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Tami Spaulding's Blog

Tami Spaulding

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Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 293

STUDY: INVESTMENTS IN LANDSCAPING EARN DIVIDENDS FOR HOMEOWNERS

by Tami Spaulding

A little water can go a long way in helping homeowners add value to their properties. That’s the conclusion that Colorado State University researchers are making after a study focusing on the social, economic and environmental benefits of landscaping. The report, titled “The Hidden Value of Landscapes: Implications for Drought Planning,” reinforces the importance of using a relatively small amount of Colorado’s water – currently estimated at 3 percent of all the state’s water – to sustain home landscapes. Among the benefits: • For every $1 invested in home landscaping, homeowners gain a return of $1.35 • Commercial properties with attractive landscapes earn 7 percent higher rents • 55 square feet of household turf grass generates enough oxygen for 1 person for 1 day • 48 pounds of carbon dioxide are absorbed by 1 tree each year Of course, resale value is rooted in curb appeal – and landscaping is a key ingredient. According to the CSU study, large street trees can add anywhere from 3 percent to 15 percent in value to a home. Additionally, the report states, “a ‘high’ to ‘excellent’ landscape is estimated to increase property values as much as 10% and bring as much as a 17% increase in overall curb appeal.”

 

The Group Incs Insider October 2017

BERTHOUD NEIGHBORHOOD BUZZING WITH NEW HOME SALES

by Tami Spaulding

As the shiny new TPC Colorado at Heron Lakes Golf Course takes shape at the west edge of Berthoud, a housing development next door is topping the leader board with Northern Colorado homebuyers. Through the first seven months of 2017, the Heron Pointe neighborhood has registered 157 sales – making it the most popular development for new home sales around the region. Water Valley in Windsor stands at a distant second with 109 sales. No other neighborhood in Northern Colorado had topped 70 sales through July. Fittingly, the two most active communities in Northern Colorado for new home sales include the Windsor area (including Timnath and Johnstown) with 484 sales, and the Loveland-Berthoud area with 437 sales. Combined, sales in those two markets made up 68 percent of all new home sales in the region through July. By comparison, Fort Collins and Greeley – the region’s two most populous markets – added up to just 403 new home sales combined. Call me if you would like to learn more about new home construction.

 

The Group Inc's Insider October 2017

ANOTHER REPORT PRAISES STEADY NATURE OF LOCAL HOUSING MARKET

by Tami Spaulding

In April, Realtor.com issued results of a study that ranked the Fort Collins-Loveland area as the nation’s No. 1 real estate market for stability and growth. Now, a new report released in July reinforces that earlier assessment. Financial services website SmartAsset ranks Fort Collins No. 6 nationally in 2016 among the best housing markets for growth and stability – one of three Colorado metro areas in the top 10. In the SmartAsset report, Boulder took the No. 1 ranking and Denver checked in at No. 9. The SmartAsset study was based primarily on overall home price growth dating back to 1991, and the average odds that a homebuyer would have encountered a price drop within 10 years of buying their home. Specifically, homeowners in the Fort Collins metro area – which covers Larimer County for purposes of the study – experienced average price growth of 246 percent between 1991 and 2016, and faced only a 5 percent chance of a price decline.

 

 

The Group Inc's Insider  September 2017

MIDTERM REPORT: SALES FIGURES IN LINE WITH 2017 GROUP FORECAST

by Tami Spaulding

With his trademark homespun wisdom, Yogi Berra once declared, “It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.” Still, at The Group Inc. we continue to take our best crack at forecasting the local housing market – and with pretty good results. For instance, our 2016 forecast for average sales prices in Northern Colorado landed within 2.5 percent of the actual outcome. And our prediction of the number of sales was off by just 1.8 percent. And looking at the first six months of statistics for 2017, our predictions seem to be holding up well at the half-way checkpoint. Back in January, we projected 10,746 home sales across Northern Colorado, or a 5 percent increase over 2016. Through June, we’re at 5,067 – or 47.1 percent of the predicted total. 

