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89 Housing Articles | Page: | Show All

Must read: The Nation magazine sheds a suspicious light on the Interstate 70 upgrade plan

The Nation presents a dark take on how the government's plan to bury sections of Interstate 70 in Denver could destroy the character of historic neighbohoods. In short, residents lose and real estate investors win.

"The CDOT’s plan would condemn 56 homes and 17 businesses—a more extensive use of eminent domain than was required for the construction of the highway in the first place. It would also sever the neighborhoods during the decade of construction and open them to land-grabbing by developers."

The plan, the story contends, is an update of redlining because it would make many homeowners ineligible for FHA mortgages. 

"It already appears to be working. In addition to direct displacement by eminent domain, home values in GES have increased by 68 percent in the last two years (compared to 30 percent in the rest of Denver). This has displaced the neighborhoods’ renters, who are uniquely precarious—over 50 percent have no lease at all—as well as longtime homeowners who cannot afford the increased property taxes. The stormwater component of the plan also places Globeville back into the 100-year floodplain, making homeowners ineligible for FHA loans. The redlining returns."

Read author Caroline Tracey's full report here.
 

New York Times features Denver renter in story about evolving Airbnb rules

The New York Times set its story about Airbnb's evovling business model in Denver. North Park Hill's Jill Bishop serves as the perfect anecdote for a piece about how the profile of renters has changed as the company has sharpened the services it offers.

The piece starts like this:

"For nine years, Jill Bishop enjoyed the camaraderie of renting out her spare bedroom on Airbnb.Guests hung out on her comfy sofas. They dined together. They shared her bathroom, which was filled with half-empty shampoo bottles and an array of lotions.
Then, things changed.
Airbnb urged Ms. Bishop to make the bathroom look more like a hotel. New local regulations governing Airbnb meant she had to start collecting city lodging taxes, which made her feel awkward when she had to ask guests for money. And Airbnb began conditioning her to host people who are just looking for a place to sleep — not a home to share."

You can read the rest here.
 

ULC's Tony Pickett offers housing lessons to Oregon's Metro

Tony Pickett of Denver's Urban Land Conservancy recently spoke about affordability and equity in Portland.

Excerpt:

The Urban Land Conservancy, where Pickett has worked since 2013, has even more opportunity to create affordability in the Mile-High City. Started with a $15 million seed fund, the organization has grown over time to invest $70 million in 28 projects, generating over $400 million in redevelopment.

One of the conservancy's advantages has been the ability to move quickly to purchase prime sites as Denver undergoes a multi-billion dollar expansion of its rail transit system.

Pickett shared the example of the conservancy's Park Hill Village West development, on Denver's new A-Line commuter rail connecting downtown to Denver International Airport. Urban Land Conservancy purchased the site close to a planned station in a historically black neighborhood to create permanently affordable housing with easy access to the region's growing transit network. The development opened at about the same time as the rail line.

Read the rest here.

Inman offers tips for booming cities from Denver

The real estate news site looked at how housing inventory, affordability and other issues are being handled in Denver.

Excerpt:

Trends that metro Denver experienced last year due to housing demand are opportunities that real estate agents can leverage in growing cities such as Charleston, Houston, Raleigh, Fort Myers and Austin.

So, what can other markets projected to have skyrocketing populations in 2017 glean from Denver?

First, for perspective, our January 2016 market trends report stated: "Looking forward into 2016, the top concerns are tight inventory, home affordability, appraisal issues, tight credit and TRID." These issues all rose to the surface, and are the same issues facing many up-and-coming hot cities throughout the United States today.

Read the rest here.

Realtor.com pegs Denver as fourth-hottest housing market

The city ranked fourth on the list, after Vallejo, California, San Francisco and Dallas.

Excerpt:

"Spring has arrived early this year, at least in terms of the rapid decline in the age of inventory," Chief Economist Jonathan Smoke of realtor.com said in a statement. "Strong off-season demand powered new seasonal highs in prices and left us with a new low in available homes for sale. Potential sellers take note: This year is shaping up to favor you even more than last year."

Another indication of the continuing strength of buyer demand is that the median list price remains level at $250,000, which is a steep 9 percent higher than one year ago. If this figure holds by the end of the month, it would be a record for February. Buyers are also ramping up their search online: realtor.com saw the highest year-over-year increase in average views per listing since April 2015.

