Market Insights: Spectacular views on sale, cheap |

Market Insights: Spectacular views on sale, cheap

Daniel Webster Johnson
Special to the Daily

Over the years in the Market Insights column I have talked about the value of views. Let me summarize: Summit County buyers want classic Rocky Mountain views and they are willing to pay for them.

Without a doubt if there are two similar properties in a condo complex and one has a great view, it will sell first and at a premium. How much more? There is no set amount. My calculations indicate a great view can be worth 10 percent.

Right now there is one segment of the market that is practically giving away views. Is it homes, condos, townhomes or vacant land?

To figure this out I reviewed each segment. I discovered that vacant land is your best bet to obtain a view at a bargain price.

Why? Supply and demand. There are a ton of lots on the market and only a handful are selling.

Here are all the reason now is a good time to buy a lot and build a home:

1. Prices are way, way down as the two examples below show.

2. Construction costs are low. I asked Chris Renner, owner of Pinnacle Mountain Homes, a dominate force in custom home construction in the county. He said, “Prices are down 15-20 percent in the past two years.”

3. Money is cheap and easy to borrow for well qualified purchasers.

4. The homes with commanding views are selling at a premium.

At the current time there are 48 lots for sale in The Highlands at Breckenridge and only 12 have sold in the past year. The lack of sales is pushing prices down. The lot located at 643 Highfield Trail is on the market for about half off the peak of the market and even at that price, $249,000, the seller has said, “Bring all offers.” Check out the photo.

There is a tiny area of Breckenridge that is both an easy walk to town and has stellar views. This area includes the Sunbeam and Gold Flake areas. Over the past year, five homes have sold and five more are under contract right now yet not one lot has sold, not one. In this area, the lot at 201 S. Pine St. is an absolute bargain. The price was dropped today to $439,000. It has the postcard view every buy expects (sorry no photo available).

Buyers are best to have a broad view of the market. Do not rule out buying a lot and building. It could be the best value possible. If you are selling a lot, make sure you are using the secret tool for attracting home buyers (too top secret to put in print).

Daniel Webster Johnson is a broker associate at Resort Brokers Real Estate in Breckenridge. He can be reached at (970) 393-3300 or

*Data provided by the Summit Association of Realtors.

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