Garrett Brafford launched Catapult Consulting in 2014 to satisfy a local need for high-level accounting services. After quickly acquiring several homeowner association clients, he earned his community association manager’s license a year later. Catapult now serves approximately 20 homeowner association clients, a handful of Main Street businesses and several small businesses across the country by providing accounting, property management and development services.
In March, Catapult acquired Telluride Consulting, which has been owned and operated by Judi Kiernan since 1985. Kiernan recorded all local real estate sales and collected details of those sales from the San Miguel County Assessor’s Office. For Brafford, that precious data, along with a deep client base and a list of all past clients, is a treasure trove.
Kiernan, who also operated her own real estate business in Telluride from 1972-81, opened Telluride Consulting with the realization that real estate brokers don’t have time to do all the homework on the market. For 33 years, Telluride Consulting provided real estate professionals, builders, developers, bankers, appraisers and individual investors with detailed information and analysis of real estate activity and trends in the county.
“Catapult was already doing data analysis, homeowner association/asset management, accounting and development services,” Brafford explained. “I felt like this purchase made sense because it compliments our existing services and allows us to show off some statistical analysis that we can do.”
Prior to moving here, Brafford, 33, worked for the City of Raleigh, North Carolina’s, accounting department. He and his wife, Telluride native Emily Horn Brafford, moved here in 2012 and built a home in Mountain Village about two years ago. Since moving to the area, Brafford worked for the ski resort, Colorado Flights Alliance and the Telluride Tourism Board, before becoming the director of operations and finance at the Telluride Mountain Village Homeowners Association.
Prior to the acquisition, Brafford hired an operations manager, Scott Benge. With a background in hedge and mutual fund accounting and real estate, Benge, 29, now handles about 90 percent of operations for Telluride Consulting.
“Garrett’s and Scott’s potential is unlimited. They’re very smart guys with skills that I don’t have,” Kiernan said. “There are so many directions for the company to go. I feel good that Telluride Consulting continues, and they are eminently qualified to carry it forward, serving the same clientele who need to follow the market, over and above raw data.”
Along with a college intern, Telluride resident Austin Altman, and some contract labor and CPA oversight, Telluride Consulting operates out of an office at the Heritage Building on 126 West Colorado Ave.
Brafford claims “responsiveness” sets Telluride Consulting apart from competitors who don’t offer the array of services that Telluride Consulting offers.
“We try to connect the dots and make it a one-stop shop type experience,” Brafford said.
For example, while Telluride Consulting offers monthly, quarterly and annual subscriptions for real estate reporting, they also offer custom real estate reporting where real estate agents or other businesses can look at specific information for analysis that is useful to them. Telluride Consulting will also compile mailing lists of people who purchased homes over a certain sales price.
Brafford and Benge launched a new website last month (tellurideconsulting.com), which includes a soft launch of a client portal they plan to fully unveil in October that enables access to a database of county real estate reports. Brafford’s vision is to update all the data by modernizing reports and adding additional information, like available real estate inventory and relevant statistics.
“Our plan is to eventually offer real-time reporting so that people can log into their client portal on our website to see what’s on the market today in an analysis format,” Brafford explained. “We’re finding that our expertise in crunching and processing data has been very useful. What will make us successful is making others successful.”