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Vol. 6 No. 5

January 27, 2014

The mortgage lending year in review: How 2013 shaped our new normal

A home’s curb appeal is crucial because it can be the first thing buyers notice about a home. That’s why Realtors® rated exterior projects among the most valuable home improvement projects in the 2014 Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report. “With many factors to consider such as cost and time, deciding what remodeling projects to undertake can be a difficult decision for homeowners,” said National Association of Realtors® President Steve Brown, co-owner of Irongate, Inc., Realtors® in Dayton, Ohio. “Realtors® know what home features are important to buyers in their area, but a home’s curb appeal is always critical since it’s the first impression for potential buyers. That’s why exterior replacement projects offer the greatest bang for the buck. Projects such as entry door, siding and window replacements can recoup homeowners more than 78 percent of costs upon resale.” NAR’s consumer website highlights the results of the report in its “Best Bets for Remodeling Your Home in 2014” slideshow. The site also provides information and advice on various home improvement projects, including a guide to kitchen remodeling with the best payback and dozens of exterior replacement projects. Realtors® judged a steel entry door replacement as the project expected to return the most money, with an estimated 96.6 percent of costs recouped upon resale. The steel entry door replacement is

See Exterior Projects | 4

Protection Bureau (CFPB) issuing the first set of seven mortgage rules formulated to cease the practices that caused the financial and mortgage meltdown. Lenders spent the remaining months of 2013 analyzing, seeking clarifications and implementing best practices to meet the new regulations. While I believe the industry has a pretty good understanding of the new rules’ ramifications, it’s going to take some time to see their real impact. Additionally, the Senate confirmed Richard Cordray as the CFPB’s first director and, consequently, the first person to oversee the mortgage lending industry on a permanent basis.

See 2013 Review | 3

Nationwide housing production edges just under 1 Million units in December 18 percent from 2012,” said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. “As pent-up demand is unlocked and the labor market improves, we anticipate that 2014 should be an even better year for home construction. That’s good news for economic growth, as each new home that is built creates three full-time jobs and contributes to the tax base of local communities.” Single-family housing starts fell 7 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 667,000 units in December. Except for November, this was the highest monthly total for singlefamily starts in 2013. Meanwhile, multifamily starts fell 17.9 percent to 312,000 units in December. Regionally in December, combined single- and multifamily housing production rose 15 percent in the

Following an unusual surge in housing starts in November, nationwide housing production fell 9.8 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 999,000 units in December, according to newly released figures from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Census Bureau. “Total housing starts of just under 1 million units in December was the third-highest monthly level of production in 2013,” said Rick Judson, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and a home builder from Charlotte, N.C. “This rate is in line with our builder surveys, and tells us we are seeing a return to trend after a strong November.” “Last year was a good year for home building, with overall production up

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Last year also saw the Federal Housing Administration make significant changes to their insurance fund. As you may recall, in 2008 the FHA stepped in when conventional mortgage funding dried up. Because this included financing subprime loans previously covered by conventional lenders, the FHA incurred higher losses. The result: for the first time in history the FHA requested and received funds from the U.S Treasury in order to remain solvent. To shore up its shaky financial position, the FHA then increased premiums. Not surprisingly, the number of FHA loans

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West but fell 33.5 percent in the Midwest and 12.3 percent in the South. Production was unchanged in the Northeast. Overall permit issuance fell 3 percent to 986,000 units in December. Single-family permits dipped 4.8 percent to 610,000 units from a strong pace the previous month, while multifamily permits were unchanged at 376,000 units. The Northeast and West posted gains of 11.2 percent and 10.5 percent in permitting activity for December, while Midwest and South registered declines of 18.8 percent and 7.4 percent, respectively. The above article has been provided to you compliments of the National Association of Home Builders.

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Realtors rate exterior replacement projects among most valuable home improvements

2013 was a year of dramatic ups and downs for the mortgage lending industry. While refinancing initially boomed, once it tailed off, so too did a sizable amount of loan volume. On the regulatory side, lenders faced the task of interpreting and By Jon Paukovich Ent implementing — new federal regulations, which significantly impacted compliance costs. The biggest story of the year, of course, was the Consumer Financial

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Colorado Springs Real Estate Journal LLC PO Box 31395 | Colo Springs, CO 80931

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Director of Publishing Josh Olson Colorado Springs Real Estate Journal LLC (CSREJ) is locally owned and operated out of Colorado Springs, Colorado. CSREJ is published once a month and distributed through US Mail to nearly all members of The Pikes Peak Association of Realtors® and The Colorado Springs Housing & Building Association and many other industryrelated professionals. CSREJ is not responsible for any opinions or facts expressed by non-staff writers. CSREJ shall not be held responsible for any errors in advertising or editorial content. Realtor® is a registered trademark. Sometimes the word Realtor® or Realtors® will appear without the “®” symbol for the purpose of saving space. The registered trademark should be assumed if it is not present.

