Colorado Springs has recently been hit by an unfortunate disaster: the Waldo Canyon Fire. The fire rushed through the northwest part of Colorado Springs leaving many homes burned and extensive damage to the natural landscape. The Waldo Canyon fire affected the beautiful Mountain Shadows neighborhood so fast and unpredictably that it left some homes standing and some burned to the ground. The fire left the Mountain Shadows Real Estate Market in an unsettled state and many are unsure of how it will react to these very unusual circumstances.
The Mountain Shadows Real Estate community is located in the western foothills of Colorado Springs and is conveniently located near many area amenities. Real Estate values range from the mid $100,000's to over $1 million and consists of varying styles and aged homes located on varying sized sites. This communities' initial growth was in reaction to the housing need of employees for a number of large companies, including Intel, MCI and Hewlett Packard. Many question whether or not those homeowners who's homes have burned will stay and rebuild or move elsewhere. If many Mountain Shadows residents decide to move elsewhere, what will happen to the value of the homes that are left? What affect will the damaged natural landscape have on the neighborhood desireability? As an appraiser, how is the value of this neighborhood now determined? Will the desireability be diminished due to the fire? If enough residents of burned homes decide not to rebuild, what will happen to the value of this once beautiful neighborhood?
The neighborhood's Real Estate values were already directly affected in recent years due to the housing bubble, along with the closing of the Intel plant and the downsizing of Hewlett Packard and Verizon (which took over MCI). Real Estate values over the past 6-12 months appeared to be stabilizing in this area as listing prices were brought in-line with recent purchaser's demands and expectations. Now this area will also have to deal with this new and unexpected turn of events.