The other morning as I was dropping my son off at the bus stop I heard “Here Comes the Sun” by the Beatles and it literally brought me to tears. It seems seasonal affective disorder has finally caught up with me. The forecast for this week touts a warming trend to result in “seasonal temperatures” and I’ll take it. But this morning it was blistery cold with a penetrating wind and more fresh snow on the ground. In Paonia and the North Fork Valley its been a grey, wet, season but luckily for me and my S.A.D. the dog days of winter have been BUSY at the RE/MAX office in downtown Paonia. A contingent of potential new neighbors; friendly, progressive, and enthusiastic folk, continue to hungrily circle Paonia and the North Fork Valley. Everyone seems eager for a change of lifestyle and look to take advantage of our reasonable property costs and undeniably sublime quality of life.

Real estate prices have continue to march upward slowly but steadily over the past several years. Check out the graph spanning 11 years below and compare the  “Housing Bubble” of 2007 with our current situation.

The early 2k’s were seeing $40k average property value increases in a SINGLE year! Compare that to the steady, moderate increases over the past 5 years. Gains of around $8k over the past couple years look as if they should continue through 2017. Inventory of single family homes in Paonia have fallen well behind demand and it continues to be a strong sellers market and a VERY competitive environment for buyers.

As an example of the type of folks interested in North Fork, the other day I showed property to an MD licensed in 37 states!  A family practitioner who practices telemedicine, this person requires a robust broadband internet connection and was very glad to learn of the addition of #Elevate fiber in Paonia. The proximity of this service currently relegates this person to property in and around town but that’s just fine because another requirement is to be able to walk or ride a bike to downtown Paonia. I can’t tell you how many buyers are desiring this ability.  (Hint to town and county planners, we need more trails connecting our communities to each other, our rivers, and our mountains!!!) This person was very excited about our little “Colorado Mayberry” and hinted that she is scouting the area for several other friends also looking to settle in the North Fork as well. Good news! Change is inevitable and I believe the cultural shift we are seeing in Paonia is not a bad thing. While many believe the decline of coal jobs is the death knell for our community, I believe the future is bright. While it is a shame when people lose their livelihood I believe the North Fork Valley is resilient and offers more than just jobs in extraction industries. People WANT to be in Paonia. The type of people interested in coming here seem to be creative in their approaches to “making a living” and tend to operate and think outside the box. Or in the case of the “e-doctor” I showed property,  our new ultra high speed  #Elevate internet connection is enabling telecommuting!

As I’ve mentioned in several previous blog posts here in the Nutshell, it remains a great time to list your property with a local Realtor. Be sure to consider the advice of a Realtor with regard to the value of your property. This is a key factor in selling your property quickly in the hot real estate market we are seeing. It may be tempting to price property above market value but there are a host of pitfalls that can result from this. Feel free to call me anytime to schedule a free property valuation or just talk about whats going on with real estate in the North Fork!

Happy Spring everyone! Here comes the sun!