Definitely Dave's Real Estate Blog

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Oct. 30, 2018

Is the Colorado Housing Market *Really* Slowing Down?

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What is going on in the Colorado housing market? Is it really slowing down? National headlines are indicating that the housing market is slowing down, or that we've hit "the peak," and there is some truth to that. 
 

  


Rest assured, the housing market here in northern Colorado is very strong.


 

If you read the national headlines, and then dig into the actual numbers, what you'll see is only a very slight slow down on sales of existing homes.

We are seeing that here in Colorado, especially over the last three or four months. 

We've discussed it in our office - is it a seasonal shift or more of an overall market shift?

The first indicator of market health is the economy. In Colorado housing is driven by jobs, specifically by wages. So, the more people that work here and earn a good salary, the better the housing market is going to be.  

The long-term and short-term outlook for Colorado is that our economy is very strong, and that's good for the housing market!

The second indicator of market health is the number of homes under contract. Right now in northern Colorado (Boulder County, Broomfield County, western Weld County, Jefferson County), 40% of the homes for sale are under contract. That's unbelievable!

In 2009 only 10-12% of homes were under contract, so our current market is incredible. Nothing to worry about there. 

What we're seeing on the street is that some sellers are testing the market. They've been seeing the upward trends over the last number of years, and are pricing their homes $50,000 to $100,000 over where they should be.

Of course, those homes are going to sit on the market, and we're going to see some price reductions. That's normal, and a big contributor to those headlines we're seeing.

If you price your home at market value, it's still going to sell right away. We are still seeing bidding wars on properly priced homes. 

So, rest assured, the housing market here in northern Colorado is very strong. 

It's a good time to buy, it's a good time to sell. Enjoy the economy, and be happy that we're here in the sunshine enjoying the abundance!

If there's anything I can help you out with, or if you have questions about specific properties or neighborhoods, give me a call. 

I'm happy to help you out! 303-828-6655. Thank you!

 

Sept. 26, 2018

Homebuyers Willing to Sacrifice 'Must-Haves' in Favor of Good Schools

 

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It should come as no surprise that buying a home in a good school district is important to homebuyers. According to a report from Realtor.com, 86% of 18-34 year-olds and 84% of those aged 35-54 indicated that their home search areas were defined by school district boundaries. 
 

  


For many buyers... 'Location, location, location' means 'schools, schools, schools.'


 

What is surprising, however, is that 78% of recent homebuyers sacrificed features from their "must-have" lists in order to find homes within their dream school districts.

The top feature sacrificed was a garage at 19%, followed closely by a large backyard, an updated kitchen, the desired number of bedrooms, and an outdoor living area. The full results are shown in the graph below. 

Buyers are attracted to schools with high test scores, accelerated academic programs, art and music programs, diversity, and before and after-school programs. 

With a limited number of homes available to buy in today's real estate market, competition is fierce for homes in good school districts. Danielle Hale, Chief Economist for Realtor.com, explained further,  

"Most buyers understand that they may not be able to find a home that covers every single item on their wish list, but our survey shows that school districts are an area where many buyers aren't willing to compromise.

For many buyers and not just buyers with children, 'location, location, location,' means 'schools, schools, schools.'"

Bottom Line

For buyers across the country, the quality of their children's (or future children's) education ranks highest on their must-have lists. And, even buyers without children will benefit from higher appreciation and demand in neighborhoods with good schools. 

Before you start the search for your next home, give me a call and we can discuss the best school districts in the Boulder and Denver metros, their boundaries, and the market conditions in those areas. 

I'm happy to help you out! 303-828-6655. Thank you!

 

Sept. 6, 2018

When is the Best Time to Sell?

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One of the questions a lot of my great clients ask me is - when is the best time to sell your home? There are really two answers to that question. 
 

  


The fall is the "secret spring market."


 

If you want top dollar for your home, and the most number of available buyers, the best time to sell your home is in early spring. 

This spring market starts as early as January 15th and continues to as late as May 1st each year. Beyond May 1st, the market starts to change a bit and by the end of June, it has noticeably slowed. 

The earlier in the spring you can list, the better. 

