The statewide stay-at-home order was lifted in Colorado on Monday, April 27. However, any city or county health orders that are impose more strict regulations supersede the orders of the state. Pitkin County has extended its county-wide order through May 8 with some exceptions.
On the bright side for contractors, architects, real estate brokers, and that large portion of our workforce and economy, the Aspen City Council just agreed to loosen construction restrictions and fast-track the permitting process. This will provide a nice economic boost by allowing new building permits to be expedited and issued. Developers can get back to work immediately, though construction hours will remain the same (7:30 am to 5:00 pm on weekdays and Saturdays 9:00 am to 5:00 pm). In addition, the right-of-way construction season has been extended from its usual June 1 closure to a July 1 closure. It will then start up earlier (before Labor Day) than usual for 2020’s fall months.
Real Estate Activity
I completed my first “curbside closing” a couple weeks ago under the social distancing protocol. Effective this week, I am now able to show property again. I have been busy consulting with clients and business partners over the phone and “virtually” through video conferences. There is are still many things that buyers and sellers can be doing during this downtime to be better prepared for an upcoming move. Market education, lining up repairs, landscaping, painting and decluttering, reevaluating housing needs ahead of a move, getting finances in order, pre-qualifying for a mortgage loan—these are all proactive steps that will give someone a head-start before it’s time to actually sell or buy a property.
Even as stay-at-home restrictions are lifted, we can expect certain aspects of the real estate process to be different. Another big piece of news to come out is that face masks or some sort of cloth face covering will be required within Aspen city limits. This will be enforced in indoor and outdoor places where maintaining a 6-foot social distance is difficult to achieve. Be prepared to wear a mask if out in public.
The face covering law will be in effect until at least May 27. At that time, it will be revisited by the Aspen City Council. There’s a chance masks will be either required—or strongly recommended—in certain public settings through the summer months and maybe into fall and winter if there is a threat of a second coronavirus wave.
Adapting to Changing Times
Since my real estate business requires me to interact with buyers, sellers and renters, I will be doing everything in my power to continue social distancing, limit personal contact and protect my clients. This will also mean implementing various safety and sanitization precautions when any face-to-face meetings occur during a real estate transaction.
It will be an interesting summer in Aspen, but I do expect the real estate market to pick back up quickly as the economy opens and stay-at-home orders are eased.
I’m Ready. Are You?
It won’t be “business as usual” anytime soon, but I am actively working toward helping clients achieve their real estate goals. I have been making the most of my extra time at home and I will be ready to get the spring and summer market rolling as soon as possible!
If you are planning to buy, sell or rent a home in Aspen this summer, now is the time to get prepared and start taking action. Give me a call or send me an email at [email protected]. Let me know how I can help.
Aspen Real Estate
DRE # FA.100019229