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Realtors, CFPB to monitor impacts of new mortgage rule New mortgage lending rules to protect consumers from risky loan products will take effect this Friday, and Realtors® will be on the front lines as homebuyers access safer mortgages that meet strong underwriting standards, said Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Richard Cordray at an event held today by the National Association of Realtors®. Cordray delivered prepared remarks about the historic consumer protections his agency will implement at the end of the week. “The Ability-to-Repay rule is straightforward. It puts behind us once and for all the kind of irresponsible lending that disrupted the housing market and so badly damaged our economy, and it provides strong new consumer protections while preserving needed access to mortgage credit,” he said of the rule and its Qualified Mortgage standard. NAR President-elect Polychron Chris Polychron, a Real-

tor® from Hot Springs, Ark., moderated the briefing and lauded the CFPB for creating a safer, more transparent lending environment with loans that are required to meet stringent underwriting standards. “These regulations will go a long way to protecting consumers from receiving loans that may be inappropriate for them and gives them additional legal protections. NAR supports these changes and has provided input throughout the rulemaking process,” he said. Cordray acknowledged concerns that the new rules could further constrain credit in an already tight lending environment. “Importantly, our rule also takes careful account of these access-to-credit issues,” he said. “Those lenders that have long upheld strong underwriting standards have little to fear from the Abilityto-Repay rule. Qualified mortgages cover the vast majority of loans made in today’s market, but they are by no means all of the mortgage market.” Cordray explained the basic criteria

for Qualified Mortgages, which cannot be made to a borrower with a debt-toincome ratio greater than 43 percent. “They also cannot have certain risky features, such as paying interest only or even negatively amortizing so that each month the consumer owes more than they did before and loans must have relatively reasonable points and fees,” he said. The rule includes a 3 percent cap on points and fees, which NAR believes unfairly discriminates against affiliated lenders who have to count many more items toward fees and points than large retail financial institutions, such as title insurance charges and escrow for homeowner’s insurance. “The problem is that under this rule, affiliated and non-affiliated firms are treated differently,” said Polychron. “It’s NAR’s view that this would be a disadvantage to many real estate affiliated lenders and reduce the choices available

See Mortgage Rule | 7

Realtors support delayed Fannie, Freddie fee increases “Realtors® applaud the decision by Federal Housing Finance Agency Director Mel Watt to delay increases in guarantee fees on loans purchased by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. In a September 2013 letter, NAR called on FHFA to refrain from changing its fee structure until completing an analysis to determine the effectiveness

of its fee pricing policy at bringing private enterprise back into the market. “We are pleased that Director Watt has agreed to halt implementation of the increases and conduct a thorough evaluation of the proposed changes and their likely impact on mortgage credit availability.” The National Association of Realtors®,

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“The Voice for Real Estate,” is America’s largest trade association, representing 1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries. © Copyright National Association of Realtors. Reprinted with permission.

January 27, 2014

National News

Honoring the legacy of MLK Jr. The life of civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. is closely linked to the National Association of REALTORS®. In the summer of 1966, he moved to Chicago and engaged in a series of marches, appealing to real estate practitioners in the city to end discriminatory housing practices. King's call for open housing led to the 1968 passage of the Fair Housing Act. In February 2007, underscoring its mission to make home ownership viable for all Americans, NAR made a $1 million contribution to the Washington, D.C. Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial Project Foundation. Pat Vredevoogd Combs, then NAR president, remarked: “NAR is an outspoken advocate for fair housing, an ally in the fight against predatory lending practices, and an organization that prides itself on building communities. We are proud to be a part of the effort to build a permanent home to honor Dr. King on our National Mall.” To this day, the Association continues to honor the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. NAR's Diversity & Fair Housing Program enables REALTORS® to help buyers of any cultural background achieve the American dream of homeownership. The association led industry efforts in 1988 to get important amendments made to enhance fair housing laws in the Fair Housing Act. © Copyright National Association of Realtors. Reprinted with permission.

Attention REALTORS®!

