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Boulder Area Real Estate Update – The Kearney Report Q2-2017

Boulder Area Real Estate Update – The Kearney Report Q2-2017

I have just completed the latest edition of The Kearney Report for the second quarter 2017.  The goal of this report is to give you a quick understanding of the statistics and trends in the Boulder County real estate market. You can view the entire report below or you can download the PDF here.  The Kearney Report 2nd Quarter 2017 Real Estate Market Update During the second quarter of 2017 the Boulder area real estate market continued to be a strong sellers market, but towards the end of the quarter there was a change in the market.  In this summary I will discuss these trends as well as discuss what we might expect to see during the third and fourth quarter of the year. During the second quarter of 2017 there were 1,459 sales in Boulder County which reflects an 8.3% drop from the same quarter of the previous year. The median sales price during the quarter was $500,000 which is ironically 8.3% higher than it was a year ago.  Inventory this year has been been consistently higher than the past two years and this has given buyers more choices when looking.  This was especially true at the end of May when the levels of active inventory were above 2016 and 2015 levels, equal to 2014 levels and just below 2013 levels.  During the second quarter, 41% (50%) of the homes sold for a price above the list price, 22% (20%) were at the asking price and 36% (30%) were below.  When comparing this years numbers to last years, which are shown in parenthesis, it’s clear that the market...
2437 Lexington Street, Lafayette – $635,000 – UNDER CONTRACT!

2437 Lexington Street, Lafayette – $635,000 – UNDER CONTRACT!

2437 Lexington St. Lafayette, CO 80026 – $635,000 I’ve just listed a beautiful home in Lafayette.  It provides a rare opportunity to buy a premium lot backing on two sides to the Indian Peaks Golf Course & a quiet location at the end of a quiet cul-de-sac. It’s priced to sell now! It was built by McStain Builders but it has a custom plan with a 3-story addition that provides treehouse views from the master bedroom suite (great remodeled bath), a large formal dining room (maple cabinetry) & additional garden level space in the unfinished portion of the basement. The home is light and bright and has views of the green golf course everywhere.  A great value for a lucky buyer.            ...
Fireworks from 405 Hapgood

Fireworks from 405 Hapgood

The conventional place to watch the fireworks in Boulder is from Folsom Stadium.  But this year I watched them from the roof of my listing at 405 Hapgood.  405 Hapgood is located on the lower slopes of Flagstaff Mountain and has 180 degree views of Boulder.  The house is a great candidate for a remodel or a scrape and rebuild but what a place to host a fireworks party from your rooftop deck!  Here is a video that shows the finale from the 2017 Boulder Fireworks Show....
Senior Property Tax Exemption

Senior Property Tax Exemption

With property values increasing as steadily and as rapidly as they are in Boulder County, it should come at no surprise that property taxes are following suit. This became very clear this past May when assessment notices made their way around town informing Boulder County residents that the assessed value of their property had significantly increased by on average 26%. Although it is exciting to watch the value of your assets increase it does mean that property taxes will most likely increase for you as well. When discussing property taxes I believe it is helpful for anyone to have a basic understanding or concept of how property taxes are actually determined. When boiled down to the basics it is actually quite easy to understand. Three major components go into your property taxes: Rate of Assessment Assessed Value Mill Levy (Tax Rate) The Rate of Assessment for residential properties in Colorado serves as the base for property taxes as it determines what percentage of your homes actual value can or will be taxed.  This can be adjusted on the state level and just recently got lowered for the first time in 14 years from 7.96% to 7.2%.  The rate of assessment is multiplied by the assessed value to your taxable value. The Assessed Value is the value assigned to your home by the county assessor.  This assessment is adjusted every two years based upon comparable sales in your neighborhood.  The assessed value is what arrived in your mailbox in May.  Finally, the Mill Levy (also known as the Tax Rate) is the percentage of the Assessed Value that is actually...
Home Search Zillow Sued for Inaccurate Zestimate’s

Home Search Zillow Sued for Inaccurate Zestimate’s

This past May, Zillow, the online real estate search company was sued by a Chicago based home building company who claimed that Zillow’s online Automated Value Model (AVM) is deceiving home buyers with prices below the true value of properties leading to frustrated sellers. Furthermore the suit claims that Zillow’s “Zestimates” are in violation of the legal description of an appraisal, which under Illinois law must be administered by a licensed appraiser. Zillow defends themselves by stating that their Zestimates claim only to be approximations not true appraisals; to which the suit responds stating that whether or not they are technically appraisals homeowners are viewing them as such leading to confusion and irritation. It will be interesting to see over the coming months how this lawsuit plays out. It’s clear that Zillow’s Zestimate and other AVM’s which are becoming common across the internet are being used by consumers to determine the approximate value of their home.  But in my experience, many times this approximation isn’t close to the true market value. So just how accurate are Zestimates. In a Nationwide study conducted by Zillow it was found that their Zestimates fall within 5% of the sales price of homes 53.9% of the time, within 10% of the sales price 75.6% of the time and finally within 20% of the sales price 89.7% of the time. Back in 2007 when Zillow was just getting its footing I conducted my own research local to Boulder on the subject and found that on a whole Zillow’s algorithm was 99% accurate.  However, when I took a closer look I found that there was...
Tracking Boulder’s Home Appreciation Over Time

