Wednesday, October 12, 2016


Every season of the year yields unique events, activities and a special list worth untold dollars that we like to call “The annual fall maintenance schedule for home owners!”
This is the post you want to readheed and share to all your online outlets because this will make you the SAVINGS ADVOCATE HERO of your social circles!
We start off with one important question you need to ask:
Let’s take a look at some real numbers about not so much the cost, but more significantly, the SAVINGS of completing the autumn checklist of To Do items around our homes.
1.  Everybody’s favorite, the gutters and downspouts clean out! Those clogged gutters can lead to damage to fascia, soffits and even cause roof damage.  Repair or replacement can run from $50 per section and up into the thousands of dollars! 
2 Change HVAC air return filters and furnace filters because a properly functioning system can save you BIG BUCKS on cooling and heating bills each and every month!
3   Shut down, drain and cover swamp coolers or AC units.  Frozen water may cause incredible damage that may not be repairable, requiring replacement.  Cleaning, draining and covering against weather and varmint damage saves you $100 - $2500 or more in repair or replacement costs!
4   Check the weather stripping around exterior doors and around the windows. Reducing the loss of cool or warm air can decrease your energy costs and save you anywhere from $25 to as much as $150 or more EVERY MONTH!
5   Remove screens and replace with storm windows – see above for the energy savings you can realize on a monthly basis!
6   Shut off and insulate outdoor spigots for the season.  While a frozen spigot might thaw out, there’s also the chance of burst pipes.  Not letting that happen saves you $150 - $300 or more, depending on resulting damages!
7   This is a great time to test the smoke and/or carbon monoxide alarms.  Install fresh batteries at a cost of about $3-$15 depending on how many units you have.  This could save a life in the coming season and that is PRICELESS!
1   Clean outdoor furniture in preparation of storing for the winter.  Savings add up fast, as new lawn furniture has increased dramatically.  NOT buying new every year can save you big next summer, and that money, possibly as much as $1000 could go toward your vacation instead! 
2 Drain fuel from lawn equipment before storing for the winter.  Engine components can gum up or water mix with the gasoline causing damage.  Savings are anywhere from $50 - $1500 when you don’t have to purchase new equipment each year!
3 Examine sidewalks, walkways, stairways, patios and driveways for cracks, crevices or missing chunks.  Keeping these in shape is a safety issue as well as a savings when kept in good repair!
4 Perform a visual roof inspection to catch any small spots needing repair to avoid water damage to rafters or leaks that ruin ceilings. Savings can be quite significant in the long term! A roof should only need replacing once every 20-30 years depending on the material used.  
5 Seal any foundation cracks.  Even small ones can allow further water damage to occur.  Be sure any water runoff is directed away from the house and not allowed to pool along the foundation line.
6 And don’t forget the landscaping!  This is the time to prune those trees and bushes and aerate the yard for healthy new growth next spring.  Savings include equity gains come sale time, since TREES  increase the market value of a home!

1 Chimney inspection!  Before opening up for the season, have chimney cleaned and serviced to make sure damper is operating properly.  Cost to skip this maintenance chore?  If the house burns to the ground it could run to the tens of thousands!
2 Clean the dryer vent as a fire prevention measure – see above for the value in this maintenance move!
3   Peeling paint isn’t just unsightly, in some subdivisions with HOA rules it could cost you a fine of $100 or more!  One small section left unattended allows weather to cause further peeling and further peeling until the $35 maintenance becomes a several thousand job to correct!
4   If you’ve got a humidifier, regular maintenance keeps you and your family’s lungs clear of bacteria that can build up – PRICELESS SAVINGS MOVE!
5   Have a sprinkler system? Be sure to drain or have it blown out to avoid cracked pipes and water leaks next watering season.  Savings are high in this area as a new system could run as much as $400 per zone to install a new system.
6   Is the doorbell working properly?  Almost no one ever checks their own doorbell but you don’t want to miss out on being alerted that YOU ARE THE PUBLISHERS CLEARING HOUSE WINNER OF $5000 A MONTH FOR LIFE! (Okay, we’re joking around a little here ha ha), but seriously, a working doorbell may not seem a big deal now, but how important might it be to a potential buyer when the time to sell the home arrives?
7   This is a great time to get a Broker Price Opinion from your local RE/MAX Alliance Associate to compare and prepare for your annual Tax Assessment.  Having a go-to agent can be a life saver in situations not related to buying or selling!
It takes about one weekend or maybe two to complete the items on a Fall Maintenance To Do list.  And while it certainly isn’t very inspiring to spend a couple of weekends during football season working around the house, how does spending a weekend increasing your wealth quotient sound?  Perspective is reality, and your reality could be making you money when you view the To Do as an interest bearing savings account at your home address!
(All pricing is based on average costs advertised in the Front Range area and are not intended to be actual cost or savings, but only a representation of possible cost or savings on these items. Content for this blog provided by Colorado Moves is created and maintained by the people of RE/MAX Alliance.  RE/MAX Alliance is the largest privately held real estate company in Colorado.)