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dropped and conventional financing ticked up. The second quarter also ushered in an economic stimulus strategy shift when Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke announced the possible slowing down of Quantitative Easing. Three weeks later, mortgage rates increased about one percent and have stayed there. While the Fed did delay implementing the change for a few months, it ultimately announced a slow reduction of Mortgage Backed Security purchases for early 2014. Since then, we’ve seen mortgage rates at or near 12-month highs. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac also underwent a strategic change, per input from the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA). In response to the financial crisis, Fannie and Freddie gradually increased their pricing in an attempt to draw in more private capital. This tactic is expected to play out slowly and deliberately in the coming year. Despite these price increases, Fannie, Freddie, FHA, and VA loans still accounted for about 90 percent of the country’s first mortgages last year. At the year’s close the Senate confirmed the FHFA’s first permanent director, Mel Watt. Watt is poised to have enormous impact on mortgage financing. He has postponed mortgage pricing and fee increase proposals. And there is speculation he may also extend, or possibly expand, the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP). While major housing finance reform discussions are still being held, some speculate a decrease in governmental motivation for change as Fannie and Freddie generate billions of dollars in government profits. With all of these changes behind us, 2014 promises to be a very interesting year for the mortgage lending industry. It’s likely the new normal will include higher interest rates and higher compliance costs that could impact homeownership for this year – and many years to come.

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January 27, 2014

Colorado Springs Real Estate Journal


National News Exterior Projects from 1 consistently the least expensive project in the annual Cost vs. Value Report, costing little more than $1,100 on average.

Eight of the top 10 most cost-effective projects nationally, in terms of value recouped, are exterior projects. A wood deck addition came in second with an estimated 87.4 percent of costs recouped upon resale. Two different siding replacement projects also landed in the top 10, including fiber-cement siding, expected to return 87 percent of costs, and vinyl siding, expected to return 78.2 percent of costs. Out of the top 10 projects, the fiber-cement siding replacement project improved the most since last year, with costs recouped increasing by more than 15 percent. Two garage door replacements were also in the top 10; a midrange garage door replacement is expected to return 83.7 percent while an upscale garage door replacement follows closely at 82.9 percent of costs recouped. Rounding out the top exterior remodeling projects were two window replacements; a wood window replacement is estimated to recoup 79.3 percent of costs and a vinyl window replacement is estimated to recoup 78.7 percent of costs.

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According to the report, two interior remodeling projects in particular can recoup substantial value at resale. An attic bedroom is ranked fourth and is expected to return 84.3 percent of costs; nationally, the average cost for the project is just above $49,000. The second interior remodeling project in the top 10 is the minor kitchen remodel. The project landed at number seven and is estimated to recoup 82.7 percent of costs. Nationally, the average cost for the project is just under $19,000. The improvement project likely to return the least is the home office remodel, estimated to recoup 48.9 percent. For the report, Realtors® provided their insights into local markets and buyer home preferences within those

Colorado Springs Real Estate Journal

markets. For 2014, the national average cost-value ratio stands at 66.1 percent, a jump of 5.5 points over last year and the largest increase since 2005, when the ratio increased 6.1 points to reach a high of 86.7 percent. For the second consecutive year, Cost vs. Value data shows that the value of remodeling is up for all 35 projects included in the survey. Additionally, for the first time in four years, improved resale value of residential housing had more of an influence in the cost-value ratio than construction costs. A modest 2.2 percent increase in average national construction costs was more than offset by an 11.5 percent improvement in average national resale value. The 2014 Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report compares construction costs with resale values for 35 midrange and upscale remodeling projects comprising additions, remodels and replacements in 100 markets across the country. Data are grouped in nine U.S. regions, following the divisions established by the U.S. Census Bureau. This is the 16th consecutive year that the report, which is produced by Remodeling magazine publisher Hanley Wood, LLC, was completed in cooperation with NAR. “Every neighborhood is different and the desirability and resale value of a particular remodeling project varies by region and metro area. Before undertaking a remodeling project, homeowners should consult a Realtor® as they are the best resour“ce when deciding what projects will provide the most return upon resale,” said Brown. “Realtors® have a unique understanding of local markets, home features and buyer preferences and know that there are a variety of factors that affect a home’s value, such as location, condition of surrounding properties and regional economic climate.” Seven of the nine regions covered in the report outperformed the national average, a distinct improvement over 2013, when just four regions performed better than average. Once again, the Pacific region, consisting of Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington, led the nation with an average cost-value ratio of 88 percent, due mainly to strong resale values. The next best performing region was West South Central with 76.4 percent, followed by three regions tied at 74.6 percent: South Atlantic, which improved from 63.7 percent in 2013, New England, which improved from 56.2 percent in 2013, and East North Central, which improved from 54.8 percent in 2013. To read the full project descriptions and access national and regional project data, visit “Cost vs. Value” is a registered trademark of Hanley Wood, LLC. The above article has been provided to you compliments of the National Association of Home Builders.

