High-end buyers are still snapping up executive home sites along the Front Range like crazy. In spite of a slow national economy, luxury communities like Stratton Preserve, Stratton Pines, Stratton Forest, The Spires, University Park, Pine Creek, Cedar Heights and The Broadmoor Resort Community, for example, are recovering nicely from the fall 2001 down market.

The same is not true for resale homes in the million dollar-plus category. According to a number of luxury residential realtors, activity on the area’s 27 listings priced over one million dollars has been mighty slow – and only one high-end property has sold in the past few months. Diane Stafford, broker for the Broadmoor Resort Community also notes fewer requests to tour the BRC’s million-dollar-and-up spec and resale residences – while interest in lot sales and single family or patio homes under one million dollars continues at a steady pace. Michelle Grove-Reiland at The Spires reports brisk custom lot sales following announcement of the company’s newest 60+ homesites (mostly builders rather than individuals however).

Second Quarter Real Estate Sales Statistics

With the median home price in June 2002 jumping to $184,000 and the average home sales price at $218,000 – up almost 6 percent over last year’s figures, the residential market as a whole seems strong.

The county’s commercial sales exceeded $3.6 million in 23 transactions, and 131 land transactions accounted for more than $14 million in property sales. Among those parcels, the majority of vacant land purchased took place to the north and east – from the Tri-Lakes south to Black Forest and down through Ellicott and Yoder. More than $2.4 million of raw land also sold in southwest Colorado Springs, and another $4 million in land sales were booked in Teller County, prior to the recent forest fires.

Finally, El Paso County’s income property closings included 59 deals for a total of $13.2 million in sales. Townhomes and condominiums are selling fastest in the city’s northeast, northwest and southwest neighborhoods. Out of a total $56 million in county townhome/condo sales recorded, more than $28 million of inventory sold in those areas. As apartments see increasing vacancies, some renters may be finding deals too good to pass up among townhomes and condos. (Compliments of the Pikes Peak Board of Realtor’s Real Estate Information Service 2nd Quarterly 2002 Report.)

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Stratton Pines by Nichols & Comito Makes Debut

Larry Nichols, who along with partner, Claude Comito, developed the successful Stratton Preserve luxury home community, recently opened Stratton Pines, just north and west of the Preserve. The 18-lot future community features scenic, tree-rimmed homesites – perfect for that million-dollar second home or executive estate. According to Marketing Director Phyllis McCoy, neighboring Stratton Preserve has only two unsold and four resale estate lots out of the original 31 platted. Prices range from $320,000 to $519,000, depending on lot size and location. Stratton Pines lots start at $395,000 and go to $625,000. On a brief tour of its roughed-in streets and secluded entry (west off Parkview, on Taurus to Oakmoor Heights Drive), Nichols pointed out views extending in all directions. Perhaps one of the area’s best features is its easy proximity to Cresta Road and major arterials.

Nichols & Comito continues to find beautiful foothills land to develop as projects like Top of Skyway, Kissing Camels golf course lots, Peregrine and others reach maturity. You’ll want to keep an eye on these two entrepreneurial builders – it’s hush-hush yet, but sounds like they may have yet another even larger project on the drawing board. After considerable successes with Stonebridge at Cedar Heights and Stratton Preserve (designed for 27 village patio homes and 31 estate homes), there’s no stopping this talented team.

By the way, the 2002 Celebration Home, benefiting the American Cancer Society, attracted more than 4,000 visitors during its three week open house. It’s no surprise; a 2003 Celebration Home is already in the planning stages.

Pikes Peak Board of Realtors Governmental

Affairs Update

Jackie McGee, PPAR’s proactive governmental affairs director, sends along news that City Planning Commission currently has three vacancies on its board. For those of you who feel strongly about how our community grows, this may be the ideal way to make your contribution. Contact Nancy Bramwell at 385-5453 to apply.

McGee also says that during political season a PPAR-sanctioned candidates have been looking for high visibility locations for campaign signs. These are 4′ X 4′ or 4′ X 8′ in most cases.

Palmer McAllister’s Sales Teams See Action

Carefree Shopping Center will be the site of a new 3,717-square-foot restaurant and bar, thanks to Mark Useman and Greg Kaufman who facilitated both sides of the new lease. New tenants are Richard and John Volske – and the landlord, Wingarten Nostat, Inc. is headquartered in Houston.

Useman and Kaufman also represented the tenant and the landlord on the lease of 2,968 square feet of retail space in the Ridgeview Plaza center at 2340 Montebello Square Drive. The tenants will operate a Jazzercise facility. The same Palmer McAllister team also represented the tenant, Champions Kempo Karate, on the lease of 3,000 square feet at 5610 North Union Blvd. in the Library Plaza Shopping Center. The Fidelity Real Estate Group represented the landlord.

In office transactions, Kent Mau and Greg Phaneuf represented the owner on the renewal of a 5,414-square-foot lease to XonTech, a Department of Defense contractor in the Presidio Building at 1155 Kelly Johnson Boulevard. The tenant was represented by an out of town firm.

Mark Useman will be celebrating this summer following the sale of 3.96 acres at the corner of Centennial Boulevard and Chuckwagon Drive. Useman represented the buyer, Hope Educational & Research Center, who plans to open a Montessori School and Daycare Center on that location. Selling price was $1,125,000.

Finally, from Palmer McAllister comes word that retail specialist, Steve Hunsinger, sold a 3,000-square-foot building at 724 Manitou Avenue to investor, Young Oh Chung, who was represented by Arleyne Glasser of Heritage Realty. Sales price was $283,000 on the property which closed last month.

Gary Bradley at NAI Highland Commercial Group Checks In

Representing the seller, Catholic Health Initiatives Colorado, Bradley says that the land at 3208 West Colorado, was purchased by Penrose St. Francis Healthcare Systems in 1997 to construct an outpatient clinic. Says Bradley, “With the rapid changes in the health care systems delivery of outpatient services, the site proved to be too small for a clinic.” He also notes that the property was purchased by Daniel G. Gillis and Sue Gillis, who plan to zone the property for an office and planned residential community. Ted Seehafer of Red Rock Realty represented the buyers.

Olive’s Conrad Reports Industrial Sale

Charley Conrad, CCIM, industrial specialist with Olive Real Estate Group represented the Lawrence Davis Trust in the sale of a 5,350-square-foot office/warehouse building at 19 W. Las Vegas. The buyers are Frank and Janet Mesce, and the selling price was $315,000.

Trammel Crow Announces Three Colo. Spgs. Deals

Mike Matkin and Randy Miller represented the landlord on two lease renewals completed in May 2002. They include the renewal of a 5,848-square-foot lease to L-3 Communications in the Academy Point Atrium II building – and an expansion into 4,358 square feet of new space. Another defense contractor, Information Technology and Applications Corporation also renewed its lease on 8,522 square feet in the Aerotech Office Park at 1915 Aerotech Plaza Drive. It’s great to hear business is good for our DOD community business members.

Craig Anderson and John Egan, also of Trammel Crow, represented the buyer on the purchase of almost one-and-a-half acres of land at SEC Research Drive and Channel Drive in Colorado Springs for $700,000.
Channel Properties, LLC was the buyer and R.L. Development, LLC was the seller.

That’s it for this week. Next week we’ll continue with a complete transaction report from Hoff & Leigh and an update from Paul Turner. Have a good one.