Category: Did you know?

Condo Insurance: What You Should Know

[ 0 ] March 27, 2018 |
What you have: Master Policy

When buying an attached home (condo or townhome), part of the HOA fee goes toward the Master Insurance Policy. The Master Policy covers liability & property coverage for the HOA. This policy DOES NOT cover the inside of each unit; this coverage insures each building from the “studs out.”

What you might also need: HO6 & Loss Assessment

When buying an attached dwelling, you will want to ADD an HO6 policy, which covers the unit’s contents, and any damage from the “studs in” (e.g., kitchen fire damage, loss from theft).

Finally, while the exterior of each building may be covered with the Master Policy, the deductible is still the homeowner responsibility. This deductible used to be manageable, but now insurance companies (generally) charge 10% of the total cost of the work. Let’s say a hail storm hits, resulting in each building needing a new roof. And let’s say each roof costs $50,000 — for a total cost of $400,000. If there are a total of 24 owners, and if the deductible is $40,000, each owner will owe just under $1700 for his/her portion of the deductible.

You as the owner can either start saving now for this potential cost, or you can invest monthly in Loss Assessment coverage, an optional add-on to the HO6 policy (i.e., H06 policy is prerequisite to this coverage). You should be able to get $5000 of coverage for around $10/month.

 

Our Stabilizing Market

[ 0 ] September 20, 2017 |

In Northern Colorado, anyone paying attention knows the real estate market of the past few years has been booming for sellers. Based upon firsthand experience, without looking at a single stat, we would tell you homes are much more attainable now as compared to 2014-2016. In the three previous years, it was very difficult for a buyer to have an offer accepted on any home priced under $400k — even if they offered more money, and even if they removed some (or all) of the contract contingencies. While the current Northern Colorado real estate market is still skewed toward sellers, it’s no longer ONLY a sellers market.

This is our experience, but what do the stats say? We looked at the past three years’ sales in the Brown Farm neighborhood in Fort Collins, during the months of June 15 to August 15. We chose this neighborhood because it’s large (which means there would be plenty of data), and because the price range is generally average for Fort Collins. This is what we found: Read More

I ♥ Traffic

[ 0 ] October 7, 2016 |

 

Nobody likes a complainer – especially when the person doing the complaining lives in an area filled with beautiful parks & open space, well-manicured trails, nice people, friendly dogs and only well-behaved kids. I don’t want to be the complainer responsible for so much eye rolling, but seriously, am I the only one frustrated with traffic that is only exacerbated by the many, many miles of road construction/improvement? I suspect not. Read More

Tracks & Trails

[ 0 ] September 10, 2016 |

If you’ve lived in Northern Colorado for even a short time you have likely seen a copy of The Recreator (http://www.fcgov.com/recreator/) at one place or another. In their own words, the City of Fort Collins website calls The Recreator a “comprehensive community resource that includes information on City of Fort Collins recreation facilities, programs, events and activities.” Yes, most of us are familiar with this local resource, but did you know the City of Fort Collins, through their Natural Areas Department, has also developed a guide to free events and activities, on City of Fort Collins Natural Areas, called Tracks & Trails?

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Thumbing through a copy of Tracks & Trails you’ll find calendars from June through October filled with various activities for younger kids, older kids, really old kids (i.e., adults) and  families. For example, if you have a teen between 13-18 years of age, sign her/him up for the Nature Photography for Teens activity, to take place on October 5th. Or, if you want the entire family involved, take part in the Family Nature Club on October 15th. And if you want to leave the kids behind, sign up for one of the Science Behind the Scenery adult programs. Read More

A Plug for Best Buy

[ 0 ] July 2, 2016 |

I discovered this past weekend that not only will Best Buy price match the published deals of other brick and mortar stores, but they will also match Amazon Prime prices. I bought a pair of Bluetooth earbud headphones this past weekend that cost over $100 in the store, but could be found at Amazon.com for under $70. Because 1) the earbuds were in stock (at Amazon), and 2) fulfillment was completed by Amazon, I was able to purchase my new earbuds, from Best Buy, for Amazon’s price.

I thought this was great because I was able to see, touch and feel what I was buying before committing, and I was also able to make the purchase for the lowest price possible. Even better, you don’t have to have an Amazon Prime membership to take advantage of this benefit, the item simply needs to be identified as Prime (and must be in stock).a

So before make your next purchase at Best Buy, make sure to check out Amazon.com first. If you find a lower price with Amazon, and if the item is designated “Prime” and fulfilled by Amazon, they will lower the price to match.
(For more specifics, just Google “Best Buy price match guarantee.”)

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Before your home is listed

[ 0 ] June 23, 2016 |

When listing your home, we break down our job into three sections; this post is concerned with the first section. In this post, we will share a few of the things we do/consider before your home officially hits the market.

First, we assume you want to maximize the market value. As such, it is our job to lay out everything that can be done to achieve this goal. For example, If we think new carpet would help maximize market value, we’ll obtain estimates and will then let you know if it is worth the cost; new carpet might support a higher sales price, but if the cost exceeds the estimated increase the value, it may not be worth it. We’ll gather any needed information/estimates and will ultimately have a plan that, we believe, maximizes the market value.

We’ll also let you know exactly what we think your home should look like when showings begin. We’ll talk you through, often room by room, what we feel should be done. This could include removing or adding furniture, or it may mean rearranging furniture. We might also suggest removing some photos but adding others. Or, we might suggest that removing everything from a given room/area is the best plan. We’ll offer suggestions related to not just the inside of the home, but also the outside. Depending on the home/neighborhood, the outside of the home is often as important as the inside.

We’ll make suggestions based on these (and other) factors, but you’re the boss, so it will ultimately be up to you to decide what is completed. Stopping 

short of completing all suggested changes might affect the market value a little, or it could affect value a lot — it will depend on what you decide not to do. We will share with you what is most important, and what is least important — you’ll have to decide how far you can/are willing to go.

Look Familiar?

[ 0 ] November 1, 2015 |

One day back in 1951, Harper Goff, a Fort Collins’ artist, was shopping in London when he stopped to admire a model train set.  A second gentleman, with whom Goff struck up a conversation, was also admiring the model train. This serendipitous meeting and the relationship it began, were, in part, responsible for the architectural aesthetic of Main Street, USA, the gateway to Disneyland Park. Goff’s new acquaintance was none other than Walt Disney, and this chance meeting led first to Goff being hired by Walt Disney, and then to Goff eventually being charged with creating what is now Main Street, USA.  According to an article published at the  Fort Collins History Connection website,

In 1994, Richard Francaviglia, author of Main Street Revisited (University of Iowa Press, 1996), called Rheba Massey at the Local History Archive to perform research on his book.  Mr. Francaviglia had been to the Disneyland Archives to perform research and much to his surprise he found out that Harper Goff, a former resident of Fort Collins, had used Fort Collins and Walt Disney’s hometown, Marceline, Missouri as an inspiration and models for Disneyland’s Main Street USA.

So, next time you visit Disneyland, pay attention to the buildings on Main Street. You may get a sense that you’ve seen them, or maybe even been there, before.

For more information:
http://history.fcgov.com/archive/legends/disney.php

http://downtownfortcollins.com/dba.php/stories/

http://www.nytimes.com/1998/10/15/garden/tale-two-main-streets-towns-that-inspired-disney-are-searching-for-little-magic.html?pagewanted=all&src=pm.)