The following article previews of Grand Junction areas are from The Daily Sentinel’s Real Estate Weekly magazine. We like being able to provide our clients and potential clients with local information about what’s happening in various Grand Junction Areas across the valley. For more information about each Grand Junction area, click the headline or the “click here for more” links at the bottom of each article.
Grand Junction Areas:
Real estate companies renew investment in the valley
In addition to helping residents find a place they want to call home, the local real estate industry has also contributed to the area’s economy in the last few years via construction and remodeling projects. Several companies have purchased and remodeled buildings, signed long-term leases in more visible locations and generally put their money where their mouth is by making significant investments in a new home for their businesses.
Downtown has become a hot spot for real estate offices, starting with Hummel Real Estate’s purchase of its office three years ago, and continuing with the opening of River City Real Estate downtown in 2016, the Mountain Coast Group at Keller Williams’ purchase of a downtown building in 2017 and the relocation of both Coldwell Banker Prime Properties and United Country Real Colorado Properties.
Year in review
A decade ago, Mesa County’s economy and housing market were on the rise, thanks to a natural gas boom that brought jobs, workers and a housing shortage. Builders were frantically building in 2007, with 669 new single family building permits issued, and 2,866 total home sales in 2008. When natural gas prices plummeted at the end of 2008, jobs disappeared, workers began to leave, and plans for new subdivisions were put on hold.
The real estate market began a steady dive, bottoming out in 2010, when there were 179 new home starts and only 1,696 homes sold. Sales of existing homes started to pick back up in 2011, along with the number of new housing starts. The growth was slow, however, with small increases in property values, the total number of homes sold and the number of new housing starts. The Front Range boomed, while the Mesa County housing market seemed to crawl.
Fast forward to 2017. The market found its legs and began to run, with more than 3,500 sales through November and 664 new housing permits through Dec. 27.
Trail Edge Townhomes is the first residential development built to take advantage of the recreational opportunities available at Las Colonias Park, including access to the Colorado Riverfront Trail, the disc golf course, and the amphitheater. There will be 14 units total. Ray Rickard with RE/MAX 4000 is the listing agent for the development.
PENNY STINE/ Real Estate Weekly
It has taken awhile for Clifton to recover from the Great Recession. When new construction first began picking up in other parts of the Grand Valley in the last few years, builders remained hesitant about building in Clifton. Commercial projects were slow, as well. The tide is turning, however, and both residential and commercial activity in Clifton have increased.
Ed Lenhart bought a piece of raw land in 2005 that he hoped to turn into a condominium development. When the real estate market started a downward trend a few years later, he put his plans on hold.
“I held onto it all this time,” Lenhart said, adding that he began taking the project back through planning a few years ago. “I looked at the market and thought that it couldn’t get any worse, so it would have to get better.”
During the intervening years, his project changed from a condo development to a single-family development of 21 homes, which took three years to get back through the planning process. He started infrastructure construction in January, 2017, and built and entered the model home for the neighborhood in the 2017 Parade of Homes. He also has two other spec homes under construction at Sagewood Estates, the name of the Clifton development.
“Traffic was good,” Lenhart said about the parade. “We got one home under contract and are expecting a contract on the other one.”
There’s not a lot of commercial or residential development out in Loma and Mack, which is just the way most people who live out there like it. Most of the land is zoned agricultural, and there is no existing infrastructure to accommodate higher density development, which puts a huge damper on housing.
“We need sewer,” said Kay Simonson, senior planner with Mesa County. “We’re still looking for ways to fund the repair and upgrade of the Mack sewer plant and to ultimately implement the Loma plan. We will need to get sewer there somehow.”
Until there is available sewer for higher density housing, Mack and Loma are likely to remain exactly what they are: agricultural communities that also offer urban dwellers an opportunity to enjoy a hobby farm, if they can afford the price.
