What to do in Denver in November 2020

Check out all the fun going on in November!     November 6thto 8th: Denver Arts Week(end) “Experience Denver’s vibrant cultural scene during Denver Arts Week(end), November 6-8! Enjoy 100s of virtual and in-person events – safely – from music and museums, dance, visual arts and more!” More Info!             November 7thto 8th: Urban Holiday Market “This is a holiday shopping spectacular not to be missed, featuring an awesome selection of one of-a-kind seasonal items, high quality handcrafted goods, fabulous holiday gift ideas, delicious specialty foods, and more, made from a diverse collection of local artists and crafters. Enjoy an open air Holiday Festival in the heart of Downtown Denver. This unique holiday shopping experience will include live entertainment and a whole lot of family fun.” More Info!             November 7thto December 23rd: The Polar Express Train Rides “The Colorado Railroad Museum is pleased to announce a revised and updated show for THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride in 2020! Casting auditions have been held, and a whole host of carefully crafted updates have been made in order to ensure the health and safety of guests, cast and crew. Our revised and updated show will still bring you all your favorite characters and the Magic of THE POLAR EXPRESS™! Put on your pajamas and your most fashionable mask and bring the family to enjoy sharing hot cocoa and cookies together as the “Hot, Hot, Hot—Chocolate” song and dance unfolds before your eyes. Laugh and sing along with our cast as they tell stories and sing Christmas Carols and perform the story of The Polar Express live! Follow your Conductor through our enchanted railyard to meet Smokey and Steamer and learn, in song, how a steam locomotive works.” Tickets & More Info!       November 13thto 22nd: Denver Restaurant Week “Celebrate the local culinary scene during VISIT DENVER’s first fall Denver Restaurant Week EVER, November 13-22, 2020. Top restaurants will offer multi-course dinners for one of three tasty prices: $25, $35 or $45 per person. Dine-in, to-go and delivery options will be available!” More Info!         November 19thto 26th: Mile High United Way Turkey Trot “Our community needs us now more than ever. We hope you will join us this year at the 47th annual *virtual* Mile High United Way Turkey Trot so we can support our community and the critical work of Mile High United Way.” Registration & More Info!           November 20thto January 16th: Blossoms of Light “The Gardens’ signature event for more than three decades, this annual holiday lights extravaganza transforms our York Street location into a twinkling winter wonderland. Join us for this family-friendly event that has become a holiday tradition for thousands of Front Range families. Pre-purchased timed tickets and masks covering face and nose required. Available for purchase: Holiday treats, warm drinks and our souvenir reusable mug.” Tickets & More Info!       November 27th: Grand Illumination “On Friday, November 27, Downtown Denver’s major landmarks will light up for the holidays during the Grand Illumination. Hundreds of thousands of lights will illuminate Denver Union Station, the City and County Building, the 16th Street Mall, Skyline Park, the D&F Clock Tower, 14th Street, Larimer Square, and more.”         Have a great month and stay safe out there!

