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.

Buying a Colorado Springs area house for $250,000

I saw this funny comic on one of the real estate groups I follow on social media. Lots of people were getting some chuckles from it, but it got me thinking. I am fairly certain the average sale price in the greater Colorado Springs area is around $244,000. Can you find the house this couple in the comic is looking for in Colorado Springs....? 

So I went on a hunt for "close to downtown" (I chose what I thought would be 30 minutes or less) houses with 4+ bedrooms, good size lots (.2+ acres) and safe neighborhood (now that could be up for negotiation, but I think in general this is a VERY safe city overall and people should investigate crime if concerned... sexual offenders, violent crimes, etc... weren't not immune to crime, but it's really a great city!).  And here is what I found.... 

currently available - 76

under contract - 82

sold in the past 6 months - 262

Inventory generally starts slowing down here August (school starts) through about February.... so summer months will provide more inventory. While we have a cost of living higher than many parts of the south and midwest, it's nice to know it's pretty reasonable to live here. 

So, here's a little summary of what that $250,000 will cost you monthly... with 3.5% down (FHA minimum), borrowing $241,250 at a 4.166% interest rate and estimated tax, insurance, and mortgage insurance in your payment, you're looking at $1737/month payment. If you are VA and put nothing down, you'd be borrowing $257,875 because you rolled in your VA funding fee) looking at a $1556/month payment. Obviously all of those payments will be lower the more you are able to put down. 

Want to be close to downtown... like walking distance...? Well, that is a little tougher to find, plus you're looking at older homes (be prepared for a bit more maintenance). There is nothing with 4 bedrooms, 2 houses with 3 bedrooms are under contract withing walking distance of downtown. NOW.... add in the Manitou Springs and Old Colorado City areas, plus remove the .2 acre lot requirement and there are 37 houses. 

Okay, I know that was a lot, but there are many things we can do to help tailor a search in the MLS... especially when those large national sites are sometimes out-of-date. Let us know how we can help in your home search! I know from experience this summer, the nice ones under $250,000 disappear quickly or have competing offers.... it's a good price range! 

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Which Cell Phone Provider Do I Choose?

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So I'm driving around in the car this weekend with some new buyers from out of state.  They traveled with their cell phones, naturally.  As we drive, we notice that they keep losing cell phone service. Their signal is weak and they can't get good connections. They do not have AT&T.

A good friend of mine who lives in the East area of Colorado Springs, near Academy Blvd. and Maizeland, is constantly dropping cell phone calls and having to redial...very frustrating!  He does not have AT&T.

I mention this becuase it DOES matter who your cell phone provider is around here.  In Colorado Springs I have found that best service is through AT&T.  I have found their rates are pretty competitive. I rarely drop calls.  I have good coverage throughout the area.  It is important...especially when your livelihood depends on it!

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212 S. Garo Ave.

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Check out my new listing!  This all brick rancher is located in an established neighborhood and features 3 bedrooms, 2 baths and over 1,800 finished square feet!  Includes front and rear yard landscaping, auto sprinkler, oversized concrete patio, formal living room with wood fireplace insert and brick hearth, formal dining room, original wood floors underneath carpet, finished basement with huge family room and separate bedroom with private bath!  Great location...walk to nearby shopping!  This home is obviously in need of some updating, but it has great bones!

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4381 Crow Creek Drive

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Built in 2003, this charming 2-story home shows pride of ownership inside and out!   Features 3 bedrooms, 3 baths, over 1,400 finished square feet, custom  interior paint, wood floors in kitchen and dining room, gas fireplace with travertine tile surround, built-in T.V. niche, upper level loft, updated bathrooms, air conditioning, oversized patio, tasteful landscaping with lush lawn and mature fruit trees, and even a dog run!  Great Springs Ranch location...walk to nearby elementary school!

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2014 Home Sale Forecast

In the first half of this year, home prices rose. From January to June, the average sales price of a single family home went up by 1.8%. The average sales price of a condo or townhome went up by 2.8%.   First quarter (Jan-Mar) single family home sales started out slow, but they made a nice recovery in the second quarter with better results (Apr-Jun).   And while sales are not quite at last year’s pace yet, I believe they will be by end of the third quarter. There are still plenty of buyers buying, interest rates are still low, and summer is only half over.   Historically we slowdown in late fall, so we still have much buying time left to bring those numbers up.

Interestingly, there is a lot more inventory meaning homes for sale, this year. We ended June with 4,233 single family homes for sale, a dramatic increase over last June when we saw only 3,868 single family homes for sale. I think the increase is the result of two things: (1) many sellers were waiting until the market improved to put their home up for sale, and when it finally did they all did. AND (2) new construction is booming again, causing many to move up into a newer home.

I think the biggest factor to consider here is inventory has gone way up, but sales have only gone up slightly.   With more supply and less demand, prices will probably stabilize.

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