Telluride Real Estate News: To Build or Not To Build

Telluride Real Estate News: To Build or Not To Build

In his regular column, (narratives and video), Telluride Real Estate News, Robert Stenhammer leverages his extensive knowledge of market factors (global, national, and regional) and the Telluride lifestyle to bring readers fresh, informative – and insider – real estate news to use today. This week Robert responds to clients’ questions about building a home versus existing real estate in Telluride. Contact him for further information about vacant land and home construction.

Robert Stenhammer

Building versus buying is a very interesting question in the Telluride real estate market today.

Please allow me to be clear: I am talking about residential construction, not commercial or condominium development. It also needs to be understood that I am talking in generalities and that each project will have unique factors and costs particular to its own.

To understand construction cost, there is a simple equation: land + hard costs + soft costs = project total cost

The important factors to understand when evaluating new home construction in the Telluride market are below:

Availability of Labor, Services and Materials:

There are incredible home builders in the Telluride market. However, basic supply and demand is dictating an increase in construction costs due to the short supply of qualified contractors. Workers are being drawn to Denver and other areas of the Western Slope where conditions and pay may be more favorable. There is also a shortage of young people entering the trades.

Almost all the materials used for building homes in Telluride are now imported: lumber and steel from Canada are examples in which proposed tariffs may further increase the costs.

Hard Costs

Hard Costs are the actual construction costs. The vary dramatically based on the size of the home, quality of finishes, lighting and appliances, etc. These costs also depend on which municipality you choose to build in.

In the Town of Telluride, there may be workforce mitigation fees and historical preservation impacts.

The Town of Mountain Village has very specific architectural guidelines such as a 35% stone requirement to preserve the overall consistency and property values of the community.

The general range of hard costs falls between $450 to $600 per square foot.

If you are looking to build a mountain modern, contemporary home, Mountain Village, or Aldasoro Ranch may be the best options as their design guidelines are now more geared to that style.

Soft Costs

Soft costs are fees for architectural design; engineering; and municipal development such as building permits, construction mitigation, water and sewer tap fees.

One important tip is to identify your builder early in the process and connect them with your architect to avoid over-designing outside your budget. Some builders and architects already have great track records and a high comfort level with one another.

A general range of softs costs is 10% of the project total for architecture and engineering; 15% to 20% of the project cost for development fees.

Purchasing a Lot

There are currently 86 lots for sale in Mountain Village at an average size of .67 acres at an average price of $1 million.

One item of note: I have recently seen engineering and architectural designs that work well on steep lots that can provide excellent land value and amazing views…

Continue reading here.

Click here for a snapshot of market inventory.

Watch Robert’s summary video here, an excellent new home construction update:

Watch this video for an overview of Telluride and MountainVillage design standard and the process to get a new home or piece of property modifications approved.

The video by Ryan Bonneau, staff photographer for the Telluride Tourism Board, captures the beauty of Telluride One Photo at a Time. The video is part of Ryan’s Seize the Days series.

Go here for Robert’s year-end marketing report for 2017.

More about Robert Stenhammer:

Daughters Sammy (18), Mackenna (16), Robert and Wife Heidi.

Daughters Sammy (18), Mackenna (16), Robert and Wife Heidi.

Born and raised in Minnesota, Robert Stenhammer holds a BA in business and an MBA in hospitality and tourism. He has enjoyed a 20+-year career in luxury resort management and been a licensed real estate broker since 2009. Specifically, his expertise encompasses real estate, hotels, vacation rentals, resort management, community relations, government affairs, and destination marketing.

Robert began his resort management career in the ski resorts of Colorado, where he directly oversaw the management of over 2,600 vacation rental properties, 40 homeowner associations, retail, food and beverage, real estate, hotels, and resort operations during his stints with Vail Resorts and Intrawest.

Robert went on to work on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, for seven years, serving on the Board of Directors for the Hilton Head Island/Bluffton Chamber of Commerce & VCB. He chaired the Accommodation Tax Committee for the Town of Hilton Head Island, got his brokerage license, and was a regular hospitality, tourism, and real estate columnist for the Island Packet newspaper and Hilton Head Monthly magazine.

In his former duties as executive vice-president for Telluride Ski & Golf Resort, Robert Stenhammer was responsible for hotel and vacation rental resort lodging, Mountain Village retail operations, golf course operations, the Telluride Conference Center, Telluride Concierge Luxury Transport, and the exclusive Telluride Ski and Golf private members club.

Telluride Real Estate News twins with Robert Stenhammer, now an associate broker with Telluride Real Estate Corp./Christie’s International Real Estate. His offers a fresh, fun, informative way to search for properties in the Telluride region: mobile search awesomeness, lifestyle search, luxury search, new listing, and hot deals.

Daughter Sammy (18), Robert, Daughter Mackenna (16) and wife Heidi.

Daughter Sammy (18), Robert, Daughter Mackenna (16) and wife Heidi.

In his new job for Telski, Office of the CEO (Bill Jensen), Robert is charged with helping to make Telluride the #1 resort in the world by working in government affairs and on strategic partnerships and new initiatives for the resort, including housing, access, and sustainable development for a better (read “greener’) future.

As a broker, Robert understands how to leverage his intimate knowledge of the market and executive-level communication skills and service experience to exceed his clients’ real estate objectives.

Off-hours, Robert takes advantage of the active Telluride lifestyle His home is in Mountain Village, where he lives with his wife Heidi and daughters Samantha (18) and Mackenna (16).

Again, feel free to contact Robert Stenhammer if you want additional information about the Telluride Ski & Golf Club and/or if you are interested in buying property in the Telluride region. To stay informed about the Telluride lifestyle and real estate opportunities, go here, like his Facebook page, Telluride Real Estate News, or call 970-708-7771. 


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