2017 Winter Telluride Market Update

Happy New Year from Telluride, Colorado,

The snow came a little late this year, but a couple of strong, heavy storms made for some great holiday skiing. The snow helped us live up to our reputation. For the fourth time in the past five years, the readers of Condé Nast Traveler have ranked Telluride as the Best Ski Resort in the U.S. and Canada.

The ski area continues to make improvements on-mountain and more capital improvements are expected this summer. The Town of Telluride is livelier than ever, with several new establishments opening in the last few months and more on the horizon.

Taco del Gnar opened its doors in Telluride this fall. The Ridgway favorite is now serving Telluride with its popular menu of creative tacos (think ahi tuna and pulled pork) for reasonable prices. Their Oak Street location has seen lines out the door — for good reason.

We also have a couple of reincarnations on Main Street. After many months of construction, the RBG (Roma Bar & Grill) is now offering classic, quality American food in the building that most recently housed Honga’s restaurant. Long-time Telluride locals and visitors will remember that the building was previously home to the long-running and beloved Roma Bar and Grill. The new RBG offers family-friendly seating upstairs and one of Telluride’s oldest bars on the lower level.

The Bean has also risen again. In the same historic building, an upscale coffee shop is now open under the moniker The Phoenix Bean. The name is a nod to the space’s most recent occupant, the Steaming Bean Coffee Shop, and the Phoenix Market, which was a popular grocery store in the same location when the building was owned by LL Nunn in the early 1900s. Not only does the Phoenix Bean serve coffee; it offers an accessible menu that includes everything from breakfast food to homemade soups, salads, and sandwiches. The breakfast sandwiches are excellent.

The Market Update

Mountain Village

I’ll start the market report with the Mountain Village, as it is seeing the strongest transition. In 2016, seven homes sold between $6M and $7.3M. In contrast, 2015 saw six TMV homes sold between $4M and $5M, and Oprah Winfrey’s $14M purchase was the only sale over $5M. Much of the 2016 activity has occurred recently, with five of the seven $6M to $7.3M properties contracted and sold since September. Having several of these high-caliber homes contract in quick succession is an indicator of confidence coming back into the Mountain Village segment.

The bigger story still may be what is unfolding as the Madeline sells out of three- and four-bedroom condominiums.  As we know, the Madeline has been stealing the TMV show over the last two years with strong sales. There are now only one four-bedroom unit and two three-bedroom units left to sell.  As predicted, new condominium buyers are starting to explore non-Madeline options. Over the holidays, we saw several sub-$2M, non-Madeline condominiums contract, and this trend should continue.

Town of Telluride

Real estate in the Town of Telluride continues to be highly-sought, with 28 home sales in 2016 compared to 20 sales in 2015. Not that it represents the entire market, but a one- bedroom condominium sold at the Ballard house for $1,937,500. Long-term rentals for Town of Telluride homes are almost impossible, and rental rates are rising in both Telluride and Mountain Village. This will help support rising real estate pricing.

The Town of Telluride remains a seller’s market, and the longer buyers wait, the more they will pay or the fewer options they will have. This trend looks to continue through 2017, and may get to a point where some buyers feel as if they missed their opportunity. I believe the Town market will remain highly valued, and buyers will begin to look more seriously into Mountain Village, Aldasoro, and Ski Ranches options in 2017.

Vacant Land in Mountain Village and Aldasoro

Vacant land in TMV and Aldasoro is still the most depressed and holds the most value for a buyer. Aldasoro lot sales picked up last summer, and there is continued activity.

San Miguel County

In San Miguel County, the first three quarters were flat on dollar volume and number of sales YTD compared to the same time period in 2015, but we’ve not yet seen the final fourth-quarter numbers. From a sales standpoint, San Miguel County had one of the best fall/early-winter off-seasons in more than five years. There was a great deal of off-season activity, and we’re seeing that activity turn into transactions in the new year.

Perhaps more important than specific sales figures is the fact that inventory is shrinking. Two years ago, the Mountain Village inventory was high and brokers would converse and ask each other why a certain condo is not selling when it was a great deal. Now, properties are selling, and brokers are a little more tight-lipped, as the deals are disappearing fast. Many brokers have clients who are missing out on the properties they wanted.    

As always, I am happy to send you a more detailed breakdown with more numbers and statistics on any given segment.   

I look forward to seeing you back in Telluride soon. Please let me know if you have any questions regarding Telluride real estate. If you have any interest in entering the Telluride market, please contact me so that I can keep you abreast of any new opportunities.

Rick Fusting

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