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Old 10-25-2020, 03:39 AM
 
24 posts, read 16,462 times
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Currently living in Saigon Vietnam. Have been in Asia for 15 years and now time to get back home. I will be retired in 2021. Seen the increase in prices and debating between CS and the Houston area. Houstons property taxes are high but no state tax and prices for home appear less. Can anyone share their experience with new home builders in CS?

Thanks in advance
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Old 10-25-2020, 08:42 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
259 posts, read 344,300 times
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Houston and Colorado Springs...I can't think of any two places in the USA that are more polar opposite.

Almost all new single family homes you'll find here are $400k and up. All of the larger developments are on the northeast and southeast sides of town. Multi-plex builders will often price in the $280k - $350k range. The trend here and other places has always been...the big companies will survive the economic ups and downs, while the smaller outfits often build for a few years, then declare bankruptcy when things get tough, and skip town. Right now, there is a major building boom going on.
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Old 10-25-2020, 10:58 AM
 
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Agree, polar opposites.

Houston climate is dreadfully hot and humid and getting worse with frequent flooding from hurricanes. Of course Saigon is hot and humid too so the OP is used to it. The big dog in town is the petroleum industry and shipping.

COLO SPGS is high and dry with actual snowy winters. I've shoveled snow there at -10F and had two roofs replaced due to hail storms. The big dog in town is the military and defense industry. USAF Academy football is a draw for some sports fans and all five pro sports are available up in Denver. Great scenery too.

If the OP has health conditions that are worsened by altitude (less oxygen at 6500 feet) then that aspect has to be considered. We have a regular poster on here who moved from Thailand to COLO SPGS and it took ages to get his blood pressure stabilized, if it ever did. He's now in the Phoenix area as am I who spent 11 years in COLO SPGS.

For hot, dry and low altitude then Phoenix area is good as is the Las Vegas area; which should fit the bill for those wishes.

If I had to choose between the two I'd go back to COLO SPGS despite the minor impact that less oxygen has on my heart.
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Old 10-26-2020, 08:48 AM
 
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Yes Colorado Springs ! according to gobankingrates.com it only costs about 85K -88K a yr to live comfortably in Colorado springs ! you never have to worry about hurricanes , earthquakes, mudslides , Typhoons, Haboobs, 110 degree consecutive days, Tornado damage is rare. I had to have my windshield replaced once a yr though....
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Old 10-26-2020, 01:00 PM
 
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Better home builders in COLO SPGS are Keller/Toll Brother, and a few others.

When I was buying a new home there in 2005 we were told to steer clear of Richmond American and the lower-priced homes by national firms like K.B Homes, etc.

Some local firms were decent, like Classic Homes, one of the larger, politically well-connected firms in the area, but with any builder there can be horror stories.

In COLO SPGS the things to avoid are expansive soils (aka bentonite) which wrecks foundations, and radon gas (cancer risk) which can be ameliorated with underground venting for a couple thousand dollars per home.

I'd avoid areas where there is old underground coal mine subsidence (some part of the west side) or landslide risk (some parts of the south side).

Some old sages say it's wise to buy a home that's ten years old and has no foundation or water problems since that's a sign that it's a good safe bet.

Watch out for nearby lots that are graded in such a way that water runs off onto YOUR property. Not good to be downhill of others, though mild gradations can be overcome with French Drains. BTDT.

Other sages say avoid areas of new homes where vacant land exists nearby since you never know what's going in on that vacant land. From personal experience we bought a new large SFH with vacant land nearby and ooops, after the good stuff got built then in came an out of state builder who slam dunked a dense set of THs on the vacant land and we then had issues with those folks parking on our streets, etc.

Here is a mapping site that shows the risky areas for landslides, subsidence and other hazards.
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Old 10-26-2020, 04:35 PM
 
Location: Sandy Eggo's North County
4,258 posts, read 1,833,790 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jer50 View Post
Currently living in Saigon Vietnam. Have been in Asia for 15 years and now time to get back home. I will be retired in 2021. Seen the increase in prices and debating between CS and the Houston area. Houstons property taxes are high but no state tax and prices for home appear less. Can anyone share their experience with new home builders in CS?

Thanks in advance
So many are vacating the USA for places like Vietnam, it's a total surprise to hear of someone actually returning. Especially a retiree. If you haven't been here for 15 years, I think you'll find this isn't the place you left...
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Old 10-26-2020, 05:02 PM
 
837 posts, read 577,761 times
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We currently have a 7 year old Challenger home, and previously had an new build Aspen View and a 2003 Classic. They're all more or less the same on the lower end. Century, Oakwood....take your pick.