Denver Real Estate News – November 2020

A Surge of Foreclosures and Short Sales? Unlikely. With all of the turbulence in the country right now, many are asking if we will experience a surge of foreclosures and short sales due to the COVID-19 recession. People have seen the number of mortgage delinquencies this year; they assume we are on the brink of a foreclosure crisis like back in 2008-2009 when people were losing their homes at an alarming rate. However, based on the available data, things are very different this time around. Forbearances in 2020 factor heavily into mortgage delinquency counts. These are people who voluntarily put their payments on pause and plan to catch up in 90 days, 6 months or even 12 months down the road once shutdowns have ended and things become closer to normal at work. These forbearances look to be 90+ days delinquent in the data. However, they are different than true delinquencies because these homeowners plan to, or have already, modified their loans to catch up over the long term. Of all the people that took a forbearance nationally, only 4% have had their payment holiday expire, could not re-start payments, and are now actively delinquent. Due to strong home appreciation in Colorado over the past decade, 95%+ of the locals of that 4% will have plenty of equity and should be able to sell their home without distress.   BUYERS Low Entry-Level Inventory Expected to Stay at Least Through Q1 of 2021 Despite a “V-shaped” recovery in the national markets since the COVID-19 crisis began in March, many are calling the current pattern more of a “K-shaped” recovery. This is because of the divergence in the strength of the recovery between people of different socioeconomic backgrounds. People with less education and income have been disproportionately affected by the latest recession, which has set back the home buying goals of many. If you are on the hunt for an entry-level home, condo, or townhome and qualify for financing, now may be the best time to act. The 2021 spring season is expected to be red hot as many people who had originally postponed the sale of their homes are expected to bring them to market after the election and winter. This should also put more buyers on the move who were trying to wait out the COVID-19 crisis. If you find a home you’re interested in, act quickly. Make strong offers and don’t expect sellers to give many concessions. In this market, sellers have most of the power in terms of negotiations. You don’t want to lose out in a bidding war because of petty details like paint colors or finishes. If you do get into a home, there should be plenty of time to paint and finish the home as you like. Focus more on big ticket health and safety concerns, as that’s most likely what other buyers will be limiting their requests to. If you are looking for a trade-up or more expensive home, now may be a great time to make the switch. Conforming mortgage interest rates (under $510K) are at record lows, and jumbo loan rates have also dropped a lot. Despite an expected 0.5% increase after the election (based on historical trends) the cards are still in your favor. The demand for your current home is probably sky-high, and there is generally more to choose from in the higher price points. This could be your golden opportunity!     SELLERS Fewer Sellers Are Willing to Drop Prices As the demand for homes continues to skyrocket and inventory continues to shrink in 2020, few sellers are accepting negotiations on price – and why would they? The main answer is overpricing. Be sure to do your research and rely on your agent to help you accurately price your home based on comparable homes in your neighborhood. The biggest reason people end up having to reduce the price of their home or have to accept lower-priced offers is because they get excited, ignore all of their agent’s warnings, list their home at a higher price than the market value, and then the home sits on the market too long. This is when price reductions begin. Buyers may begin to wonder, “What’s wrong with that house?” among other things. With such a strong market, don’t fall into this classic trap and potentially lose out on thousands of dollars because you wanted to push market value. Based on the current market trends in the Denver metro, you are likely to receive strong offers on your home if it’s priced at a fair value from the start. Average home prices are up again this year, and bidding wars may increase the sales price of your home up to where you wanted to price it anyway.  

What to do in Denver in October 2020

October 1st– 31st: Boo at the Zoo “Join us DAILY October 1–31 for Boo at the Zoo: Storybook Safari—a modified, masked version of Denver’s family favorite! Throughout our 84-acre campus, classic animal stories and fairy tales come to life with costumed characters, mythical creatures, unforgettable animal experiences and food fit for a king or queen! And don’t forget: Nature Connects®, Art with LEGO® Bricks will still be up for your enjoyment, too! So, get the whole family suited up in costume, and come celebrate Halloween in a way that’s safe, socially distanced and candy-free…but still VERY sweet.” Tickets & More Info! October 1st– 31st: Corn Maze “Wind your way through seven acres of corn. The maze can be viewed from two 15-foot tall illuminated bridges. Visitors under the age of 10 can explore the corn mini-maze. In October, pick the perfect pumpkin from the 10-acre pumpkin patch. Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays.” Tickets & More Info! October 2nd– 31st: Fritzler Farm Park                                                   “Since 2000, The Fritzler Family has welcomed young and old to their farm park! Their iconic Corn Maze designs only touch the top of the mountain as Fritzler Farm Park offers over 25 attractions during their Fall Season! Pumpkin Patch, Pedal Go-Carts, Barrel Train, and Pumpkin Cannons, only to name a few.” More Info! October 16th– 17th: Great American Beer Festival                                         “The Great American Beer Festival® was founded in 1982, and has been growing and evolving along with the American craft brewing industry ever since. GABF® was voted the No.1 beer festival in the country by 10Best and is listed as one of the top 1,000 places in the U.S. to visit before you die.Due to COVID-19, the country’s preeminent beer festival and competition will pivot this year’s event to an online experience, October 16–17, 2020 and a national passport program.Between October 1-18, GABF passport holders will have exclusive access to onsite and online deals at more than 800 participating breweries nationwide.” More Info! October 16th– 30th: Ghosts in the Gardens“Denver Botanic Gardens dares you to join us after dark with haunting stories of the Gardens’ 100 years of history and points of interest in what used to be called The Boneyard. Visitors strolling through the Gardens will encounter socially distanced storytellers sharing real staff ghost stories, actual overnight security staff ghost encounters and intriguing history. Conjure your courage and capture your fear as you walk our dimly lit paths after hours and dare to have your own ghostly encounter, here at Denver Botanic Gardens.” Tickets & More Info! October 22nd– November 8th: Denver Film Fest                                       “Best seat in the house.Welcome to the 43rd Denver Film Festival. This year we are hosting the Festival on our new virtual platform, which will allow us to bring Official Selections, exclusive filmmaker conversations, bonus content, special guests and more, to all of Colorado.” Tickets & More Info! October 28th– November 2nd: Día de los Muertos Celebration“Celebrate Day of the Dead with virtual offerings this year! Since we all can’t gather in person on the actual day, we invite you to join us in a virtual celebration of Denver Botanic Gardens’ observance of Día de los Muertos. This traditional Mexican “Day of the Dead” celebration offers at-home fun for the whole family. Download coloring pages, learn how to make sugar skulls and shop our virtual mercado.” More Info! Have a great October and stay safe and healthy!

