May 2020

May 11, 2020

By Ross

My, what uncertain times.

The real estate market in Fort Collins and the rental and property management market has been interesting in the last few month to say the least. We went through a period where we could not show properties, everything had to be done virtually. It was only week or so ago that showings became allowed again.  Regarding property management, the greatest impact I have seen is on commercial properties. With the requirement of being closed for weeks, many of the tenants in our managed commercial properties have struggled. Luckily, I have good clients and they have worked with these tenants to help them through these times. I have had clients waive rent for a full month. I have had clients reduce rent to 50% under the understanding that the balance of the rent will be paid back over the following months as soon as the businesses are able to open full time.

The residential tenants seem to be stable. The troublesome ones are always trouble, and they always struggle, but the good ones, are still paying the rent on time.  If they have lost their jobs, they have picked up part-time work to replace part of their income. But I do have some situations where tenants are only able are paying one half their rent. Now, there is a moratorium on evictions and foreclosures, so the more everyone works together the better we will come through all this.

The first quarter statistics are starting to come through for 2020. On a rolling 12-month average, the median sales price of a single-family residence in Fort Collins went up 2.6%. The average sales price went up 4.7%. The same time, the last 12 months, the median sales price of a townhouse or condominium fell by 0.2%, but the average sales price was up 6.8%. The inventory, or month supply of housing on the market, increased from 1.4 months to 1.7 months for single-family homes, and from 1.4 months to 2.2 months for townhouses and condominiums, which is a 57% increase.

Greeley reports that the median sales price of a single-family residence went up 5% over the past 12 months. The average sales price went up 7%. The median sales price of a townhouse or condominium went up 2%, and the average sales price went up 2.7%.

Loveland reports statistics like Fort Collins. The median sales price of a single-family residence went up 2.8% in the past 12 months, and the average sales price was a -0.8%. Townhouses and condominiums seem stronger with the median sales price being 5.2% and the average sales price been 6.5%.

So overall the market is still positive and property values are still going up although much less than we are used to from the past few years. I had a client, who owns a residential rental property that we manage, that is going to have a turnover in tenants in July, ask if he should sell the property or re-rent it. That is a tough call, but there is a lot of uncertainty in the market right now. There is a lot of unemployment, but I feel most of it is only temporary. Interest rates are at historic lows, and there are glimmers of hope around the world with the coronavirus. I feel that once the virus is gone, and people have gone back to work, we are still going to enjoy record low interest rates, I believe buyers will flood back into the market, which will push values. But, as the coronavirus has taught us, it is difficult to predict the future.

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