Trailhead Blazes on, a Sprawling Ranch with a View, and Entry Level Charmers [Fresh Listings, Get 'Em Hot]

Are you ready to see the best homes to hit the Boulder real estate market?

This week: benchmark sales in Trailhead, a sprawling ranch with (supposedly) unobstructed views in Frasier Meadows, and family friendly options in the outer 'burbs. As usual, we've culled the bad locations and refreshed old listings. To help educate you on market conditions, we've also included a more detailed discussion on notable sales.   

To schedule a private showing, which includes a discussion of real estate investments, negotiation strategy, and market conditions, call Osman at 303.746.6896.

Sold Listings of Note

2669 4th | $3.7MM | More Pics
This sale sets a benchmark for home values at Trailhead: a newly constructed 5 bedroom, 3 bath "urban farmhouse" with just under 5,000 SQFT. A significant portion of the property value is the position next to popular open space and downtown Boulder. Other well executed, newly constructed homes along open space on the west side of town should fetch similar values. Most buyers would likely pay an additional premium if this house offered a more privacy (we know we would). The adjacent lots are a little close and the location is not without development risk. Due diligence: Review plans underway for Alpine Balsam and the old Junior Academy. 

335 Dewey | $2.5MM | Details
Another comparable sale for Trailhead. This one about 1,000 SQFT smaller and with only 3 bedrooms, 3 baths. Lot size is substantially smaller too, but at least the buyer got a two car garage. No pics, sold off the MLS. On a $/F.SQFT basis, this sold at a 11.4% premium to 2669 4th (above), and that's ignoring the lot premium. 2669 4th was a better value. 

3105 Kittrell | 2.1MM | More Pics
If you're shopping for a perch, don't ignore South Boulder. This part of town offers opportunities, and they typically are not on the market for long. Open space access is equal or better to North Boulder, without the crowds, and the public schools outperform. Historically, South Boulder real estate trades at a discount to North Boulder, but the gap has been shrinking in recent years (and rightly so). 
3105 Kittrell is a giant lot with a view. It was available for only 3 days before a buyer snapped it up, paying a 3.5% premium (cash) and a fast closing. The late 60's raised ranch on this property won't remain for long. When the construction dust settles, some of the bones may still exist, but more likely it will be scraped for a fresh start. 

2345 Balsam | $2.0MM | More Pics
We took several buyers to see this property during the 20 months it was on the market. The location is excellent: Alpine, Balsam, and Panorama form a peninsula of high ground with homes on the edges overlooking north and south, yet easily within walking distance to downtown Boulder.  The design of this home checked a lot of boxes for buyers, and it should have sold quickly, but it was first listed at an eye popping $2.7MM.  After multiple price reductions, it sold for 30.1% below the original asking. Take home lesson: Price it right to maximize value and minimize time on market.  
It's critical to lead the market after a factual, deep analysis of the competitors. If your agent doesn't challenge your wishful thinking price, find a better Realtor.  

4500 Baseline, Unit 2301 | $459K | More Pics
We're not fans of Vistoso. After having taken many buyers to see condos here over the years, the reaction is nearly always the same. The layouts are awkward, and the overall design reminds us of a discount hotel. At only $459K for a sizable 2 bedroom, 2 bath however - they still make economic sense for certain buyers (CU students and young professionals). Getting past the lack of emotional appeal is a challenge. Due diligenceWhen the market is soft, units in this complex take a long time to sell.  

Fresh Listings


385 Erie | $1.1MM | More Pics
A large ranch with 5 bedrooms and 4 baths all on the main level.  The interior could use a refresh but appears in reasonable shape. The value is in the unobstructed views over the CU Chancellor's Residence. The risk is that the large parcel of land that provides that view could one day be redeveloped by CU. Given the resistance to CU Campus South, and the University's long term expansion plans, it's a risk you don't want to ignore. For now, it's a spectacular spot with beautiful views and social trails out your back door. The large ranch and substantive lot size also provides an excellent potential footprint for a second story. Due diligence: Research CU's Master Plan. 

To schedule a private showing, which includes a discussion of real estate investments, negotiation strategy, and market conditions, call Osman at 303.746.6896.

6968 Sweetwater | $785K | More Pics
Gunbarrel Green is just southwest of the golf course. Head east on Jay Road, and hang a left on Carter Trail into the last neighborhood before 75th Street. This particular house has some updates and a nice layout. It's also on a decent size lot, and the 3 car garage is a nice bonus. 

115 S 33rd | $730K | More Pics
A moderate size, 4 bedroom ranch with a rare, detached 2 car garage. It's also on one of the better (quieter) streets in Martin Acres. Nice updates; definitely worth taking a look. It's likely at some point the original garage was converted into a 4th bedroom.   

To schedule a private showing, which includes a discussion of real estate investments, negotiation strategy, and market conditions, call Osman at 303.746.6896.


1009 Boxelder | $650K | More Pics
This late 90's house is probably the value play for this weekend's listings.  It's a generously sized, 5 bedroom, 3 bath on the southwest side of town with a decent layout.  It's an easy commute to Boulder, has decent schools, and provides easy access to the area's best road cycling routes.  The color scheme is unusual and may not work for many buyers. But on the scale of home improvement expenses, paint is cheap. Also, ignore the scary posters in the teenager's bedroom. It's hard to believe they left those up. 

To schedule a private showing, which includes a discussion of real estate investments, negotiation strategy, and market conditions, call Osman at 303.746.6896.

Worth A Second Look  

1439 North | $1.5MM | More Pics
Originally listed in August at $1.6MM, this is the second $50K reduction. The house has some interesting architectural features.  It has no garage, but the location and reasonable lot size hints at greater potential. We're big fans of front porches. Due diligence: Casey Middle School traffic. 

To schedule a private showing, which includes a discussion of real estate investments, negotiation strategy, and market conditions, call Osman at 303.746.6896.



2995 Euclid | $3.2MM | Details
This hit my radar the moment it went on the market (Monday). While the current cap rate is ho hum, it's acceptable for carrying the investment. The potential to remodel the units for higher rent or possibly redevelop the property completely is the real opportunity. 20 bedrooms currently generate a verifiable $171,555 in gross rent. There are 12 parking spaces and the lot size is just under 13,000 SF.  Supposedly, it's a well maintained building with an original construction date from the mid 70's. 

Unfortunately, if you're just seeing this now, it's probably too late. The property was only available for 4 days and is now under contract. The best opportunities go quickly.  That's why it's important to work with a broker who is responsive.  We happen to know a good one.


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cover shot:  James Garcia

The ideas and strategies described in this blog are the opinion of the writer and subject to business, economic, and competitive uncertainties.   We strongly recommend conducting rigorous due diligence and obtaining professional advice before buying or selling real estate.

Image: @chrislawton

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This document contains forward-looking statements. You are strongly cautioned that investment results are subject to business, economic and other uncertainties. There are no guarantees associated with any forecast and the opinions stated here are subject to change at any time. Always consult your financial advisor before making an investment decision.