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January 27, 2014

Colorado Springs Real Estate Journal


National News

NAR extends alliance with Chrysler Group LLC Part of the cost of doing business as a real estate agent is spending a considerable amount of time driving from one property to another to assist clients. To help members who are always on the go, the National Association of Realtors® is pleased to announce a two-year extension of its agreement with Chrysler Group LLC, as NAR’s official automobile manufacturer through the REALTOR Benefits® Program. Through the partnership with Chrysler, Realtor® members and staff of local, state and national associations or boards of Realtors® and their immediate family members will continue to receive exclusive savings and benefits, like

a $500 cash allowance on the purchase or lease of select new Chrysler, Jeep®, Dodge, Ram and now select Fiat® models, through 2015. “NAR is Realtors®’ business advantage. This agreement with Chrysler Group is a natural fit, and we are pleased to continue our relationship with them for another two years,” said NAR President Steve Brown, co-owner of Irongate, Inc. Realtors® in Dayton, Ohio. “Our members know that having reliable transportation is a vital part of bringing value to buyers, sellers and investors. Receiving discounts and service benefits on some of the most recognizable and dependable automobile brands

in the world means Realtors® can spend less time focused on their travel needs and more time focused on their clients. Altogether, Realtors® taking advantage of this program receive the value of their NAR membership dues for more than six years.” In addition to the $500 cash allowance, members are also eligible for a free, two-year “On The Job” service contract with their lease or purchase, which includes eight oil changes (including diesel), lube and filter – worth nearly $300. For more information and program details, visit © Copyright National Association of Realtors. Reprinted with permission.


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January 27, 2014

National News

Builder confidence slips one notch in January Builder confidence in the market for newly built, single-family homes fell one point to 56 in January from a revised December reading of 57 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI), released today. “Following an unexpected jump last month, builder confidence has essentially leveled out and is holding at a solid level,” said NAHB Chairman Rick Judson, a home builder from Charlotte, N.C. “Many markets continue to improve and this bodes well for future home sales.” “Rising home prices, historically low

mortgage rates and significant pent-up demand will drive a continuing, gradual recovery in the year ahead,” said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. “However, the pace of the recovery could be stronger were it not for rising construction costs and inaccurate appraisals that are keeping some home sales from going through.” Derived from a monthly survey that NAHB has been conducting for 25 years, the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index gauges builder perceptions of current single-family home sales and sales expectations for the next six months as

Mortgage Rule from 2

left unedited, could potentially create an ossified underwriting system that may be inappropriate for the next generation of homebuyers. “We need to make sure the rules aren’t creating unintentional barriers to access,” she said. Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist, explained the future of homeownership depends on greater access to credit. “Over the past eight years, homeownership in the U.S. has decreased while many in the growing population have turned to renting instead of buying a home. We need to ensure that good, credit worthy renters can someday have the appropriate access to credit so they can build equity through Yun homeownership.” Barry Zigas, the director of housing policy for the Consumer Federation of America, applauded the CFPB for listening to stakeholders across the country to create a meaningful rule to protect consumers. “Consumers are finally going to be in an environment where their ability to repay a loan will be the fundamental determining factor about whether they’ll get a loan or not. This is a terrific week for Americans,” he said. NAR will continue to monitor the rule’s impact on consumers, including the important new protections, and will work closely with CFPB and others to ensure that consumers have access to affordable mortgage credit.

to consumers of where they can get a mortgage, and because the unaffiliated lender must still use a title company, the consumer pays the same amount either way.” Cordray said that Congress drew a line on points and fees, but that going forward, regulators, consumers and Realtors® can monitor the market and evaluate the cap’s impact on access to credit. “It means a great deal to our new Consumer Bureau to know that NAR has members with boots on the ground in communities both small and large all across the U.S. We urge [Realtors®] to help us spread the word about how consumers can make the most of this new agency,” said Cordray. Following Cordray’s remarks, leading housing policy experts participated in a panel discussion about the new Abilityto-Repay and Qualified Mortgage rule. The panelists offered divergent views about the potential impact the rule might have on the overall housing market, and suggested that the lending industry is prepared for implementation. Jeff Kibbey, primary legal counsel for Century Mortgage Company, asserted that the new rule will restrict lending by at least 10 percent, and higher than that in some regions, which will create some difficulties in our economic recovery as a result of the QM rule. Economist Ann Schnare, principal at AB Schnare, LLP, emphasized that some of the guidance in the rule to help lenders calculate income, debt, and assets, if

