A Gratitude Checklist for Homeowners

Happy Thanksgiving week! 

Although I feel an ongoing sense of gratitude for my beautiful wife and children, my friends, my health and the ability to do wake up and do work I enjoy – this time of year I always feel a tug to say it out loud: Thank you!

You may be a little annoyed about the peeling paint on your back deck; maybe your garbage disposal is on the fritz, your drapes are “so last season,” or you missed out on the very best interest rate on your home loan because your credit had a few too many dings. I hear you – I’ve dealt with most of the same minor housing annoyances you have. And yet – we have so many things to be grateful for in terms of the roof over our heads… Read on for a checklist of home ownership blessings worth being grateful for.

A Gratitude Checklist for Homeowners

  1. Clean running water. According to the United Nations 783 million people do not have access to clean water, and almost 2.5 billion do not have access to adequate sanitation. Makes that long hot shower feel even better, doesn’t it? (water.org can help you do something about this, if you are so inclined.)
  2. Electricity. Typetty-type-type. This post comes to you courtesy of electricity, a laptop computer and wireless internet. Just 30% of the world’s population enjoys electricity. Think refrigeration, microwaves, most forms of media…
  3. F00d. A fierce familial debate over the relative merits of boiled versus crockpot mashed potatoes… let’s just admit most of this nation is doing pretty well on Thanksgiving Day and beyond in terms of the variety and availability of healthy foods – or any kind of food we want. 12.9% of the world’s population faces food insecurity according to the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization.
  4. HVAC. If the local watering hole threatens your health, you lack electricity and you are downright hungry, chances are good temperature regulation is a low priority. Colorado winters are a funny thing, and some temperature sensitive folks I know have been known to blast the heat one day and run the AC the next when one of our trademark snowstorm-followed-by-summer-temps hits town. We enjoy comfort at the flip of a switch, and I try not to take this for granted.
  5. Shelter. The United Nations’ last global survey on homelessness (in 2005) determined there were 100 million homeless people worldwide, with the number of individuals facing “inadequate housing” reaching as high as 1.6 billion; these numbers are difficult to track. For example, is a ‘house’ made out of detritus and located in a slum adequate shelter? Should individuals temporarily able to find shelter on someone else’s couch be considered ‘adequately housed’?  Tough questions, and this information makes it so easy to be grateful for the roof over our heads – be it a suburban McMansion, a diminutive condo or something in between.

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So. Gratitude. And I share this information not to tie you up in knots of guilt – but because it lends perspective to the minor annoyances in our daily lives and reminds us to be grateful for the good things we are blessed with every day. And if some of these global factoids inspire you to write a check for the greater good, volunteer for a cause you care about or drop a couple of bucks in a Salvation Army kettle on the way into Target – that’s okay, too.

Happy Thanksgiving, and I hope yours will be spent with the ones you love.

Jack Meyers

The Meyers Group
jackestate@aol.com
303.263.3050
Twitter: @jackestate

Trump’s Presidency + Real Estate

How might the president elect’s policies affect

U.S. Real Estate?

A few day’s ago, Forbes contributor Lawrence Yun hypothesized how a Donald Trump White House may impact homeowners, home sellers and home seekers in terms of interest rates, home listings, purchases, taxes and more. I encourage you to read the article in full, and I’ll highlight a few key points below.

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  • While the stock market has had a few ups and downs following the unexpected results of the presidential election, the economy will likely see a boost the first half of 2017 as tax cuts are implemented and government spending increases to reflect the new president’s plans for increased infrastructure. Long term, this increase in economic growth will likely contribute to rising interest rates. 
  • Changes to Dodd-Frank financial regulations may remove cost restrictions currently impacting smaller banks. The result would be greater lending access and an increase in new home building activity. Deregulation does carry the risk of a return to the faulty lending practices that led to the last recession if big banks are allowed the freedom to operate unchecked.
  • Regulatory and zoning issues have helped push the cost of newly constructed homes significantly higher than existing homes. Lifting the burden of these regulations would lead to lower purchase prices on new home construction.
  • Fannie and Freddie could be on shaky ground. These institutions have made major mistakes in recent history, but have cleaned up their respective acts and are responsible for adding stability to the lending marketplace. This point (#7) of Yun’s article deserves a full read.

Whether you voted to “Make America Great Again” or be “Stronger Together,” this nation is in for a fair bit of change over the next four years. If you are planning to buy, sell or refinance a home for personal or investment purposes, you’ll want to know the lay of the land and work with an expert to minimize negatives and take advantage of every opportunity available to you. I hope you’ll give me a call if I can be of service.

Jack Meyers

The Meyers Group
jackestate@aol.com
303.263.3050
Twitter: @jackestate

The Worst House on the Block

Why the Worst House on the Block may be your Best Bet

As you peruse online listings, check email from your Realtor or drive the streets of your favorite neighborhood, your eye is bound to be drawn to the visual gem of any neighborhood you are seeking; the creme de la creme, cream of the crop, top of the heap.

