Vail Valley Voices: Vail real estate rises |

Vail Valley Voices: Vail real estate rises

Vail Homeowners Association
Vail, CO, Colorado

Editor’s note: The following is an excerpt from the Vail Homeowners Association monthly report. We publish weekly excerpts from the association, which keeps a close eye on economic and political trends in and outside of the town. The newsletter electronic version with links to supporting documents is available at

Eagle County June real estate sales were on the rise, reflecting a nationwide trend showing housing values increasing in many metropolitan areas.

Home values have shown the first year-over-year increase since before the 2007 crash of home values. The lack of new home inventory nationwide has slowed sales and is an indicator that new construction will intensify.

Some authoritative sources are saying the bottoming of the housing market has occurred.

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Locally, Prudential Colorado Properties reports current inventories are 19 percent lower than a year ago, while unit sales and dollar volume are up 14 percent.

A drawn-out, long-term, intensifying recovery is now possible.

The strengthening of the dollar and low interest rates have contributed to a strong influx of foreign investment in American real estate.

Credited with stimulating the upward trend is a decline in the supply of housing stock as the rate of foreclosures abates, increasing construction employment and mortgage rates remaining low.

The dollar value of foreclosures in Eagle County has declined by 33.6 percent, but the number of transactions is up 9.6 percent over the same time last year.

There is minimal new construction countywide.

County employment and job numbers are near even with the same period last year, indicating seasonal stability in work force availability.

The broader view: Nationally, business investment is static. Worries are that another recession could take hold as the recovery from the Great Recession is slowing down.

To induce growth, central banks may stimulate inflation by printing money, according to some analysts.

Unsettled confidence is caused by the European sovereign debt crisis, the probability of escalating energy and food consumer prices and impending national elections with the prospect of falling off the fiscal cliff into even greater political turbulence because of dramatic tax increases and cuts in government spending.

The drumbeat of the doomsayers needs to be weighed against the view of some international market forecasters who see the United States doing well in transforming some components of its economy by backfilling a marked decline in domestic consumption with global exports of goods and services.

The shift in emphasis has not translated into improved national employment percentages as the jobs created thus far are high-paying technical positions.

Vail Resorts planning ahead: Vail Resorts is adroitly responding to this trend by exporting the image of its U.S. resorts to increase its import of luxury international destination guests, principally from selected Latin American markets for both its winter and summer seasons.

The success of their efforts could be augmented by a program to promote international tourism in the United States through a federal initiative seeking to overcome a downturn in visitations caused by restrictive visa regulations.

In a recent announcement, Vail Resorts executives debuted its initial program, submitted to the U.S. Forest Service for review, to take advantage of a recent change in policy that allows winter resorts on Forest Service land to expand their use permits into the summer.

Among the included family oriented summer experiences on Vail Mountain are ziplines, exercise courses, coaster facilities, interpretive exhibits, including expanded hiking and mountain biking opportunities.

Vail Resorts’ summer on-mountain attractions are designed to create an appeal for the millions of family oriented visitors who travel to the state’s national parks. Rocky Mountain National Park attracts over 3 million visitors annually.

It has yet to be determined if additional revenue will flow to the town of Vail from lift ticket tax or charging for summer parking, should the success of the new on-mountain attractions increase the number of summer visitors significantly.

Some local business owners are concerned it will draw business away from the town’s resort business center.

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