I’m not a party bus kind of gal.
But I saw the bus tour of the Parade of Homes on Facebook, sponsored by the northern Colorado Women’s Council of Realtors and I thought, why not? I signed up and hopped on board at noon on a very hot day last week and headed off to Berthoud, CO.
The bus was loud and I was definitely the oldest real estate agent on board but the A/C was working and there was plenty of water along with other offerings. But day drinking is not a skill I possess. Regardless, bus touring Parade of Homes is an efficient way to experience what builders are envisioning for the next generation of homes.
Modern Farmhouse or Mountain Retreat?
Everyone had their favorite homes whether is was the clean white & gray lines of a modern farmhouse interpretation or the dark warm woods and arched stone entries of a Colorado retreat.
We visited just a few of the homes available for the Parade of Homes but we were hosted by the listing agents who answered many of our questions. I talked to one knowledgeable agent about the buyers looking at his ranch-style, model home with a walkout basement in Mariana Ridge in Loveland. He says it used to be about a 70/30 ratio, residents vs. out-of-staters. In the last couple of years, he estimates that 80% of his buyers are from other states, mostly California, Arizona, & Texas.
Homes that Make Sense
The model home we saw had almost a full kitchen in the basement and was priced just under $800,000. Finally–a home that works for retirees. They can either welcome their kids and grand kids for extended stays or have a caretaker who lives in, attending to the owners as we live longer and longer. These are homes that make sense.
The price leaves out a lot of people but there’s still a substantial category of boomers who have the money. Many boomers have long ago paid off their homes or owe a minimal amount. They can now get exactly what they want.
We also saw a 10,000 square foot resale on nearly four acres that could house a NFL team. The price was just over $2M–a bargain–especially butting up to a small lake. It needs a redo but I can see a multi-generational family or a maybe a commune (?), with dogs and cats, a large garden, volleyball court, soccer AND baseball field or maybe a dog agility course….. .
Prices may be still trending upwards but in the price range over $600,000, the value is huge. And retirees living in other states realize that Colorado is still a bargain, despite the last few years of appreciation. If you live in Colorado and have been considering selling that 2-story or thirty-year old ranch with the small bedrooms, baths and kitchen you hate, you better think about it a little faster.