As the Real Estate World Turns

28Jul 2014

By Steve Blank – Managing Broker, FSIR Downtown
It is important, and encouraging, to review some national and local numbers that bode well for Denver’s economic recovery, particularly in the housing market. I always find it interesting to compare national economic trends with those taking place in Denver.

For example, Denver was recently ranked sixth among the Top 10 states with the most potential to thrive in the new, post-recession economy, based on 25 economic indicators analyzed by the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation. The analysis focused on globalization, technological innovation, entrepreneurial development and employment as factors that reveal probable levels of economic growth. Mortgage giant Fannie Mae qualifies and employs this information to help determine state and regional economic directions.

The Top 10 states include: Massachusetts, Delaware, California, Washington, Maryland, Colorado, Virginia, Connecticut, Utah and New Jersey.

As for other positive numbers, Denver ranked #2 for renting to millenials, (18-34 yrs of age) according to Realty Trac’s Q2 2014 residential report which analyzed data from 370 counties across the country. This is a primary reason why all those rentals are being built across the city, reflecting Denver’s 5.6 percent to 5.8 percent unemployment rates (nationally hovering around 6.3 percent)

New higher-end apartments are seeing leases for $2.50/ft in areas like Cherry Creek and downtown, still carrying a vacancy rate of only 4.4 percent, according to Q2 2014 numbers. It is worth noting that Denver ended the year at a 4.2 percent vacancy rate, which is a signal that supply is catching up with demand.

Denver housing prices are up nearly 10 percent from a year ago, as noted in the recent Case-Stiller report. Perhaps even more compelling is a Zillow report showing local home resale prices are 50.59 percent higher than in January of 2000. June was also the 30th month in a row with year-over-year gains in Denver values.

For the most up-to-date monthly market snapshot of your area visit

Metro Denver’s luxury market has posted sharp gains, while listing inventory has gradually increased. There were 127 luxury homes (over $1 million) sold in May, which is 24.5 percent over the 102 sold in May of 2013. The May report (from MLS statistics) showed that the average luxury home sold in 85 days, which is down from 142 days just a year ago. Even mortgage lenders are gladly reaching out to higher-end borrowers (loans over $417,000 in Denver and over $625,000 in cities like San Francisco) with very competitive rates and more flexible underwriting. For instance, Bank of America reported that 38 percent of its loans were in this jumbo market, this first quarter, compared to 23 percent in Q1 2013.

The new home construction market is also moving full steam ahead, offsetting some of the low housing inventory available. Builders Magazine reports that the nation’s 200 largest builders accounted for 53 percent of all homes built in the U.S. during 2013. Just 20 years ago, small volume builders delivered about 70 percent of all houses being built.

In Denver, small builders are tearing down older buildings and homes and constructing larger, more luxurious homes in areas like Washington Park, Cherry Creek and Hilltop. Depending on the land’s specific zoning, small developers are also building apartments, condos, and creating mixed use projects that combine residential with retail and light commercial use.

Overall, Denver is exhibiting positive, diverse activity in the real estate market. Both the city and the state are showing up in national rankings and comparing very favorably to other places in the country.


Luxury Real Estate Board of Regents Appoints Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty

23Jul 2014

The Luxury Real Estate Board of Regents is proud to announce that Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty has been selected to exclusively represent the brand in Metro Denver, Boulder, Breckenridge and the Vail Valley, Colorado. The Board of Regents, which celebrates their 10 year anniversary in 2014, is the governing body of Who’s Who in Luxury Real Estate, the worldwide network of high-end brokerage firms.

With 10 offices and 250+ broker and support staff associates, Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty serves some of Colorado’s best-known luxury real estate markets and consistently produces over $1 billion in annual sales volume. Fuller Sotheby’s distinguishes itself as Colorado and Metro Denver’s leading luxury real estate brokerage by providing its professional team with a uniquely high level of sales support and utilizing the industry’s leading technologies, business systems and vendors. Its broker associates average over 12 years’ experience and over $6 million in annual sales production.

Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty further distinguishes itself by providing clients with an industry-leading service level resulting in a higher than average listing sold/taken ratio, the highest average sales price and the lowest number of days on the market. Fuller has been an integral part of the Who’s Who in Luxury Real Estate network since 2001 and will now have the added benefit of prime placement on the award-winning website,, as well as an array or powerful, exclusive marketing tools and solutions.

For more information on Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty, please visit For more information on the Luxury Real Estate Board of Regents, visit


Wildflower Ranch: The Ultimate Luxury for Horses and Owners

22Jul 2014

Colorado is horse country. In fact, the state equine population of 256,000 comes to about one Coloradan for every 18 horses, according to the American Horse Council Foundation.

Coloradans aren’t idle horse owners, either. More than 180,000 of the state’s horses are ridden for show and recreation every year. More than 50 percent of owners live on the same property as their horses. No matter the use, having horses is a lifestyle.

Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty (FSIR) has a variety of horse-friendly listings along the Front Range, including Boulder, and the mountain communities of Breckenridge and Vail Valley. In fact, FSIR listings are searchable by the specialty market, “Farm and Ranch.” Buyers can view superior properties in Colorado or anywhere in the world, via Continue reading


Stately Home, Rich History, Warm Memories

16Jul 2014

1220803_Entrance_highThe stately red brick home at 685 Emerson Street is undeniably impressive – in its history, elegance, sublime architectural details and, interestingly, in the ambiance it imparts that decades of warm family life have unfolded here.

“We moved in when I was 11 years old,” said current owner Jack Crawford of the genteel home that has been in his family for nearly 50 years. Growing up there with his three brothers, Crawford remembered the spacious rooms and intriguing nooks gave the boys plenty of room for “mischief.”

“It was always a warm, friendly place. I remember opening the door for guests many times and seeing their surprise at how inviting it was, despite the size,” Crawford said.

“The home itself really offers the best in old elegance and updated style. And some truly unique people have lived here,” said Maggie Armstrong, who is co-listing the home with Trish Bragg, for Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty. Continue reading



14Jul 2014

Management and broker representatives from Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty (FSIR) recently participated in a professional development conference held by Sotheby’s International Realty and the Sotheby’s Auction house in New York City.

Phillip White, President & CEO of Sotheby's International Realty; Melanie Frank; Tre Behr; Kristen Muller

Those attending included Melanie Frank, vice president of professional development and managing broker, Breckenridge; Tre Behr, director of professional development and associate managing broker, Denver Tech Center; and Kristen Muller, director of marketing.

With 10 offices in Colorado, FSIR is the third largest affiliate in the Sotheby’s International Realty network, which includes 15,000 independent sales associates in 700 offices and 54 countries and territories worldwide.

“This was an exceptional opportunity to align ourselves with the Sotheby’s International Realty brand and affiliates from all over the world,” Muller said. “We gained even greater knowledge about branding, advertising and promotional opportunities, and how to deliver exceptional value to our clients. I’m excited to integrate this new knowledge into our business practices.”

Philip White, president and chief executive officer of Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC, said the conference was designed to empower its distinguished affiliates to represent the most extraordinary clients and properties in the world.

“Our luxury network helps connect the finest independent real estate companies to the most prestigious clientele in the world,” he said. “We empower our affiliate leaders with our exclusive product line so they can better serve their clients’ needs.”

Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty has multiple office locations in the Denver Metro and surrounding areas, including Boulder, Breckenridge, Castle Pines Village, Cherry Creek, Clayton Street, Denver Tech Center, Downtown Denver, Edwards, Evergreen and the Vail Valley. For more information call 303.893.3200 or visit


In the Market for a Truly Distinctive Property?

10Jul 2014

Known as a leader in the Colorado luxury real estate market, Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty (FSIR) lists an array of distinctive properties, including some that are downright different, when compared to what the conventional single family, loft or condominium buyer is seeking.

Are you searching for a property in the one-of-a-kind category, like a restored ghost town or a 1920s-era hotel, listed on the National Register of Historic Places? FSIR happens to have both in its current inventory.

Own a Ghost Town

Uptop Dance Hall“Uptop” is an iconic ghost town near La Veta, Colo. It is now listed for the first time with various purchase options by FSIR realtors Kerry Endsley and Jon Goldberg. The entire parcel is listed at $2 million.

“The diversity of this property makes it perfect for an individual searching for a secluded slice of the rural countryside, or for a business in the hunt for a stellar corporate retreat where employees can reboot and reconnect with their creativity off the grid,” Endsley said.

The history-rich property is located at the top of the Old La Veta Pass, surrounded by unprecedented views of the Sangre de Cristo Mountain range and the beautiful Spanish Peaks. Uptop is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places. For more information, visit

Make an Offer on an Historic Hotel

Fairplay HotelThe Valiton Hotel in Fairplay, Colo., is another historic treasure now on the market. The property is listed by FSIR broker Jeni Freidrich and dates back to 1873, when the original owners bought the hotel’s land for $87.50.

In its life, the Valiton Hotel went through several different names and owners until a fire forced its closure in 1921. In a true demonstration of small-town determination, Fairplay engaged William Bowman, a noted Denver architect, to rebuild the hotel on its original foundation. The hotel kept its old name but reopened in 1923 boasting Adirondack/Craftsman architecture, befitting its location in a beautiful, rugged mountain area.

This iconic Fairplay hotel has been a favorite of visitors and locals alike through the years. Guests come for the spectacular scenery and recreational opportunities, such as summer fishing and hiking, and skiing at nearby resorts in the winter. The hotel is a true community hub and offers great panache and historic presence as a site for weddings, retreats and reunions.

The Valiton Hotel is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is offered at $785,000. For  information, contact Jeni Friedrich at


Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty’s The Behr Team Listed among the Nation’s Top Real Estate Professionals

27Jun 2014
Linda Behr, FSIR President Scott Webber, Josh Behr

Linda Behr, FSIR President Scott Webber, Josh Behr

FSIR’s Linda Behr and Josh Behr, The Behr Team, are among an elite group of professionals that Sotheby’s International Realty (SIR) refers to when it says, “Some of the world’s most successful luxury real estate agents keep company with us.”

