Building contractor Richard Bush hopes he can deliver a two-story, stick-built spec house in Hayden's new Dry Creek Village subdivision this year for less than $400,000.
Bush, the owner of Bush Construction, has been in the building business in the Yampa Valley for 35 years and on his own for 15 of them. He has a contract on a lot in the new subdivision on Hayden's east side. His lot backs up to interior open space, as do many of the lots in the neighborhood.
"I live in Hayden, so I'd like to build something here," Bush said. "I think I can build an affordable house as cheaply as you can do it and not have it be cheap-looking - a house where the quality is there."
The 54 lots in the first phase of Dry Creek Village have just been released to the market by co-developers Jon Peddie of Steamboat Springs and partner Jim Woods of Denver, with listing broker Amy Williams of Colorado Group Realty's Hayden office.
Lots begin at $69,900, but the typical price will be between $80,000 and $85,000 for a 0.17-acre lot.
Williams said she hopes the introduction of 54 new residential lots will relieve the bottleneck creating pressure on the Steamboat residential market and create a new place for families to build a home of their own. Already, 14 of the lots are tied up, with several scheduled for closings.
"We have no problem going straight to contract," Williams said. "The lots are buildable this spring. There's nothing holding you back."
She added that subdivision covenants allow manufactured homes as long as they are new product. The minimum above-ground home size is 1,200 square feet plus a two-car garage.
Peddie said he and Wood planned carefully to ensure a subdivision site plan where no home backs up to another.
"Kids will be able to go out their back doors and see open space," he said.
The developers also were deliberate about bringing the lots in at prices that would allow families to build 1,500- to 1,700-square-foot homes, and obtain 90-percent loans on 30-year fixed mortgages.
Peddie thinks it should be possible to construct stick-built homes for $175 to $200 a square foot and modulars for $125 to $150 a square foot.
A 1,500-square-foot home built for $175 a square foot would multiply out to $262,000. On an $80,000 lot, the package is $342,000. Peddie suggests adding $20,000 to the budget for other expenses.
Bush thinks he can deliver a bigger home for less than $340,000, partly because he is a working contractor who straps on a tool belt, and partly because he's tracking industry reports that building materials will be at a 10-year low this year.
He was designing a 1,920-square-foot home (plus two-car garage) last week that he hopes to produce for less than $150 a square foot.
"I'd like to be able to sell it for about $375,000," he said.
He's particularly attracted to the passive solar potential in the wide-open subdivision.
Williams, a veteran of the commute to Steamboat, said Dry Creek's location on Hayden's east side shaves minutes off the morning drive. Residents won't get caught in the mini rush of school traffic that congests downtown Hayden, she said.
And after the primary access - winding Routt County Road 37 - is straightened this summer, Dry Creek Village residents would enjoy a straight shot to U.S. Highway 40 and an easy right turn onto the highway.
Families will enjoy soft surface trails around the subdivision, which will be groomed for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in winter, Williams said. The subdivision also will be in easy bicycling distance over lightly traveled roads to Dry Creek Park.
One drawback to the location of the subdivision is its proximity to the west end of the runway at Yampa Valley Regional Airport, about three-quarters to one mile away. During a recent visit, an American Airlines 757 appeared on final approach to the airport. Red lights on top of a bluff to the northeast of Dry Creek Village announce the presence of the runway, which is out of sight.
Williams pointed out that air traffic is heaviest on winter days when most people are in work or school.
Interested parties can learn more at www.drycreekvillage.com.
Ultimately, Dry Creek Village would offer a total of 150 lots with an additional 96 on land immediately to the west.
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