A licensed Colorado Real Estate Broker since 1996, Nicole works with both buyers and sellers. In 2009, she was ranked #21 out of 214 ERA agents state wide, for volume sold. She proudly supports our local military and is happy to offer our military appreciation program to active duty clients. http://www.springshomes.com/military-assistance-program. In addition to real estate, Nicole’s passions include running, ballroom dancing, cooking and playing piano. With a strong background in new home construction and accounting, she has a sharp eye for detail.

2017 Real Estate Market at a Glance

2017 Real Estate Market at a Glance

Our housing market is off to a great start this year. Sales are abounding. Many properties are receiving multiple offers, and the days on market are shorter than ever. For more detailed local stats, check out our Market Reports. Mortgage interest rates are still low, hovering in the 4%-4.25% range.

I just saw an article from Realtor.com which says that Colorado Springs is in the top ten hottest housing markets in the nation. Wow! Below is a snapshot from that article, as well as recent stats for this year, at the end of February:

SINGLE FAMILY HOME SALES                          : on pace with last year right now

CONDO/TOWNHOME SALES                              :   Up 7.6% over last year

AVERAGE PRICE OF A HOME                             :   Up 12.3% over last year

AVERAGE PRICE OF A TOWNHOME                :   Up 11.9% over last year

INVENTORY OF HOMES ON MARKET             : Down 23.8% from last year

INVENTORY OF TOWNHOMES ON MARKET            :   Down 15.9% from last year

Source: “These Are the Hottest Real Estate Markets in February 2017,” realtor.com® (2017)

 
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A Love Letter to My Clients

In honor of Valentine's Day, I am writing this love letter to all my clients. 

heart for valentine's day 

Dear Clients/Friends,

Thank you for allowing me to help you with one of the most important decisions of your life, one of buying and selling your home, one of relocating your family, one of financial change, one of great impact to you.   Thank you for trusting me to guide and advise you through the process.  Thank you for the opportunity you have given me to feel significant. 

Thank you for the knowledge this work has given me.  Thank you for the confidence I have gained.  Thank you for the difficulties it has posed which have forced me to grow in patience and wisdom.  Thank you for the income it has offered, enabling me to provide a great life for my daughter.  Thank you teaching me how to do this job the best way I can.

Thank you for sharing your personal stories with me.  I love hearing how you couples met, who your children are, what brings you joy and what sorrows you face.   I love knowing you so intimately that I learn your pet's names and get invited to your baby showers and weddings.  I love that we have laughed together, and I cherish that we have cried together.

What a gift you have all given me...one of knowing you! 

Happy Valentine's Day!

Nicole Happel

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Understanding Your Property Taxes

Understanding your Colorado Springs property taxes

Will property taxes go up in 2017? Better yet, just how are property taxes calculated? Here, in Colorado Springs, the El Paso County Assessor re-evaluates the value of homes every two years. He starts with the current market value of the home. Market Value is based on the most recent comparable sales in the area.

Once market value is determined, he multiplies the current market value by 7.96%, which is the current assessment rate for all residential properties.   MARKET VALUE times 7.96% = ASSESSED VALUE.

Once the assessed value is determined, he multiplies that by the current mill levy for the area. And that result is your annual property tax.

The mill levy for your area is dependent on many factors including but not limited to the school district, fire district, water district, library district, your county, and city. These various taxing entities comprise the total mill levy for an area. Taxing entities in one area may be higher than another. For example, the taxes for School District 20 are higher than those of School District 11. Although, the school district is not the only taxing entity in an area, the example gives you some information regarding the various mill levies for El Paso County

You can appeal the assessed value of your Colorado Springs home, thereby possibly lowering your property taxes. If you choose to do so, remember the El Paso County Assessor will only consider comparable sales for a specific period. That period must fall within the Assessor’s specific collection dates. For this task, I recommend calling your Realtor. As a part of our ongoing service and commitment to you, we can easily provide those comps to help you through the process, just give me a call.

 

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Just Listed! 3515 Mosswood Lane Colorado Springs CO 80910

Just Listed! 3515 Mosswood Lane Colorado Springs CO 80910

Well, if this isn't the cutest house! Check out my new listing.  Built in 1972, this charming home features 4 bedrooms, 2 baths and over 1,600 finished square feet!  Includes updated kitchen with Silestone counters, new cabinets, new sink/faucet, new flooring, new roof, new carpet, new lighting, new windows, new doors, new paint, updated bathrooms and a huge deck for entertaining!  Great location...walk to nearby park, schools and shopping! For more information, visit the MLS listing, or give me a call.

 Mosswood Exteriorcover

Mosswood Kitchensm

 

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Cash Buyers for Homes: Pros and Cons

Cash Buyers for Homes: Pros and Cons

Right now I'm working with a cash buyer, meaning they do not have to get a loan to purchase a home.  Often times cash buyers ask "can I negotiate more since I'm paying cash?"  Here is what I tell them: 

Advice for Cash Buyers

Being a cash buyer is great because you don't have to wait the usual time for a mortgage loan. You can usually close within 2-3 weeks instead of the typical 45 days which loans take to accomplish. So your "power" or leverage is that you can close quicker than most.

But being a cash buyer DOES NOT make you more valuable from a money standpoint. At closing the seller gets paid no matter what, whether you are financing your purchase or bringing cash to the table. They do not get paid more if you pay cash.

Why I Like Working with Cash Buyers

From my perspective a cash buyer is sweet. They can close quickly. There are less hassles without a mortgage involved. And they can choose whether or not to even have an appraisal done. For me, simple real estate transactions are great. 

While sellers may appreciate your ability to close fast, they won't stand to make any more money with you. And...be sure you can verify your funds. Sellers will need to see an account statement or some proof that you really do have the dough!

If you have more questions about buying homes with cash versus taking out a mortgage, feel free to give me a call.

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