REAL ESTATE NEWS
A Mega Mansion Right in Colorado
To seek out local real estate news that is not super depressing (the media sensationalizes any change in the market), here is a story about a too-good-to-be-accurate listing right in our backyard — Evergreen, Colorado. We have reported on some extravagant listings nationally, but there is a national-newsworthy home for sale locally every so often. One such home is for sale right now.
Dubbed the “Colorado Playboy Mansion” (no association with Hugh), the megamansion is currently for sale at $24,799,000. Boulder firm K.G.A. Studio Architects designed it for a man named Richard Berry, a former racecar driver turned investor, supercar fan, and enthusiast. His goal was to “… create a better grotto than Hugh had at the Playboy Mansion.” And wow, this place is incredible.
Situated on a 74.5-acre plot, the home features seven bedrooms, 14 bathrooms, a massive 50k gallon indoor/outdoor pool, a large hot tub, a leading suite that takes up the whole 2nd floor, a bar, a vast wine cellar, my personal favorite; a Star Trek inspired home theater that looks like it was pulled straight out of the bridge of the U.S.S. Enterprise. If anyone buys this one, can you please invite me over?!?!
(Story/Photo Source: The Denver Business Journal)
LOCAL MARKET UPDATE
A Slow Start but Higher Consumer Confidence
In the local real estate market, the first quarter of 2023 feels like the fourth quarter of 2022; slow. With an official recession likely this fall, high inflation, and the mortgage rate hikes last year, it makes sense why many people are apprehensive about making a move.
However, on the bright side, consumer confidence has been rising recently – more than expected for January. This is an excellent indicator of what will happen over the next few months. To try and predict the market, the best metrics to pay attention to in sequence are consumer confidence, new mortgage applications, home showing activity, mortgage rate locks, and closings.
So far, we have seen a spike in consumer confidence, which indicates people are a little more optimistic about the economy than before. Of course, they wouldn’t want to apply for a new mortgage if they weren’t. But, since confidence is on the rise, that increase should eventually flow through the rest of those metrics, resulting in more home sales. It is an excellent sign for the spring, historically the busiest time of year in real estate.
INFO FOR SELLERS
You Might Need to Work Harder Than Before
If you are looking to sell your home this year, you may need to work harder than you would have if you had listed at this time last year. This is because sales at the end of December were down about 40% from last year! That means nearly half as many fewer buyers are looking for homes now compared to the previous year.
So, if you want to sell in the first part of the year, you must ensure your house is “parade ready.” It needs to be clean; things need to be fixed, you have to work harder on curb appeal, and you need to price it to where buyers want to take a look. If you try to price your home at spring 2022 levels, you will almost certainly face a price reduction a couple of weeks down the road. Last year’s frenzy is over, but it is still a seller’s market, so you should get a fair price for your property if you put in a little extra effort than folks who sold last year.
INFO FOR BUYERS
Ample Opportunities, but Still Not a Buyer’s Market
There is excellent news for buyers in the current market. For starters, inventory at the end of December was up 222% from last year! That makes competition a lot less fierce than before, giving you more options, more time to plan out your offers, ask for more concessions for repairs, slight price reductions, etc.
Mortgage rates are also slightly declined from their recent peaks—the 30-yr. The fixed rate is 6.15% as of the date of this publication, which is down almost a full percent from back in November when the same rate topped out at 7.08%. This is a small victory for buyers, who may pay less for a home than they would have back in November. Home price increases also slowed almost to a standstill in December, which is great news to help keep your monthly payments as low as possible if you are looking to buy in the first part of the year.
But please remember that this is still not a buyer’s market, no matter what the local news may tell you. The advantage in negotiations still goes to the sellers. How can that be? Well, inventory may have been up tremendously year-over-year, but that level is up from record-low levels of homes for sale in 2020/2021.
We currently have about 1.5 months (45 days) of housing inventory. To make this a balanced market where buyers and sellers have equal negotiating power, we need 4-6 months (120-180 days) of inventory. So a buyer’s market would be roughly 6-8+ months (180-240+ days) of stock. Do not let the media trick you into thinking you hold all the cards when buying a home. Many reporters do not understand what they’re talking about and are just looking for a scoop. Sellers can quickly turn down your offer if they get offended or have better suggestions.
*We use reasonable efforts to include accurate and up-to-date information. The real estate market changes often. We make no guarantees of future real estate performance and assume no liability for any errors or omissions in the content.