“Everyone I talk to wants a one- to three-acre parcel with a nice home,” said Geri Robinson with Robinson & Co. Realty. “Small acreage parcels move quicker than large farms. If we had things closer to the $400,000 price, they’d move quicker.”
Of the 29 total listings in Loma and Mack, 25 of them are priced for more than $400,000, which puts it out of the reach of many buyers who would enjoy having a little piece of land.
“Inventory is not as plentiful as it has been in years’ past,” said Mandy Rush with RE/MAX 4000, “but we’re still seeing nice properties that are available.”
By Penny Stine
Monday, July 10, 2017
Housing is in high demand in the north area, with both building lots and new homes selling quickly.
Freedom Heights is a development of 22 homes near H and 26 Road, with large lots, a walking path along Leech Creek, and good views of the Bookcliffs, the Grand Mesa and Colorado National Monument. Linda Kramer with RE/MAX 4000 listed the lots last August, but infrastructure construction didn’t get started until a few months later.
“Contracts started coming in when we were doing infrastructure,” Kramer said. The infrastructure was complete by the middle of May, and lots continued to sell quickly.
“I only have two lots left,” Kramer said.
Lots in the neighborhood, which is within the city limits of Grand Junction and has sidewalk, sewer, curbs and gutters, are about 7/10 of an acre. Their large size allows home owners to build a shop, have a garden and enjoy a little elbow room.
The owner of a 150-acre adjacent parcel of land that was slated for development years ago took notice of the brisk sales at Freedom Heights and decided to resurrect plans for Weminuche, a residential development of 303 single-family homes.
Continue reading about Grand Junction’s North Area.
Remote living just 25 minutes from town
There’s a lot to love about Glade Park. It’s beautiful, with little traffic, so while the commute may be longer than some have in the Grand Valley, it’s a pretty commute, especially when the weather cooperates. Neighbors are generally far-flung, thanks to the minimum 35-acre lot size zoning, but there are opportunities for neighbors to get to know each other if they wish.
Glade Park has a small community center, which is the place where neighbors can socialize for coffee, picnics or cowboy poetry.
Glade Park also has a volunteer fire department, which holds it annual fundraiser throughout the summer at the “Movies Under the Stars” program. Entrance to the movie is always free, but the concession stand is operated by the fire department, and all proceeds go toward training and equipment for the department. The concession stand opens at 5:30, while the grill opens at 6 p.m. and remains open until the movie starts.
Movies at Glade Park are always family-friendly, starting whenever it gets dark enough to see the big screen. There’s also family-friendly live entertainment from 7 to 8 p.m., as well as a hayride, volleyball and drawings for prizes.
New housing, safer routes to recreation on the horizon in the Redlands
The Redlands is about to get a variety of new housing options, thanks to a townhome development near Redlands Mesa Golf Course currently under construction and a few single-family home projects that are also in the works.
Existing housing, especially if it’s priced anywhere close to the median Grand Valley price of $215,000 for a single family home, moves quickly in the Redlands.
“I put a house on the market (in the Redlands) for $279,000 and it had two showings immediately,” said Janice Burtis with RE/MAX 4000, “and six the next day.”
Burtis said that she’s also seeing more expensive properties selling quickly and selling above the asking price.
“It’s good news for sellers, but really hard on buyers,” Burtis said.
Burtis is the listing agent for the lots at Pinnacle Ridge, a 70-lot subdivision that is still in planning stages near Mariposa Drive. The developer is waiting for final approval from the city planning office to begin infrastructure construction on the first two phases, which total 21 lots.
Tides are turning with increased commercial and residential activity in Northwest
This new Asian restaurant, Ginger, should open within the next month or two in the northwest area on Patterson Road near Highway 6 & 50. The owners also own the popular Chin Chin restaurant in Clifton.
“It’s mostly people moving around,” said Theresa Englbrecht with Bray Commercial, who added that she arranged a five-year lease with a Denver business owners on an industrial property in the northwest, and is closing on another big property in the northwest next week. She’s anticipating getting two additional listings soon, and has already had people approach her who are interested in the properties.
