December 13, 2010





If you saw the movie, “Groundhog Day”, you’ll remember that it told the story of a not-so-smart follow who had to repeat living the same day, over and over, until he got it right. By the end of the movie, by trial and error, he had all the right answers and was making all the right choices.

Well, for the past several years, since the bottom fell out of the real estate market, it seems that many people have been living their own version of Groundhog Day. Buyers, Sellers, Investors and Realtors have begun each day by having the media inform them that “The Recession is Over”, and “We’ve Bottomed Out”, only to be told by the media later in the day that “Foreclosures are up”, “More Homeowners are Upside-Down”, and “The sky is falling”.

So, where are we now, really?  Have we reached the point where the market has stabilized enough that you can make some good choices, or, are you still in the middle of Groundhog Day?  For our part, we are convinced that there is now enough stability in our local market that Buyers and Sellers can make some wise, informed decisions and profit accordingly.

With this in mind, we thought that it might be helpful to our readers if we reviewed some current facts and some recent comments by industry experts, so that prospective Buyers, Sellers and Investors might get a better idea of where they stand.   

Here are some facts and comments about our current real estate market:

  • OUR LOCAL MARKET IS BETTER THAN MOST - Remember that “All real estate is Local” and in almost every national survey, Colorado Springs comes out in the top ten cities for recovery, standard of living, opportunity for growth, etc.  Regardless of how bleak things might look in Phoenix or Las Vegas, our local market shows every sign of being poised for a rebound from the housing slump. All we need for that to happen is more jobs !!! and our new Governor has pledged to place that goal at the top of his priorities.   
  • OUR LOCAL ECONOMY IS GROWING – Again in November, sales tax collections climbed. November collections were $8.94 million, for an increase of 6%. This is the 13th straight month of year-over-year growth. This means that people are spending again and that’s great news for our local economy. 
  • FALLING HOME PRICES - Nationally, price-cutting continues. The share of homes for sale that experienced at least one price reduction in November jumped 24.1 percent compared to the same month last year, (ZipRealty). As of Dec. 1, sellers had cut asking prices on 48.4% of all listings. Out of 26 national markets, 19 saw double-digit jumps in the number of discounted homes. However, Readers, please take note: In October and November, Denver (and the state of Colorado in general) had the smallest share of discounted listings, at 34.2 percent.

Now, finally, many national housing experts are saying that, "Prices seem to be stabilizing as sellers have finally figured out that they have to adjust prices to meet the market.

  •  LOCAL MARKET VALUES – Our local average sales price grew from $214,062 in November of 2009 to $233,286 in November of 2010, an increase of 9%.  Median sales price grew from $187,950 in November of 2009 to $198,000 in November of 2010, for an increase of 5.3%. We’re now going in the right direction.
  •  INVENTORY - Inventory typically goes down month-to-month in November, when many people decide to wait until after the holidays to sell, and November’s inventory was down 3.8 percent from October. On a year-over-year basis, however, inventory continued to trend up: In 2010, it rose 11.6%, to 629,086 properties.
  •  FORECLOSURES - There are currently upwards of 11 million distressed properties on the market, including short sales and foreclosures.  Dale Stinton, CEO of The National Association of REALTORS® (Dec.12, 2010) summed up the problem when he stated,”2010 was all about the distressed market—We need to start clearing out that system before the market sees real recovery or any return to normal,”  The bottom line is that these foreclosures will slow our eventual recovery, but, for now, will make for low prices for some fortunate Buyers.
  •  INTEREST RATES – The good news is that Interest rates are still a real bargain. The bad news is that they have gone up. According to the Gazette (Dec, 11, 2010), “Rising government borrowing costs have driven mortgage rates to their highest level in six months, challenging the still-shaky housing market and the Federal Reserve’s efforts to boost the U.S. economy.” 

This week, according to the Gazette, the rate for a 30 year, fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.61%, up from 4.46% a week ago and the highest level since June 24, 2010. “This rate increase has been so sudden and so sharp that it’s almost too late for many borrowers to refinance”, said Kevin Cavin, mortgage strategist for Sterne Agee in Chicago.

 This upward trend in mortgage interest rates will likely continue and should remind us that, if you are going to buy or sell a home, there will probably not be a better time to do it than right now.  Remember,  ...“He who hesitates is lost”.

  • GROWING LOCAL HOUSING NEEDS - Every year, a tremendous amount of new homeowner needs are added to the market by virtue of the population growing and reaching adulthood. There is somewhere in the neighborhood of half a million to a million new households that need shelter every year.  In Colorado Springs, in addition to this “normal” increase in demand, we are fortunate enough to benefit from the influx of troops to Fort Carson.  Many of these incoming troops enter the housing market, and they attract additional outside service companies.

THE MORAL OF THE STORY FOR SELLERS – There are still Buyers out there, but the houses that are selling are the ones that are priced right.

THE MORAL OF THE STORY FOR BUYERS – The house you postpone buying today, will cost you more tomorrow.




Job-Insecurity is one reason why some prospective Buyers are reluctant to buy their new home. It’s an understandable concern, and it’s the reason why Salzman real estate Services introduced and offers the Job-Loss Protection Program.

This program, which is available only from Salzman real estate Services, will pay the Homeowner up to $1,800 per month for up to 6 months, during the 24 month coverage term of the policy, if the Homeowner becomes unemployed after 60 days of closing.

This innovative protection plan is paid for by the Seller and is, therefore, a benefit to the Seller (by making his/her listing more attractive) and to the Buyer (by removing “Employment Anxiety”).

If this Plan is of interest to you, please give us a call, to learn more about it.

And, please remember, I would be honored to serve as your Broker for all of your residential real estate needs. I want to help you, my reader, make the most prudent and accurate Real Estate business decision.

Also if you know of anyone who desires to buy or sell local real estate, or, who is moving in or out of the Pikes Peak region, remember that, with over 37 years of providing relocation and Real Estate services to clients throughout the country, I am uniquely qualified to assist them with the relocation process, including buying and/or selling their homes on both ends of their move. Please allow me to implement my negotiating skills on your behalf.

Just click on the icon at the top of this email to listen to my latest podcast. ….And, if you would like to learn more about our Job Loss Protection Program, or, about our CyberHomes Complete Market Analysis of a property, please contact us. 





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