However, in January and February, your yard may not be green yet, and your flowers certainly will not be blooming. There may even be some snow on the ground and it will likely still be cold. 

So, if you think there's even a slight chance you may list your home next spring, let's schedule some pictures now while everything is still green and blooming, so we can market your home in its best possible light when the time to list arrives. 

Schedule your photos here

Surprisingly, the second best time of the year to sell your home is in the fall, between Labor Day and Thanksgiving. 

Not many people know about this sweet spot in the market - I like to call it the "Secret Spring Market."

The fall market is a great time to upgrade and move to a larger home, and it's also a good time to sell your current home. 

Selling in the fall, you'll get a good price on your existing home, and you're also going to get a killer deal on your new upgrade home. 

Right between Labor Day and Thanksgiving, all the kids are back in school, summer vacations are over, and people are starting to refocus on their living situation, making it a great time to make a move. 

If you have more specific questions about your house or your neighborhood, what's going on in the market, or the best time to sell (because it does vary a little based on location), give me a call. 

I'm happy to help you out! 303-828-6655. Thank you!

 

Aug. 23, 2018

Strategies for Dealing with Overwhelm

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Today I'd like to share with you a strategy for dealing with overwhelm. In my business, it's funny, but half the time I feel like a therapist.
 

  


Many people deal with the same emotion.


 

When people are moving, it's a stressful time, often because many times a move is accompanied by big life changes.

For example, a divorce, a growing family needing a bigger house, or becoming an empty nester and needing to downsize are all common reasons people move. 

So, on top of moving and selling a home, stressful in itself, people are often faced with these other big life events that add to the stress. 

Going through these things, many people deal with the same emotion - overwhelm!

I've dealt with overwhelm a lot in my personal life, as well as with my clients, and there is a secret to dealing with overwhelm.

Overwhelm comes on quickly - you're thinking about all the stuff you have to do, and then you spend 2-3 hours thinking about all the stuff you have to do, and overwhelm takes over, leaving you stressed, anxious, and tight.

The secret is, all you have to do is just take action!

Just take the tiniest baby step, move in the right direction, and that will lead to the next step.

Taking even the smallest step will get your mind off the mountain of stuff you have to do, and at the end of taking a few small steps, you're going to feel better about yourself and you'll be able to take more action.

That's it - the secret to a stress-free, easy move. 

Of course, hiring a top agent like myself helps - we make everything super easy!

But, if you're feeling overwhelmed, just start to take action a little bit at a time, and you'll feel better soon!

If there's anything I can do to help you with your real estate needs, give me a call! 

303-828-6655

 

July 5, 2018

Coldwell Banker Helps 20,000 Shelter Dogs Find Forever Homes

Coldwell Banker releases new ad for their Homes for Dogs project.

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Nothing compares to the warmth and comfort of being at home. But for many dogs across America, this feeling is foreign. 
 

  


Because everyone deserves a loving home.


 

According to The Humane Society, between six and eight million dogs and cats enter shelters each year. Plus, almost three million healthy shelter pets are not adopted annually, and only about 30 percent of pets in homes come from shelters or rescues.

These sobering facts are what served as the inspiration the Coldwell Banker Homes for Dogs Project. After more than 100 years of helping people find homes, the real estate company extended its mission to man’s best friend with its “Homes for Dogs Project.” By partnering with Adopt-a-Pet.com, North America’s largest non-profit pet adoption website, the Coldwell Banker network has helped to find more than 20,000 dogs their furever homes.

To increase awareness of the effort, Coldwell Banker has focused its latest advertising campaign called “Old Dog New Dog” to capture the heartfelt story of an agent giving back to her community by helping shelter animals find homes through the “Homes for Dogs Project.”

The commercial features rescue dogs, such as Max, who was adopted in 2014 after being spotted on Adopt-a-Pet.com. Before he was put up for adoption, Max was picked up as a stray and delivered to a “high kill” shelter in San Bernadino, CA. The shelter only keeps dogs for five days before it puts them down, and after Max had been at the shelter for four days, a worker reached out to The Dexter Foundation, a local non-profit dog rescue and adoption agency, which quickly rescued Max and found temporary foster care for him.