All have had their own irritations/issues/quirks. Classic had some electrical thing going on and some other minor annoyances with HVAC and water pressure even after new pressure regulators and water heater, and all new faucets and some connector pvc pipes. Aspen View swayed in the wind and the siding would bang against the house. Challenger our porch had to be lifted due to drain placement, granite backing cracked, some other surprises.

In the Classic home, all of the light switches would crackle and flicker when you'd touch them. The garage light would turn on/off at will, and the garage might open on it's own. Lights would buzz while on too. We had it looked at by an electrician who said it was, "cheaply done." Probably by someone who didn't know what they were doing .....no real fix. Seemed odd for a 15 year old home.....I've lived in homes from 1950 that didn't have that affliction.


We live East of Powers and noticed some cracks in our slab after nearby blasting for new home sites. We had a foundation specialist out who measured and assured us they're just cosmetic, it would be almost impossible for real damage. He said avoid anything west of I-25 or around Palmer park (or at least be super careful.)

Banning Lewis Ranch has a new 55+ community you might be interested in. I believe it's exclusively being built by Oakwood.

There's lots of paired and patio homes bring built all over that I believe are geared towards the older/low maintenance crowd.
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Old 10-26-2020, 05:19 PM
 
837 posts, read 577,761 times
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Also, someone came out to do work on our Aspen View Home siding. They said we were, "lucky," because some of the big, "cheaper," big builders do it even worse and something I didn't understand about home wrap or siding. Something about the studs....I don't know.

Our Challenger came with an insulated garage though, so that's nice. The sound proofing seemed better in Classic & Challenger too, but that could be because we're under a fight path.

We looked at Oakwood and Century as well....and Richmond. I was impressed with Century.... Oakwood we'd only buy for the neighborhood. The rest were too far away or too expensive so we didn't look, these were the bottom of the new home barrel so to speak. However, my grandparents bought a $700k cal-pacific? atlantic? home in Denver and it had lots of remediation needed in the first year. I guess you just never know. It's probably highly dependent on who the workers on the site are too.

My parents also have a Challenger and it's older but no problems like ours.

And lol at the lot - our lot drains into our neighbors. That must suck.
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Old 05-25-2021, 04:17 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
6,455 posts, read 7,056,742 times
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‘Detached townhome’ concept gaining traction in Colorado Springs, other growing markets

While they still come at a cost, they're typically cheaper than traditional homes


https://www.koaa.com/news/state-of-g...rowing-markets

"COLORDO SPRINGS — With construction costs soaring and demand at an all time high, many people are opting to build what homebuilders are dubbing “detached townhomes.”

The homes, which have been sprouting up in Colorado Springs the past few years, are built similar to townhomes. They’re tall and narrow, taking up a small footprint. The difference is, these homes are detached, offering homeowners more privacy and independence."

"“These have been very popular,” Loidolt said.

It’s bringing a wider clientele than expected.

“We thought it would be more millennials,” he said. “But we’re seeing everything from first time buyers to empty nesters.”

It does come with its drawbacks. Higher population density means more infrastructure needs to be built in a smaller area for cities.

And even though it’s cheaper than most of what’s out there, the price tag for Classic’s base Midtown Collection model still sits over $300k. Oakwood’s American Dream concept is slightly cheaper, with its most affordable floor plan starting in the high $200k range, and it’s only offered in Oakwood’s Banning Lewis Ranch development right now.

But in this market, buyers are still eager to make those sacrifices.

“In fact in this [Hannah Ridge] project and Wolf Ranch, we’ve actually had to temporarily halt sales so we can get caught up,” Loidolt said."
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Old 05-25-2021, 09:17 AM
 
4,736 posts, read 2,770,389 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wilberry View Post
Yes Colorado Springs ! according to gobankingrates.com it only costs about 85K -88K a yr to live comfortably in Colorado springs ! you never have to worry about hurricanes , earthquakes, mudslides , Typhoons, Haboobs, 110 degree consecutive days, Tornado damage is rare. I had to have my windshield replaced once a yr though....
I'm not sure I would call $85k/year in household income comfortable here, particularly if you are a newcomer who needs to buy a house. That's a about $5400 or so monthly after taxes, and it's going to be tough to get a mortgage that is significantly below $2,000. That leaves $3400 per month for non-housing expenses.....certainly doable, but I'm not sure I'd consider it to be comfortable, assuming we are talking about a family and not a single individual.
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