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Top Tips for Staging Your House to SELL!

Clean the house thoroughly. Keeping it that way throughout the selling process is essential.  Make the appliances shine, vacuum and shampoo the carpets and polish the floors.  Dust the house and make sure to get rid of any flies or moths in lighting fixtures.  Clean the windows inside and out.

Remove any clutter from your home.  Keeping the kitchen spotless includes removing any unnecessary items from the counter tops.

Tidy up your closets.  Take out the clothes in your closets that you do not wear often so that they do not appear full.  Removing any extra furniture and pictures from the room will help as well.

Remove any personal items from site. This is important because you are selling the house and not yourself.  By doing so, you are visually expanding the rooms in your home.

Fix the little things.  If there are any items in your house that are not in perfect working order, it will be a good idea to get those fixed.  Do it right and don’t cut corners.  Buyers can pickup on cheap fixes.
  • Tighten or repair any loose knobs, sticky doors and windows.
  • If there are any light switches that do not work, make sure they are repaired.
  • Make sure the caulking and grout in the bathrooms are good and that there are no leaky faucets.
  • Replace any burned out light bulbs.

Some things to consider repairing/improving. These would be to apply a fresh coat of paint that is neutral in color and enhances the details of the decor.  The fresh smell of paint implies cleanliness.  Make sure not to forget to touch up interior trim.

Additional Tips:
  • When showings are scheduled, it is always a good idea to leave the house.  Go for a walk or out to eat.  It is always best to leave the clients with their agent and not to interfere with them as they view your house.  Being home can often hurt the selling opportunity.
  • If you are selling a house that is somewhat vacant, it will be a good idea to stage the home by a professional stager.  A great staging of the home can dramatically create an emotional statement.

Don't forget about the outside!

The most crucial thing is the “first impression” your home gives.  

  • Be sure to clean the front yard, trim any shrubbery, pull the weeds out of the flower beds, mow the lawn, rake any leaves and sweep the walkways.  This will make your home appear at it’s best!  

  • Consider planting some flowers in the beds and pots to add color to the appearance.

  • Repair any exterior trim, gutters, planters or mailbox.  Make sure that nothing appears to be sagging or tilted.

  • Make sure that the garage door is closed for showings.  If you usually have extra cars in the driveway or parked in front, it would be a good idea to move those so they are not blocking the view of your house from the street.  Also, hide the garbage bins. 

Following these best practices will help ensure that you get the highest and best offer for your house when the time comes to sell!  Contact us today for even more information on how selling your house can be made easy with our help.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Jefferson County Market Insights

for the month of July 2016

Each generation has had their own great impact on the real estate market as each comes of home buying age. 

Millennials are no different, they just haven’t been as decipherable as they follow a new path of progression to adulthood. Anticipating their housing preferences has been a tough call for the experts, mainly because the forces driving millennials decisions are very different from those that drove the generations before them. 

This is the generation that went home to their parents’ houses in record numbers after graduating from college. Most because of the unhappy discovery that employment prospects were minimal and some due to delaying marriage and starting their own family. 

Innovative bunch that they are, all indications at this time point to them having reassessed their situation, reset their goals and aspirations, and are now becoming the generation flooding the housing markets across the country. 

They don’t behave like their parents’ or grandparents’ generations, so industry trends have been harder to predict. This is the tech generation. They have expectations of instant gratification, unique communication and data gathering that fits their thought patterns and housing wants and needs to match. 

They have turned impossibly tiny buildings into a chic new housing trend; and not just for themselves. Where once we added rooms as in-law dwelling spaces, they are adding Tiny Houses in back yards to the list of alternatives in caring for aging relatives. 

When it comes to knowing what they want in a long term home, they are redefining room use and square footage to suit their own style of living. Because you don’t know what you don’t know until you learn it, this is an ongoing journey of discovery. 

This is a generation taking the ideas of reusing and repurposing beyond the current limits. 

For now, we can be encouraged about the market taking an upturn, as the latest Fannie Mae survey reveals more people than ever state this would be a good time to sell a home, and the interest rates have convinced even more people that this is a very good time to buy a home. 

Both the 30 year and 15 year terms mortgage interest rates dropped slightly in the last two months. More than 74% of homeowners across the country have realized significant equity gains, with even better numbers in the hot moving market in Jefferson County. 361 sold and closed homes were reported in June, after an average of 18 days on the market. 

Last year’s average days on market was slightly lower at 15, while national figures showed 49% of existing homes sales took less than a month to sell. 

Sale prices continue their steady climb, with a median sales price of $375,000 reported for June. Inventory remains on the low side, but June had a strong turnout at 482 available homes as compared to June 2015 which offered 498 to choose from. 

Rent costs are seeing sharp increases which could grow sales numbers in July and August, making for a strong showing in the third quarter of the year.

