Friday Update September 18, 2020
The last time the Denver Nuggets faced off in the Western Conference finals they did so against the LA Lakers in the 2008-2009 season. That time around LA won the series 4-2 and then the nugz went on to suck pretty consistently for almost a decade. I was a bartender at Rock Bottom and decided to move to Portland, OR that year and then I also sucked for the better part of the following decade.
Well today we have the chance to #beatLA and the Nuggets have a chance to go to the NBA Finals for their first ever time. A lot has changed in Denver since 2009 and the same can be said for the Springs. Denver went from like a B grade big city to an A class metropolis. Everyone says they're from "Denvah" even though their lame asses are from like Ohio, or Tennessee or Chicago. Basically Denver is kind of like what Portland was to me 11 years ago but a lot more bougie and less hipster. The Springs got measureably less lame.
In September of 2009 we had almost 5000 active listings on the market here with less than 1000 sales a month. Today we have 601 existing single family homes on the market with 205 of them priced below our median price of $385,000. We have less than a month of inventory as a norm right now.
You may have seen a recent Gazette article talking about how the Springs is now among the least affordable places to live in. Let's break down some numbers real quick and see what has changed since the last time the Lakers owned us in the playoffs.
In September of 2009 the median home in COS, adjusted for inflation, cost $228,664. Par interest rates at that point were about 5.75%. For the sake of simplicity I'm using today's numbers for insurance and taxes for both scenarios. In 2009 the mortgage payment on the median house here would have been about $1626 as adjusted for inflation.
In September of 2020 our median price here is now $385,000. Par rates are hovering around 2.5% and with the same taxes and insurance the median payment would be around $1812 a month.
For both examples I'm factoring in 0% down payment and for simplicity no mortgage insurance for either example.
So while prices have gone up tremendously rates have gone down so much that the difference in monthly payment is only 10.3%. And you know that nobody really cares how much things cost, they just care how much they cost per month. Because credit!
Now median incomes have not really gone up significantly here. This probably has a lot to do with the fact that the Springs lacks a significant number of high paying jobs. We're just kind of basic, you know?
The inflation adjusted 2009 median household income here was $65,349 and today it is $68,119. Not a tremendous jump really, but then again our city is still primarily dependent on the military, it's auxiliary businesses and the service sector. Median wages increased by 4% where as the cost of housing increased by 10.3%. No silicone valley here=stagnant median wages.
With the above set of numbers we can discern that in 2009 the median household spent 29.8% of their income on their house payment and today they spend 31.9%. This is of course an oversimplified example because it does not account for the folks that bought a house in 2009 and refinanced in in 2020, they are paying a SHIT TON less than that. Like I mentioned in a previous post this is a large part of the reason why our inventory is so low, if you're spending say less than 20% of your income on your home because you bought cheap and refinanced cheap why would you want to move and leave that behind?
To the Gazette article talking about COS becoming increasingly less affordable I'd like to present this question. Is it because the prices in the Springs are going up too quickly and wages aren't keeping up? Because this is indeed true. But is it also because some of the other cities that we are being compared to are seeing an exodus of their population and therefore becoming more affordable than they used to be for comparison?
People are leaving the super large cities in record numbers due to the pandemic, due to cost of living, and due to people being some of the most difficult mammals to get along with. Los Angeles for example has been gradually, and slowly to be fair, losing people to other areas while secondary markets like the Springs are exploding.
So at least in that regard we have #beatLA already, also our traffic isn't anywhere close to as bad, our weather is more exciting, our taxes don't force businesses to leave the state, we're not saturated with neurotic actors/actresses and now we're even getting an In and Out. So basically what I'm saying is Colorado Springs is doing awesome and I think will continue to do great over the long haul. Hopefully the Nugz can bring a trophy home and then whatever Californians end up moving here can leave their shitty policies in California and remember why they moved here to begin with!
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