“Folks who are here are expanding,” Englbrecht said. “No one is reducing.”
Unique Whitewater and Gateway ready and willing for growth
Whitewater and Gateway
The Whitewater area is zoned, approved, and ready for growth, with available sewer and water to many areas.
“There’s been plenty of planning done in Whitewater,” said Linda Dannenberger with the Mesa County Planning Department. “Clifton Water is ready for growth; there’s a sewer district. Land’s End Fire has been formed as a taxing district. CDOT did a highway access plan. We put a land use plan in place with zoning.”
Longterm commercial construction projects nearing completion
Growth in Grand Junction Areas
New retail spaces, refurbished office buildings, new production facilities for business and new restaurants are all signs of increased commercial activity and optimism in the local economy. Other long-term construction projects are nearing completion, with two new highly anticipated healthcare facilities getting ready to open their doors to the general public.
The Center at Foresight, 606 E. Foresight Circle, is finished and going through its Medicare certification process while also serving a few pro bono patients and waiting for the final approval from the state to open its doors to the general public. A grand opening of the transitional and rehabilitation facility is scheduled for June 1.
Opportunities for more lodging and dining are prime-picking in Palisade
By Penny Stine
Monday, May 8, 2017
There is new activity in Palisade, with several businesses hoping to open in time to provide services to residents and the many guests who come to Palisade in the summertime.
Varaison Vineyards will hold a ribbon cutting for its new cider tasting room and bistro, 13 Brix, on May 13 at 1 p.m., or 1300 hours, if you speak military-style. Andrew West, the cider maker and son of Varaison’s founders, Andrew and Kristin West, has been working on the the bistro for more than a year.
“We’ve been working on the remodel for 18 months; we’ve been trying to do it without digging a sucking hole of debt,” West said. The building, which started out as a convenience store, has also been a video store and stood vacant for almost three years before the Wests purchased it with the intent to turn it into a tasting room for their hard cider, Forbidden Fruit.
When 13 Brix opens, it will have a limited menu, along with five different ciders. In addition to apple with Saigon Cinnamon, the bistro will have pear vanilla, blueberry lavender, cherry and peach ciders, all available for drinking on site or bottled so customers can take their favorite flavor home.
Palisade will soon be able to offer more options for visitors who want to stay in town. There is construction activity underway at Palisade Basecamp RV Resort, where the owners plan to offer two country home units, 12 cabins, 71 RV and trailer sites, six standard tent sites and 13 primitive sites.
“The goal is to have it all open, all at once, but in reality, we may have portions done and ready for opening, while still doing finishing touches throughout the month of July,” said Keith Ehlers, one of the partners in the project. The business has received lots of calls and requests from visitors who are eager to make reservations to stay at the resort, and are willing to stay even if the swimming pool isn’t quite operational or the landscaping isn’t fully installed.
Although it’s not currently listed for sale, there is a large greenhouse facility that the partners are hoping to sell eventually to someone who is interested in a large-scale local food production business.
There is also some progress at the Palisade River Ranch, the glamping facility where there are currently two vacation rental homes available on the 100-acre site. The ranch also hosts special events.
The look of downtown Palisade is changing, with new outdoor dining options at the Palisade Cafe and the 357 Grill. The town of Palisade built and installed the patios.
“It’s a project we’ve been trying to do for years,” said Rick Sales, town administrator. “The intent is to create a more active streetscape environment.”
There are a few vacancies in high-profile office or retail spots in downtown Palisade, creating an opportunity for businesses or entrepreneurs who have always wanted a Palisade location, such as JUB Engineering, which recently moved into new office space at 305 Main St.