Market Insights courtesy of

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Last of the Second Saturdays in Olde Town Arvada

One last 
time for the  
Saturdays in 
Olde Town 

We again invite our community to celebrate in Olde Town at the 2nd Saturday Street Festival! Olde Town events typically bring around 4,000 people to Grandview Avenue. There will be top-notch entertainment that is sure to please!
In addition to live music, there will be arts & crafts booths, food booths, kids activities, and beer/wine sales. Admission is FREE! Keep in mind that Grandview Ave will be closed to auto traffic which will ensure a fun and safe atmosphere for all.  

The party starts this Saturday at 4:30PM and will go till 10:00PM  Be sure to stop by our office which is right on Grandview Avenue and say hello!   Just look for the RE/MAX balloon!

Live Entertainment scheduled to appear are:

4:30 Ponder the Albatross

6:00 The WhoDos

8:00  Wendy Woo

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Sand In The City

Recently, we had the opportunity to participate in our local Sand In The City event put on by the Arvada Chamber of Commerce.  This is a two day long event held at Arvada's Ralston Park near 64th and Simms that has been touted as Colorado's premier beach party!  There are games, vendors, live Hawaiian style music, food, drinks and best of all, the giant sized sand sculptures!  This year was RE/MAX’s first year entering in the sand sculpture competition.  Altogether, there were 9 teams competing against each other for the coveted title of best sculpture.

The sand sculpting competition consisted of two phases:  Phase I is filling the forms and compacting the sand and Phase II is the sculpting part. On the day of the event, each team has only 6 hours to complete both phases.  However, there was a lot of preparation in advance of the competition.  First, we had to come up with our theme.  Then we had to design our sculpture and calculate the needed volume of sand.  Once this was done we had to construct the wooden forms that would be used to form the sand blocks.  Amidst all of this, we had only a 2 hour day of practice where we learned all about what we just got ourselves into! 

It takes a great deal of effort to construct these massive sand sculptures.  Not only do you have to build the forms, but then you have to manually fill them with the sand all while mixing the sand with water and packing it down tightly using a hand held tamper.  (If you are looking for an amazing shoulder and forearm workout, try packing several hundred cubic feet of sand with a hand held tamper.  Oh man!  Your muscles will burn.)  The ratio of water to sand was also something of an art form.  Too much water and the sand is too mushy.  Too little water and it crumbles.  The mixture had to be just right.  The ideal way of compacting the sand was to fill the form every 6 to 8 inches and then pack it down.  One of our forms was 6 feet tall!  Imagine the time it took to fill that one.  Plus, we had another form that was 7 feet wide by 3 feet deep and 4 feet tall.  HUGE!  Once the forms are filled and the sand compacted tightly, it's time to remove the forms...carefully!  This is the moment of truth.  Did we do a good enough job compacting the sand?   YES!  Success!  Our group of REALTORS really pulled together as a team to complete the first phase of the competition.  This was absolutely grueling in the high hot sun of the Colorado summer as we all shoveled tons of sand and compacted it level by level and we persevered.

Now on to Phase II of the competition, the sculpting!  We printed out several copies of our design and each artist had their designated areas to focus on.  To begin, a general outline was cut into the blocks from 3 sides.  The large chunks were removed quickly using small shovels and trowels until we were down to the basic shape of our design.  To begin the refining of the sculpture, more precision tools are used, such as, pallet knives and custom made tools from metal strapping.  Curry combs were used to round over and smooth certain areas.  Bit by bit, grain by grain of sand was whittled down right up to the last minute of the competition.  The stress of completing the sculpture started to set in at those last few minutes.  As each person completed their respective parts of the sculpture, they would help and cheer on the others.  If it wasn't for the constant cheers from onlookers, I don't think that we would have made it.  The love and support from the team members really paid off in the end as well.  This was one of the most stressful, difficult and rewarding days we've ever experienced.  The bell went off and the competition was over.  Each of us exhausted but extremely fulfilled. We stood back and marveled at our creation.  "How cool is this?", we thought.  High fives were handed out all around as we headed over to the food and craft beer area to wind down and recuperate.

It was time to relax, eat and socialize with all the c
ompetitors and each other.  The Mayor of Arvada, Marc Williams, was out and about congratulating each person.  As we finished up the excellent food, the time had come to award the winners.  We anxiously sat by as the announcer stalled and stalled with banter and one liners.  The first award given was for Rookie of the year.  This award is for new teams that have never competed before.  There were 3 teams there, including us, which were up for this award.  Can you guess who won that?  WE DID!!!!!  We were awarded Rookie of the Year for our sculpture.  We were truly honored to receive the award.  Though we did not win the overall competition, we were all winners with each other.  The experience really brought us closer together.  We are so proud of the team and we couldn’t have done it without each other

If you missed the event, here are some photos of what we created.  The idea is "Looking for the perfect home" and since we are RE/MAX Alliance, that’s what we do best.  The Keyhole is representative of the search and as you peer through the keyhole, you see the perfect "Home Sweet Home".  A BIG comfy couch and "MAX" the doggie asleep in his favorite spot.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Our new Blog

Welcome to our new blog!  We will be talking about all things real estate and the local Arvada area events.  Hope to see you soon!