445 San Juan St.
Pagosa Springs, CO 81147

Colorado Real Estate Industry 2012 Snapshot

Colorado Association of Realtors

November, 2012


The following is a snapshot of Colorado’s housing market:

I. Nearly three quarters of 3.6 million or 67.6 percent of Colorado residents are homeowners.

II. CARHOF (Colorado Association of REALTORS® Housing Opportunity Foundation gave $132,308 in 2011 to non-profit housing agencies across Colorado totaling over 7 million since 1990.)

III. Colorado consistently receives top rankings nationally as a place to live and start and succeed in business. Bits of proof of this is supplied below:
  a. Best State to Invest (OwnAmerican.com)- 1st 
  b. Technology Industry Employment Concentration (TechAmerica Cyberstates 2010)- 3rd 
  c. Research & Development Inputs (Milken Institute)-3rd 
  d. Best States for Business (Forbes Magazine)- 4th

IV. Colorado’s unemployment rate is currently at 7.9%
  a. Service industries make up the largest portion of Colorado’s gross state product. The two largest service industries are real estate (10%) and health care (12%).
  b. Tourism is the second largest industry in the State of Colorado.
  c. The second-largest aerospace economy in the nation is right here in Colorado. The state’s aerospace economy consists of businesses providing products and services for commercial uses, the military, and space exploration.
  d. Colorado is expected to add over 23,000 jobs in 2012, more than any other state.

V. How Does Real Estate Affect the Economy? 
   a. Real estate contributes 10% of the total U.S. economy’s output. 
   b. If real estate sales decline.

      i. Construction jobs decline
      ii. Unemployment increases
      iii. Real estate prices decrease
      iv. The value of homes decrease whether they are being sold or not.
      v. The amount of home equity loans the homeowner can get decreases.

   c. In 2011, Colorado consumers spent more on goods and services, with retail sales increasing 6.5% for the year. In 2012, retail sales are forecast to remain relatively strong with a gain of 4%.
   d. Colorado home builders, for the second year in a row, pulled more permits than they did the year before. 

VI. Homes Sold by Colorado REALTORS®- Year End 2011 (based off same time period in 2010)
   a. 57,730 Single Family Units were sold in 2011, an increase of 3% compared to 2010. 12,476 Condos/Townhomes in 2011 were sold, a decrease of 1% compared to 2010.
   b. The median price for Single Family homes was $196,667 in 2011, a 2% decrease from 2010. The median price for Condos/Townhomes is $126,667 for 2011, a 10% decrease from 2010.
  c. About 80 percent of homeowners in Colorado have lived in their house over 1 year and more.

VII. Who were the Buyers?
   a. 50% of recent home buyers were first-time buyers
   b. The typical first-time home buyer was 30 years old, while the typical repeat buyer was 49 years old.
  c. The median income was $59,900 among first-time buyers and $87,000 among repeat buyers.
  d. 20% of recent home buyers were single females, and 12% were single males.
  e. When considering the purchase of a home, commuting costs were considered very or somewhat important by 76 percent of buyers.
  f. New home purchases were at the lowest level in nine years—down to 15% of all recent home purchases.
  g. The typical home purchased was 1,780 square feet size, was built in 1990, and had three bedrooms and bathrooms.
  h. 11% of buyers over 50 purchased senior related housing or in an active adult community.

VIII. Foreclosures 
  a. Colorado is ranked 11th in the nation for its foreclosure rate according to the Denver Post.
  b. The state Division of Housing says that foreclosures are down 28 percent at the end of 2011. Many predict the number will continue to slowly decline in 2012.
  c. Foreclosure-related properties, which made up roughly one in five home sales in the third quarter of last year, sold for an average 34 percent less than homes that were not “distressed sales,” according to the latest data from RealtyTrac.

Sources: Bureau of Economic Analysis; National Association of REALTORS®; Macroeconomic Advisors; Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies, Colorado Multiple Listing Services, Realty Trac, U.S. Census Bureau, State Division of Housing; EconPost, Everitt Real Estate Center, Leeds School of Business, Denver Business Journal, Denver Post, Wall Street Journal, Colorado Office of Economic Development