“good,” “fair” or “poor.” The survey also asks builders to rate traffic of prospective buyers as “high to very high,” “average” or “low to very low.” Scores for each component are then used to calculate a season-

“Many markets continue to improve and this bodes well for future home sales.” ally adjusted index where any number over 50 indicates that more builders view conditions as good than poor. All three HMI components declined in January. The index gauging current

sales conditions edged one point lower to 62, while the index gauging expectations for future sales fell two points to 60. The index gauging traffic of prospective buyers fell three points to 40. Looking at the three-month moving averages for regional HMI scores, the Northeast and West each rose four points to 42 and 63, respectively, while the South held steady at 56. The Midwest fell a single point to 58. The above article has been provided to you compliments of the National Association of Home Builders.

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January 27, 2014

Colorado Springs Real Estate Journal


Local News

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advertising Classic Homes broke ground on the Inaugural St. Jude Dream Home® house to be raffled for the benefit of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. The home has an estimated value of $415,000 and will be located in the Banning Lewis Ranch community in Colorado Springs, CO. The five bedrooms, 3.5 bath, 3 car garage home features a one foot taller 9’ basement walls , two gas fireplaces, gas cooktop, upgraded stainless steel appliances with gas cooktop, granite countertops in the kitchen and master bath, and covered patio. Representatives of Classic Homes, KKTV 11 News, Banning Lewis Ranch, members of Epsilon Sigma Alpha and national sponsor Shaw Floors, were all in attendance for the momentous occasion. Classic Homes is excited to be the builder of the Inaugural St. Jude Dream Home®. “Not too many of us can say that our lives have not been touched by cancer in some way. It is always an anxious situation and it is especially tragic and frightening when a child is involved,” said Jon Carlson, Construction Manager for Classic Homes. “The partnership we have formed between Classic Homes and St. Jude could be life changing for someone. We feel compelled to take action. It is a humbling experience and we at Classic are proud to be associated with St. Jude in the fight against childhood cancer.” To learn more about the St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway in Colorado Springs or to be involved as a sponsor please visit

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REALTOR® Day at the Capitol: Wednesday, February 26th Don’t miss the 2014 REALTOR® Day at the Capitol on Wednesday, February 26 at the McNichols Building and the State Capitol. Based on feedback received from local leadership, we have completely revamped this event and are very excited for you to attend. We are offering Capitol Tours and Meetings with Legislators as part of the selections to help craft an educational and entertaining day. This is a great opportunity for you to learn about and discuss important policy issues affecting the real estate industry this upcoming year, as well as hear from legislative leaders and network with your legislators. Pre-registration is $55 and includes lunch and an afternoon program. For more details, or to register today, visit © Copyright Colorado Association of Realtors. Reprinted with permission.

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Colorado Springs Real Estate Journal

January 27, 2014


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Colorado Springs Real Estate Journal


Local News

Reminder on temporary signs The New Year is here and while looking forward to working with clients, new and old, it is also time to review the temporary sign code ordinance and how it could affect your business. The temporary sign code ordinance is a result of citizen’s complaints that there were too many temporary signs of all kinds cluttering the City. As a result, the city adopted the following guidelines for temporary signs such as Open House and Directional Signs: • Open House and Directional signs may be placed in the public right of way (area between sidewalk & street) from noon Friday to noon Monday (max of 2 sq. ft. and placed 2 ft. from curb). • You must obtain permission from the owner when placing the sign in the right of way in front of their property. • You may place a sign on private property, with owner permission, at any time for as long as you wish. • Signs are not allowed on medians. • Signs are NOT allowed in the downtown core area (Walnut east to Wahsatch & Rio Grande north to Willamette). • Signs placed in the public right of way during weekdays or for longer durations of time will require a permit (called a Temporary Use Permit), issued by the City. • Signs not in compliance with this ordinance will be confiscated without notice and destroyed by Code Enforcement.

These rules were renewed on March 13, 2012 for an indefinite duration. To Obtain a Permit: contact the City Zoning office - 385-5905 or 30 S. Nevada Avenue, 3rd floor zoning office. Cost is $6 for each permit. Ask for Sue Matz or email her at The City is taking a stricter stance on sign violations and have hired a full time sign enforcement agent. If everyone works together and abides by the current sign code ordinance, then we will not have to worry about stricter regulations concerning our Open House and Directional signs in the future. For more information about the sign code in general, visit www.springsgov. com under Land Use Review. The above article has been supplied by the Pikes Peak Association of Realtors®. For more information log on to or call 719-633-7718.

