Fall Gardner Report 2018

The following analysis of the Metro Denver & Northern Colorado real estate market (which now includes Clear Creek, Gilpin, and Park Counties) is provided by Windermere Real Estate Chief Economist Matthew Gardner. We hope that this information may assist you with making better-informed real estate decisions. For further information about the housing market in your area, please don’t hesitate to contact your Windermere agent.

ECONOMIC OVERVIEW

The Colorado economy continues to perform quite well, having added 72,200 non-agricultural jobs over the past 12 months — a solid growth rate of 2.7%. Through the first eight months of 2018, the state has added an average of 6,700 new jobs per month. There has been a modest slowdown in employment gains, but I really don’t think this is a cause for concern and still hold to my forecast that Colorado will add a total of 82,000 new jobs by the end of 2018.

In August, the state unemployment rate was 2.9%. This matches the level seen a year ago. Unemployment rates in all the markets contained in this report rose between August 2017 and August 2018 but this is not actually a concern. Growth in the workforce is not only due to recent college graduates, but also discouraged workers who are starting to look for work again and this puts upward pressure on the unemployment rate. All of Colorado’s metropolitan areas are showing unemployment rates at around 4% or lower, suggesting that the regional economies are at, or close to, full employment.

 

HOME SALES ACTIVITY

  • In the third quarter of 2018, 16,550 homes sold — a drop of 6.2% compared to the third quarter of 2017.
  • Sales rose in just two of the 11 counties contained in this report. Gilpin County again led the way, with sales rising by an impressive 21.1% compared to third quarter of last year. There was also a significant increase in Clear Creek County. Sales fell the most in Arapahoe County.
  • Slowing sales in the quarter can, to a degree, be attributed to continued home price growth, but I believe it is more a function of the rapid rise in the number of homes for sale. The number of listings in third quarter rose by 5.4% over the same period in 2017, but was up by 31.2% compared to the second quarter of this year.
  • What the numbers are telling us is that inventory growth is giving buyers more choice and they are being far more selective — and patient — before making an offer on a home.

HOME PRICES

  • Even with the rapid rise in listings and slowing home sales, prices continue to trend higher. The average home price in the region rose 7.9% year-over-year to $460,982. However, the average price dropped 4% between second and third quarters.
  • The smallest price gains in the region were in Park County, where prices rose by a fairly modest 3.6%.
  • Appreciation was strongest in Clear Creek County, where prices rose 10%. All other counties in this report saw gains relative to the third quarter of 2017.
  • Affordability is becoming an issue in many Colorado markets and this, in concert with rising inventory levels, has started to dampen home price growth. Although I do not expect prices to drop, I do think price gains will moderate over the next few quarters.

 

DAYS ON MARKET

  • The average number of days it took to sell a home in Colorado remained at the same level as a year ago.
  • The amount of time it took to sell a home dropped in three counties: Gilpin, Clear Creek, and Larimer. The rest of the counties in this report saw days on market rise by only a couple of days or less.
  • In the third quarter of 2018, it took an average of 24 days to sell a home. It took less than a month to sell a home in all but one county.
  • Housing demand is still solid and, as long as homes are priced appropriately, they will continue to sell in less time than historic averages.

CONCLUSIONS

This speedometer reflects the state of the region’s real estate market using housing inventory, price gains, home sales, interest rates, and larger economic factors.

For the third quarter of 2018, I continue the trend that I started last quarter and have moved the needle a little more in favor of buyers. Listings are likely to continue their rising trend, but we should still see a seasonal drop off during the winter months. The market is clearly headed toward balance, which I am very pleased to see.

Matthew Gardner is the Chief Economist for Windermere Real Estate, specializing in residential market analysis, commercial/industrial market analysis, financial analysis, and land use and regional economics. He is the former Principal of Gardner Economics, and has more than 30 years of professional experience both in the U.S. and U.K.

Posted on October 30, 2018 at 7:22 pm
Windermere Colorado | Category: Colorado Real Estate Market Update, Economics 101 | Tagged , , ,

Should You Wait out the Housing Market?

The housing market is remarkably tight across the U.S., and you may be wondering if you should wait for home prices to slow before making your move. Windermere’s Chief Economist, Matthew Gardner, shares why waiting could end up costing you more money in the long run.

Posted on September 25, 2017 at 8:00 am
Windermere Colorado | Category: Economics 101 | Tagged , , , , , ,

Colorado Real Estate Market Update

ECONOMIC OVERVIEW

Annual employment growth in Colorado was measured at a respectable 2.2% in November and will likely finish the year having created around 55,000 new jobs. Within the metropolitan market areas included in this report, we are seeing employment growth at or above the state level and I anticipate that this will continue to be the case in 2017.

