Friday, September 27, 2013

Case-Shiller: Metro Denver home price index up for 19th straight month

Case-Shiller released its home price index for July 2013 this week. The home price index for the Denver area rose 1.5 percent percent from June to July, and rose 9.6  percent, year over year, from July 2012 to July 2013.  The year-over-year increase in July was the nineteenth year-over-year increase in a row for Denver. July also marks a second month above previous-peak levels for the metro Denver index. The index peaked in July 2006 at 140.3, and the index value during July 2013 was 145.6. The first graph shows the recent increase to new peak levels:

 According to S and P's press release, home prices nationwide continued to show some signs of growth:
“Home prices gains are holding their 12% annual rate of gain established by the two Composite  indices in April,” says David M. Blitzer, Chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones  Indices. “The Southwest continues to lead the housing recovery. Las Vegas home prices are up 27.5%  year-over-year; in California, San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego are up 24.8%, 20.8% and  20.4% respectively. However, all remain far below their peak levels.

“Since April 2013, all 20 cities are up month to month; however, the monthly rates of price gains have  declined. More cities are experiencing slow gains each month than the previous month, suggesting  that the rate of increase may have peaked.

In year-over-year comparisons for July, all of the twenty cities measured reported increases.  The largest increases were in Las Vegas and San Francisco with year over year increases of 27.5 percent and 24.8 percent, respectively.

The first chart shows trends in the Case-Shiller index for the Denver area and for the 20-city composite index. It is clear that Denver did not experience the kind of price bubble that occurred in many other metropolitan areas, and consequently, the index has not fallen nearly as far in Denver compared to the larger composite. The metro Denver index value is at the highest value seen since 2006.

The 20-city composite is down 21 percent since it peaked in July 2006, but the Denver index is up 3.8 percent from its August 2006 peak.

The second chart compares year-over-year changes in the Denver area index and in the 20-city composite. Overall, the index has been less volatile in Denver than has been the case for the 20-city composite. The year-over-year change in the 20-city composite during December was positive for the fourteenth month in a row.

After many months of higher growth rates in Denver than in the 20-city index, the Denver index was surpassed in March 2013 as the 20-city index YOY growth rate rose to 10.9 percent. The composite index growth rate has now outpaced the Denver metro rate for five months.

Housing News digest, September 27

Floods impact Colorado real-estate market Long story short, this natural disaster is not unlike others (wildfires, etc). Many believe the property values in the affected area will be negatively affected for at least a year. The lending on properties (even unaffected properties just in the county) has become more difficult. As with other tragedies, it will force homeowners to rebuild and remodel, which could, in the future, improve neighborhoods and home values in those areas.

  Fort Collins rent drops, Loveland, Greeley increase In Loveland and Greeley, though, average rents increased in the second quarter of 2013, according to the Colorado Division of Housing. Loveland's rent increased from $1,030 to $1,042 from first-quarter to second-quarter, and Greeley's average rent edged up from $704 to $715 per month in the same period. Average rent in Fort Collins dropped from $1,037 to $947 over the quarter.

  Home loan payoffs up 45% in second quarter Releases of deeds of trust increased by 45.9 percent from the second quarter of 2012 to the same period in 2013 in Colorado, according to new data from the Colorado Division of Housing. In Larimer County, the number of deeds released was 6,985, an increase of 35.8 percent over the same quarter of the previous year. In Weld County, 4,714 deeds were released, an increase of 60.1 percent from the second quarter of 2012.

  Freddie Mac Immediately Extends Mortgage Relief to Colorado Borrowers Affected by Floods MCLEAN, VA--(Marketwired - Sep 17, 2013) - Freddie Mac's (OTCQB: FMCC) full menu of mortgage relief policies for borrowers affected by disaster is being extended to homeowners whose homes were damaged or destroyed by the devastating floods in Colorado. Freddie Mac's disaster relief policies enable servicers to help borrowers with homes in presidentially declared Major Disaster Areas where federal Individual Assistance programs are being made available. Freddie Mac is one of the nation's largest investors in residential mortgages.

