Category Archives: Denver

Denver Leads as a Hottest Home Market 

Making the life-changing transition from renting to owning follows major research and decision-making. One of those choices is your home buying location – and what better city to buy a home than Denver, which was ranked the no. 1 hottest real estate market for 2016?

The top home markets across the nation were rated based on Zillow’s Home Value Index (ZHVI) Forecast, recent income growth and low unemployment rates. Denver took the top spot with 5 percent forecasted home value growth throughout the next year and a low 3.1 percent unemployment rate across the entire metro area.

The hottest submarkets include Delmar Parkway, Highline Villages and Centretech in Aurora with Ruby Hill placing high among neighborhoods in the entire metro.

Before packing your bags and relocating to Denver, future home buyers need to crunch the numbers and learn about their buying power. Developing a housing budget helps determine whether it’s best to rent or buy a home in Denver, assisted by the breakeven horizon – or the number of years it takes for buying to become cheaper than renting the same home.

Cost of buying in Denver

The median home value in Denver is $343,800, an impressive 15.3 percent rise from one year ago. If a homebuyer were to put 20 percent down on a median-priced home in Denver, or $68,760, assuming a 30-year fixed loan at a 3.508 percent interest rate, they would pay $1,647 per month. The total mortgage payment includes principal and interest ($1,236), insurance ($67) and taxes ($377).

Cost of renting in Denver

Assuming you’re looking to rent an apartment in Denver at a median value, you would pay $1,959 per month. In the wider Denver metro, renters pay a median $1,977 per month. Compared to the national median of $1,388 per month, rental rates in Denver are costlier, but keep in mind Denver is a buzzing city and U.S. medians include rates from towns across the entire country.

When does buying outpace renting?

While the example mortgage payment of $1,647 per month is lower than the median city rent rate of $1,959 per month, it is still cheaper to rent first when accounting for the down payment of $68,760. In addition, the cost of buying goes beyond monthly mortgage rates to encompass closing costs and the general fees of homeownership, like maintenance.

In Denver, the breakeven horizon as of the last quarter of 2015 was 1.7 years, a 0.09 rise from the year prior. So, if you’re planning to stay in a home longer than 1.7 years it’s more cost-effective to buy.

Overall, if you have the recommended 20 percent down payment ready, buying a home in Denver now could be a great investment opportunity. However, this is assuming you perform the proper home buyer due diligence.

Keep in mind, you typically don’t need 20 percent upfront to buy a home (depending on your lender pre-qualifications), but a heftier down payment ensures a lower interest rate. If you aren’t quite financially prepared to buy, renting below budget to save before those 1.7 years are up is your best bet in the meantime.

By Jennifer Riner, Zillow

 

Denver Real Estate Agents        Colorado Rentals 

Denver Home Improvements

Denver home improvements with the best returns

If you’re buying a home, you often want to know whether a remodel in the home you’re considering is worth the higher price. If you’re planning to sell, you want to account for your renovations in your asking price.

The “2013 Cost vs Value Report” released by Remodeling Magazine reveals that after a six-year decline, the national average cost-value ratio for home improvement projects rose 60.6 percent. This means that lower renovation costs are producing higher returns when the house is sold.

The following shows some of the costs and returns for mid-range home renovations in Denver, Colorado.

  • The highest percentage return belonged to a minor kitchen remodel that updated 200 square feet. It replaced cabinet and drawer fronts but kept the existing boxes. It also included new counters, a more energy-efficient wall oven and cooktop, and a mid-ranged sink with faucet. The project returned 76.2 percent, of $13,603, of its $17,849 cost.

 

  • The most expensive job and the highest resale value was adding a 24-by-16 second story that included a second-floor bedroom and full bath with a fiberglass tub and shower. The project also included a first-floor family room with a gas fireplace and atrium-style exterior doors. This cost an average $147,309 and returned $94,226, or 64 percent.