Denver Real Estate News – October 2020

The Election And What It Means For Home Sales As summer transitions into fall, the presidential election looms. In an already surreal year plagued by a pandemic, social disruptions, and a plethora of divisive issues, many people are wondering how the upcoming election will affect home sales. It has been reported that the average home price in Denver has increased to over $600,000. What will happen with the election on the horizon? As stated in our last publication, this $600,000+ average price in the news was misleading. The inventory of homes from $0-$500K was already very low due to a pre-existing housing shortage only to be exacerbated by Coronavirus fears; thus causing the average home price to be skewed towards higher priced listings as those were more available. Simply put, it was not so much that home values skyrocketed through the recession as reported. Rather, the mix of what was available shifted upwards in price. Since the shutdown back in March and April, some of the listings that did not come to market those months were eventually sold more recently, aligning us closer to normal seasonal trends. Homes from $500K-$900K drove the recovery in Denver. People seized on low interest rates and the opportunity to trade up to larger homes. It is expected that in spring of 2021, an even greater number of homes will be brought to market that were not listed this year. This should somewhat lessen the shortage of entry-level homes we have been experiencing. During non-election years, home salestypically dip about 10% in the six weeks prior to November. Pricesare not usually impacted. This is the normal seasonality. In election years, the number of sales drops 15% for the six weeks leading up to the election. This is election-year seasonality. Most likely, the media will not know how to reconcile this sudden drop in home sales with the inflated price averages from this spring. It will probably be reported as impending doom for the real estate market. Don’t believe the hype. Seasonal trends still affect our industry, regardless of who wins an election. In fact, based on historical data, which political party gains control does not change these stats from election-year to election-year. Buyers Moving Quickly May Help You Get Ahead Dependent upon your circumstances, you may be well poised to take advantage of a dip in homes sales in the next month or so. The election will most likely slow some people down on their home searches while they await the outcome, and average home sales may drop by as much as 15% nationwide. That, coupled with historically low interest rates, could help you get a sweet deal that has eluded many in the more recent competitive summer months. In the six weeks after the election, home sales should swing upwards again based on historical trends. Interest rates should increase by at least half a percent —as they do after every presidential election. If it’s in the cards for you financially to act fast, know that these low rates will not last forever. If you are unable to move quickly, spring should at least bring more inventory for you to choose from. It is difficult, if not foolish, to try to time the market. So always remember to act in yourbest interest and do what is right for your season in life. Sellers ACT STRATEGICALLY TO MAKE THE MOST OF THIS SELLER’S MARKET It has been a seller’s market for years, and there is nothing to signal that will change any time soon in Denver. Depending on your situation, you may want to consider jumping in now before the winter sets in and the market cools off. Interest rates always go up by at least half a percentage point after any presidential election, so if you act fast you may lock in a better rate on your next home and/or catch the influx of buyers taking advantage of current rates. Perhaps you want to hold off on selling until after the presidential election when home sales are expected to increase again after the pre-election dip. Some sellers may even wait until spring when the market typically gets red hot and more buyers are expected to start shopping. No matter which way you spin it, sellers are still in the driver’s seat in our local real estate market. As stated above, it’s important to do what’s right for you and your timeline. Give me a call so we can figure out the best plan tailored to achieve your real estate goals!

