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[Link] Forecast: Northern Colorado home real estate market to continue stabilizing in 2019

LOVELAND — While Northern Colorado home prices are expected to increase in 2019, appreciation rates are likely to be more modest than in recent years. The continued flattening of appreciation across the region was one of the major takeaways from The Group Real Estate’s annual Northern Colorado Real Estate Forecast and Expo. Hundreds of real estate professionals packed a large conference room Wednesday evening at Loveland’s Embassy Suites for the event. “We’ve been on a path of rapidly accelerating appreciation for many years,” Brandon Wells, president of The Group Inc., said. “But what you’re seeing is some of the appreciation has started to stabilize and normalize.” But, he was quick to note, “that does not mean that average sales are declining. It just means the rate of appreciation is slowing.” In some cases, slower appreciation rates are a result of more — and more affordable — new housing stock becoming available. In Fort Collins, the average 2019 sales price for attached and detached homes is forecast to be $443,576, up 5 percent from the average price of $422,454 in 2018. That appreciation rate is down slightly from a recent high of 6 percent in 2017. Loveland’s average price this year is predicted to be $400,217, up 3 percent from 2018. The city posted a recent high appreciation rate of 9 percent in 2017. Average 2019 prices in the Greeley/Evans area are expected to be $319,700, a year-over-year increase of 6 percent. The region posted a 10 percent appreciation rate as recently as 2017. Regionally, the average 2019 sales price is expected to be $410,492, up from the $388,200 average recorded in 2018. The total number of homes sold in Northern Colorado this year is estimated to be 10,650. That’s 75 more homes than were sold in 2018. The Group’s forecast in 2018 was better than 95 percent accurate predicting the number of homes sold and the average sales price across the Northern Colorado region. Jason Peifer, president Group Mortgage LLC, predicted that interest rates will continue to rise in 2019. While that could create some challenges for real estate professionals, he said he does not expect interest rate increases to cripple the industry. Rising interest rates “could provide a significant headwind for the real estate economy,” but strong employment and wage growth could counteract some of those impacts, he said.

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[Link] New Year’s wishes for 2019

2019 has gotten off to a turbulent start, with a partial federal-government shutdown, a stock market in the doldrums and political uncertainty at the national level. Here in the Boulder Valley and Northern Colorado, a strong economy should help the region weather any potential storm, but here are some New Year’s wishes to help promote a positive and prosperous 2019: To Apple: We extend a hearty welcome to Boulder, wherever you might land with the hundreds of jobs that BizWest first reported in December. While some circles might look askance at more tech jobs in the city, your presence will further solidify the region as a technology hub. To the University of Colorado and Colorado State University: successful searches for new presidents. CU has embarked on search for a replacement for President Bruce Benson, who will retire next summer, and CSU seeks a president for the Fort Collins campus, as Tony Frank will step down from that role while retaining his position as chancellor of the CSU system. Both institutions play vital roles in the Colorado economy. To Colorado’s brewers and liquor stores: strong sales in the wake of changes to the state’s liquor laws, through which grocery stores can sell full-strength beer. Craft brewers had fought such changes, believing that national grocers would be less likely to carry their brews, and that the new competition will threaten the livelihood of local mom-and-pop liquor stores. The simple answer? Frequent your favorite local liquor stores, and sample more local brews. To Hensel Phelps Construction Co.: best wishes to retiring CEO Jeff Wenaas and incoming CEO Mike Choutka. Few realize that the company, which boasts revenue of $3.4 billion, is based in a nondescript building in east Greeley. But the employee-owned company contributes enormously to the economy, locally, nationally and globally. To the Colorado Legislature: courage and wisdom in implementing a statewide climate action plan. Retrenchment at the federal level from addressing climate change requires greater efforts at the state, local and private-sector levels. Care must be exercised, however, to not hurt Colorado’s traditional energy sector or the overall economy. It would be easy for legislators to promote measures that could wreak economic havoc. But much progress could be made with a series of incremental steps that would reduce carbon emissions. Utilities such as Xcel and Platte River Power Authority have already begun that process. To the Greeley Area Chamber of Commerce: a very happy and successful 100th anniversary year. The Greeley Chamber, led by Sarah MacQuiddy, champions a strong local and regional economy. This milestone year represents an appropriate time to celebrate the chamber’s role and influence. To Phillips 66: a buyer for its 432-acre parcel in Louisville, the former Storage Technology Corp./Sun Microsystems campus. This land has been on and off the market for years and was once presented as an option for Amazon HQ2. While that effort obviously failed, the property along U.S. Highway 36 provides an excellent opportunity for redevelopment. To Brinkman: continued success with its downtown redevelopments. […]

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[Link] Boulder renters get 2019 security deposit interest bump

BOULDER — Boulder tenants who put down a security deposit with their landlords will now receive 0.75 percent interest on that deposit, up from the previous rate of 0.16 percent. The new rates went into effect Tuesday. The tenant security deposit interest rate is recalculated each year in accordance with a 2004 city ordinance. The rate is the average of the one-year certificate of deposit from the top three financial institutions in Boulder, based on market share data as of Dec. 15, 2018, according to a city news release. The city offers support for lease questions and tenant/landlord issues through the Community Mediation Service at 303-441-4364 and through the online Landlord/Tenant Handbook.

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