Housing Possibilities in the Grand Valley
By Penny Stine
Monday, April 17, 2017
If you’re thinking about buying a new home, selling your existing home, curious about the local market or just looking for an excuse to tour local homes, mark your calendar for next weekend’s Grand Valley Open House Weekend. Local area Realtors will have homes open both Saturday and Sunday, so be sure to check the special section promoting the event that will be in the newspaper on Friday, April 21.
The Grand Junction market has changed in recent years, so if you are thinking about making a real estate buy or sale, make sure your real estate agent is knowledgeable, with up-to-date information.
“Make a wise decision in who you use to represent you,” said Ron Walz with River City Real Estate. “Make sure the agent does the comps. Don’t forget to ask questions. Make sure they’re doing the research and providing you with a service.”
Those who are interested in buying a new or different house, especially if they’re looking for a home that’s priced under $300,000, need to be able to act quickly if they see a home they like.
Go North(east) for affordable housing and new construction
By Penny Stine
Monday, April 3, 2017
The northeast part of town continues to be an affordable area for housing, with ongoing new construction in several neighborhoods and plenty of existing housing. While some retail areas in the northeast are seeing vacancies, others are seeing bright spots on the horizon, with new tenants and new life bringing new services to area residents.
Brett McGlothlin, the owner of the Planet Fitness franchise that will be opening in Teller Arms Shopping area on North Avenue, worked for quite a while to secure the location for the gym.
“I started working on the deal in November of 2014,” he said. “I absolutely wanted the location; it puts me right in the middle of town.”
McGlothlin also owns a Planet Fitness facility in Aurora, and when he bought that franchise, one of his conditions was that he would be given the option to open up a second gym in Grand Junction.
Planet Fitness gyms offer memberships starting at just $10 per month, and that membership includes small group classes that start out early in the morning and go on all day.
Fruita, Colorado continues to grow
By Penny Stine
Tuesday, March 21, 2017
Infrastructure construction will start soon here at Aspen Village, which will be a 22-lot residential subdivision on the corner of Aspen and Pine in Fruita.
Fruita continues to carve out its own niche in the Grand Valley, pursuing opportunities to advance its reputation as a good place for recreation, for families and for businesses that want to embrace the small-town atmosphere.
The town of Fruita is getting close to having the plans finished for the Kokopelli portion of the Colorado Riverfront Trail, which will be a four-mile extension of the trail from Fruita to Loma.
“Our anticipated construction start is August,” said Ture Nycum, director of parks and recreation for the city of Fruita. Construction will be ongoing through the fall and winter, and the new portion of the trail should be open in the spring of 2018.
The town has also been working with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the Colorado Plateau Mountain Bike Trail Association (COPMOBA) to improve the mountain bike trails and the access near Mack Ridge.
“There’s a trailhead parking lot, but no trail,” Nycum said. “COPMOBA is starting construction of a trail that will go from the Mack parking lot; it will be a connector that takes people on top of Mack Ridge.”
Pear Park North
Homebuyers who are hoping to find a brand new house at an affordable price in a nice neighborhood that’s convenient to everything should take note of Pear Park North, a 68-lot subdivision near 30 Road and D 1/2. Steve Voytilla with GJ Homebuilders has developed the neighborhood, and he is also one of two exclusive builders who are building homes in the development.
Voytilla purchased the raw land from the bank and decided to do the development himself. It’s taken about nine months, but he had the full cooperation from the city of Grand Junction, and he also received help with financing and mentoring from Ben Hill with Hill and Homes Real Estate.
“Ben was instrumental in getting this project started,” said Voytilla, who has worked in the local real estate market for years, primarily as a real estate agent for another builder. Pear Park North is the first development he’s done with his own company, GJ Homebuilders. It won’t be the last, as he has another parcel of land he hopes to develop when Pear Park North is built out.
This is not, however, the first neighborhood in which Voytilla’s company has built homes. He has previously built in Heritage Heights in the north area and on Bear Dance Drive in the southeast area, just a few blocks from Pear Park North.