City Mouse or Suburb Mouse?

 

As far back as Æsop and his fables {read “The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse”: http://www.bartleby.com/17/1/7.html} , both mice and men have debated the relative merits of country versus urban living. The wonderful thing about living in the Denver area is that both city and suburb living offer a variety of benefits. Ask any suburbanite from Parker to Thornton and they’ll tell you, “It’s great!” Ask any city dweller and they’ll praise the merits of Denver proper. Let’s take a closer look at both option.

Bright Lights Big City

If you see yourself in the heart of the action, the rush of city life might be for you. Financial and business sectors are nearby, and if you are a fan of arts & culture or the nightlife, you’ll enjoy living near museums, galleries, theaters, nightclubs, and fine restaurants. Don’t forget the shopping! If you’ve got the time & dime to indulge in retail therapy, urban living may be a good choice.

Assuming you work “only” 40 hours a week, you spend approximately 25% of your time at work – not including travel time to and from work or the time it takes you to get ready in the morning. Don’t let that get you down, but DO consider your work location in choosing the location of your next home. If you work in or near Denver, you could give yourself the valuable gift of time by living near your office – not to mention the gas savings.

If you are lured by the call of the city, you may also be attracted to architectural styles you can only find downtown. Sleek steel sky rises with soaring city views, historic neighborhoods, chic modern architecture… you’ll find a lot of wow closer to the city center, but you may not find the same bang for your buck. Price per square foot varies from neighborhood to neighborhood, but you will inevitably pay more money for less square footage the closer you get to the heart of Denver.

Potential Drawbacks of City Living

If you loathe traffic, noise, and proximity to other people, city living might not be your best bet. Crime rates in Denver are lower than many other metropolitan areas, but crime rates in parts of Denver are likely to be higher than the fringes of the suburbs, and this is something to consider. Pollution also tends to be higher mid-city than in the suburbs. If you are looking for a spacious yard, oversize garage and major square footage, you will be more likely to find these items outside of metro Denver, and prices will be more competitive.

Rockin’ the Suburbs

If you want to escape the daily grind and you like the small town feel you can find in hamlets just outside the big city, then suburban living may be for you. The suburbs have a lot to offer: more square footage inside, larger lots, more space between neighboring homes and more greenery. A suburban home will cost you less than one of comparable size in the city, and suburban homes are often larger and have more amenities.

Potential Drawbacks of the Burbs

For some people, the suburbs are just not exciting enough! They are far away from all the action in the city: the theaters, bars, clubs, restaurants, galleries and shops. Each outing to one of these places is an excursion, taking time and effort. Suburb living may require a long commute to work. The cost of transportation adds up, and a long commute takes up time that could be better spent.

If you are weighing your options – such as relocating to Denver or finding a spacious home in the suburbs, call me. I also love showing our fine city to Colorado newbies. If you have a friend or family member moving to town, send them my way. I’m happy to help.

Jack Meyers

jackestate@aol.com

303.263.3050

Twitter: @jackestate

Home Selling – a Game Best Played Objectively

For homeowners considering listing their property in the spring, or at any time in the future, it is important to remember that despite the emotion attached to your home, the purchase or sale of Real Estate is still a business transaction. Keeping a cool head amidst the pressures of a home sale can be to your benefit.

Let’s start at the beginning: what is your home worth? You and your family have probably built memories of a wonderful life together in your home. You’ve shared meals, tucked children into bed, and hopefully lived a full life within the shelter of your home. Those memories are priceless!

To a potential buyer, your warm fuzzies, and the price they are willing to pay for the home you offer for sale, have nothing to do with each other. Ultimately, the listing price decision is up to you, the seller. An experienced Realtor will advise you on the list price of your home based on market conditions and comparable sold properties. It is up to you to set emotion aside and listen to the voice of reason when setting the list price of your home.

Yes, but nobody does a backyard barbecue like this family – and this yard has hosted some awesome cook-outs! Those are memories to treasure, no doubt. Another moment to treasure – the swift sale of your home, which can be the result of a properly set list price when your home goes on the market. Pricing your home too high based on “a feeling” can lead to slow showings and a sluggish sale, and this may ultimately lead to a lower sale price as you lower the list price over time. Gut feelings are simply not an ideal factor to base your home price on.

Objectivity is the name of the game, and helping my clients see the full picture during the purchase or sale of a home – an emotional transaction to be sure – is an important part of my work.

Another mistake sellers sometimes make is to reject the first offer or two they receive, believing that the “right” offer will eventually show up. Price it right in the beginning, and buyers in-the-know will see your home for what it is: a competitively priced option in the marketplace. Your home is likely to see the most activity in the first month of the listing. Price it right – based on facts and market conditions – and you are the most likely to snare buyers during this vital initial listing period.  

What about low offers? Extremely low offers can feel like a slap in the face, and may seem to disrespect the beauty you’ve enjoyed in your home. For the buyer, even low offers are just business. Be prepared to make a counter-offer on any offer your Realtor deems to be serious and worth consideration. Do not make the mistake of rejecting a serious offer out of hand because emotion gets the better of you.

My goal is customer satisfaction – to sell your home in the least amount of time possible at the best possible price. Armed with factual data, including accurate current market conditions and a knowledge of local Real Estate trends, I can help make the sale of your home a more pleasant experience – and I’d love to be your advocate in the Denver area Real Estate market. 

 

Jack Meyers

jackestate@aol.com

303.263.3050

Twitter: @jackestate

Real Estate Resolutions

This time of year you may be counting calories, counting your pennies, or counting your blessings in an effort to meet your resolution goals.

Good for you, and don’t give up!

This year, I propose that you consider adding a Real Estate Resolution to your git-r-done list. 2013 can be a year of positive action for you, whether you plan to buy, sell, rent, or stay put. Here are some steps you can take to make this a great year for your Real Estate portfolio & planning.

1. Get a Current Market Analysis (CMA) from an experienced Realtor.

Knowing the value of your home in today’s market can help you with big decisions: Should you refinance? Sell? Take out a home improvement loan for a dream deck? Starting with a CMA helps you make an informed decision. ***A CMA is also an important step in contesting your property taxes if last year’s tax valuation was too high. Let’s talk!

2. Start saving for a 2013 home improvement project.

Check out my previous posts on which home improvements offer the most bang for your buck: http://bit.ly/y5vGBm and http://bit.ly/TSH2ZV  

3. Make headway on your existing 2nd mortgage.

Already have a HELOC (home equity line of credit) or other 2nd lien on your home? Maybe 2013 is the time to pay down that existing debt while interest rates are still low. Start small – pay an extra 1, 2 or 3% on your loan each month. Increase that payment a little at a time and soon you’ll start to see the balance shrink.

4. Consider refinancing your home loan.

Are you paying a variable rate via an ARM (adjustable rate mortgage) or paying higher interest on your home loan than your neighbor? If your credit merits, talk to a licensed mortgage professional about refinancing your home loan to a fixed rate mortgage or a better rate on your loan. Talk to me – I am happy to refer you to my trusted network of professionals.

5. Make sure you aren’t missing out on valuable home insurance discounts.

Did you make major repairs or improvements to your home last year? If you fixed your roof, added a deck, bought new windows or replaced old plumbing, talk to your insurance rep. You may be able to score a discount or lower quote on this year’s premiums based on these upgrades. 

Cheers, and happy new year to you and yours! If I can be of service in any way, call or drop a line. I look forward to hearing from you.

 

Jack Meyers

jackestate@aol.com

303.263.3050

Twitter: @jackestate