Insights From California

Now that I’ve been “back in real life” for a couple of weeks, I have a few insights I’d like to share.

I feel the 5 weeks I spent in CA were so cathartic in so many ways. As adults, we have so few opportunities to really unplug from just about everything. Even a 2-week vacation, while refreshing, isn’t enough some times. I had a lovely little cottage to stay in, all by myself for about 5 weeks.  The La Cresta community, in the foothills outside Murrieta, CA, is idyllic. I had the Cleveland State Park 2 miles one direction from my front door, the 8,000-acre Santa Rosa Plateau the other direction 2 miles, and my horse another direction 2 miles. If I wasn’t at the stable riding or spending time with my horse, I was hiking or mountain biking in one of these locations.  La Cresta also has miles of dedicated equestrian trails that I walked on.

It took about 2 weeks to really unwind enough to enjoy my solitude and “nest” as I called it. I realized I had the time and desire to just sit, meditate or sit and think. What a luxury! It ‘s a time to really take stock of your life, goals, achievements, what brings you joy, etc. It was also a time to just immerse myself in one of my joys and passions – my riding. I don’t think I’ve had this lack of responsibility to others, my job, family, friends etc. since being on summer break as a kid.

While I absolutely loved this time, I also realized I missed my friends, my job, my routine etc. We need to know what we don’t like and want, to know what we do want and like. It’s then that we can direct our attention and energy to creating what we do want and like. Contrast, as such, is important.  It reinforces what is desired versus what isn’t.  Often times, I feel I get so caught up in doing, doing, doing, that I forget and don’t allow myself to just BE.  What a wonderful feeling it is.  To feel so confident, safe and joyful in the life you’ve created and continue to create is so empowering and yet brings such peace.  It allowed me to embrace my gratitude in humility and joy.

Now my goal is to be able to find that quiet, peaceful, confident place amidst all the chaos of “real life”.  So far, so good.  I find myself getting caught up in day to day events but am finding time to reflect and re-center myself.  I’ll keep you posted.

 

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Compete to Beat Hunger: Community Food Share Corporate Challenge May 7th-23rd

May 7th-23rd – Compete to Beat Hunger!

Did you know hunger is a reality for 1 in 8 people in Boulder and Broomfield Counties?  

WK Real Estate has teamed up with Community Food Share for their Corporate Challenge where we’ll compete against other companies to raise money and collect food. Please consider helping us reach our goals by donating at this link or bringing food items to our Boulder or Longmont office locations. 

96% of donations go directily to supporting hunger relief efforts in Boulder and Broomfield Counties. For every $1 donated, Community Food Share can distribute 3 meals.

Click HERE to join me in donating to Community Food Share!

 

May is the Best Month to Sell Your Home

Many clients ask, “When is the best time to list my home?” That can certainly differ based on your location. A resort home at a ski area might be best in the winter. There are statistic just for this purpose. I personally like to list properties once there is some greenery and blooming taking place. April for example. The article below states that May is the best month to list here in Colorado:

This Just In: Data Says May is the Best Month to Sell Your Home

Of course, you ultimately list based on what your life dictates. In my opinion, there is not a bad time to list – just better times to list.

If I can help you with any real estate questions or needs, or you are interested in a free market analysis, please give me a call.

Andria Allen

303.810.8375

We are on day two of our journey home from CA!

I have had the most idyllic 5 weeks riding and training with Kathleen Raine and enjoying beautiful La Cresta, CA. I stabled with Stephan and Natalie Hinneman.  I I enjoyed mountain biking at the Santa Rosa Plateau and hiking at both the Plateau and Cleveland State Park. The bridle paths throughout La Cresta were a delight.  Such a beautiful community.  I had time to relax, reflect and rejuvenate.  While in CA, I also went to one horse show in Burbank. Armani was such a good boy with the traveling and the new stall at the show, and weather conditions. I am so thankful for this opportunity.

Thank you.

Andria

 

Andria

We are on day two of our journey home from CA

AndriaI have had the most idyllic 5 weeks riding and training with Kathleen Raine and enjoying beautiful La Cresta, CA. I stabled with Stephan and Natalie Hinneman.  I enjoyed mountain biking at the Santa Rosa Plateau and hiking at both the Plateau and Cleveland State Park. The bridle paths throughout La Cresta were a delight.  Such a beautiful community.  I had time to relax, reflect and rejuvenate.  While in CA, I also went to one horse show in Burbank. Armani was such a good boy with the traveling and the new stall at the show, and weather conditions. I am so thankful for this opportunity.