New forms and a new process for 2014 Every year at this time we have to learn the changes in our contracts for the next year, but it won’t happen next year. This is a result of what happened last year. Approv ing changes to our Forms is a difficult process. The five Real Estate Commissioners are at a disadvantage as By Paul Goldenbogen Keller Williams they cannot disPartners Realty cuss anything — related to the Commission due to the Open Meetings Law. All of their discussions must be at a public meeting, posted in advance. In addition, the Commission does not meet every month as in the past. Last year the Commission was not prepared. The Commission has the authority to approve Forms and Changes. In my opinion they did not understand the forms changes process. The Forms Committee is the Commission’s subcommittee designed to prepare forms for their approval. When the forms were submitted for their approval last year, they did not agree with the wording of many of the forms submitted by the Forms Committee and did not agree with each other about what to change. The forms could not be approved. The Forms Committee had to review individual Commissioners recommendations. Those changes had to be reworked into the forms; then an emergency public Hearing had to be set

up by the Division of R. E. Some forms and changes were approved and some were not. As a result of all that, The Division of Real Estate implemented a streamlined process using a screening subcommittee, a drafting subcommittee and the full Forms Committee. Changes were limited. All Forms committee work was completed earlier. The Commission was now able to follow the work as it progressed. This year forms were approved on time in an orderly manor. The Division of Real Estate, The Commission and the Forms Committee have a new vision of, not only how the changes will occur but also how often. There are NO changes planned until 2016. Moving forward there will be a limited number of forms and a limited number of changes that will be made at any one time. The Division is currently working with a large group of Real Estate licensees taking input from them on the forms. Over the next two years the Forms Committee will be looking into ways to reduce the length of the forms and wording them so that it will be easer for the public to understand them. To better understand the new forms and the changes, all the information you need can be found in Levine’s Bible for Colorado Real Estate Contracts, prepared by Kent J. Levine, Chairman of the Colorado Forms Committee. Go to The Bradford Publishing Co. By Paul Goldenbogen, CRB, GRI.

GOT NEWS? Let us know! CommerCial & residential

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Colorado Springs Real Estate Journal

538-9900 January 27, 2014

Come Visit the G.J. Gardner Homes Model and Take a Walk on the Modern Side Best Craftsmanship Award Best Master Suite Award Come check out our ‘Values That Matter’ designs. We have 1/3 to 1 acre lots available. 10578 Pictured Rocks Dr. | Model Home Hours: Monday through Saturday: 10-5, Sunday: 12-4 | 719.495.8800 Or call the Markowski Team at 719.602.9381 or 719.602.9472 for a private showing after hours.

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Over 30 new lots available in Meridian Ranch Filing 2! For more information, call 719.495.8800 or visit January 27, 2014

Colorado Springs Real Estate Journal


New Award-Winning Homes and New Home Sites by Reunion Homes in Lorson Ranch Every builder will tell you they build the best homes in town. But, our Parade awards tell you that everyone else thinks we build the best homes in town!

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Colorado Springs Real Estate Journal

$304,585 | Available in February Floor Plan: Cascade Style: 2-Story | Fin. Sq. Ft.: 2795

January 27, 2014

On the Move 17 years ago and made Colorado Springs her home shortly after. Her "client first" philosophy has required her to continually improve her skills and how she conducts her business. Outside of her accomplished career, Tammi is the proud mother of one son and two daughters, and grandmother to five! She is active within the industry, her community, and her church.

Murphy, Gabriel, Stuart, Lee Keller Williams Partners Keller Williams Partners would like to welcome Mike Murphy to our family. Mike is a native to Colorado Springs. He has close ties with military bases across the country. Mike loves fishing, hunting, snowmobiling, waterskiing and being with family. Mike can’t wait to explore the new freedoms of the real estate!

Keller Williams Partners would like to welcome Frank Lee to our family. Frank has called Colorado Springs his home for the past 5 years. He has an extensive career with the U.S. Army as a Chaplain. Frank sees Real Estate as an interesting and fulfilling new career path and is excited to begin his new adventure.

Please join us in welcoming Melissa Gabriel to the Keller Williams Partners Family! Melissa has called Colorado Springs home for 14 years. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master’s degree in Counseling and Human Services. Melissa is excited to begin her new adventure in Real Estate and is looking forward to having a career she loves.

