Year in review: Real estate

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August 27

Flying off the shelves

If someone put a home on the market in Colorado Springs, chances are good it sold within two months.

As of the end of June, single-family homes spent an average of 62 days on the market, the lowest number since June 2006, when the Pikes Peak Association of Realtors started keeping records.

The total number of active listings was extremely low at 3,450, said Fred Crowley, associate director of the Southern Colorado Economic Forum. He compared that number with around 6,000 active listings in June 2010.

“The available homes for sale decreased 40 percent over three years ago,” Crowley said. “These numbers are just mind-boggling.”

A total of 1,114 homes sold in May, an increase of 20.4 percent over the 925 homes sold in May 2012. The momentum continued in June as 1,104 homes sold, compared with 846 in June 2012, an increase of 30.5 percent, said Joe Clement of RE/MAX Properties.

“It’s a healthy market,” said Eric Estrada, director of business development for ERA Shields Real Estate. “And it seems to be getting healthier.”

In the city’s northeast sector, 93 homes were on the market only 34 days on average before being sold, said Harry Salzman of Salzman Real Estate Services. In Old Colorado City, 22 homes, with a median price of $160,000, sold after an average of 36 days on the market, Salzman added.

In the northwest area of Colorado Springs, 29 homes were on the market for an average of 43 days before selling. Those homes had a median price of $319,680, Salzman said. In the Powers Boulevard area, 112 homes sold with a median price of $221,448, also on the market for an average of 43 days.

“It’s a reflection of what’s going on in the economy,” said Crowley. “The economy is consistently showing signs of improvement.

“People are more confident; they’re beginning to buy homes they’ve been putting off for years.”


August 20

Legal maneuvers change the face of business

A nearly completed multiplex movie theater, flanked by a half-done office building and a parking garage, sat vacant and unused, casualties of an economic downturn unparalleled since the Great Depression.

The fate of the once-promising Colorado Crossing — an ambitious project that would have created a mixed-use entertainment, office and housing development — remained in question, tangled up in lawsuits and bankruptcy filings.

Once dubbed “Colorado Springs’ second downtown,” Colorado Crossing was to include office, entertainment and retail space, multi-family housing and hotels — an entertainment mecca for families in northern Colorado Springs.

Of the 153-acre development, only 17.5 acres had been developed before SRKO encountered financial troubles in 2008, just as the bottom fell out of the banking and housing industries. Too much debt led to the bankruptcy filing. Denver trustee C. Randel Lewis was named to care for many of the assets.

Assessor records show Richardson still owned parcels totaling a little more than 18 acres at Colorado Crossing. Assessor records also showed Lewis as the trustee of 126.5 acres adjacent to the Richardson property at Colorado Crossing.

Some properties that had been owned by SRKO and Richardson were sold at auction in June; several properties remained in their name, according to public records.