  Office buildings' sale shows 'how much the Colorado Springs market has improved,' seller says A Tulsa, Okla., real estate investment company has acquired the remaining five buildings in the Prime Center office complex in the Briargate Business Campus for $18.7 million. It's a deal that one of the sellers says reflects how much the local commercial real estate market has improved in recent years. GBR Properties Inc. bought buildings totaling 218,000 square feet at 2315-2355 Briargate Parkway on Wednesday from a joint venture of Boston-based The Davis Cos. and Colorado Springs-based Griffis/Blessing Inc.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Asking rents up in Colorado Springs and metro Denver in August

According to Trulia's price and rent monitor, Trulia's index for asking rents was up 1.1 percent in Colorado Springs and 6.1 percent in metro Denver, measured year over year from August 2012 to August 2013.

Also, from August 2012 to August 2013, the asking price for homes increased, year over year, 2.4 percent in Colorado Springs and 11.8 percent in metro Denver.

The differences in these increases likely reflect the differences in overall economic activity in metro Denver and Colorado Springs. metro Denver has shown a more robust recovery in the job market than Colorado Springs, and metro Denver appears to support more demand for real estate overall.

Latest disaster relief press release from State of Colo.

Gov. Hickenlooper makes $65.5 million more available for flood recovery, CDOT announces opening dates for highways

DENVER — Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013 Gov. John Hickenlooper signed an Executive Order today that makes $65.5 million more available for flood response and recovery. This brings the total state funds available to $91.5 million.

“There is great urgency to get flood recovery efforts underway as quickly as possible,” Hickenlooper said. “This money will help local communities rebuild now instead of waiting for other recovery dollars to arrive.”   
The governor today also joined the Colorado Department of Transportation to announce estimated opening dates for many highways. The ultimate goal is to complete temporary or permanent repairs to restore mobility on these state highway routes by Dec. 1, 2013.

The total cost of permanent repairs on Colorado’s highways is now estimated at $475 million.
The governor’s Executive Order signed today transfers $15.5 million from the Controlled Maintenance Trust Fund and $50 million from the Medical Services Premiums appropriation in the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing to the Disaster Emergency Fund. Current projections indicate there will be money available above the enacted budget to accommodate this change.

For Flood Victims, and Property Owners Looking to Rent to Flood Victims can assist with connecting flood victims in need of units with property owners looking to rent units:

Landlords, if you have available units, damaged units, or know someone we should contact to add units, please log in and update your listings immediately, call 1-877-428-8844 toll free or email

Residents in need of housing, please search unit listings at the site, call 1-877-428-8844 or email

Nat'l GDP growth: 1st Q estimate: 1.1 percent, 2nd Q: 2.5

The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) has issued the following news release today:

Real gross domestic product -- the output of goods and services produced by labor and property located in the United States -- increased at an annual rate of 2.5 percent in the second quarter of 2013 (that is, from the first quarter to the second quarter), according to the "third" estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.  In the first quarter, real GDP increased 1.1 percent.
The full text of the release on BEA's Web site can be found at

Housing News Digest, September 26

Boulder County flood victims facing housing crunch Housing, however, remains one of Laska's biggest concerns. Laska and other Boulder County residents affected by floods are encountering hurdles in efforts to find stable shelter. The efforts of hundreds of displaced residents to seek short-term housing have resulted in a further saturation in an already tight rental market and a shrinking of options for people such as Laska.

  Colorado flood victims face tight rental market As if flood victims didn't have enough to worry about, they face extremely tight rental markets in Boulder, Weld and Larimer counties. "It is going to be a challenge because this is not happening at a time when there is a bunch of rental housing," said Ryan McMaken, an economist with the Colorado Division of Housing.

  Inspectors checking homes damaged in Boulder during Colorado flooding BOULDER, Colo. - Inspectors with the city of Boulder are going door-to-door Monday checking the integrity of homes hit by the floods. Inspectors started with homes in the hardest hit areas, including the 100-year floodplain. According to the city's website, inspectors are looking for any potential safety threats including the structure itself, electrical problems and gas line problems.

  Lyons, Colo. Residents Unable To Return Home For 2-6 Months The disastrous flooding in Colorado brought even more bad news to Lyons residents Thursday, who learned during a town meeting that they might not be able to move back home for two to six months. Officials say the town's drinking water is contaminated with E. coli and is unsafe to drink, water and sewage lines will cost at least $1 million to repair, and roads and bridges are badly damaged, The Longmont Times-Call reported of the meeting.

