The Benefits and Challenges of Owning Real Estate in Fort Collins and Colorado

Is there ever a reward gained without a risk taken? A strike bowled, without a gutter looming nearby?

So it is in real estate. It has many challenges. It has great potential reward.

As big as the risks may be, the rewards can be even better. Equity. Appreciation. Financial growth. Even wealth.

Benefits in owning Fort Collins Real Estate include:

  1. You own your spot. A plain old great feeling. Pat yourself on the back.
  2. With every mortgage payment, you own even more of it. Payments are usually lumped into the acronym PITI. Principle. Interest. Taxes. Insurance. At the beginning, the lion’s share of the payment goes toward principle. Slowly, that pendulum swings, and if a homeowner executed the full term of the loan, or made extra payments toward the principle, the acronym can becomes like the rapper—TI. Lol. Only Taxes and Insurance remaining. Those, however, aren’t known for going away.
  3. You can customize your living space. When you rent, you can’t really do much to change your space. When you own you have options. What would you like your space to be like? Do you want to tweak it? Open it up? Have a nicer kitchen? Have more connection between the rooms? What do you want? Where do you want to live? Choose it, employ the resources to make it happen, and in real estate and building in America, you can pretty much get it done. Now, we can’t just do whatever we want in any neighborhood we want. Like, you can’t have chickens in your Midtown condo. It doesn’t work because of health, safety and many other reasons. But there are plenty of places that are zoned so you can have chickens. You can buy a small property. You can buy a big property. You can buy a small house, or a big house or no house (vacant and open land) and build whatever you want on it. It has to be done according to specific zoning laws, rules, and regulations. There are a lot of things that require permissions, and permitting, and review, and inspection, and every type of investigation may need to be done, and you have to be able to do it yourself or pay someone to do it; but as it is, you can buy land and build your dream on it just about anywhere across this great country. That’s special. We are lucky to have this opportunity.
  4. Appreciation. You pay the mortgage, and every payment earns you more of a stake in that home. Pay extra and you gain even more ground on the price you paid for the home. Appreciation happens  when market forces increase the value of our home. Same applies to goods or services. Demand goes up, things demanded becomes more valuable. In real estate, when you purchase a home for $130,000 in 2005 and by 2015 it’s worth $265,000. The value of the property increased. The mortgage payment didn’t change. The interest rate didn’t change. The market changes around us. First it bombed. 2008? Remember? People wanted to sell, but couldn’t. Then, kinda dead for a few years. All of a sudden, 2013 comes and the world realizes Colorado is the shizz, or something, and bang! Home prices soar. More people want to move in? Prices go up. Appreciation.

 

Challenges in owning real estate in Fort Collins and Colorado include:

  1. Putting yourself into the financial position from where you can actually do it. It’s not impossible, and we are lucky in America because we have numerous institutions, from government to private to some that are hybrid, or almost in between that want us to buy, own and sell property. It’s a privilege that not all people in this world can even consider. People who have less financial leverage can find it challenging to own a home.
  2. Maintaining the home. From your personal preferences to Home Owners Association (HOA) rules to city, county and possibly even state regulations, there are standards to which your home must be maintained. Once you buy real estate in Fort Collins, or Northern Colorado, or even anywhere else in the state, you own every bit of it from the center of the Earth all the way up through the sky. Granted, the subsurface rights and the air rights may have been already sold, and therefore not even part of your day, but the point is that if it breaks, you are going to have to fix it.
  3. If the market turns, it may be hard to sell for a profit. In this case, if you can’t turn a profit or even lose money, owning did little better than renting, in at least some respects.
  4. Depreciation is possible. Market forces can be fickle, unpredictable, and acute. Things fall apart, sometimes. We’ve seen a lot of appreciation. It doesn’t mean we’ll always see appreciation.

There are other benefits. There are other challenges. Suffice to say that if nothing is ventured, nothing is gained.


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