While nearly 425,000 new listings will have entered the market in February, there still aren't enough to meet buyer demand. In fact, the sharp double-digit decline in for-sale housing inventory observed since October is continuing.

Read the rest here.

NY Times covers I-70 expansion controversy

The story delved into the environmental and health hazards associated with the project.

Excerpt:

Each morning Yadira Sanchez and her three children awaken to the roar of traffic and the plumes of exhaust that spill from the highway that cuts through their neighborhood.

Now, Ms. Sanchez and her family are confronting a plan to triple the width of this state's main east-west artery, sending tens of thousands more cars by their door.

Denver was the fastest-growing large city in America in 2015, with a population of nearly 700,000, and the scene of a tech and marijuana boom that has drawn 1,000 new households a month. But as in other cities, its highways have not kept up with development. Many roads are crumbling, leaving officials with decisions that will have lasting effects on the families living nearby, including residents of Elyria-Swansea, a low-income and overwhelmingly Latino community still reeling from the road's construction back in 1964.

Read the rest here.

U.S. News & World Report pegs Denver second-best city to live

After topping the list in 2016, Denver was second to only Austin in 2017.

Excerpt:

To clarify a common misconception, Denver is not a mountain town. It actually takes at least an hour to drive to the Rockies. But there are some great places for recreating within a 30-minute drive of downtown, such as Red Rocks Park and Cherry Creek State Park.  

Some might say that Denver is experiencing a gold rush of a different color: green. After Colorado residents voted to legalize recreational marijuana in 2012, Denver has seen a surge in cannabis-related commerce, from dispensaries to magazines to high-tech paraphernalia like vaporizers, rolling papers, lotions and storage containers -- and the industry is just gaining speed. 

Read the rest here.

LinkedIn ranks Denver fourth in U.S. for worker migration

The LinkedIn Workforce Report ranked Denver after Seattle, Portland and Austin.

Excerpt:

Seattle, Portland, Austin, Denver, and Charlotte gained the most workers over the last 12 months. For every 10,000 LinkedIn members in Seattle, 68.2 workers moved to the city in the last year  -- mostly from San Francisco, Chicago, New York City, and Los Angeles.

Seattle, Portland, Austin, Denver, and Charlotte are all cities that have a lower cost of living than cities like New York and San Francisco, and have access to the great outdoors. This is a trend we’re keeping an eye on. 

Read the rest here.

NY Times gauges $1.9M worth of housing in Denver

The story compared properties in Denver, Santa Barbara, California, and Wayne, Pennsylvania. 

Excerpt:

DENVER

WHAT A condominium with three bedrooms and five bathrooms in a converted church

HOW MUCH $1,850,000

SIZE 4,815 square feet

PRICE PER SQUARE FOOT $384

SETTING This condominium is in a former Presbyterian church in the San Rafael historic district, about 10 blocks outside downtown Denver. With the exception of some commercial and small apartment buildings, the neighborhood is single-family, dominated by red brick houses, many of them Queen Anne-style. Shopping and dining are a few blocks away, toward downtown.

INDOORS The church was built in 1906 and converted to a residence between 2012 and 2014. It was designed by A. Morris Stuckert, an architect who built several houses in the district, though is probably best known for the Kittredge building, an imposing granite office downtown.

Read the rest here.

Curbed probes lower rents in Denver

The prime reason for the drop: lots of new apartments.

Excerpt:

According to the new Denver Metro Area Apartment Vacancy and Rent Survey, published by the Apartment Association of Metro Denver, the city's average apartment rent fell from $1,371 in the third quarter to $1,347 in the fourth quarter. It was the largest quarterly drop in the 36 years that the study has been conducted.

In addition, vacancy rates -- which show the number of available apartments and can help illustrate affordability -- increased from 5.1 percent to 6.2 percent, which is a more "healthy" percentage.
 
How did Denver do it? A total of 9,962 new apartment units were built in the city during 2016, a record-breaking number.
"In 2010, only 498 new apartment units were built in the entire city. Fast forward to 2016 and we're seeing that same number being delivered every three weeks in Denver," said Teo Nicolais, a real estate expert and Harvard University professor quoted in the study. "That's the most apartments we've built during one year in Denver's entire history."

Read the rest here.