Best Storage Ideas That Will Organize Your Entire House

A Little Remodeling Or Furniture Update May Be In Order Home organization can be difficult, but there are things you can do which are simple, and make getting your home in order a lot less strenuous. First, consider the furniture paradigm you’ve got. Do you have proper storage throughout your house? How are things looking in the basement? How are things looking in the living areas, bedrooms, bathrooms, and kitchen? If you’ve got existing storage, is it adequate for your needs? Sometimes home organization has less to do with available storage, and more to do with how that storage is used. However, there are often situations where the problem lies in the storage options available. Buying New Storage Solutions When you’ve taken stock of all home areas and come to the conclusion you need more, one of your best moves in terms of an organization is to simply acquire that new furniture. This is easier to say than to do. Furniture can be expensive, oftentimes it isn’t built with your specific home in mind. This means you need to conduct a careful search to find the right options. You’re not only looking at storage capacity, you’re looking at coloration, materials, installation, shipping, and overall size. Sometimes what you want to do is find furniture that has a vertical construction behind it, sometimes you want to build out, or find some option that’s very wide and deep. The RTA Cabinetry Angle Additionally, it depends on the specific storage needs you determine after you’ve carefully examined what’s available. What is most ideal is finding furniture options that can be designed to match your specific needs. Along that line of reasoning, there are some considerable options in the areas of RTA cabinetry. RTA stands for “Ready To Assemble”. Essentially, these sorts of cabinets are designed to be shipped and assembled on your property. There is a similarity to “Ikea”, but the difference lies in the overall design. With RTA options, you can determine the exact specifications of your cabinetry before payment. So you’ll have a greater likelihood of an exact match for your needs. There are several different RTA options available, and from the right providers, you can get a combination of RTA cabinetry and traditional cabinetry. White shaker cabinets are well-known for their stylistic efficiency and storage capacity. As an example, take a look at this product at Best Online Cabinets, a business that additionally provides RTA options. Getting Rid Of The Things You Don’t Really Need Something else that makes space for storage maximization is the elimination of unnecessary clutter. Over time, everybody accumulates possessions that are either out of style, out of value, out of use, or broken beyond functionality. This furniture, appliance, entertainment, and artistic things build up over time and take away space from your home. Every year or so, you should spend a week going through your house from top to bottom, identifying the clutter, and either donating it, trashing it, or organizing it for a garage sale when the weather is amenable to such an undertaking. Certainly, you could throw everything in the garage or attic, but that just eliminates such spaces from use even while debris gathers dust. Vertical Storage Options Provide A Lot Of Space Another good strategy here is to store “vertically”. This was briefly touched on earlier, here’s the idea: most cabinets and storage options tend to be either waist-high or stretch down from the ceiling. However, a wardrobe can be floor-to-ceiling, take up approximately the same space, and have two to three times the available storage potential. Have You Considered Rearranging The Furniture? Beyond cleaning house, utilizing better cabinetry storage options, and incorporating vertical solutions, another thing you can do is rearrange the furniture. Sometimes you’re having storage issues owing to a poor layout in varying rooms of your home. “Flush” furniture makes more space available than “diagonal” furniture—for most situations. Consciously Downsizing Your Home In Terms Of Possessions It’s also considerable that beyond getting rid of things you no longer use, you might consciously downsize. Oftentimes there are possessions people cling to dearly which ultimately aren’t serving much of a purpose outside sentimental value. That’s certainly a very real and valuable thing. However, if things are very cluttered, it’s something “expendable”. How many people live in your home, and how often do you host gatherings? If you’ve got a house of five in a home with a basement, main level, bedroom level, and attic, why do you need fifty chairs and fifteen couches? Some of those may not have been used for years—especially when furniture rotation banishes a sofa to the basement, where dust and spiders predominate. Incorporating Multiple Strategies So downsize, eliminate clutter, get new cabinets, reorganize furniture, and try to find vertical storage options that provide greater storage capacity for the same footprint as regards available space. Storage strategies of this kind can facilitate more harmonious living arrangements that maximize your use of possessions without tending toward clutter.

