Realtor Doug Labor was at first puzzled when he noticed that average Routt County real estate prices appeared to decline during the first three quarters of 2016, despite his knowledge the Steamboat Springs selling prices were rising.
But when he looked more closely at the numbers, Labor realized that the average price across the market had declined because of an uptick in inexpensive vacant land purchases in the Stagecoach area, south of Steamboat.
Labor suspects that news this year of reopening a long dormant ski area in Stagecoach attracted more buyers to pick up lots in the region.
“I think it attracted a lot of people to buy there,” Labor said. “The average price seemed to go down, because there was a less expensive product being bought.”
Labor said that in the first three quarters of the year, the number of Stagecoach area transactions went up, comprising 12 percent of the total county market, up from 8 percent. Meanwhile Steamboat’s share of the market decreased, from 70 percent to 63 percent.
Labor shared his findings during a Business Outlook Breakfast Tuesday at Rex’s American Grill & Bar. In addition to Labor’s presentation, the group heard an overview of the local real estate industry from Steamboat Springs Board of Realtors CEO Ulrich Salzgeber and an update on the Community Housing Steering Committee from Angela Ashby.
Labor said after the presentation that he knows of owners that have chosen to sell and buyers that have chosen to purchase lots in Stagecoach after learning about the plans for the ski area, which could open as early as December 2017.
The lots in some Stagecoach subdivisions can sell for as little as $3,000 to $5,000, though prices vary and can be much higher.
According to transaction data from the Routt County Clerk and Recorder’s Office, 17 lots of less than 2 acres sold in the Stagecoach area in October, with prices ranging from $3,750 for a 0.99-acre parcel in the South Station I subdivision to $70,000 for a 1.01-acre parcel in the Eagles Watch subdivision.
One $40,000 sale recorded on Oct. 21 included six lots at once from the South Station I subdivision.
Another four Stagecoach lots closed during the first two weeks of November, with prices from $5,000 to $14,000.