 

 

 

The Group Inc's Insider September 2017

HOUSING PRICE POINTS FIND A NEW NORMAL IN NORTHERN COLORADO

by Tami Spaulding

What a difference a half decade makes. As recently as 2012, homes priced at $250,000 or less represented a vast majority of all sales in Northern Colorado – 68.5 percent during the first half of 2012. So far in 2017, only 17.7 percent of regional sales fall in the same price category. Two different factors have brought about this shift in the pricing landscape. First, since the local housing market started shaking off the shackles of the Great Recession, rising demand and a general lack of inventory have combined to drive prices up on single-family homes throughout the region. Second, the lack of availability of condominiums for sale has reduced the number of lower-priced options for first-time homebuyers. As we’ve discussed here in recent editions, Colorado law made it easy for builders and developers to get sued over alleged construction defects, a fact that has deterred development of new condominiums in recent years. It’s believed that recent changes in the law could begin to reverse the trend. So, where have all the homebuyers gone? Here’s a snapshot of how different price categories are attracting buyers in Northern Colorado after the first six months of 2017: • 70 percent of all sales across Northern Colorado this year are in the price range of $250,001-$500,000. That compares to 27.6 percent at the same time in 2012. • 475 homes priced between $500,001 and $750,000 were sold so far this year, more than four times the total (118) in 2012. • Similarly, 87 homes priced between $750,001 and $1 million have been sold this year, or nearly four times the 22 sold in 2012. • In the highest-priced category, 34 homes have sold for more than  $1 million so far, compared to eight in 2012.

 

The Group Incs Insider September 2017

‘MAIN STREET’ BRACING FOR MASSIVE COMMERCIAL PROJECTS

by Tami Spaulding

With Northern Colorado’s population continuing to grow, the conventional wisdom is that commercial development on the northern Interstate 25 corridor would soon follow suit. It was never a question of if, but when. And get a load of some of these whens: When Scheel’s opens its new 260,000- square-foot retail complex in Johnstown on September 30, it will be the biggest sporting goods operation in Colorado with up to 400 staff. When Amazon completes its three-story, 2.4 million-square-foot distribution warehouse in Thornton next August, it will be largest building of any kind in Colorado. Amazon also expects to employ up to 1,500 people. When IKEA launches a new 300,000-squarefoot store in Broomfield sometime in 2019, it will need about 250 people to work at the largest retail store north of Denver. When J.M. Smucker opens a new 200,000-square-foot food packaging plant in southwest Weld County, also in 2019, it will create up to 500 new jobs at full production capacity. What these projects all have in common is proximity to I-25, large employment rolls, hundreds of millions of dollars in investment, and – oh yes – significant construction activity before they can open the doors. By even the most conservative of projections, the impact on the regional economy is robust, at least. And the same can probably be said for traffic on parts of Northern Colorado’s “Main Street.”

 

The Group Incs Insider August 2017

GROUP MORTGAGE PUSHES THE PACE WITH EXPRESS CLOSING.

by Tami Spaulding

Walk into a traditional mortgage loan closing today and you’re likely to be looking up – at a mountain of documents some 150 pages high. And best bring a trail snack and a bottle of water to get through the hour-plus course of reviewing and signing documents. Beginning July 1, The Group Mortgage, LLC blazed a new, low-altitude trail for the closing process. Called Express Closing, the new approach can usher homebuyers through the closing session in as little as 20 minutes, and with as few as 20 documents. Express Closing is grounded in a concept developed by Jason Peifer, branch manager and loan officer for The Group Mortgage. Essentially, the new process sought to eliminate long-standing duplication from the document set, and then dispatched most of the documents via email to the borrower for their review and electronic signatures ahead of the closing appointment. “With TRID (a recently established disclosure regulation for home loans), we have to send out closing figures three days prior,” Peifer said. “The thought came to me, why not send any other documents that we can electronically so the client has time to review in advance.” The net effect: by the time borrowers arrive at an Express Closing, the number of documents to see is pared down to small fraction of the full set, and borrowers only need to make a handful of “wet” signatures to complete the loan. “I never want to hear that joke again, ‘Oh, my hand’s cramping,’” Jason said. “The closing should be the highlight (of the homebuying process). It should be the touchdown dance – not this long arduous process.”