What to do in Denver in September 2020

Here are some fun things going on in Denver this month! September 8th– 27th: Colorado Rockies Games “At this time, fans will not be allowed inside MLB parks for games, as COVID-19 continues to hamper live sporting events for spectators across the country. All games will be broadcast on AT&T Sportsnet.” Schedule! — September 10th– 20th: Film on the Rocks – Drive In With news that Red Rocks will be closed to the public later this month, don’t miss your chance to experience a favorite Colorado events venue in a new way. “A cinematic summer celebration at Colorado’s most iconic landmark (but make it a Drive-In). For 20 years, Film on the Rocks has brought together outstanding local bands and comedians, everyone’s favorite films, and enthusiastic audiences in the most affordable program hosted at Red Rocks Park & Amphitheatre. This year we are turning the summer favorite into a Drive-In movie theater!” Schedule & More Info! — September 14th: Denver Broncos v. Tennessee Titans The Broncos season opener will be the second game of the double header for the NFL’s first Monday night game of the 2020-21 season. You can watch the game live on ESPN September 14that 8:20pm MT.   — September 14thto 18th: Denver Startup Week (Virtual) “Denver Startup Week, founded in 2012, is a celebration of everything entrepreneurial in Denver. The weeklong event is intended to unite the entrepreneurial community in Denver and celebrate the great companies, innovation and ideas happening in the city and the people and inspiration behind them. The core programming is centered on the entrepreneurial community with an emphasis in technology, design, social entrepreneurship, manufacturing and business. Events throughout the week are organized by both the Denver Startup Week Organizing Committee and the community at-large and include sessions, presentations, panels, workshops, happy hours, social events, job fairs and more.” Registration & More Info! — September 15th– October 15th: National Hispanic Heritage Month “Each year, Americans observe National Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 to October 15, by celebrating the histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America. The observation started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to cover a 30-day period starting on September 15 and ending on October 15. It was enacted into law on August 17, 1988, on the approval of Public Law 100-402. The day of September 15 is significant because it is the anniversary of independence for Latin American countries Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. In addition, Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on September 16 and September18, respectively.” Ways to Celebrate! — September 24th– October 4th: Mile High Horror Film Festival (Virtual)                                                                                                                         “The Mile High Horror Film Festival (MHHFF) 2020 will launch virtually September 24th – October 4th! It will feature over 80 of the best horror, thriller and sci-fi films from around the world along with Q&A’s with filmmakers and special guests. Most films included in the festival are new films, giving fans a chance to see them before they are released to the general public.The co-writer/director of THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT, Dan Myrick is the 2020 special guest judge of the feature film category.The festival has been extended 10 days in order to give fans more of a chance to stream everything.Scream Passes are now available for $75.” Tickets & More Info! *At the time of writing, this information is accurate. Due to the nature of the pandemic, changes and cancellations may occur. Please check the official event’s websites to confirm any details before attending or watching.   — Have fun and stay safe out there!

Denver Real Estate News – September 2020

Market Recovery and a Return to Seasonal Trends The speed of the real estate market recovery is beginning to show signs of our normal seasonal slow down. In June and July, we collectively recaptured a good portion of listings not brought to the market due to the pandemic recession. Traffic reached higher levels than back in the summer of 2019 as people tried to make up for lost time in the spring. Now the numbers of newly added homes are slightly lower than this time last year. Even so, much has changed since last year.  One of the most glaring differences from 2019 to 2020 is even scarcer housing inventory. Some in the media are reporting this as an inexplicable 10% increase in the average home price in Denver since last year, despite the pandemic and high unemployment. However, that distorted average is most likely due to the mix of what is currently on the market.Since there are so few entry-level homes available, the average is being skewed closer to the higher price points. It is not that there is an excess of high-priced homes available, but rather a shortage of lower priced homes. Don’t be surprised if the media makes it seem like the sky is falling when the trend reverses – prices may “drop” in early 2021. It’s most likely not that the value of homes will go down dramatically, it’s that many sellers who opted out of selling lower priced homes in 2020 due to financial concerns will do so nextyear instead. We expect that by spring of next year many of the “missing listings” will be brought to the market. Buyers Even Tighter Inventory and a Flight to the Suburbs?There is currently close to one month of housing inventory available. This means that if no new listings were added, and the rate at which homes sold was constant based on the average of the last 12 months of sales, it would take only one month to run out of available inventory. For example, during this time in 2019 the M.O.I. was closer to two months, which is also low and makes for a strong sellers’ market. The demand for homes, especially entry level homes between $0-$500K, is very high due to a housing shortage exacerbated by the pandemic. So, is there a bright side of all of this? Thankfully, yes. Those that do secure a new home during this period are locking in record low interest rates. Lower interest rates can equate to a lower monthly payment and/or more purchasing power. Another positive note is that building permits are up, as developers are planning to cash in on the high demand for homes. Eventually these new permits will make up for some of the low inventory, although the process to build brand new housing can be very lengthy depending on the bureaucratic red tape in any given county. It may be more of a long-term solution than a silver bullet for our housing shortage.  Another recent phenomenon is being called a “Flight to the Suburbs” or an “Urban Exodus”. It is still too early to say if this is a long-term trend or a shorter-term effect of the pandemic, but millennials that had previously wanted to move to downtown areas for proximity to more jobs, night life, and other amenities are now buying further out in the suburbs. The current rationale is that people are working from home more than ever, so they are looking for properties with room for a home office, more living space, and a larger yard to relax in. Not to mention, they may no longer have to worry about a commute. Sellers Waiting Out the Market or Capitalizing on the Current Market?Although many sellers gave up selling their homes this spring because of the pandemic, those that are selling right now are in a prime position to cash out their equity and trade up into larger homes. Between historically low interest rates and a high demand for homes, all the drivers are in the seller’s favor. It is still a strong sellers’ market and should continue to remain so for the foreseeable future. Act now to take advantage of the current conditions before interest rates shift again.  Lending Mortgage Applications Remain at Record Highs New mortgage applications and refinances have skyrocketed. That said, there is a reason people are scrambling to get new home loans and refinance. The interest rates are at historic lows, and as a local lender shrewdly commented, “At this point there is more room for the rates to go up than go down.” These low rates are expected to jump up by at least half a percentage point after the presidential election, regardless of who wins, as this is the norm for any election year. If trading-up was ever a part of your future plans, and the finances are available, the time to do so is now – these near-zero rates will not last forever. As always, feel free to reach out to us with any questions.

