Special Features

Outdoor living on a Colorado scale: Final Parade weekend offers dramatic outdoor entertaining at Pradera in Parker

By Mark Samuelson

AronPhoto.comUmbria model at Pradera open for final weekend of the Parade of Homes.When veteran builders Dan Verdoorn and Kurt Miller brought luxury homes to some city-sized lots in Lone Tree's Heritage Hills six years ago, Colorado's housing market was headed for the tank - but Celebrity Custom Homes, all with dramatic outdoor-living spaces, sold well anyway, right through the downturn. Now the market is vastly better, and Verdoorn, Miller and award-winning architect Mike Woodley have applied those same concepts to the expansive terrain around the private Jim Engh-design golf course at Pradera, near Parker. And you can come see how great those work on this final weekend of the Parade of Homes.

"The city grew up around Lone Tree, and now we're seeing some of our buyers who look for more privacy," Miller said, showing off the two homes you'll see - each with wide-open settings where outdoor living unfolds from the home's interior, seamlessly into the rolling panorama. There's room for a 'casita' that could be an added guest suite; or a party room that unfolds from a giant pool and terrace.

"This is the line," Miller said as he traced an imaginary divide that Woodley has created between the entertaining spaces and the functional areas like bedroom suites. The latter are also decked out, showing creative uses of light and color to complement the outdoors.

All of this is an add-on to a private golf club setting that offers plenty of value in its amenities, says Verdoorn. "It's a nice, family-styled club with an amazing social membership," he added. $94 a month gets you the inviting clubhouse and its gym and grill (great chef, Verdoorn notes) along with four foursomes a year on the course, and a calendar of activities with your neighbors.

"A lot of value in a custom purchase ends up being about who's doing it," notes Craig Penn, sales manager at Pradera, who has already seen six sales of these homes this year. "This is a custom builder at a semi-custom price. You won't find this quality anywhere around."

Prices start under $900,000. Tour the homes, and then Penn can tell you about home sites at Pradera - some ready for you to go to work on a custom version of these right away. Celebrity also has one home set for early delivery: an Avila 3-bedroom-plus-study plan on track to be ready this year. You still have time to have that personalized, from a price including lot premium estimated at $1.1 million.

Penn adds that Pradera has the new connectivity offered by the west side of Parker, with its Hess Road and Ridgegate Parkway connections to Southeast office campuses. You can get there by heading south on Parker Road past the town of Parker; but Penn recommends you take the I-25 route: south to the first Castle Rock exit, Founders Parkway, then east a mile to Crowfoot Valley Road, north three miles to Pradera Parkway, and right a half mile to Wildgrass Place.

WHERE: Parade of Homes featuring Celebrity Custom Homes at Pradera, final Parade weekend; two designer-furnished custom homes, attractively priced sites, some on private Jim Engh designed golf course. Take I-25 south to first Castle Rock exit, Founders Pkwy, east 1 mi. to Crowfoot Valley Rd., turn north 3 mi. to Pradera Pkwy, then right ½ mi to Wildgrass Pl.

PRICE: From $835,000 to $1.5 million, ready soon $1.1 million

PHONE: 720-851-9411

WEB: CelebrityCommunities.com

Mark Samuelson writes on real estate and business; you can email him atmark@samuelsonassoc.com. You can see all of Mark Samuelson's columns online atDenverPostHomes.com

  • Boulder apartment complex owners cited for illegally subdividing bedrooms agree to $410,000 settlement

    The owners of Boulder’s Sterling University Peaks apartments, who this summer were cited for illegally subdividing 92 bedrooms in the complex, have reached an agreement to settle the case for $410,000, the city announced Thursday.
    Under the terms of the deal, the owners of the complex, located at 2985 E. Aurora Ave., will pay a $150,000 administrative penalty and $260,000 in restitution to current and former tenants.
    The owners will get credit for the $168,000 they’ve already paid to some tenants in the form of refunds, expense reimbursement and rent waivers.
    The penalty and restitution amounts are the highest ever paid to resolve a Boulder Municipal Court case, according to the city.
    “This settlement underscores both the city’s commitment to upholding safety standards in rental housing in Boulder and the importance of providing compensation to individuals who were directly impacted by the owners’ actions,” said Tom Carr, the city attorney, in a statement.
    Read the full story about the settlement at the Boulder Daily Camera.

