10 Reasons You Should Invest in Colorado Springs Right Now

by | BiggerPockets.com

I grew up in Colorado Springs, but when I meet strangers, I like to qualify my roots by saying that I live in Denver now and it’s a better fit for me. Wink. Wink. Nod. Nod. And to my family who still live there, I’ve enjoyed referring to it as Denver’s Less-Attractive Little Sister and/or Crazy Town. And that about sums up everything I’ve ever thought about Colorado Springs until 2016-ish. And in 2016, I started saying confusing things like, “It’s probably smart to buy in Colorado Springs.” And by 2018, I said something even more confusing, which was, “I bought in Colorado Springs.” And to my investors: “We should look in Colorado Springs.”

I’m not the only one who has experienced this shift in feelings. A lot of people are into Denver’s Less Attractive Little Sister now. So, let’s talk about why, and how, Colorado Springs has finally matured into the Real Estate Prom Queen we never thought she could be.

Related: Best Places to Invest in Real Estate: An Analysis of 6 Cities

1. Denver

Everyone loves Denver, but not everyone can afford it. Consequently, a lot of people have moved south and commute north.  Some have just built lives in Colorado Springs, where the prices remain a little lower (for now).

2. Millennials

According to this article, millennials are moving to Colorado Springs at a faster rater than they are moving anywhere else. Whatttt? I know. Weird. I think this influx is related to millennials being priced out of Denver, but then being pleasantly surprised by the housing costs, job opportunities, and quality of life that Colorado Springs offers.

3. Culture

For the past 30 years, Colorado Springs has been widely known for its military bases, fundamentalist church scene, and its intensely conservative politics. As that scene isn’t for evryone, the population has remained depressed. But with the onslaught of Denverites and millennials, the city is starting to feel a lot different and a lot more relaxed.

4. Year-Over-Year Rent Increases of 7 Percent

Colorado Springs rent have increased 7 percent between 2017 and 2018. And that’s attractive if you’re an investor.

5. Neighborhoods Close to Downtown Have Appreciated by as Much as 60 Percent

That’s over 5 years, but again, very attractive to an investor.

6. Airbnb Laws

Colorado Springs is in the process of changing some of its Airbnb laws. But currently, there are no limits on what you can buy and rent out Airbnb. Compared to Denver, where you are limited by law to Airbnbing only your primary residence, this is a very attractive thing. Colorado Springs does not appear to be heading that way, but they are implementing some restrictions. (Email me if you want details on that.)

Related: Top Real Estate markets to invest in through 2020

7. Colleges

Colorado Springs has three major colleges in the city and is adding a satellite location to its downtown. This build suggests a surge in the millennial demographic, and it also suggests the downtown might soon see a further influx of business and spending.

8. A New Sports Stadium

There is currently a proposal for a 10,000 seat sporting venue in Colorado Springs. There have been some issues with this (location), but if that goes through, it’s reasonable to think additional jobs and money will also come in.

9. Athletes

The Olympic Training Center is in Colorado Springs… but more importantly, athletes love Colorado Springs. It is increasingly competing with Boulder as a top place to be for elite athletes to train, at altitude, in a beautiful place.

10. It’s Ludicrously Beautiful

It just is. Face west standing on Kiowa street — east of downtown — and tell me it’s not just stunning.

And that’s a wrap. We buy and sell properties in Colorado Springs (40 percent of our client set is based in Colorado Springs), so if you have questions, please reach out to me and I’ll be happy to discuss.

Do you have questions about the area?

Share them below!

About Author

Erin Spradlin

Erin Spradlin co-owns James Carlson Real Estate. She loves working with first-time homebuyers for their enthusiasm and excitement, and loves working with investors because she’s a fellow spreadsheet nerd. She and her husband own three properties in metro Denver and are currently in the process of acquiring a duplex in Colorado Springs. You can find Erin’s blogs here: https://www.biggerpockets.com/renewsblog/author/erinspradlin/ and her airbnb video series here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLgSUZKLPRI9tK3Vd-qpH3Sk2Rh-_pIrNN.

13 Comments

  1. Ali Hashemi

    Yes!! Colorado Springs is amazing. And BOOMING. There are the paint mines, garden of the gods, artsy district of Manitou Springs, Pikes Peak, the Academy, Whispering caves……I could go on and on. There are tons of reasons to love the Springs hence a great place to invest!

  2. Steve T.

    It is certainly a great place to live…. and it was a great place to invest. It may still be a great place to invest, but only if your investment criteria does not come anywhere close to following the 2% or even 1% rule (and of course most of the highly desirable areas in the U.S. do not meet those guidelines).

    Prices going up 60% in 5 years… or in many cases in excess of 100% in 8-9 years, should be concerning to new investors in this market. That rate of growth simply can not continue. So, as always, the question should become one of cash flow and what your acceptable rate of return is.

    • Erin Spradlin

      Yeah, I feel like Denver has long blown through the 1-2% rule in the past few years- and same for Colorado Springs. That said, there are a lot of people that said “stop buying” in Denver five years ago, but for those that did, they are pretty pleased they did with the appreciation. Also, if you do a short-term play (airbnb, etc.) the numbers are pretty good. I am going to post an article on those numbers (we just started a partnership with someone down there) and that might change your mind.

      • Steve T.

        SFR’s may generally continue to work for AirBnB, but many condo and TH developments are prohibiting it. In fact, even some SFR neighborhoods with strong covenants are trying to limit short term rentals… perhaps not too successfully, but trying.

        But… yes, everyone should definitely come here and buy a few properties:) Seriously though, just don’t get burned or overextended if you are a first timer.

      • Erin Spradlin

        Yeah, I just disagree. It was cheaper a few years ago but there’s still a ton of opportunity- especially if you are in the short-term rental space, as most of my clients are. That said, it’s also better for buyers if not everyone is rushing the market.

  3. Mike McKinzie

    I just spent two months in CS, May and June, taking care of my daughter, who is in the Air Force. She had surgery on her right ankle and needed a caregiver and driver. In that two months, I got to experience CS, up close and personal. And while I agree that there are some absolutely gorgeous areas, I loved hiking Red Rock Canyon and visiting the summit on Pike’s Peak, I also saw quite a bit of urban decay, homelessness and crumbling infrastructure. Being the investor that I am, I drove all over. I saw some beautiful, newer tracks of home, nice parks and great shopping. But I also saw some areas that I wouldn’t let me Labrador stay over night. Let’s just say that when I went for a walk, I carried pepper spray with me (this is the area of Academy and Airport Drive). So while I agree that CS has some great areas, an investor needs to really look for the area they want to invest in, Colorado Springs has A, B, C and D area’s!

    • Steve T.

      Academy and Airport is close to being one of our worst and most dangerous areas of the city. I would argue that any city of this population will likely have a few similar areas. Not representative of the area at large, or where I would own rentals.

    • Erin Spradlin

      Totally agree. That’s not a part of town I would ever advise clients to buy in… but every city has areas that you would steer people away from or toward. So, with that in mind, it’s important that depending on your goal- your agent knows the area, the laws, the industries, etc. that can support and/or derail whatever you are trying to do.

  4. Jaron Walling

    To me the Colorado market is a primed for flipping. Retail buyers are having a hay day trying to purchase in any of above markets. My friend purchased a home 2 months ago in Erie, CO because nothing was affordable in Denver, Colorado Springs, or Boulder. The searched for 8 months.

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