NY Times explores real estate in RiNo

RiNo's development boom was the subject of a recent story in the New York Times.

Excerpt:

Among the unconventional work spaces and restaurants in the district, known as RiNo and north of downtown, is Comal, a lunch spot with Latin American cuisine where women from low-income backgrounds are learning how to run a business. In RiNo's recently opened Denver Central Market, shoppers can grab a sandwich, coffee or fresh fish,or sit at a bar and take in the scene.

The neighborhood has attracted artists who helped gentrify the old and neglected industrial expanse, which in its dilapidated condition was long considered the back door into downtown from westbound I-70.

Business promoters now want to create an international trade hub in the district and are ready to capitalize on what they see as one of Denver's last development frontiers. The developer Sean Campbell and World Trade Center Denver, a nonprofit organization that helps regional businesses, have proposed building a $200 million international business campus in RiNo.

Read the rest here.

WSJ analyzes impact of affordable housing in Denver

There was no drag on nearby property values, and even an uptick in Denver, according to the Wall Street Journal story.

Excerpt:

The majority of metro areas in the study, which included most coastal markets in California, along with New York City, Miami, Denver and the Pacific Northwest, saw no significant differences in prices after low-income housing was built.

There were a few exceptions: In Boston and Cambridge, Mass., home values closest to low-income housing increased at a slower pace than the area slightly farther away, amounting to a difference of between $18 and $19 per square foot.

In Denver, the opposite happened: Prices for homes closest to the low-income housing grew at a faster rate than the more distant ones.

Read the rest here.

Curbed names Wynkoop one of "10 streets that define America"

Wynkoop Street in LoDo has undergone a remarkable renaissance in the last 25 years.

Excerpt:

Jim Graeber notes that when he moved in two years later into his own loft down the street, "Union Station was a beautiful building, but it wasn't used much. Two Amtrak trains a day and the ski train, but that was it."

Loft conversions in the early 1990s spurred further development downtown. Joyce Meskis, owner of the independent bookstore the Tattered Cover, had dreamed of expanding her Cherry Creek-based operation with a satellite store, but couldn't afford the expensive real estate on the eastern side of town.

Wynkoop Street was less expensive, and offered her, she says, "the chance to be a part of the future of Denver." But even though the neighborhood showed promise, "in the early stage when we moved there [they first opened a warehouse in 1990 and then a store in 1994], there were more pigeon occupants than people occupants."

Read the rest here.

Energy.gov previews the 2017 Solar Decathlon in Denver

A year to the day before the event, the U.S. Department of Energy posted a preview of the Solar Decathlon 2017 to be held in Denver.

Excerpt:

Zero-emission electric vehicles charge along the street. People walk along LED-lighted sidewalks. A commuter train drops travelers off from the airport to enjoy dinner at a corner café. And the houses? They're entirely powered by sunshine.

This might sound like a scene from the distant future, but it's not as far away as you think. Exactly one year from today, Solar Decathlon 2017 will kick off in Denver. The biennial competition challenges teams of college students from around the country to design, build and operate beautiful solar-powered houses that are ultra-energy efficient and balance innovation with cost effectiveness. Fourteen Solar Decathlon student teams are now hard at work refining their initial plans for houses designed to provide shelter after disasters, conserve water and achieve other goals.

The Solar Decathlon houses will join the landscape at Peña Station Next, a burgeoning "smart city" between downtown Denver and the airport that city planners began mapping out several years ago. The plan calls for adding 1.5 million square feet of corporate office space, 500,000 square feet of retail stores, 2,500 solar-powered residential units, and 1,500 hotel rooms to the space separating the vibrant urban hub from the nation’s largest airport in total land area.

Read the rest here.

Bloomberg analyzes Denver housing market

It's gone from superheated to merely hot as year-over-year gains moderated slightly in 2016.

Excerpt:

The prices have gotten too heated for many buyers in Denver, which has seen a slowdown since the beginning of the year, said Wade Perry, a managing broker at Coldwell Banker Devonshire in the area.

"Buyers are starting to push back and say, 'I'm not going to pay that much for that house,'" Perry said.
 
The median home value in Denver rose 10 percent in August from a year earlier to $353,300, according to Zillow. While that's still one of the top increases in the country, it's down from an almost 16 percent surge in the same period of 2015.

Read the rest here.
89 Housing Articles | Page: | Show All
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