The Behr Team is among the top U.S. broker teams who are affiliated with the SIR brand and recognized in a new ranking of the nation’s 1,000 top licensed agents, published annually by REAL Trends Inc. and The Wall Street Journal.

“I’m pleased Linda and Josh are recognized for their remarkable sales and marketing achievements,” said Scott Webber, FSIR president. “It’s an impressive example of the results-driven viability that comes from the partnership between the SIR brand and our expert brokers.”

“It’s a great honor to be among the top 250 teams out of nearly 1 million licensed real  estate professionals, in a business we truly love,” said Josh Behr. “Our affiliation with the SIR brand, both in Colorado and internationally, is a critical marketing partnership.”

Linda Behr added that, “The SIR partnership relays immediate assurance to our clients that their highest expectations in terms of service, quality and results always will be met when they buy or sell extraordinary properties with The Behr Team.”

Earlier this year, The Behr Team won the prestigious team volume award at the 36th Roundtable of Excellence Awards, hosted by the Denver Metro Association of Realtors®. During that ceremony, 30 additional FSIR individuals and teams, as well as 4 offices, were recognized for sales achievement.

Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty has multiple office locations in the Denver metro area, including Downtown, Cherry Creek, Clayton Street, Denver Tech Center, Castle Pines Village, Boulder, Evergreen, Breckenridge and the Vail Valley. For more information call 303.893.3200 or visit


Summit County Price Points Looking Up

26Jun 2014

There’s a lot to love in Summit County as summer arrives, including the latest snapshot of the county’s real estate market.

Photo by Adam Baker

According to the Land Title Guarantee Co.’s April 2014 market report, 12 residential properties sold for $1 million or more that month. The highest of those was $2.6 million. The most active price point was between $400,000 and $500,000, which is higher than in years and months past. Presently, inventory is low in Summit County compared to recent years, accounting for stronger year-to-date pricing and fewer transactions.

In first quarter 2014 (compared to Q1 2013), the average residential price rose just over 4.6 percent, while the average residential price-per-square-foot rose nearly 17 percent. In terms of price history, the report said as of April, the county’s average residential pricing “continues to be highly consistent” and suggests the market has held or increased its value since 2012.

The average price for multi-family also increased, to just over $377,000 in Q1 2014, from $344,578 in Q1 2013.

As of April 2014, Summit County had seen 353 residential transactions, with 31 properties at a million, compared to the same period in 2013, with 357 transactions and 26 properties selling at that price point.

In keeping with past statistics, the Front Range demographic comprises 37 percent of the Summit County market, compared to 22 percent local and 38 percent domestic out-of-state buyers.

In all, the forecast for Summit County’s current real estate market is sunny, in terms of price point and value. There is also a lot of interest in the upcoming winter market, when 35,000 or more athletes, fans and media from around the world will flood over the Divide for the 2015 FIS Alpine Ski Championships.

There will be enormous demand for lodging, of all types and price points. There should also be increased buyer interest, some visitors who want to keep a part of our beautiful county for themselves.

If you are interested in renting or listing your home in advance of this ski racing spectacular, now is the time.


Cool County, Hot Market

26Jun 2014

It’s summer in the Vail Valley. The streams sparkle and gush, flowers almost glow, the air is cool. And the real estate market is hot.

Photo by Nick Csakany
In an April 2014 snapshot of the Eagle County market, real estate transactions added up to the best month for total sales volume since 2008: more than $239.4 million. That compares to nearly $126 million in April 2013.

A significant number of high-end sales in the county led to an impressive average sales price of nearly $1.64 million in April. There were 10 transactions over $5 million, with 11 more sales in the $2.5 million to $4.9 million range. Vail Village recorded the highest residential sales, at $19 million and $14.5 million respectively.

The average price-per-square-foot ranged from $2,000 to $2,925. April revealed that the number of transactions were similar throughout the county, although Eagle and Gypsum were out-sold for the first time in several months. Avon led the pace with 13 transactions, followed by Arrowhead (11); Eagle (8); and Gypsum (10).

Confidence continued in the commercial market. April saw 12 new commercial transactions, bringing the county’s total to 35 so far in 2014. The highest commercial sale was $28.6 million, for property located in Vail Village.

April 2014 buyer origins were: local (47%); Front Range (9%); U.S. domestic (41%); international (3%). The April numbers are close, or exceed, the total 2013 buyer origins, which were: local (53%); Front Range (15%); U.S. domestic (30%); international (1%).

With the current vibrant real estate market, and global attention the Vail Valley will undoubtedly earn during the February 2015 FIS World Alpine Ski Championships, it looks like a cool summer for our resort property owners. Enjoy the summer festivals, world-class music, romantic picnics, hiking, biking, fishing, wildflower vistas and all the other seasonal pleasures our beautiful valley has to offer.