  No speakers at hearing on rezoning for apartments The process is moved forward on the Elsey Partners rezoning request, which is needed for the developer to move forward with the proposal to construct a 140-apartment complex at 4201 S. Navajo St. The council passed the rezoning ordinance on first reading on Sept. 3, set the public hearing for the Sept. 16 council meeting but no resident spoke at the hearing.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Buildfax: July remodeling index up in U.S. West

The remodeling index in the West was up 16 percent, year over year, according to Buildfax. This increase was small compared to large jumps in activity in the Midwest and Northeast:
Seasonally-adjusted annual rates of remodeling across the country in July 2013 are estimated as follows: Northeast, 476,000 (down 32% from June and down 52% from July 2012); South, 1,303,000 (up 6% from June and up 4% from July 2012); Midwest, 1,076,000 (up 3% from June and up 80% from July 2012); West, 868,000 (up 8% from June and up 16% from July 2012).

See more. 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Top 10 priciest U.S. cities to rent an apartment

Denver is not on the list

1. San Fran
2. NYC
3. Boston
4. D.C.
5. LA
6 San Jose
7. Oakland
8. Miami
9. Seattle
10. San Diego

Nevertheless, we can note the rent growth in the Denver area, taken over the past two years, is at the highest level we've seen since the later years of the Dot-Com boom of 1998-2001. 

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

New data on releases of deeds of trust

Here is the link to the second quarter report on releases of deeds of trust.

Update: State agencies continue assistance to Coloradans in flooded areas

Office of Gov. John Hickenlooper

State agencies continue assistance to Coloradans in flooded areas

DENVER — Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2013 Gov. John Hickenlooper, Lt. Gov. Joe Garcia and Cabinet members continue to visit and assist flooded communities in many Colorado counties. State agencies are providing direct assistance for rescue and recovery, infrastructure, safety and ongoing efforts such as insurance and information regarding state lands and services in the affected areas.

State agency assistance includes:
Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management
The State Emergency Operations Center is managed and coordinated by the Office of Emergency Management with staffing from the Office of Preparedness and Office of Prevention and Security. The State EOC is currently running 24/7 operations at a Level I staffing. The Office of Emergency Management is providing two Regional Field Managers at each several of the local Emergency Operations Centers. The state pushes out updates on an emergency blog at,  at @COEmergency on Twitter and on Facebook at Preparedness information is shared at, at @READYColorado on Twitter and on Facebook at Division wide information is shared at

Department of Transportation
CDOT has highway closures continuing in parts of Northern Colorado, in Weld, Jefferson and Morgan counties and some areas in metro Denver. Crews worked through the weekend and continue to assess road and bridge conditions, begin cleanup and repairs where possible. Currently, CDOT estimates approximately 30 bridges have been destroyed, 20 have serious damage and with more roadways and bridges where the status is still unknown due to lack of access. CDOT is working on an initial damage assessment with information about how the agency will address ongoing response. For more information, visit,, on Facebook at, or call 511 and download CDOT Mobile.

Colorado National Guard
Military members from the Colorado National Guard, the U.S. Army’s 4th Combat Aviation Brigade from Fort Carson, Colo., and the Wyoming National Guard are currently supporting Colorado flood evacuation operations. As of 7:30 a.m. today, a total of 681 troops, 21 helicopters, 23 ground search-and-rescue teams, and 40 traffic-control points are operational. Their cumulative number of military aerial evacuations is currently 2,378; 62 of them by hoist. Additionally, 856 animals have been rescued by air. Colorado National Guardsmen have evacuated a cumulative 676 people by ground, along with countless animals. Currently, 24 teams with 84 vehicles are operating in Boulder, Lyons, Fort Collins/Larimer County, Estes Park, Jefferson County, Weld County and Loveland, and 267 Colorado National Guard members are currently manning 40 checkpoints in Fort Collins, Longmont, Greeley, Milliken/Evans, and Boulder in order to ensure public safety and protect property. Over the weekend, Colorado National Guardsmen also helped fill nearly 10,000 sandbags in Jefferson County to help civil authorities mitigate flooding effects.
According to Lance Blyth, U.S. Northern Command historian, the military response to the Colorado floods, dubbed “Operation Centennial Raging Waters,” is likely the biggest rotary-wing airlift mission since Hurricane Katrina.

Second Quarter 2013 Foreclosure Report

Here is the link to the second quarter's foreclosure report for Colorado.