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Old Today, 05:19 PM
 
4 posts
Reputation: 15

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We were recently saddened to learn that a location where we nearly purchased a home was part of a landslide area. I had heard there was “ground movement” from someone familiar with the area and also that the roads were falling apart when the development began. However, we weren’t informed by anyone that this was a landslide area and nearly moved forward on this home. Come to find out, the area does indeed have a history of problematic ground movement. As many know, several homes have been lost in Broadmoor Bluffs as they are also in a landslide zone.. Before I go on, there are many people living in these gorgeous locations who haven’t had issues and love living there. They shouldn’t have to fear that their home values will go down, and I’m not posting to make folks fearful. I simply want to share what I learned in my own search for a home. Some areas include Broadmoor Bluffs, west of the Broadmoor, Cedar Heights Small parts of Peregrine. After searching there are a few maps that show specific landslide areas. Boulder hasn’t built homes in landslide areas since the 70’s, but Colorado Springs has allowed it. The developers and builders are usually long gone by the time the homes crack or move. Ground movement damage isn’t covered by homeowners insurance. I wanted to share this map with you in case you are in my shoes. A structural engineer, familiar with the specific area we liked, who’s a family friend told me to run from the area we were looking to purchase. No underpinning will save a home in a large slide and without a proper foundation, just slight movement can be a big issue. And some folks choose to live in these gorgeous locations anyway. However, most who lost their homes weren’t told they were in a landslide area. I just feel we should be fully aware as buyers - unfortunately many people buy never knowing they are on potential moving ground. There are also locations in Rockrimmon and Cragmor where mines are underground - it’s just helpful to know what to look into as a buyer when purchasing in certain spots.

[url=http://hermes.cde.state.co.us/drupal/islandora/object/co%3A13910?solr_nav%5Bid%5D=4637cff8d83cf2d8f70c&s olr_nav%5Bpage%5D=0&solr_nav%5Boffset%5D=0]Map of potential areas of landslide susceptibility in Colorado Springs, El Paso County, Colorado | Colorado State Publications Digital Repository[/url]

For some reason you can’t click the link, but if you copy and paste it, then put it in a search you should find it. I clicked a download from this link, scrolled down and it showed the most detailed map of any I’ve seen. Even showing where slides have already occurred.

There are also articles from the Gazette and Denver post about how Colorado Springs allowed building in these locations, as well as opinions from geologists and engineers. Hope this helps you as you buy a home here. We are so sad to not feel comfortable to purchase where we wanted - probably someone will buy it up and be just fine!
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Old Today, 05:35 PM
 
20,529 posts, read 38,258,019 times
Reputation: 18442
Until you have a certain number of postings your link will not be clickable, so here's the clickable link.

IIRC about the real estate business ... realtors are to inform potential buyers of material defects in a property. IIRC a "buyer's broker" is a specific realtor who works for the buyer with the definite goal of protecting a buyer's interests.

Any realtor want to confirm my understandings?
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Old Today, 06:50 PM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
18 posts, read 29,621 times
Reputation: 17
Default Cedar Heights

Hi Jess CO - thanks for your post. I understand your concern to which you are entitled. I recently sold a home up there (4 months ago) and it stands on bedrock- whilst I understand that there is 'never' a 'never' this home has been there since 1985, the past owner lived there for 18 years - the buyer had a structural engineer come out and not a thing could be found - not a thing - relating to movement - in fact I will go so far as to say there is more movement in Old Colorado City, East and Rockrimmon area. For all the slides we had on the west side devastating some homes, not one moved in Cedar heights - again not to say they won't but time has proven to be kind. Their fire prevention was and is rated the best in the city and it saved the community when we had those awful Rampart fires a number of years ago. As for the road - that did happen when the development first started but was sorted out by a new panel on the HOA and the roads were properly corrected and they now have over one million dollars in an account specifically to address the roads should they ever need to. Comito as you know constantly builds up there, to today and they are million dollar homes and I am pretty sure his soils tests are comprehensive. One other thing, remember a Realtor can only disclose to the best of their currrent and ACTUAL knowledge. It is up to the buyer to do their due diligence - good job, you did yours and it scared you and that's ok - if a Realtor has no knowledge then they cannot disclose or advise, same goes with crime areas, sexual preditors and where they live. I sold a house near UCCS a couple of years ago and had absolutely no idea that there were tunnels in the area and they were beginning to collapse - nor did the seller, nor did the seller before him (and if he did he did not inform my buyer or myself). After the sale we were informed by the buyers agent that the next door neighbor had told them about them and wanted to know why we had not disclosed. I presented them with the sellers property disclosure from when my seller purchased the home and asked how we could possibly have disclosed when we had no knowledge of it - and I have been in town 17 years and never ever heard of them in this area before - I had heard of Rockrimmon and the filmore area - so, had we known we would have had to disclose for sure. Cedar heights is indeed a beautiful location and hopefully it continues to stay that way. Regards, Sallyanne
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Old Today, 08:45 PM
 
4 posts
Reputation: 15
Thank you both! Sallyanne - I’m thrilled for your buyer and you’re right, the history shows no homes up there lost in a landslide. I’m glad the engineer confirmed that there was no movement on their lot or with their home.

No doubt those million dollar homes had soils testing and structural engineer checks. I was told that it’s not just the ground movement, which can be solid and steady but the fact is that it’s in a landslide zone. A geologist should potentially be hired by the potential buyer, which is quite rare and geologists for this can be difficult to find. After looking at the map from the link I just shared, there are clearly a few areas that have had much more landslide activity than other areas, including much of Cedar Heights. The engineer mentioned lots that were on moving earth (checked by a geotech) and still being sold - I don’t know, this could have been long ago. He also mentioned that homes in these types of areas (not just cedar heights) are fixed and then marketed as as having been fixed but are still in a poor location. No doubt this is the minority, but I’m just sharing what I learned personally, which lead to our decision. Even as a Colorado Springs native, I too was unaware of the tunnels when we bought our first home in Cragmor years ago - the location you mention across from UCCS. I am also surprised to now find out that there are landslide zones in our town. This is the only reason I post as it seems there’s a lack of knowledge about these areas. Folks can do their own research and hopefully decide one way or another, but this information is very hard to come by unfortunately. Of course, a realtor can only disclose what they know and thank you for service in this area. I truly respect your opinion and simply want to share what I’ve learned in my buying journey! we even considered taking the risk ( for a quick minute ) because we loved it so much and many homes have been fine for decades! (Though many of the Broadmoor homes had been fine for years too)There will always be buyers in for gorgeous locations and that is their choice - my post is not to dissuade but to inform from my personal experience. Thanks so much!

Last edited by JessCO; Today at 10:12 PM..
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Old Today, 11:01 PM
 
Location: Woodland Park, CO
195 posts, read 179,911 times
Reputation: 494
Kudos to you for doing your research. Unfortunately Colorado Springs remains well behind other cities along the Front Range in limiting / prohibiting development in landslide prone areas. Unfortunately developers continue hold a lot of power in city politics. But there is no question they could do a lot better.
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