Housing

Esther Honig

Out on Colorado’s Eastern Plains, the sound of hammers and saw blades cuts through the steady silence. A construction site hums next to a solitary cluster of nearly 150 newly built homes and 48 apartment units.

In the small town of Wiggins, where a pair of grain silos are the tallest structures for miles, the population of less than 900 hadn’t grown in over a decade. But with this new development, the town’s on track to double in size by the middle of 2020.

For Sale
Matt Bloom / KUNC

When Hailee Bergstrom and her husband set out to buy their first home earlier this year, they set a budget of around $300,000. The two were renting and working in Greeley and looking to stay nearby. But the couple realized something pretty fast.

"There was no selection between what we could afford and ... I don't know," Bergstrom said, trailing off.

The couple looked at two places in Greeley. Both felt too cramped or unsafe. When they didn't find anything else in their price range, they looked south to a new development in the neighboring community of Evans.

Matt Bloom / KUNC

Zee Ziola remembers the sounds he used to hear on mountain bike rides through Maxwell Natural Area. On fall Saturdays, the boom of a cannon signaled the start of another home game at Hughes Stadium. Fans erupting in cheers marked a Rams touchdown.

"This side of town would get crazy packed," Ziola said, standing at the edge of the old Hughes site in Fort Collins.

Now the 161-acre property is vacant, serving as the future home of a new neighborhood.

Pexels

It’s expensive to live in Fort Collins, and part of the reason could be a city housing ordinance referred to as “you-plus-two.”

The policy limits home occupancy to no more than three unrelated people per household in Fort Collins.

Our region is home to some of the hottest housing markets in the country but that trend may slowing down. 

Dan Moyle / Flickr

This summer, the housing market was expected to be extremely competitive, with lots of buyers vying for a limited number of homes. But it turns out, the housing market, including in our region, may finally be cooling down.

Lawrence Yun, chief economist with the National Association of Realtors, says home prices have been rising too fast -- much faster than people’s incomes.

Screenshot of a map from choosecolorado.com

126 low-income urban and rural zones in Colorado, coined “Opportunity Zones,” are now eligible for a new federal tax incentive created by last fall’s GOP tax overhaul.

Flickr Creative Commons

Brad Inhulsen has been a real estate broker in Greeley for about 5 years. He says 2018 will be “the year” for homeowners to sell.

“We’re so skewed to the left, to the sellers’ market, that it’s not even funny right now,” he said
 

 

 

More than 77,000 new residents arrived in Colorado this year, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. With the state’s unemployment rate sitting at 2.7 percent, many of the homes Inhulsen has listed along the Front Range are selling in less than one month, Inhulsen said.

Is Fort Collins In A Housing Bubble?

Jun 7, 2017
Jim Hill / KUNC

Northern Colorado real estate is still hot. Single family homes in Fort Collins, Loveland and Berthoud priced under $400,000 sell after an average of 18 days on the market — and sellers are getting slightly above asking price.

In Fort Collins, a starter home — one that has a mortgage comparable to area rent, is now between $300,000 and $400,000 — increasingly out of reach for many first-time buyers.  

But this isn’t a housing bubble.

Jim Hill / KUNC

Colorado is currently the seventh fastest growing state in the nation. Experts expect the bullseye of future growth to be the northern Front Range.

“We’re forecasting the state to increase between 2010 and 2040 by about 2.8 million people — about 500,000 in the north Front Range, in Larimer and Weld counties,” said state demographer Elizabeth Garner.

It all has to do with jobs -- sort of. Data show that in the past 10 years many people are moving from the Western Slope to the northern Front Range looking for work, while high-paying tech industry jobs has brought workers in from other states. It’s the marriage of these two counties and what they have to offer commuters that makes them so economically diverse.

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