“I found him on Adopt-a-Pet.com as I was looking for a dog to rescue of that sort of breed and age,” said Kelly Saffrey, Max’s current parent. “As soon as I saw his picture, I just knew he was the pet for me.”

Adopt-a-Pet.com currently has more than 15,000 shelters and rescues in its network, and it is thrilled to be partnering with Coldwell Banker.

“We share Coldwell Banker’s view that nothing turns a house into a home more quickly than the addition of a loving pet,” said Abbie Moore, executive director of Adopt-a-Pet.com. “And we are so inspired by the desire of Coldwell Banker to launch this amazing program.”

For more information on the “Homes for Dogs Project,” head to coldwellbanker.com/homesfordogs.

The difference between a house and a home is love – and sometimes the smallest things are all it takes to fill that void. The latest Coldwell Banker advertising campaign, titled “Old Dog New Dog,” is a reminder of just that, as we follow the journey to home of Mr. Cooper.  This sentiment is also why Coldwell Banker founded the Homes for Dogs Project, a partnership with Adopt-a-Pet.com aimed at helping adoptable dogs find loving homes. Together, the pair has helped more than 20,000 dogs find homes and are poised to continue this effort throughout 2018. Because everyone deserves a loving home.

Posted in Local Fun, Local News
June 6, 2018

What does the current drop in home affordability mean for you?

Friends and Clients —

Some potentially worrying news came out this month:

Home affordability is shrinking rapidly, according to research by Arch Mortgage Insurance.

In the first quarter, affordability (defined as the size of the monthly mortgage payment needed to buy a home) dropped by 5%. This was mainly due to the increase in mortgage rates, and, to a lesser extent, an increase in home prices.

As a consequence, more people are now stretched and taking on greater debt relative to their income. Other buyers are being pushed out of the market altogether.

And that's not all. Affordability is expected to drop another 15% to 20% by the end of the year. That's because home prices continue to rise, and the Federal Reserve is expected to ratchet up its reference interest rate, which often leads mortgage rates, three more times this year.

What does this mean for you?

Well, if you're looking to sell, you won't have a hard time finding a buyer. Even with decreasing affordability, demand for homes still far outstrips supply.

However, it's certain that buyers will look to take advantage of current conditions before affordability drops further.

That means that this spring and summer might see an additional rush on the real estate market. It also means that right now might be a very good time to list your home if you've been thinking about selling for a while.

On the other hand, if you are thinking of buying a home, you might think news spells doom for you.

However, there's no need to panic.

While affordability is dropping, it is still well above historical averages (just like current mortgage rates). In fact, Arch Mortgage Insurance estimates that homes are now 15% to 20% more affordable than they have been in the period from 1987 to 2004.

At the same time, it's certainly true that mortgage rates are going up, and this will affect what your monthly payments will be on a new home. From this perspective, it makes sense to move now in case you've been looking to buy before rates rise further.

So what's the next step?

If you are thinking of selling, you can get started by finding out what your home might be worth in the current environment. Simply use this home value calculator that takes into account recent Boulder and Denver sales:

Enter your street address here to find out what your home is worth

And if you are looking to buy, check out all the great Boulder and Denver area homes that have recently come on the market:

Click here for all available Boulder and Denver homes for sale

Finally, if you have any questions (whether you're looking to buy or sell), give me a call at 303-442-5001. I'm very active in the Boulder and Denver real estate markets, and I'm always here to help.

May 17, 2018

New Luxury Townhomes in Frederick

There is a new luxury townhome development in Frederick at Wyndham Hill. 

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Glasco Park Townhomes are the newest, best thing to hit the market in Frederick. Our team just listed this new development, and we are super excited to share it with you!
 

  


You can buy these with $0 money down.


 


Located just west of I-25 on Highway 52, the development is right next to the new Grand View Elementary, a K-8 school opening in Fall 2018. 

This community is absolutely booming, with brand new retail and lots of new homes being built. Prices range from $340,000 to $375,000 for an 1,800 to 2,000 square foot luxury townhome with an attached 2-car garage.