Tracking Boulder’s Home Appreciation Over Time

Boulder County Has One of the Most Consistently Strong Real Estate Markets In The Nation According to the most recent FHFA.gov Home Price Index quarterly report the one year appreciation in Boulder County for the period ending March 31, 2017 was 11.23%.  This ranks us 12th highest in the nation out of the 257 largest Metropolitan Statistical Districts that were studied.  Our area has been ranked in the top 15 for eight straight quarters including a #1 ranking for the period ending June 30th 2016.  The first chart below shows the annual appreciation reported on a quarterly basis for both Boulder County (green) and the United States average (blue).  The last five years have been one of our strongest “bull runs” in our history.  Over the past five years, the average home has appreciated 55%. The chart below shows our national ranking compared to the 257 other markets in the FHFA report since 2nd quarter of 2006.  This is an interesting graph because it shows that just before the economic downturn in 2008 our market was actually in the last quartile.  Our annualized returns at that time were in the 1 to 3% range.  As the downturn started and the real estate market came to a grinding halt our ranking improved compared to the rest of the country.  During 2008 our appreciation remained above +2%.  From 2009 – 2011 our average annual appreciation ranged from +2% to -2.8%. It turns out that we were one of the most stable markets in the country. This got me to thinking about how we compare to other currently “hot” markets over the...
The Latest Kearney Report – Q1 2017

The Latest Kearney Report – Q1 2017

I have just published The Kearney Report for the 1st Quarter of 2017.  The entire report can be viewed below on this page or you can download the PDF link here The Kearney Report 1st Quarter 2017 Real Estate Market Update The Boulder area real estate market has been one of the most robust markets in the nation over the past few years.  The market has been characterized by steady sales, low inventory and rapidly rising prices.  This trend continued through the first quarter of 2017. During the first quarter of 2017 there were 847 sales in Boulder County which reflects a 5% drop from the previous year. The median sales price during the quarter was $465,000 which is 9% higher than it was a year ago.  Inventory, especially towards the end of the quarter and then extending into April and May has increased giving buyers more breathing room to shop for homes.  During the first quarter, 35% of the sales had a price above the list price, 20% were at the asking price and 45% were below.  Of those that did sell above list price the average premium paid was 4.4%. During the first quarter of 2016, 42% sold above list price and the average premium paid was 5.5%.  It seems that calling this a slow down is splitting hairs but during that same period it was my experience that showings were down and the number of offers received on any one property was down as well. Through the end of April the total number of residential sales in Boulder County is up roughly 1% with January and March exceeding...
830 20th Street #204 – $275,000 – SOLD!

830 20th Street #204 – $275,000 – SOLD!

Right Across from Campus – Great new listing for CU Students or Investors Cute condo located just steps from the University of Colorado. This neat and clean 1 bedroom condo shows great and includes a reserved parking spot (#23), a storage locker and use of the HOA pool. The location is so convenient you won’t be using your car much. Laundry room in the basement. Great for owner occupant or investor. Well priced and has low HOA fee. Heat included in the HOA, super low utility costs.      ...
Boulder Real Estate Market Slowing But Remains Strong in April

Boulder Real Estate Market Slowing But Remains Strong in April

Each spring since 2013 the real estate market in Boulder County could be characterized as frenetic. This year the market is a bit more tempered.  If you just look at April’s numbers the market seems similar to a year ago.  Sales are similar, inventory is up, prices are up…  However, despite strong forward looking sales it seems that the market has lost some of the strength we have seen over the past three springs.  Houses are staying on the market longer and there are fewer showings on new listings.  It will be interesting to see how it plays out but we don’t usually see the market slow down until late June and we are seeing it earlier this year in some segments. Sales in April were down 9.4% when compared to last April. Year-to-date sales are still up 1% but it seems that this year is losing a bit of steam.  Anecdotally, there have been fewer than expected showings on listings and even on popular properties when multiple offers have been received, the numbers of showings and offers is down. The slideshow below illustrates graphically different segments of the local real estate market including; number of sales, inventory (which is rising), under contract percentage etc.   Boulder County April 2017 Real Estate Statistics from Neil...
2990 Dartmouth Avenue – $715,000 – UNDER CONTRACT!

2990 Dartmouth Avenue – $715,000 – UNDER CONTRACT!

I have just listed this great ranch home in South Boulder, west of Broadway.  This home shows beautifully! A gem in the Bear Creek attendance district that has been all shined up and is ready to go. Ranch style home with finished basement with many upgrades including: gleaming hardwood floors, granite countertops, beautifully finished basement with large rec-room, conforming bedroom, study or flex space and a 3/4 bath, new boiler last year, new roof in 2013, great rear patio and a large deck with a sunken hot tub, leased solar panels.          ...