Recent Articles

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

Country Club Estates & Nedrah Acres

[ 0 ] September 23, 2016 |


Country Club Estates and Nedrah Acres are two of the most sought after neighborhoods in north Fort Collins. The homes in this area, built in the 50s, 60s & 70s, are some of the coolest and most unique around. If you’re looking for a mid-century modern home, for example, you may just find it in one of these neighborhoods. Read More

What is a ‘Backup’ Offer?

[ 0 ] September 23, 2016 |

So, what is a “backup” offer? A backup offer, simply stated, is when a second buyer comes along and likes your home enough to bet on the possibility that the first contract falls through. If the second buyer writes a backup offer, and if you accept it, and if the first contract does fall through, the backup offer will immediately take effect as the active contract. If the second buyer does write an offer, we go through the negotiation process just like we did with the first contract. You evaluate the dates and deadlines, and the price, and you decide if you want to accept, counter, or deny the offer outright.

Frankly, it isn’t likely you will receive a backup offer — however, even given their infrequency, it is our opinion that leaving the door open for such an offer can’t hurt. Being open to a backup offer also means maintaining your home as available for showings (making beds, wiping crumbs off of kitchen counters, keeping clutter to a minimum, etc.).

Once your home goes under contract, we are obligated to change the “status” of your home. That is, we have to let potential buyers and agents know that your home is under contract. How we do this is up to you, and what you decide will determine whether or not you have the possibility of receiving a backup offer. You will decide whether you want the status of your home to change to Under Contract/Backup or to Pending. By changing the status to Pending, you are effectively telling buyers and agents that you want no more showings. You may decide to go this direction because it’s too much work to get your home ready, or maybe because you are tired of leaving every time someone wants to see your home; by identifying the contract as Pending, we will receive no requests for showings, and as a result, you will have no potential for receiving backup offers. If, however, we identify your listing as Under Contract/Backup, we are effectively telling agents and potential buyers that you are still willing to show your home and that you would consider a backup offer. These are the only two options available to us — it is not an option to leave the home listed as it was before; that is, once your home goes under contract, we are obligated to change the status, letting buyers know your home is under contract.

Risk vs. Reward

[ 0 ] September 22, 2016 |

 

Every real estate transaction comes with some amount of risk and potential reward. For example, you may love the house that backs up to the four lane road, with a 45 mph speed limit, and the reward for you may be a home you love. But we might suggest a couple of potential risks. We would tell you that, 1) that home is always going to be more difficult to sell — because at least half of the people that look will rule it out because of the road, and 2) you may love the home now, and you may love it if you are the type of people to spend most of your time inside, but if you enjoy outdoor living, you may grow to hate the hum of the road. Read More

One thought when buying an investment property

[ 0 ] September 16, 2016 |

To the extent possible, buy based on the worst of times, not the best.

A photo by Todd Diemer. unsplash.com/photos/67t2GJcD5PI

Rental properties are a hot topic right now in Fort Collins.  Rents are up, vacancies are down, and interest rates are very, very low.  At this point in time, there would appear to be very little risk; it’s difficult for investors not to find renters, and current rental rates are at a premium.  I contend, however, that this is a potentially dangerous and shortsighted view to take.  When I work with investors, my goal is to help them buy a property that is not only easy to rent now, but will be easy to rent when vacancy rates are higher (and they will, eventually, be higher).  Before writing an offer, I would urge you to consider this: Is this the type of property that is going to be appealing to a quality renter when vacancy rates are up?  That is, there will come a time when renters have multiple options, and aren’t desperate to find just anything; when this day comes, will they pick your rental, or the one down the street?  To the extent possible, buy based on the worst of times, not the best.

 

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

Horsetooth Mountain Open Space & Horsetooth Reservoir

[ 0 ] July 6, 2016 |

Horsetooth Mountain Open Space, located four miles west of Fort Collins, covers 2,711 acres, includes 29 miles of hiking/biking trails, and ranges in elevation from 5,430 to 7,255 feet. With Horsetooth Rock as its most prominent landmark, Horsetooth Open Space offers a quick outdoor getaway for Northern Colorado residents and visitors. A hike might lead you to Horsetooth Falls or all the way to Horsetooth Rock, where you will find magnificent views of Fort Collins, Horsetooth Reservoir, and Longs Peak (on a clear day). Take advantage of living along the foothills of the Rocky Mountains and enjoy a day (or even just a couple of hours!) at Horsetooth Mountain Open Space.

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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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Rolland Moore Park

[ 0 ] June 29, 2016 |

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Rolland Moore park has grown into a beautiful space in west central Fort Collins. Ride or walk along tree-lined Spring Creek Trail, which winds its way through the north and west borders of the park. With mature trees and foliage, tennis, racquetball and basketball courts, volleyball pits, shelters, open green space, baseball fields, and two playgrounds, Rolland Moore Park is at the heart of outdoor activity in Fort Collins. It’s a great place to take in a baseball game on a warm summer evening or to enjoy a quiet picnic and a game of Frisbee with your family. In the spring & fall you’ll find kids soccer games on weekend mornings and early afternoons. Rolland Moore Park is another of Fort Collins fantastic city parks, and one not to miss!

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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.