For an incredibly affordable price, you can get a brand new home that is low maintenance and move-in ready. 

The Glasco Park townhomes are eligible for $0 money down programs, and you can also take advantage of the low rates before they inevitably rise. 

These homes would be great for first-time homebuyers, investors, or anybody looking to down-size. 

If there's anything we can help you out with, or if you know anybody that might be interested in this community, give us a call. We'd be happy to help out!

 

May 17, 2018

Surprises in the Town of Superior

There are exciting changes happening the Town of Superior!

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This year there are some great things happening in Superior!
 
Tesla Dealership Opening

Elon Musk is opening a new Tesla dealership on Highway 36 and McCaslin Boulevard in Superior. Previously located in Boulder a number of years back, the company is coming back to Boulder County. The dealership will be on a 2-acre parcel and offer both service and sales.
 

  


Exciting changes in the Town of Superior


 


1,500 New Homes in Downtown Superior

Right next door to the Tesla dealership's future location, and close to the new Sports Stable, Remington Homes is building 1,500 new single family homes and townhomes. We can expect to see this project last the next year or two. 

 

New Athletic Club

Lifetime Fitness has created a new Onyx Premier Athletic Club inside the old Lakeshore Athletic Facility. The building was completely remodeled over the Christmas and New Year's seasons, and is now the highest end facility Lifetime Fitness offers. 

 

If have any questions about what's going on in Superior or the surrounding communities, I'm happy to help you out and fill you in!

June 6, 2017

Adding Real Estate to Your Investment Portfolio

Should you invest in real estate? Actually, real estate investments can be a great addition to your retirement portfolio for a few reasons.

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Should real estate be a part of your investment portfolio?
 
There are a couple of reasons why having real estate as part of your retirement portfolio is a good idea:
 
1. Diversification. When you are investing for something so far in the future, you’ll want a variety of items in your portfolio, including stock, bonds, and real estate.
2. Return on investment. When you calculate that you’re paying down the mortgage every month, appreciating rents, and tax breaks, your return could be well over 10%. Plus, once the house is paid off, you have a pure cash flow.
 

  


Investing in real estate is a big commitment.


 


Of course, there are also a few reasons why it may not be a good idea for you to add real estate to your investment property. For one, real estate always comes with surprises. You never know when the air conditioner will go out or the roof will leak.
 
Plus, when you invest in real estate, you are working with people. If someone is down on their luck, your emotions may cloud your decision on whether or not to evict someone or rent to them.
 
Investing in real estate is a big commitment. If you get laid off from your job, you don’t have to put money into your 401(k). If you get laid off and your rental property is vacant, then you are in a bit of a crunch because you are still responsible for paying that mortgage.
 
If you do decide to invest in real estate, here are a few recommendations:
 
1. Start with an easy property. I will set you up with a property to make the whole process fun and enjoyable. Soon, you’ll want to buy more real estate!
2. Do your research. Make sure that you follow all of the rental licensing laws.
3. Be prepared to put 20% to 25% down. On a $300,000 house, that means you would need $60,000 to $80,000.
 
Ultimately, real estate can be a very rewarding investment. If you are interested in getting started with real estate investments, give us a call or send us an email. We would be happy to help you!

Posted in Buying
May 12, 2017

When Is the Right Time to Update Your House?

The right time to update your house is right after you buy it. That way, you can actually enjoy the updates and still get top dollar when the time comes to sell the house.

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I work with many people who are getting ready to put their home on the market, and before they do, they always want to know what updates they should make to it.

They usually opt for updating the kitchen, the backyard, or the master bathroom, but I have a secret about home updates I learned from my mother-in-law that I want to share with you.
 

  


Update your house as soon as you buy it.


 

 She told us, “When you buy a house, update it.”

In other words, update your house as soon as you buy it so you can enjoy the updates while you’re living there. You’ll get the same benefits of those updates when it comes time to sell the home as well. If you want to enjoy your life, do the updates now and get top dollar at the sale.

If you have any questions or are looking to buy or sell a house in northern Colorado, don’t hesitate to give me a call. I’d be happy to help.

Posted in Buying