    Read more

  • U.S. 30-year average mortgage rate rises for sixth straight week to 4.13 percent

    WASHINGTON — Long-term U.S. mortgage rates climbed for the sixth straight week in the aftermath of Donald Trump’s election win, marking new highs for the year.
    Mortgage giant Freddie Mac said Thursday the average rate on a 30-year fixed rate loan jumped this week to 4.13 percent from 4.08 percent the previous week. The benchmark rate surpassed its 3.95 percent level of a year ago.
    The rate on 15-year home loans, a popular choice for people who are refinancing, rose to 3.36 percent from 3.34 percent.
    Long-term mortgage and interest rates have surged in the five weeks since Trump’s surprise victory in November to become the country’s next president.
    Since the election, bond investors have been demanding higher long-term yields and paying lower prices for bonds, as they look toward rising inflation under the Trump administration. Anticipated tax cuts and increased government spending to upgrade roads, bridges and airports could stoke inflation. That would depress prices of long-term Treasury bonds because inflation would erode their value over time. Bond yields move opposite to prices and also influence long-term mortgage rates.
    Related ArticlesDecember 8, 2016

    Read more

  • Rising real estate market makes foreclosure properties hot investments, but some never collect profits

    County foreclosure auctions have become the hottest investment opportunity in town, reaping tens of thousands of dollars in profits for the most unlikely people: the homeowner who lost the house.
    Yet getting them to collect the money isn’t always easy, the public trustees who track them down say.
    The money comes from people who buy auctioned houses for more than what a homeowner owes the bank or lender who foreclosed. Once lawyers and any property liens are paid off, the homeowner who lost the house gets what’s left. It’s usually a few thousand dollars.
    Lately, though, it has been as much as $100,000 or more.
    “Some are more than willing to claim the money, but others are hesitant,” said Diana Springfield, chief deputy public trustee for Arapahoe County. “One guy came in recently to ask about (the money), and now we can’t get him to come back to collect it.”
    The amount waiting for him: $27,692.
    “We’ve never had anything like this. It’s crazy,” said Adams County Public Trustee Susan Orecchio, noting that auction buyers are frequently paying more than what a bank is owed for a property.
    There has been a drop of 45 percent in houses sold at the foreclosure auction this year, Orecchio said. But bidders have already paid more than $3 million more than the banks were owed — a 77 percent increase over last year.
    And it’s happening all over Colorado.
    “In the past decade, most people owed far more on their loan than what the property was worth, so the bank usually would simply get the property back at auction,” said Brandon Turner at BiggerPockets.com, a real estate investment and networking site.
    Related ArticlesNovember 24, 2016

    Read more

  • Wheat Ridge staking out an outdoor recreation “base camp” near new rail stop

    WHEAT RIDGE — What happens when you combine two of Colorado’s hottest trends: the outdoor recreation industry and co-working office space?
    You get an unfolding blueprint for how to best use the real estate surrounding Ward Station, the last stop on the future G-Line and Wheat Ridge’s only station on the 122-mile FasTracks system.
    The plan is known formally as the Ward Station Vision, but lately by the more user-friendly “Base Camp” — a nod to outdoorsy entrepreneurs who might want to set up shop a few miles from the foothills west of Denver yet still easily connect to the rest of the metro area and Denver International Airport via train.
    “Wheat Ridge has always been the base camp of the Rocky Mountains,” said councilman Zach Urban, who was the first to come up with the project’s nickname at a City Council meeting this fall. “Wheat Ridge is where people stop from all over the Front Range to stock up before going up the hill.”

    Read more