Curb appeal. Kitchen and bath upgrades. A finished basement. What’s not to love? 

When it comes to the very best house on the block, my advice is to leave that particular cherry to be picked by another buyer; there are several reasons to bypass the best home in the neighborhood and invest elsewhere, and it’s good to familiarize yourself with this line of thinking before you begin your house hunt and fall in love-at-first-sight with a house that might not, after all, be the very best investment for you.

This one's a winner...           or is it?

This one’s a winner… or is it?

The house that helps the rest of the neighborhood to rise now, may seem like a drag when it’s time to sell. 

When you fall in love with a beautiful house, it’s hard not to imagine how happy you’ll be pulling into the driveway of a house you can be proud of – maybe even the very nicest home on the block. Dinner parties, family game nights, cozy holidays… you can really see yourself living in this house. Now imagine further down the road when it’s time to sell your lovely home. Instead of a shooting star in a galaxy of celestial goodness, your home may just be pointing out the flaws next door, across the street and throughout the rest of the neighborhood. Neighborhood gentrification is a wonderful thing, but don’t buy the prettiest belle at the ball assuming the other girls will step up their routine; there is no guarantee things will go that way.

Savvy buyers seek room to build equity.

If the house is already maxed out (upgrades throughout, killer landscaping, energy efficient appliances/windows/etc.), you’ll probably pay top dollar to purchase the property. Long term, this doesn’t give you a chance to make good on your investment. If, on the other hand, you buy the ugliest house in the very best neighborhood you can afford – you really have something to gain. Chances are good the quality of the neighborhood will hold, and if you score a great deal on an ugly house in need of a little TLC, there will be nowhere to go but up.

Maybe don't buy THIS ugly house... But - Go Broncos!

Maybe don’t buy THIS ugly house… Go Broncos!

 

Not everything on HGTV translates to reality for the rest of us – but the notion that buying a bit of an eyesore in a great neighborhood is a keen investment makes sense. 

Call or drop me a line – I can help you find a diamond in the rough or a gem that’s move in ready, and part of my expertise includes helping you understand what kind of long term investment you are likely to be looking at.

Jack Meyers

The Meyers Group
jackestate@aol.com
303.263.3050
Twitter: @jackestate

Our Incredible Local Parks

Our Incredible Local Parks

Autumn is shaping up to be a stunning season with outdoor-friendly weather this year across Metro Denver, and right now is an ideal time to plan an outing to the park with your family. Whether you want to hit the trail, soar on the swings or enjoy a relaxing picnic in the sunshine, plan to visit one of these favorite local parks you may never have been to before the snow flies. Or the day after the snow piles up, then melts…

Isn’t Colorado the best?

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Center Park – Centennial

Located just off Arapahoe Road about halfway between Parker Road and I-25, Centennial’s Center Park offers free splash pad fun in the summer and some of the best playground equipment around. There are fun play opportunities for kids of all ages. Three climbing walls (a spongy surface material makes for soft landings), super tall concrete slide and cool round hammock-style swing are just a few play features. There are lots of tables, including covered shelters, and great modern bathroom facilities on site. It is impossible to be bored at this cool park, no matter the time of year.

westlands

Westlands Park – Greenwood Village

Westlands Park is another almost-too-fun-to-be-true location for kids. Children can slide right down into the action on a steep, fast slide and the adventure begins! The park boasts climbing features and play structures suitable for toddlers to teens, hiking/biking trails and a pond. If you aren’t a frequent visitor to this area of town, you may not come across this hidden gem on Quebec Street. This park is a consistent community favorite and worth the drive if you live across town.

centralcentral-2

Central Park – Stapleton

Simply put, Central Park is 80 acres of fun. As Denver’s third largest park, it attracts people from all over the city for sledding, RC boating, team sports and an amazing Dr. Seuss-inspired playground. 5280 magazine calls Central Park “one of the city’s coolest playground.”

curtis

Mestizo-Curtis Park – Denver

The oldest park in Denver, Five Points’ Mestizo-Curtis Park (est. 1868), boasts one of the city’s newest playgrounds. The $300,000 project, with features such as a compass-inspired merry-go-round, debuted last summer. Snag one of the six picnic tables near the playground to sit down for a family meal at the park. Originally developed as Curtis Park, Mestizo, meaning “a mix of cultures and ethnicities,” was added to the name in 1987 to reflect the diversity of the community.

What is your family’s favorite local park or trail? Share your top pick in the comments. With so many amazing green spaces, sports fields and places to play, it’s tough to choose!

Jack Meyers

The Meyers Group
jackestate@aol.com 
303.263.3050
Twitter: @jackestate