The luxury building market is on the rise in Boulder County. There’s currently a high demand for luxury homes, while the inventory remains low. With the growing influx of new residents looking to buy million dollar homes comes a growing need for new luxury buildings. We hope that reading this piece inspires new design ideas for future luxury homes.
There are only a handful of $5 million+ homes on the market at a time, as luxury homes sell as quickly as they’re built throughout the county. But Boulder architects and developers are trying to meet the rising demand for luxury homes, as they incorporate some of the customized and innovative features that are expected by luxury homebuyers. Current trends in the luxury home market include green homes and smart homes, which may sometimes include innovative features like fingerprint key entry.
Recently, I spoke with Derek Guarascio of TreeLine Homes about the rising demand for luxury homes in Boulder County. Derek is a licensed general contractor and founder of TreeLine, a leader in building and remodeling high-end residences in the Boulder/Denver metro area. Since he’s been building in Boulder County for over two decades, Derek has some great insight into current luxury home trends and potential trends we can expect to see in the future.
“We’ve been in the luxury sector for the better part of 20 years in Boulder County,” Derek told me in our discussion about TreeLine and Boulder’s luxury market. He feels that the modern design movement is the biggest change in Boulder housing over the past few years. Derek accredits this change partially to young, affluent homebuyers looking for a more simplified design. This aesthetic is also visible in retail spaces like Whole Foods, Pharmaca, and Pekoe Sip House.
The simplified and clean design that’s popular in retail spaces and homes, as Derek sees it, also extends to home automation. Luxury homebuyers are looking for wireless smart homes with sound systems that don’t involve complicated wiring built into the infrastructure. Derek has noticed that people are willing to invest more in homes that incorporate their web-based devices or tablets, which they use to access music on apps/sites like Spotify or Pandora.
Smart homes with a modern design aesthetic are often associated with having a cold or stark look and feel. But Boulder luxury homebuyers want a warm design touch—one that reflects the natural environment of Colorado’s mountains. Giving homes earthy elements involves using materials like wood and stone, materials often used by the TreeLine team. Although new Boulder residences want homes built around the natural elements, they don’t always have specific ideas on how best to actualize that desire. As Derek sees it, many homebuyers need architects and design-oriented, experienced builders to help them strike a balance between innovative and pragmatic designs.
Incorporating the beauty of Boulder into the design of new luxury homes also translates to building green homes. While many cities across America are interested in the LEED certification trend—where homeowners voluntarily have their property graded for its green design—Boulder already has high standards that make LEED certification seem unnecessary to residents. One of the environmentally conscious trends Derek has noticed here is a rise in the popularity of more glazing on windows. Not only do they create a bright feel throughout the home and give homeowners access to Boulder’s beautiful views, but high performance glazed windows also lower the energy costs and carbon footprint of a home by keeping it heated throughout the winter. Here in sunny Boulder, expansive windows, along with solar panels, are a great use of one of our greatest natural resources.
As the luxury home market increases in Boulder, we’re also seeing that new homebuyers are interested in smaller homes. Part of this trend is because people are starting to care more about conserving and downsizing but it also has to do with the high costs of building in Boulder. Supply and demand may just find a way to balance out as Boulder continues to develop its luxury home market.