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Since beginning her real estate career more than two decades ago, Carrie Wells of Coldwell Banker Mason Morse has consistently been ranked as one of the top agents in Colorado and within the Coldwell Banker network.

She has sold more than $3.5 billion in real estate during her career and was ranked #33 in the nation and #1 in Colorado in 2022 by RealTrends/.The Wall Street Journal.

The Aspen-based agent has become a sought-after luxury expert in her market over the years and has developed deep ties in the community by serving on the advisory boards of a number of community groups, including the Aspen Music Festival and School and Aspen Santa. Fe ballet.

Wells is also currently in the midst of major changes in its home market, where on June 6 The Community Advisory Committee for Growth presented a report to county commissioners of major proposed changes to land use regulations in Pitkin County. Among them was a proposal to reduce the maximum home size in rural areas of the county from 15,000 square feet to 8,750 square feet, and within the county’s urban growth boundary to up to 9,250 square feet.

As he prepares for the summer and before his performance at Inman Connect Las Vegas this August, Wells sat down with Inman to share some of the things that matter most this summer, including upcoming land use code changes. Here’s what she had to say, edited for brevity and clarity.

Inman: What are the big things happening in your market right now?

Wells: Probably one of the biggest news is coming and many realtors and homeowners don’t know it. The district we are in Aspen — Pitkin County — rewrites land use code. We’re currently able to build up to 15,000 square feet and they’re going to scale that down, and we don’t know what that number will be, but they say it could be 10,000. [When Inman spoke with Wells, the Community Growth Advisory Committee had not yet submitted its proposed land-use changes to Pitkin County commissioners.]

This will come as a real shock to many homeowners and many brokers. We live in an area, both in the city of Aspen and in Pitkin County, where the rules for growing are very, very strict. For example, the city of Aspen just changed its zoning code so that there are only six demolition permits per year in the city of Aspen. Historically, we’ve seen anywhere from 12 to 19 demo permits.

So every time we turn around, they’re cutting back on things. The interesting thing is that the prices are only going up. So I think it will make bigger houses more valuable because you might not be able to create them [in the future]. These are some of the big news, what’s happening with zoning and land use that affects properties that are already built and projects that have yet to be built.

Very interesting. Do you think it will encourage people who are building their own houses to try to build higher properties?

There is no doubt that the people who have the right to build on a larger area will most likely jump and get planning permission and do it while they can before the new zoning is passed. So they come up with these new regulations and then we go through the process of notifying the community.

There will be discussions, a first reading, a second reading, and then it will be adopted at some point. So I think there’s going to be a lot of pressure, but I think we have to be prepared for that to happen and force people who don’t even want a bigger house to build a bigger house because they’re going to lose their rights if they don’t.

Wow, that sure is something new for all of you to deal with. As we gear up and get closer to the summer market, are you seeing a big increase in traffic in Aspen?

Yes. We always start the summer sales season in mid-June, when we start with the Food & Wine Classic. This is followed by the Aspen Institute Ideas Festival, which is at the end of June and continues into the first days of July. July 4th is a huge time to be in Aspen. We have a big parade in town and everyone seems to want to be there.

Then we have the summer seven-week music festival, which runs from the end of June to the end of August, and this is one of the world’s leading classical music festivals. At the beginning of August we have an Artcrush benefit with Artcrush. We have jazz concerts, both in June and on Labor Day, that bring in great artists.

So culturally there’s a lot of exciting things going on in the summer and then of course we have all these amazing things to do for recreation, whether it’s hiking, biking, mountain biking, golfing, fishing and on and on. That is why people are attracted to this area.

Sounds like a place. As the market has shifted over the past year, have you seen any changes in the types of buyers coming to Aspen?

We all saw the shift in the market around June a year ago at this time. And I really haven’t seen a change in the type of buyer that wants to be here. It can be really young billionaires multi-generational families people who have multiple homes all over the place people who want to change their primary residence to Aspen for many reasons whether it be for tax purposes, coming from high tax states, the great schools we have here or just the safety of living in Aspen.

That’s great. Is there anything special you have planned while you’re in Vegas for Inman Connect, or anything you’re particularly looking forward to?

I love seeing my broker friends from all over the world who have different brands and love meeting new brokers and growing this network of broker relationships. So that’s the main thing I’m looking forward to.

Something else?

I am very honored to have won Inman Golden I Award for Best Luxury Agent last year. That was a huge honor. I feel very humbled and grateful for that. Inman is my go-to source for real estate news—it a The Wall Street Journal – and I really appreciate all the work you do to keep us all informed and up to date.

We are happy to help.

Email Lillian Dickerson



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