5 Home Remodeling Projects That Will Increase Your Property Value

With as hot as the real estate market in Colorado has been in recent years, it may not seem like you have to do much to see your property value go up besides sit and wait. After all, there have been some properties in Northern Colorado appraised at $100,000 more than what they were just five years ago, and with 20% projected growth in some areas by 2025, there appears to be no shortage of demand in this booming region. However, no matter how hot, the real estate market will always be competitive, so if you are looking into renovations that will make your property stand out and command a premium price on the market, consider some of the following projects. 1. Replace the Siding Quality home siding should provide a number of important benefits to your house, from protecting it from air and moisture to offering an aesthetically-pleasing aspect that enhances curb appeal.  As Colorado faces arguably a larger array of nature’s elements than any state in the country, such as bright sun, heavy snow, and intense winds, nowhere will your siding get put to the test harder than in the Centennial State. While traditional house siding, such as brick and wooden planks, must be treated with regularity in order for it to retain its pleasing appearance and protective properties, more innovative options, like fiber cement and steel log, maintain their integrity for many years with very little maintenance required by the homeowner. In addition, these modern siding options come in a variety of designs and colors, making them the perfect choice to pair with creative exterior door trim ideas to maximum curb appeal and hold a prominent place in the mind of buyers. 2. Give the Kitchen a Faclift Kitchen renovations are some of the most exciting, and potentially profitable, home remodeling projects. After all, nowhere are good feelings and quality communication shared quite like at the dinner table, so anytime a kitchen renovation is mentioned, the creative wheels get spinning in the minds of homeowners. However, not all kitchen remodels are created equal. For example, if you try an overly elaborate remodel that effectively leads to “too much kitchen,” you can have difficulty recouping investment dollars. Furthermore, large-scale remodels can sometimes leave your kitchen inaccessible for months at a time, creating a terrible inconvenience and leading to secondary costs of having to eat out all of the time. Therefore, if you are looking to be assured of a simple project that will lead to a solid increase in value to your property, look no further than adding quartz surfaces to your kitchen. Not only are they among the most durable countertops on the market, but quartz is nonporous, meaning that cleaning is as easy as a wipe of the rag. With most installations being possible in three days or less, high-quality quartz surfaces will be a major asset to buyers who want a classy appearance with little future investment required for cleaning, maintenance, and replacement.  3. Include Aging in Place Features While Colorado may have a younger than average population, the continued migration of the Baby Boom generation to retirement could see an increase in demand for houses equipped with aging in place features. Very simply, aging in place features allow residents to enjoy full comfort and functionality of their home as they move through their retirement years. Some renovation ideas that will appeal to this market and lead to increases in your property value include: Shower seats and removable showerheads to increase comfort while cleaning Custom handrails in the bathroom and kitchen to aid in crouching and rising Shallow kitchen sinks to limit reaching and lifting of heavy cookware 4. Add Solar Panels Society, in general, is becoming more aware of living a sustainable lifestyle, with Coloradans being some of the leaders in this regard. Therefore, any renovations that can make your home more energy efficient are highly desirable to a forward thinking clientele. While solar panels are a great way of powering your home with renewable energy, some other eco-friendly ideas include: Installing large windows to allow for the flow of natural light Choosing energy-efficient appliances for the kitchen Using polyiso roof insulation to regulate interior temperature 5. Put in a New Driveway The Colorado snow commonly melts into porous concrete driveways, only to freeze and cause cracks that form a haven for weeds to spring out of in the summertime. Instead of concrete, a better alternative for Colorado driveways may be gravel held in place with innovative permeable paver grids. These grids allow for optimal drainage of melting snow and keep the gravel evenly dispersed in the face of traffic, making for much greater curb appeal than an old and cracked concrete driveway. Conclusion Although there is no denying that the Colorado real estate market has been hot in recent years, trendy remodeling projects are necessary to ensure that your home can maximize its value on the market. Modern concepts such as classy, low-maintenance siding; durable, nonporous countertops; and features to accommodate an aging market are just a few of the ideas that can help your home appeal to a wide range of buyers and command top dollar. Thanks to Matt Lee for his input on this piece. He is the owner of the Innovative Building Materials blog and a content writer for the building materials industry. He is focused on helping fellow homeowners, contractors, and architects discover materials and methods of construction that save money, improve energy efficiency, and increase property value. 