Fischer, Lang, Sasso, Turner ERA Shields Real Estate

Keller Williams Partners Realty would like to welcome Tammi Stuart to our family. She comes to us highly valued, offering over 25 years of experience in sales, new construction, real estate and product management. Tammi moved to Colorado

ERA Shields Real Estate recently announced the addition of four new broker associates to their growing team of real estate professionals serving consumers in El Paso, Pueblo, Teller, Douglas and Elbert counties.

January 27, 2014

"We are honored to welcome Cherri Fischer, Deanna Lang, Connee Sasso and Michael Turner to our experienced agent team," said Cathi Sullivan, General Manager/Vice President with ERA Shields Real Estate. "They all bring tremendous industry knowledge to our team and proven leadership that will certainly benefit our company and our customers along the front range." As part of the ERA Shields Real Estate team of nearly 100 real estate professionals Fischer, Lang, Sasso and Turner will be able to offer homebuyers and sellers a wide and unique variety of valuable products and services ERA and ERA Shields has to offer. A few products and services include online listings, home warranty plans, the ERA Sellers Security Plan and our local, exclusive 10K award home listing program which all contribute to a faster, more efficient and quality buying and selling process.

Skelton, Skudlarek The Real Estate Network A start to an exciting New Year, The Real Estate Network, Inc. is proud to announce the addition of Holly Skelton and Donna Skudlarek to their sales force. Holly Skelton has 14 years experience in real estate sales specializing in residential, investment, relocation and senior real estate. With 24 years background as a real

Colorado Springs Real Estate Journal

estate closer for various title companies previous to real estate sales, she prides herself on customer relations and is a stickler for detail. Her passions besides real estate are golf, golf and more golf! Donna Skudlarek has over 20 years of sales experience in various venues. She has a passion for sales and doing the right thing for people. Donna prides herself on hard work, commitment & dedication to her clients, who in turn, become her friends for life. Her passions besides real estate are interior design and traveling.

Bill Hourigan The Platinum Group Bill moved to Colorado Springs in 1984 after graduating from UNC. He fell in love with the Pikes Peak region while competing in rugby against the USAFA. He has been a full time Realtor serving the greater CS area since 1992. Bill and his wife Pam have five children who are all in, or graduated from college. Bill loves the real estate business and has a passion for turning clients into "raving fans"! His primary goal is to provide his clients with a level of service and care that far surpasses any service they experienced in the past. To achieve this, Bill understands that his focus must always be on "his clients' best interests".

Send your 150-word (or less) new agent bio and photo to:


Local Expert

Resolving to boost home sales

Empire Title of Colorado Springs

5755 Mark Dabling Blvd., Ste 110, Colorado Springs, CO 80919 Phone: (719) 884-5300 - Fax: (719) 884-5304 WWW.ETCOS.COM

So, you say you want a Resolution … we-ell, you know: we all want to change the world. Don’t you know it’s gonna be alright … alright … alright … yeah! Less than a month into the New Year, and the immediate future looks to have some strong promise - more so if your resolution is to increase your business, but likely a little less if you’ve picked the #1 or #2 Resolutions: Losing weight and getting organized, respectively. A study by the By Michael Podoyak University of Scranton revealed that one-fourth of the people Empire Title — making resolutions don’t maintain them through the first week of the year; over half will not keep them past six months. Now, if you are resolving to increase your production, this may be the easiest year to do it for a while. There were 680 homes sold in December 2013; and when averaged over the previous 12-month period, the current number of local home sales is still at its highest point since the summer of 2007.

Empire Title of Woodland Park

350 N. Pine St., Woodland Park, CO 80863 P.O. Box 9004, Woodland Park, CO 80866 Phone: (719) 686-9888 - Fax: (719) 686-8208 WWW.EMPIREWP.COM Our Associates are here to serve you in every capacity possible. It is what made us ...

If you feel that we continue to meet and exceed your expectations, please consider voting for Empire Title as …

Also in December, there were 3,223 properties listed in the Pikes Peak MLS. When averaged over the previous 12 months, the difference between the active number of listings and the number of homes sold is as big as it has been since the summer of 2006. This helps explain why the current inventory in number of months is at 3.58 months overall, well below the benchmark of 6 months and the lowest level in 12 years. In fact, the months-of-inventory is below 6 months for every price range below $500K.

Number of Sales With Active Listings Previous 12 Month Average 7,000

1,200 Number of Sales

Active Listings 6,000





(City Life category)

4,000 600 3,000 400

Thank you very much for your Trust & Loyalty!