 

 

The Group Incs Insider August 2017

REAL ESTATE BY NUMBERS

by Tami Spaulding

$1.6 billion. The estimated economic impact that cheesemaker Leprino Foods has made on the Greeley-area economy since it opened a new plant in 2010. The estimate was reported by Upstate Colorado, the economic development agency for Weld County. 0.52 percent. The effective property tax rate for Colorado homeowners in 2016, according to an analysis by ATTOM Data Solutions. By comparison, the national average is 1.15 percent. $28 million. Amount that Anheuser-Busch plans to invest at its Fort Collins brewery. The investment would expand production of aluminum bottle products and increase diversity of products through installation of dry hop capabilities. 225,000. Square footage that pharmaceutical maker Tolmar Inc. wants to add to its Windsor facility. The addition would include space for manufacturing and administrative offices. Tolmar operates a 110,000-square-foot research and development facility in Fort Collins. $10.15 million. Sale price for the Armstrong Hotel in downtown Fort Collins. Wyoming-based Crystal Creek Capital bought the 45-room, three-story hotel, 259 S. College Ave., from the Levinger family, which had owned the building since 2002. 380,007. Cubic yards of rock that work crews have blasted and hauled away thus far during the reconstruction of U.S. Highway 34 in the Big Thompson Canyon. 410. Number of new hires by Banner Health as of May 1 at its Colorado operations, most of which are located in Northern Colorado. $9.2 million. Amount that United Power paid for the vacant 130,117-square-foot building along Interstate 25 in Longmont. Once home to Abound Solar, the building is located at 9586 E. I-25 Frontage Road. 348. Number of breweries in Colorado, which is second only to California for the total number, and first in breweries per capita - six for every 100,000 residents. $4.7 million. Price that the owners of A&A Dairy paid for a 7,080-square-foot office building in the 2534 development, located at the southeast corner of Interstate 25 and U.S. Highway 34. The property was sold by an entity controlled by Chrisland Real Estate Cos. $50.1 million. What California-based Cress Capital LLC spent to buy approximately 500,000 square feet of office and industrial space across seven buildings in Fort Collins. the largest of the deals was $25.8 million for property in Midpoint Park in east Fort Collins. $22.6 million. What Loveland-based real estate developer McWhinney paid to buy the 123-room Hyatt House Denver Airport Hotel, located at 18741 E. 71st Ave. 650. The estimated number of employees that Google now employs in Colorado, roughly doubling its headcount over the past two years. Google has offices in Thornton and Boulder. 2.9. Acreage for Copperleaf Place, a new apartment complex to be located near the intersection of Shields Street and Horsetooth Road in southwest Fort Collins. The project, scheduled for completion by late June 2018, will include three buildings ranging in size from 24 to 36 units.

 

 

The Group Incs Insider July 2017

LAWSUIT ZINGS ZILLOW FOR ITS ‘ZESTIMATE

by Tami Spaulding

The online real estate marketing company Zillow has rapidly made a name for itself by providing easily accessible estimates for home values. Just key in an address, and up pops a property description and a dollar figure. The trouble is, according to a lawsuit recently filed against Zillow, is that the so-called Zillow “Zestimate” is too easily confused by potential buyers as a real appraisal. And that’s a real problem if Zillow’s figure is not in line with the genuine market value. Resulting expectations for would-be buyers can become hard to resolve. To Zillow’s credit, the firm doesn’t call the Zestimate an appraisal, and it provides a disclaimer as to the accuracy of its figures. In fact, the Zillow Zestimate lands within 5 percent of the actual sale price 53.9 percent of the time. The lesson to be learned: by working with a local, professional Realtor, both buyers and sellers can be more confident they are working with price figures that stand up to scrutiny.

 

The Group Inc's Insider July 2017

SOME COLORADO VISITORS LIKE IT HOT

by Tami Spaulding

Sure, Colorado has gorgeous mountains, but when would-be tourists visit Colorado.com – the official website of the state tourism office – they’re thinking more about climbing in than climbing up. The most popular search term entered on Colorado.com is “hot springs.” In fact, the lure of soaking has inspired a group of five popular hot springs locations to create the Colorado Historic Hot Springs Loop. The 720-mile hot springs road trip covers 19 facilities in Buena Vista, Nathrop, Salida, Pagosa Springs,  Ouray, Ridgway, Glenwood ​Springs and Steamboat Springs.

 

The Group Incs Insider July 2017

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 293

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Photo of Tami K. Spaulding Real Estate
Tami K. Spaulding
The Group, Inc.
375 East Horsetooth Road
Fort Collins CO 80525
Direct: 970-377-6003
Office: 970-223-0700
Fax: 970-223-2999