Unemployment rates continue to drop, and with rates now below three percent, all of Colorado’s metro areas are at full employment. Because of this robust level of growth—in concert with very low unemployment levels—I anticipate that we will see some fairly substantial income growth as companies look to recruit new talent and keep existing employees happy.

HOME SALE ACTIVITY

  • There were 14,614 home sales during the fourth quarter of 2016—up by a marginal 0.7% from the same period in 2015.
  • Jefferson County saw sales grow at the fastest rate over the past 12 months, with a 5.9% increase. Sales activity fell in three counties, but this was a function of short supply rather than slowing demand.
  • Listing activity continues to remain well below historic averages, with the total number of homes for sale in the fourth quarter 12.8% below that seen a year ago.
  • The key takeaway from this data is that 2017 is shaping up to be one which will still substantially favor home sellers. I do anticipate that we will see some improvement in listing activity, but it is almost a certainty that demand will exceed supply for another year.

 

HOME PRICES

  • Demand continued to exceed supply in the final three months of 2016 and this caused home prices to continue to rise. In the fourth quarter, average prices rose by 9% when compared to the fourth quarter of 2015. The average sales price across the region is now $393,969.
  • In many parts of the region, prices are well above historic highs and continue to trend upward. With double-digit price increases over the past year, the market remains very hot.
  • Annual price growth was strongest in Larimer and Jefferson Counties, where prices rose by 11.8% and 10.9% respectively.
  • While we will likely see some modest softening in home price growth in 2017, we can still expect a very strong market.

 

DAYS ON MARKET

  • The average number of days it took to sell a home dropped by one day when compared to the fourth quarter of 2015.
  • Homes in a majority of the counties took less than a month to sell.
  • In the final quarter of the year, it took an average of just 27 days to sell a home. This is down from the 28 days it took in the fourth quarter of 2015.
  • The Northern Colorado housing market is still firing on all cylinders. The only missing piece is listings, which remain well below the historic average.

 

CONCLUSIONS

This speedometer reflects the state of the region’s housing market using housing inventory, price gains, sales velocities, interest rates, and larger economic factors.

For the fourth quarter of 2016, the needle remains firmly in the seller’s territory. It will be interesting to see if the recent increase in mortgage rates has any effect at all on the housing market. I believe that it will; however, I expect that it will likely cause a slowdown in home price growth rather than any collapse in home prices.

 

Matthew Gardner is the Chief Economist for Windermere Real Estate, specializing in residential market analysis, commercial/industrial market analysis, financial analysis, and land use and regional economics. He is the former Principal of Gardner Economics, and has over 25 years of professional experience both in the U.S. and U.K.

Posted on February 6, 2017 at 9:24 pm
Windermere Colorado | Category: Colorado Real Estate, Colorado Real Estate Market Update, Market News | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

Windermere Metro Denver Expands to Aurora

PRESS RELEASE

For Immediate Release

Windermere Metro Denver expands to Aurora
Windermere opens fourth office in Colorado

Denver, COLO. (December 8, 2016) – Windermere Real Estate has just opened a new office in one of the fastest growing communities in Metro Denver.  The new Aurora location, which is located in the Southlands shopping center, joins Windermere locations in Fort Collins, Centennial, and Denver. Windermere opened its first office in Colorado just two years ago and has plans to continue growing across the state over the next few years.

“We are very excited about our recent expansion into Southeast Aurora; the city is growing by leaps and bounds and we are happy to be part of this exciting growth,” said Vincent Grandi, co-owner and managing broker of the Windermere Aurora office. “One industry that has lacked a presence in the area is real estate, forcing many home buyers and sellers to search outside the area for a real estate agent. We are proud to now provide a local neighborhood office with experienced and knowledgeable agents who live and work in Aurora and have extensive knowledge of all that the city has to offer,” said Grandi who co-owns the Windermere Metro Denver and Aurora locations along with (insert all the owner’s names).

Grandi added that one of the best advantages of living and working in the city of Aurora is the vast diversity of its residents, “Aurora is a melting pot of many immigrants that have chosen to come from all over the globe to live and work.  We’re proud to be part of this community and look forward to providing the best real estate experience to the residents of Aurora,” he said.

The office features a hip, fresh atmosphere, effective spaces for agent training and client meetings, and a rooftop deck.

“This location fits our strategy to serve home buyers and sellers all across the Front Range,” said Eric Thompson President of Windermere Real Estate in Colorado.  “We are thrilled with the team at Windermere Metro Denver and their ability to offer an exceptional experience to both their agents and their customers.  I’m excited to watch Windermere grow in Aurora.”

About Windermere Colorado:

Since its inception in 1972, Windermere Real Estate has grown to be a network of 300 offices with more than 6,000 agents by focusing on three basic principles: hire the best people, give them the best tools and create thriving communities. Windermere’s growth has allowed them to expand into the Colorado market led by Eric Thompson, President of Windermere Colorado. For more information, visit www.windermerecolorado.com.