 

  • The lowest percentage return of 42.8 percent, or $29,727, went to a sunroom addition, which cost an average $69,626. This project constructed a 200-square-foot structure with post-and-beam framing on a slab-on-grade foundation. The room boasted 10 aluminum-clad ventin skylights, ceiling fans, and insulation on the non-glass areas.

For more information on how a renovation can change the value of a home, or if you want to get into the Denver real estate market, please contact our Denver Real Estate Agents today.   303.545.6000

Corporate Housing in Denver     Denver Property Management

Homes in the lower Highlands neighborhood of Denverq

The Highlands nieghborhood in Denver Colorado offers the best of both worlds

If you’re one of those people who wants to live somewhere that has a strong, tight-knit neighborhood community, but you also don’t want to be far from where the action is, the Highlands neighborhood in Denver Colorado might just be the perfect place to settle in. Featured in both National Geographic Magazine and Travel + Leisure, Here are six reasons to make Highlands your home:

1Location, location, location.  Highlands is just northwest of downtown Denver, so you’re never far from  what’s happening. You can get into Denver on direct bus routes if you’d prefer not to take your car into the city, or you can take a cab without breaking the bank and enjoy your stay in Denver without worrying about driving home.  ( Highlands refers to two separate city-center neighborhoods, Highland and West Highland, in Denver, Colorado. Highland and West Highland are both in the area that is referred to as North Denver.

Highlands Neighborhood Denver

The Highlands Neighborhoods Denver CO

2.  Strong community. Highlands is such a strong community that the town calls its own website Highland United Neighbors, Inc.  This community is built around an amazing network of family-owned restaurants and boutiques that thrive in this “up and coming”  neighborhood. It also sponsors the local Highland Farmer’s Market on Saturdays.

3. Diversity. Those family-owned restaurants serve food from half a dozen different cuisines, hinting at the cultural diversity which ranges from Mexican and Italian to Caribbean and Asian.

4. Highlands Square. This is a great place to hang out, whether shopping for unique items in its specialty stores or enjoying a glass or pint in one of the pubs and bars. The bungalow houses in this area make charming homes for young couples who want to live right on top of the action.

Highlands Square Denver

Highlands Square Denver

5. Tennyson Street Cultural District. If you’re into the arts, this is the area you want to buy into. With both visual arts and live music venues, you’ll not need to leave your neighborhood to enjoy the arts, especially the First Friday Art Walk.

6. Lower Highlands. This area is home to the Navajo Street Art District, which boasts more galleries and also a performance art space. This is also an excellent place to go when you’re ready for a night of fine dining.

So if you’re ready to live in the midst of life, action and culture, with Denver just a short drive away, come live in Highlands, Colorado.  We have watched the Highlands real estate market develop and evolve over the last two decades and can help you find your perfect home in the Highlands.

The Whittier Neighborhood Denver

Historic Whittier Neighborhood Denver Houses

The Whittier Neighborhood in Denver was developed in the 1800s and named for a school, which was named after a poet who also happened to be a founding member of the American Republican political party by the name of John Greenleaf Whittier.  The neighborhood was unsurprisingly integrated from the beginning, since Mr. Whittier was an abolitionist poet it matched his philosophy. Keeping that in mind we can take a look at the development of this neighborhood including the housing market to learn how it has progressed and what it has to offer today.

The location of this area is northeast of Downtown Denver, mostly residential and contains some very old buildings.  This is one of Denver Colorado’s oldest historic neighborhoods that features early twentieth century homes containing craftsman architecture.  The neighborhood remains diversified and appealing for young professionals and their families offering tree-lined streets, parks, a public golf course and the convenient location near downtown.  This combination of charm and proximity makes it attractive to many hard-working families as well as singles.

The real estate market offers a range of listing prices from $200,000 as the lowest to the high end of  $549,900.  Home sales have been increasing over the last several years with the majority of sales in the median range around $250,000. A recent article in the Denver Business Journal stated “Metro Denver home prices still surging..” revealing good news about the area housing market. This community also offers affordable rental properties including homes that include fantastic condos and attractive apartments.

