Housing In Colorado Springs Is Becoming More Unaffordable — But It’s Still Cheaper Than Denver

Michael Elizabeth Sakas
A row of new homes still under construction in Colorado Springs, May 24, 2021.

Colorado Springs housing prices set records for the fifth month in a row in June. The median price of a single family home still sits nearly $100,000  less than in metro Denver. Still, Donna Major with Colorado Peak Realty in the Springs says the city is increasingly pricing people out.

“That’s heartbreaking because obviously I want to see everyone be able to buy a home and live in something that they own and build equity,” Major said.

The median home price in the Springs rose to $450,000 in June, up from $432,000 a month earlier. Houses are also staying on the market for an average of nine days, half the time of a year ago, according to data from the Pikes Peak Association of Realtors.

That means it’s a great market for sellers, with homes usually selling for well over their asking prices. Major said it’s difficult for her to even gauge how much to recommend her clients bid over the asking price since at times the final sales price is so much higher than she even expected.

It’s even worse in Denver; median residential home prices there were $545,000 in June. Though Dirk Draper, President and CEO of the Colorado Springs Chamber of Commerce, said the status as an “unaffordable city” is a relatively new one for the Springs and it’s having negative ripple effects across the local economy, especially as businesses work to recruit talent. Draper said it’s even been the case for his own office in the last month, where a new incoming senior executive employee at the Chamber pulled out when she saw the local cost of housing.

Even though there are some bright spots in the number of new homes being built this year, builders rarely have incentives to build starter homes for first-time buyers. Draper called changing those incentives a complex problem that will require multiple solutions from local workforce development, to possibly changing state regulations for condo developers.