2,000 200


































As it has always been and will always be:




Don’t forget that Empire has exclusive programs to assist with your business:

Active Listings

Number of Sales



Our final chart presents an even clearer picture as to how our local real estate is selling by price range - I guess you might say it increases the resolution. Although fully onethird of the homes sales for 2013 were in the price ranges below $250K, the most popular price ranges were actually from $200K-$400K – making up about 43% of all the home sales last year. Barely 10% of the homes sold in 2013 were priced above $400K. If that little bit of data doesn’t shake your resolve in high priced listings, I don’t know what will. But certainly if I were you, I’d resolve to take advantage of this attractive housing market before somebody else beatles you to it!

Colorado Springs Real Estate Journal

January 27, 2014

Around the Corner Saturday, Feb 8

Tuesday, Feb 18

2014 Real Estate Contract 8:30am-12:30pm @ Empire Title 719-884-5300

Home Buying (for clients) 10am-12pm @ Ent (Galley Service Center) 719-574-1100 ext 6670

NARPM Meeting 11am-1pm @ Clarion Hotel (314 W. Bijou) Alex Yoder, 719-213-9100

Wednesday, Feb 5

Wednesday, Feb 12

Wednesday, Feb 19

HUD & GFE (Followed by Happy Hour) 2pm-4pm @ Empire Title 719-884-5300

HBA Breakfast with the Builders 8:30am-11am @ Freedom Expo Center

Mandatory Commission Update 8:30am-12:30pm @ Empire Title 719-884-5300

Understanding CFPB 10:30am-12pm @ Legacy Title

Mandatory Commission Update 9am-1pm @ Empire Title Woodland Park 719-686-9888

Hard Money Lending 2pm-4pm @ Empire Title 719-884-5300

Power Net 2.0 1:30pm-3:30pm @ Legacy Title

Legacy Title Happy Hour 4:30pm-7pm @ Navajo Hogan

Thursday, Feb 13

Thursday, Feb 20

Thursday, Feb 6 Masterminds Networking Group 7:30am-9am @ Canon National Bank RSVP to David Alley, 719-632-3526 B.L.E.E.P. (Black Forest & Eastern Marketing Group) 8:30am-10am @ The Grill at Latigo Trail Equestrian Center. Roxene, 495-6213 Mandatory Commission Update 8:30am-12:30pm @ Empire Title 719-884-5300

Women's Council of Realtors 11am-1pm @ Ivywild School Michele: 719-633-7718 2014 Real Estate Contract 8:30am-12:30pm @ Empire Title 719-884-5300

Intro to Title & Escrow 9am-11am @ Legacy Title

Friday, Feb 21 Independent Brokers Forum 9am-10:30am @ PPAR Annual Commission Update 8:30am-12pm @ PPAR

Wednesday, Feb 26 2014 Real Estate Contract 1pm-5pm @ Empire Title Woodland Park 719-686-9888

Thursday, Feb 27 Social Enterprise Workshop 8am-12pm @ Glen Eyrie 719-636-5076 Events subject to change. Due to space, please check with event/class holders early for more detailed information on cost, CE credits, sponsors and registration dates.


us your



builder me Ho



Color ad o’ s

CTM eContracts - Intermediate 1:30pm-3:30pm @ Legacy Title

Farm and Land 8:30am @ Rudy's on 8th Street Greg Wolff: 719-590-1711

HBA Home & Garden Show (thru 23rd) See Hours on web @ Freedom Expo Center


Wednesday, Jan 29


January 27, 2014

Colorado Springs Real Estate Journal



Lim ited Inc $10 enti ,00 ve 0* This is it. The finale. The moment when the music reaches its crescendo…the fireworks burst across the night sky…and lost loves rush together in a final embrace.

Only 7 Lots Remain, And When They’re Gone, It’s So-long, Sonoma.

With only seven lots remaining, The Village of Sonoma will soon be closing its gates to newcomers. But the good news is, there’s still time to find the home of your dreams in this extraordinary Flying Horse community. Yes, like all great performances, we’ve saved the best for last. But with limited inventory, and an even more limited $10,000 discount/incentive on our remaining lots*, you’ll want to act quickly. So call and schedule a private tour today. The Village at Sonoma. Maintenance-free, luxury living. Only in Flying Horse. (719) 495-7297

Classic Homes Sales Center 1908 Turnbull Drive in The Village of Verona

*Offer applies only to the Village of Sonoma. Classic is still offering a large variety of luxury homes in the other neighborhood villages.

CSREJ - January  

January 27, 2014