If you are interested in finding apartments for rent, there are some very impressive apartments that offer the character and convenience of urban living.  You can select from some affordable luxury apartments that offer excellent amenities. The added convenience of downtown living makes it possible to walk everywhere.

Another interesting note published a few weeks ago by Denver CBS4 headlined “Baby Boomer Enter Real Estate Market To Downsize.” The story went on to recognize how as the Colorado housing market rebounds those baby boomers are key players.  It is part of a trend that is developing for couples who have raised their families to sell those big houses and down-size to smaller homes, and moving downtown seems to be a favorite for many of them.

Check out the Historic Whittier Neighborhood website to learn more about this unique historic community. The Whittier Neighborhood is one Denver neighborhood that you should definitely check into for great possibilities that Housing Helpers can explain further.

Denver Homes For Rent    Denver Homes For Sale    Denver Real Estate Agents

Denver Apartments

Denver apartments in high demand as renters compete for properties

Apartments in Denver are in high-demand leaving many renters with few options. A recent article in the Denver Post details a study done by the Apartment Association of Metro Denver and the Colorado Division of Housing, stating that the apartment vacancy rate for metro Denver is at its lowest since 2000 and that rental rates increased by 4.3 over the past year to an all-time high of $1,022.

Several factors are contributing to the shortage of apartments in Denver.  One factor is the lack of new apartment inventory that has been added to the Denver rental market in the last several years, as the economy was sluggish. The inventory of apartment units was at an all time low coming out of the economic recession.   Now the that the job market is on the recovery in Denver there are a lot of new apartments being built.  But the time to develop and build new apartments and bring them to market is a transitional time that can take 18 to 24 months.   This “catch-up” time will be a transitional time where we could see a shortage of apartment inventory continue for a year or two.

Another factor causing tight vacancy is the influx of new workers taking advantage of the recovering job market within Denver.  Metropolitan Denver is a very desirable area to live due to it’s quality of living including vibrant culture, recreational abundance, reasonable cost of living, trendy dining options, and exciting nightlife.  Job seekers in their twenties and thirties are relocating to the Denver area in large numbers seeking better quality of life and fairly affordable living in comparison to major metro areas on the East coast and West coast.

Renters should be prepared to act quickly.   The apartment shortage in Denver leaves many renters taking whatever apartment they can find but  not always what they desire.  The tight rental market means units come and go it a matter of days, even hours in some cases, making it challenge for renters to spend time doing research on rental properties.    At Housing Helpers we are recommending that renters go to showings ready to put down a deposit on the place if they like it- if they hesitate chances are it will be rented before they know it.

Renters should seek whatever advantages they can to find properties, including the latest technology.  For renters, it is so important to have the latest data on available properties so as soon as they come available you don’t miss out on any opportunity.   Often when searching on line at sites like Craig’s list, the listings may not always be constantly updated.  At Housing Helpers we have a great system in place for renters that are signed up with us to receive daily updates of new properties as soon as they hit the market that match the renters criteria, price range, and neighborhood preferences.  Getting this data to the renters quickly helps them immensely in this competitive rental market.

Renters may consider alternatives to the metro Denver rental market which will give them more options to choose from.   The greater Denver area including, Broomfield, Golden, Lakewood, Highlands Ranch, Parker, Aurora, Westminster, Thornton, can offer more rental opportunities then the metro area and offer access to local amenities as well a reasonable commuting proximity to downtown.  They also tend to offer much more open space and access to many parks and recreational opportunities.

Housing Helpers is a full service Denver apartment finder and rental locating service that helps renters with finding an apartment rentals in Denver as well as condos and homes for rent.  If you would like more information on rentals available in Metro Denver or any of the Front Range cities, please contact us

View our listings of apartments for rent in Colorado

 

 

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