Breckenridge puts new, deed-restricted apartment building up for sale
Any local business owner struggling to retain or recruit workers might be interested to know the town of Breckenridge is looking for just such an employer to buy a new, nine-unit apartment building.
The apartments are under construction near Colorado Mountain College, off Airport Road, next door to the Blue 52 workforce-housing neighborhood in Breckenridge.
The sale is being presented as a unique opportunity for a local employer to address an employee-housing shortage through ownership, and the apartments are scheduled to come online this fall.
All of the new apartments will be one-bedroom units with private parking and storage. According to the town, the apartments are going to be low-maintenance and energy efficient because they’re new construction. A big plus is the location since it has easy access to the Blue River, the new River Park, soft and paved trails and a free transit system.
Because these units are designated to become part of the workforce-housing inventory, they will be deed-restricted and occupants must be full-time employees working locally.
Naturally, the apartments therefore cannot be used as short-term rentals.
“One of the reasons we’re selling this apartment building is so we can recoup the cash and reinvest in additional housing development,” said Laurie Best, Breckenridge’s senior planner. “Our goal is to put the money back into the housing fund.”
At this point there is no set asking price for the apartment building. Instead Leah Canfield, a broker with Coldwell Banker Mountain Properties, has been releasing how much the town spent developing the property — $2.6 million — as a “guiding number” for anyone interested in purchasing the apartments, which cannot be sold individually.
Even though the sale of the apartments was only announced late last week, Canfield said a good number of employers have already expressed interest and purchase proposals are currently being accepted.
“It is a really good opportunity for employers to pick up a piece of real estate that will help them recruit and retain employees,” Canfield emphasized over the phone Monday.
Retaining employees has been an ongoing struggle for many businesses in Summit County. Some have sought foreign-worker visas to keep fully staffed while others have had to get creative with lodging accommodations, even building them into the business. At the same time, Silverthorne just created a new town-funded program that will pay local businesses willing to take on workforce-housing projects for their employees.
Across Summit County, Breckenridge has been at the forefront in the push to create housing for local workers. Even as the town looks to sell this apartment building, Breckenridge is working on a much larger project — called the Block 11 Apartments — that’s expected to add 111 new apartments in the same general area on the northern end of town.
Best, said town staff know the nine-unit apartment building won’t be for every employer who’s struggling, but there are some big business in town that might jump at the chance.
If everything goes according to plan, this won’t be the first time Breckenridge has built apartment buildings and then looked to sell the property. In spring 2017, town council solidified a lease-to-own deal with Colorado Mountain College, in which the town agreed to lease CMC 14 studios and six one-bedroom units in two buildings built by the town for up to three years.
The agreement also came with an option for CMC to buy the buildings for $5.8 million, a figure that covered the town’s construction costs, at any time during the terms of its lease.
Per the agreement, CMC was allowed to sublease the apartments itself and remained free to determine the terms of the rental agreements it offered. However, the college must give priority to its students and employees, workers in the Upper Blue and then Summit County employees, in that order.
For more information about the nine new apartments for sale, contact Canfield at Coldwell Banker Mountain Properties at 970-485-1571 or via email at Leah@SummitMtnHomes.com.
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