Denver Real Estate News – August 2020

THE LOST CONTRACTS, A RELATIVE RECOVERY There is no denying the pandemic shutdown resulted in many lost home sales. Some sellers and buyers scrapped their plans altogether, while others put them on hold. Can these “lost” home sales be found again? The strength of the recovery will largely depend on price point. Despite a quick rebound in traffic once showings resumed, the Denver metro sold count was down around 24% year-over-year between March and June. For this same period, there were 4,820 fewer closings than in 2019. One encouraging detail is that more contracts have been written since showings resumed than had been written in the same timeframe last year. This suggests the market will recover at least some of the lost sales from the spring as these contracts finalize. The recovered home sales have not affected each price point proportionately. Of the new contracts aforementioned, around 49% of them fall into the $0-300K and $300-500K price segments, despite these segments having together made up around 67% of the overall market share back in 2019. ENTRY LEVEL HOMES — TOUGH TIMES AND LOW INVENTORY Inventory is still at historic lows relative to the past 40 years. Developers have not been as active in 2020. Strong demand for affordable housing has not gone anywhere. Further compounding these issues, every level of government is bound to have budget shortfalls due to COVID, which may set back affordable housing measures. For entry-level buyers lucky enough to have held their current jobs through the crisis, it is highly competitive. By choosing a great agent, acting quickly, writing strong offers, and giving sellers plenty of leeway, there are still homes to be found if you can be patient. MID-RANGE HOMES — HOMES PRICED $500-900K LEAD THE RECOVERY The $500-900K price point is leading the recovery of the local real estate market. This price segment managed to recover better than any other, with around 43% of the recovered contracts falling into this price point despite making up only 27% of the overall market share back in 2019. This trend is largely driven by a continuing surge of demand for lower-priced homes that are lacking inventory, coupled with a greater variety of higher-priced inventory. Many trade-up buyers are cashing in on the equity they have been sitting on and using it to trade-up to larger and more expensive homes. For many trade-up buyers, recent events have been advantageous to their home buying goals. The record low-interest rates are providing them significantly more buying power! LUXURY HOMES — THEY ARE JUST THAT, A LUXURY Homes from $900K and up have been slower to recover than the lower price segments. These homes tend to sit on the market longer since there is a smaller customer base that can afford them. During recession years, any luxury product tends to suffer since everyone tightens their belts. The bottom line is that people do not need to move into a $900K+ home… they want to. Considering recent uncertainty in the stock market and a typically more volatile market during election years, many of these buyers are content to wait out the pandemic until things are calmer.  Feel free to come talk to us if you need any assistance navigating this unprecedented real estate market.

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