain robust, which will be reflected in rising home values.
ABOUT MATTHEW GARDNER
Beautifully maintained and updated town-home style condo.
Open and spacious foyer welcomes you with updated engineered hardwoods and vaulted ceilings. Upstairs enjoy the quiet open loft. The private master retreat is spacious and boast of a well appointed master bath. The secondary bedroom also has it’s own private bath. On the main level the spacious living room provides a warm welcoming feel with a fireplace that flows to the kitchen and private backyard oasis. 2 car attached garage!
The Next Boulder?
Fort Collins Real Estate vs. Boulder Real Estate | The hottest question we get in Northern Colorado is this “do you think Fort Collins is the next Boulder?”
Let’s look closely at that question and start with what is similar. They are both beautiful college towns nestled against the foothills. They both have affordability issues which push real estate buyers to satellite communities (what is happening is Wellington is not unlike what happened in Louisville).
Yet there are differences at a fundamental level that will forever keep these two places very different from each other. For example the average Household Income in Boulder is 60% higher than Fort Collins. Here is another big deal, Boulder is only half the size of Fort Collins (25 square miles versus 57 square miles). And get this, the City of Boulder owns 71 square miles of open space in and around the City.
Essentially Boulder is a small island surrounded by an ocean of open space inhabited by very high income-earners. That is why the average price of a single family home in Boulder is now over $1 million.
We put together a short video which shows you more detail about this hot question. You can watch it here:
Last week Windermere’s Chief Economist Matthew Gardner joined us for our annual Market Forecast events in Northern Colorado.
Here are some of the big takeaways that we shared:
- Interest rates will increase to 4.6% by the end of the year
- First-time buyers are back and will make up 47% of all buyers in 2017
- Inventory will remain at record lows and will continue to drive up prices
- Appreciation is expected to be between 9% and 7% accross our Front Range markets
- Home builders will get creative in order to hit lower price points – we will see more “tiny homes” and more homes without basements
Click HERE to see Matthew Gardner’s infographic on the 2017 Forecast.
Did You Know?
Here are some fun “Did You Know?” stats as we wrap up 2016 (arguably one of the most fascinating years in the history of Northern Colorado Real Estate)
Happy New Year to all of you. Be sure to register for our 2017 Real Estate Market Forecast if you want to see insightful information about our market and hear some entertaining real estate stories. www.windermereforecast.com
Register for our annual Real Estate Market Forecast events! We will be in Denver January 18th and in Fort Collins January 19th starting at 5:30 pm.. Back by popular demand is our Cheif Economist Matthew Gardner. Seating is limited.
Just for fun let's take a walk down memory lane and look at 2007 average prices in Northern Colorado.
- Fort Collins = $238,000
- Loveland = $229,900
- Greeley = $151,500
What are they today and how much have they increased?
- Fort Collins = $348,000 (46% higher)
- Loveland = $345,000 (50% higher)
- Greeley = $248,000 (64% higher)
One of the many interesting dynamics in our Northern Colorado market is the mismatch between inventory and sales.
Meaning, there isn't enough of what most people want.
Under $300K = 1,123 homes sold/87 currently for sale
$300K to $500K = 1,106 homes sold/358 currently for sale
$500K to $1M = 310 homes sold/301 currently for sale
Over $1M = 13 homes sold/54 currently for sale
By the way, this means that is an incredible opportunity for the move up buyer. Contact us to see what your home is worth in today's market.
Let's have some fun with 5 Fascinating Facts about the Luxury Market in Northern Colorado (homes priced over $700,000):
- Luxury homes represent 19% of all available inventory
- Luxury homes represent 3% of all closed sales
- The luxury market has 11 months of inventory
- The average sales to list price for a luxury home is 97%
- The average days on market for a luxury home is 132 days
Hot off the press is our brand new Luxury Market Report. It's 12 pages of fun facts, charts, graphs and insights into the $700,000-plus market in Northern Colorado. This is a must-have resource.
Simply email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will get one in your hands right away.
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