In Fort Collins, the median home price dropped from $342,250 in June to $335,500 in July. The median sale price in July of last year was $290,000. Thousands of home buyers entered the Fort Collins real estate market as the Great Recession came to a close in 2009. Some saw renewed financial opportunity.
Single-family home sales show the average sales price for a single-family detached home in Fort Collins in 2014 was $325,044, up 15.3 percent over two years. In 2012, the average sales price was $281,945. Fort Collins' home prices are rising at more than twice the national average.
The average sale price for a single-family detached home in Fort Collins last year was $325,044, up 8.6 percent from 2013 and up 15.3 percent from 2012. The median, or midpoint, last year was $285,450.
The housing price surge — caused by a paucity of homes for sale; a shortage of new homes coming into the market; rising construction, land and water costs; and a landlocked city that can't expand its boundaries — puts Fort Collins in the midst of a modern day land rush.
Builders are trying to catch up after nearly eight years of inactivity, but most new construction is selling for more than $300,000, out of the price range of many middle-income buyers.
The city's median household income of $79,300 for a family of four rose this year for the first time in three years. But wages are not keeping pace with home prices.
Nearly a third of Fort Collins residents earn less than $49,999 and about half earn less than $74,999, according to the American Community Survey's five-year estimates.
That creates a disconnect between new homes being built and those who can qualify to buy them. Which in turn creates enormous demand for lower-priced homes.
In this white-hot market, nearly 70 percent of homes sold in April went for list price or more. In 2012, only 38 percent of homes sold in Fort Collins went for list price or more.
Lower- to middle-income earners find themselves up against cash offers, investors seeking to flip or rent out homes, multiple offers before homes even go on the market, and other buyers hoping to secure the dream of home ownership.
In and around Fort Collins, average home prices in January through April hovered at just more than $316,000, with the median at $294,000. The data includes townhomes and condos, which are seeing year-over-year price increases at about 21.5 percent, compared to 16 percent for single-family detached properties.
Rising home prices and stagnant wages are fueling concerns about a looming downturn in the Fort Collins real estate market. From January through March, the median sales price for houses sold in Fort Collins was $314,500. Year-over-year, the median was up 24 percent.