Who rates the lowest rates?
That’s the average interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate loans as of June 28, as reported by Freddie Mac. Fifteen-year fixed-rate loans dropped to 2.94 percent. The 30-year rate marked a continuation of a streak of rates below 4 percent that has continued since December.
Securing those low rates, however, might not be as easy as it seems. As reporter Jeff Thomas notes in this edition of Distinctive Homes of the Boulder Valley, the best rates are available only to those with the best credit scores, perhaps as high as 760 or 780.
Consumers have to pay attention not only to paying their bills on time and not maxing out their credit, but also on having enough credit. As Thomas’ article notes, some would-be homebuyers simply haven’t used enough credit to bump their credit score higher.
So, if you’re in the market for a new home, be aware that the rate offered by your lender might not be the very lowest. But if your credit score is in that 760 or 780 range, have at it!
One of the new additions to Distinctive Homes this year has been our regular focus on school districts in the Boulder Valley. There’s no question that people in search of a new home — if they have children — want to know about the school system. What are the teacher-student ratios? What are test scores and graduation rates? What Advanced Placement classes are available?
This month, reporter Jeff Thomas takes a look at schools in mountain towns, including Gold Hill, Jamestown and Nederland, part of the Boulder Valley School District.
Mountain schools offer some unique dynamics. Teachers in mountain towns typically instruct multiple grades, and school closures can be a challenge at elevations of 7,500 to 8,600 feet.
Speaking of mountains, this edition includes an exploration of mountain living. Recent wildfires in Colorado Springs, Boulder County and Northern Colorado have shown the dangers and risks of living in a mountain setting. But many homeowners and Realtors say the risk is worth it for many people, who value the serenity and beauty of life in a mountain setting.
Natural hazards and the economic slump have caused a drastic drop in mountain home sales in recent years, writer Valerie Gleaton reports, with only 12 of 567 homes sold in Boulder County during the first quarter of 2012 being mountain properties.
Still, mountain home sales have begun to recover in more recent months. One group particularly interested in mountain properties is out-of-state buyers looking for vacation homes. Often, people relocating to Colorado purchase mountain residences for work-at-home options.
One drawback: A local Realtor told us that there simply is not a large supply of new construction on the market in the mountains.
“It’s too bad we don’t have more new construction to offer buyers,” the broker said.
Loft developments are a cool, interesting type of project to feature, in keeping with the Boulder Valley lifestyle. One project that’s succeeded remarkably in recent years has been Landmark Lofts, located along 28th Street Frontage Road near the University of Colorado-Boulder campus.
Writer Keely Brown spoke with broker Steve Remmert about the project, which has completely sold out. But that was only after some difficult times, with the global economic downturn.
Just as downtown’s condo market has revived, so, too, has the market for properties outside of downtown, especially those with close proximity to CU.
Have an idea for Distinctive Homes? Feel free to contact me to suggest a story idea.
Christopher Wood can be reached at 303-440-4950 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
More breaking news...
Obfuscation when chips are down
One of the region’s premier business events will take place May 23 at the Omni Interlocken Resort in Broomfield. Mercury 100, honoring the fastest-growing private companies in the Boulder
As area’s housing market recovers, Distinctive Homes chronicles changes
It seemed like such a simple question: Does Boulder Canyon Natural Foods still have a physical location in Boulder?
Alas, you might have thought I was asking