 About Windermere Real Estate

Windermere Real Estate is ranked the largest regional real estate company in the Western U.S. with over 300 offices and 6,000 agents serving communities in Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Mexico. Last year, Windermere closed over 86,000 home sales for more than $31.7 billion in dollar volume. The Windermere family has a proud heritage of serving our neighbors via the Windermere Foundation, which funds services for low-income and homeless families. Since 1989, the Windermere Foundation has contributed more than 32 million dollars towards improving lives in the communities where we live and work. For more information, visit www.windermere.com.

 

Posted on December 8, 2016 at 3:39 pm
Windermere Colorado | Category: Blog, Colorado Housing, Colorado Real Estate, Press Release | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

Windermere Colorado Triples in Size

PRESS RELEASE
For Immediate Release

November 9, 2016

Windermere Colorado triples sales and agents in two years
Innovative program and Millennial agents drive success for Colorado real estate company
Fort Collins, COLO. (Nov. 9, 2016) – After opening its first Colorado office in December of 2014 in Fort Collins, Windermere Real Estate Colorado has experienced accelerated expansion with new offices in Centennial and Denver Metro over the past two years. The rapid growth stems from a number of factors, but primary among them are a one-of-a-kind home selling program and a fresh approach to hiring and engaging a younger workforce.
With the Front Range expansion, Windermere Colorado has tripled sales volume from $77 million in 2015 to $205 million now, increasing employees from 21 to 65 agents during this same time.  Windermere Real Estate’s Colorado President, Eric Thompson, explains, “We’ve figured out how to be relevant to top-selling real estate agents and how to be relevant to the customer. In our mind it’s pretty simple: agents want their company to save them time and energy, and customers want a predictable process with no surprises.”
Thompson and his team pioneered a revolutionary program to market a home called the “Windermere Certified Listing.” Similar to buying a certified pre-owned vehicle, the program includes a pre-inspection of each listing before it ever goes on the market. With the pre-inspection in hand, the seller can decide how to handle certain repairs and then be transparent with the buyer as to the exact condition of the home.
“The biggest disappointments in a typical transaction occur when there is a surprise. With this program we’ve virtually eliminated all surprises,” says Thompson.
Now entering its third year, the Certified Listing program is getting results. For example, Windermere’s listings in the Northern Colorado market sell for 14 percent more and 42 percent faster than the market average. It has also been a key driver to attract productive agents to Windermere because the company’s staff handles the scheduling of all the vendors who prepare the home for sale.  “The Certified Listing program was a big reason why I chose to align with Windermere,” said Natalie Davis, Windermere agent and past Chair of the Fort Collins Board of REALTORS. “It saves me an enormous amount of time and allows me to focus my energy on my customers.”

Interestingly, the program has also resulted in a younger generation of agents joining Windermere. Currently, 20 percent of Windermere Colorado employees fall under the Millennial generation, an uncommon characteristic for a real estate company in an industry where the average age for a realtor nationally is 58.
At 35 percent, Millennials are the largest share of home buyers, which has been consistent over the last four years according to the National Association of Realtors. Having younger real estate agents to connect to this group is something Windermere leveraged at an early stage.  “Most of my clients are in their 20s or 30s,” says Kyle Basnar, a Millennial agent at Windermere Colorado.  “Windermere educates us on how to effectively guide this group and give them the information they need to make good decisions.”

Both the younger and experienced agents at Windermere also appreciate Windermere’s commitment to giving back to the communities where they serve. The Windermere Foundation has generated over $31 million in donations since its inception toward supporting low-income and homeless families. In Colorado, Windermere partners with Homeless Gear, Colorado Coalition for the Homeless and the YMCA.

“Charitable giving is incredibly important to me and the agents on our team. The fact that Windermere is so committed to giving back to the communities where they serve was certainly a major factor in our decision to join Windermere,” said Carl McNew, co-owner of Windermere Metro Denver.

About Windermere Colorado:
Since its inception in 1972, Windermere Real Estate has grown to be a network of 300 offices with more than 6,000 agents by focusing on three basic principles: hire the best people, give them the best tools and create thriving communities. Windermere’s growth has allowed them to expand into the Colorado market led by Eric Thompson, President of Windermere Colorado. For more information, visit www.windermerecolorado.com.
About Windermere Real Estate
Windermere Real Estate is ranked the largest regional real estate company in the Western U.S. serving communities in Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Mexico. The Windermere family has a proud heritage of serving our neighbors via the Windermere Foundation, which funds services for low-income and
homeless families. Since 1989, the Windermere Foundation has contributed more than 31 million dollars towards improving lives in the communities where we live and work. For more information, visit www.windermere.com.

Posted on November 10, 2016 at 10:39 pm
Windermere Colorado | Category: Blog, Colorado Housing, Colorado Real Estate, Press Release | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,