When a home buyer comes to view property in the Boulder area they soon find out that there are trade offs to consider and compromises to make. This isn’t uncommon, buyers in all areas need to prioritize the location, size, and condition of a home.
Here is a typical progression of a Buyer who is moving to Boulder from an area where the cost of housing is less expensive and they are looking in the $300,000 – $600,000 price range.
- Assumption that they will be able to get a relatively similar home to what they have now.
- After a quick search of online home sites they soon realize that they will need to either settle for a house with a smaller lot, fewer bedrooms or that needs some work.
- They view homes in the City of Boulder and are disappointed. They either raise their target price range or start looking in the surrounding communities.
- They look at homes in Louisville, Superior, Lafayette, Erie or Longmont. Find that they can get more house for the money.
- They then are forced to re-visit and clarify their priorities.
The graphs below show a comparison of median prices across the various communities of Boulder County starting in 1997. Back then, prices throughout the county had a much smaller disparity. The median price for a home in Boulder was just 20% above the county average. In the ensuing years, the gap has increased considerably. Now the median price of a home in Boulder is nearly $700,000 while the county median is just over $400,000.
The lower graph shows the prices for attached dwellings in Boulder, Louisville, Lafayette, Longmont and Boulder County. There isn’t as much difference in condos as there is in single family homes. One reason for this is that the condos in Boulder tend to be smaller than those further east.