The Real Estate Encyclopedia
Boulder Real Estate
Category - Real Estate Information Sources - Real Estate Information General

Boulder real estate - is it a good time to buy or should you wait?  According to IRES, there are 638 single-family homes on the market today in the City of Boulder, 94 (about 15%) of which are under contract.  That leaves 544 Boulder homes for sale, and buyers are asking whether it's a good time to buy a Boulder home?

There are so many distractions in the current real estate market that it can be hard to see the forest for the trees.  It's easy and maybe even popular to pick the negativity "flavor of the day" and extrapolate that into a news story that the real-estate sky is falling.  It's sensational and somehow news-worthy that " . . . home prices fell last month by x%, the biggest drop since . . . the month before."  It's much more challenging to look past the momentary blip(s) and the sensationalism, and evaluate the real estate market on a more long-term basis.

Buying a home used to involve at least medium-term commitment; most buyers bought homes to live in, and viewed them as their home, not as short-term fix-n-flips, investments, and cash-out refi piggy banks.  This shift in the way homes are sometimes viewed today, coupled with the challenges we've faced in the real estate market in the last few years, has caused some buyers to overlook the long-term benefits of owning a home.

Real estate is, by its nature, an illiquid asset.  It's not a stock or a bond that can be bought and sold in the open market on a daily - or even hourly basis.  On a short-term basis, owning a home can easily be viewed as a losing proposition, not because it's a bad investment per se, but because viewing it on a short-term basis is generally inconsistent with the nature of owning a home.  However, when viewed on a more long-term basis, home ownership has delivered positive results.

Here are some compelling home-price figures for the City of Boulder from Zillow.com.  The following chart represents the Zillow Home Value Index for Boulder, CO single-family homes over the past 5 years, broken down by area - North Boulder, Central Boulder and South Boulder:

boulder real estate, boulder market, boulder homes for sale

While it's interesting that Central Boulder has the highest price, followed by North Boulder then South Boulder, the most critical things to focus on from this data are the long-term trend line(s)!!  If you look at the price index month-over-month or even quarter-over-quarter . . . you see some declines.  Boulder home buyers: Please look at the year-over-year results, then look at the 5-year trend line(s) - all positive.

Buying a Boulder home should be viewed in the context of a long-term investment.  When you consider the current federal tax incentives for home buyers, historically-low mortgage interest rates, and the long-term benefits of owning a home, the decision of whether to buy or wait becomes much clearer.  There's an old saying in real estate: "Don't wait to buy . . . buy and wait."  Waiting is not without its risks; not only are you taking the risk of trying to time the market, but you're also taking an interest-rate risk.  If you plan on staying in your new home for a while - and you should - the interest-rate risk is significant.

The principle demonstrated here not only applies to Boulder real estate, but Boulder Valley homes for sale in Longmont, Niwot, Lafayette, Louisville and many other places.  If you have questions or would like more information about Boulder real estate, please feel free to call 303-441-5647.



Phil Boren's Profile
Phil Boren is a 26-year veteran real estate Broker and Realtor with RE/MAX of Boulder, the #1 RE/MAX office in the U.S.  Read more here.


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