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Challenges and Opportunities

The Real Estate Market in Crested Butte has been slow so far in 2014.  As you can see from the charts below, we are well behind 2013 through April.  There are 44 additional properties under contract for another $24 million+ (asking price), so we could gain some ground in May.

April 2014 Residential Dollar Volume Chart April 2014 Residential Sales Numbers Chart

 There are several reasons for this slow down and several things that are happening to turn it around.

* The rumored sale of the ski area put everything on hold while people waited to see what was going to happen.  Sellers thought it might create an increase in prices and buyers weren’t sure what it meant for the opportunities.  By the time it was announced that the sale was not going through, the market had lost some momentum and it is taking some time to get it back.

* The market has improved, but buyers and sellers do not agree on how much.  Sellers are feel that prices have increased and don’t want to accept offers that aren’t significantly higher than last years prices.  Sellers should temper their enthusiasm a bit and really look at recent sales to get a better idea of what makes sense for their property today. Buyers don’t want to accept that they have missed the bottom of the market and are hesitant to pay more than other buyers have been able to pay for the last few years.  As we have more sales at higher prices, buyers will realize that in order to purchase a property, they have to start out with a competitive offer or they may lose out to someone else.   This is especially true because of the next item.

* Inventory is at the lowest point we have seen in at least 5 years.  The majority of buyers in the Crested Butte area are second homeowners or investors and these buyers do not “need” to buy a property here.  If buyers aren’t finding the perfect place that they want to buy, they are simply not buying anything.  On the flip side, many time multiple people make offers on the same property and only one party is successful in making a deal.  I believe that sellers have an opportunity to list their properties at higher prices than they could a year ago with the knowledge that there is less competition.

Without having a crystal ball, I can confidently say that this summer will start with more properties coming on the market at prices that are higher than we have seen recently.  The tougher part to predict is how buyers will react.  Buyers should look carefully at properties that fit their needs and consider it a good time to buy, even if prices are a bit higher than last year.  Lowball offers are no longer being welcomed by sellers as an opportunity to negotiate, but are being rejected with the feeling that the wait for a sale closer to the asking price will be short.  I don’t foresee Crested Butte real estate prices going back down in the next few years and likely will continue to creep up.

Now more than ever it is important to have someone who can help you navigate the market whether you are buying or selling.



Spring in Crested Butte.  The snow has been melting in the valleys, but people are still out enjoying the conditions in the backcountry.  Our Crested Butte kids are traveling around playing soccer & running track, but still aren’t able to practice on our fields. The town is replacing various sections of sidewalk so there are orange cones dotting the landscape.  We are gearing up for the Crested Butte School of Dance annual performances the weekends of the 9th and the 16th – yet another example of an activity in town with an incredible number of kids participating!  Town is slow and somewhat empty, but somehow May always feels very busy to me.

This year I am finally going to be rafting down the Grand Canyon with my family & some friends!  We have had the permit for 5 years and have been on the list for almost 20 so it really has been a long time coming.  I will be out of touch for a little more than two weeks from May 30 – June 17, but Maggie Dethloff will be available to assist anyone either in person or by phone or email.  I’ll send more information closer to the time, but please let me know if you know you are going to need assistance during that time.

Please let me know how I can assist you.  If anyone you know needs help with real estate in Crested Butte, please know that I am never too busy to get to know new people and am happy to help.  Recommending that your friends & family work with me is a wonderful compliment and I appreciate it.

I hope to see you in 2014!



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