Thank you.

Andria

Now is a Great Time to Buy a Home!

We’ve been hearing about interest rates rising for the last two years. While we didn’t see much of an increase early in the year last year, we are certainly seeing increases now.  There is an example of what a 1% increase in interest rates can mean to you as a buyer in the last paragraph.  I know some buyers have been hoping that the market prices would decrease before purchasing a home. However, interest rates are also a huge consideration in your timing to purchase or not.

Personally, I am seeing a bit of slowing in certain portions of our local real estate market with price reductions as well.  The time on market has also increased with some property types. So, if you have been thinking about purchasing a home, upsizing or downsizing, now is really a great time to do so.  The affordability of your home is changing along with whatever home or property you may be dreaming about.

Give me a call. Andria Allen

Why Buyers May Lose If They Don’t Act Now

DAILY REAL ESTATE NEWS | MONDAY, MARCH 12, 2018

Rising mortgage rates could have a big impact on the direction your buyers choose when shopping for real estate, economists warn. “Every time the interest rates go up, you eliminate a group of people who can no longer afford to buy a house,” Don Frommeyer, a mortgage broker at Marine Bank in Indianapolis, told realtor.com®. “Some people may have to rent for a period of time until they make more money—or buy a smaller house.”

To avoid further complications in their plans, your buyers may want to speed up their home search this spring, as interest rates are forecasted to move higher in the coming months. Forty-four percent of home buyers say rate increases likely will force them to settle for a smaller, less expensive home that requires a longer commute to their jobs, according to a realtor.com® survey. First-time buyers may be most affected by rising costs, as increasing home prices and interest rates price some out of the market.

Mortgage rates are at their highest levels in more than four years. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.46 percent last week, according to Freddie Mac, and that’s largely expected to increase since the Federal Reserve said it is likely to raise its short-term interest rates this year. That could prompt mortgage rates to move higher at least three times this year, starting this month.

“For the bulk of buyers, it’s not going to kill their decision to purchase a home,” Rick Palacios Jr., director of research at John Burns Real Estate Consulting, told realtor.com®. “If anything, it will get them off the fence by creating a sense of urgency.” Higher rates are “a kick in the pants for you to start thinking seriously [about buying].”

Rate increases—even minor ones—can add up over time. Realtor.com® offers this example: On a $300,000 house with a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage and 20 percent down payment, the difference between a 4 percent and 5 percent mortgage rate is $142 a month. Calculated over the life of the loan, that is more than an extra $51,000. “Buyers thought they could wait forever because rates were going to stay low forever,” says Palacios. “They’re starting to realize that if they’re going to buy, they should probably buy now.”

Home buyers who are concerned about rising rates may want to lock in with a lender, which guarantees the current rate for a set period of time. Still, don’t let your clients linger on making a decision. It typically costs several hundred dollars to lock in a rate.

Source: “Is It Last Call for Low Mortgage Rate? Why Home Buyers Should Act Now,” realtor.com® (March 7, 2018)

How much apartment will $1,500 get you in Boulder County?

We’re all hearing about the rising cost of rents – all across the US. However, if you need a reason to purchase versus rent, the article below is a good one.  While it can be difficult to save for the down payment, it’s so worth it when your apartment rent could be a mortgage payment, and for a lot more square footage.

If you’re still renting, give me a call.

Andria Allen 303-810-8375

Squeezed: How much apartment will $1,500 get you in Boulder County? Not much

Renters get less for more as apartments shrink

By Shay Castle

Staff Writer

What can you rent in the Boulder Valley for $1,500?

Erie: 1,360 square feet / $1.10 per-square-foot average

Longmont: 1,200 sq. ft. / $1.25

Lafayette: 1,150 sq. ft. / $1.30

Broomfield: 1,100 sq. ft. / $1.36

Louisville: 1,050 sq. ft. / $1.43

Boulder County: 870 sq. ft. / $1.73

Denver (city): 840 sq. ft. / $1.78

Boulder (city): 760 sq. ft. / $1.99

Just how much apartment will $1,500 a month get you in the Boulder Valley? That depends on where you’re looking.

In Erie, for example, that amount can rent a roomy 1,360 square feet, according to a recent report from online rental marketplace Apartment List — enough for three bedrooms, a couple of bathrooms and a decent-size kitchen.

Renters in the city of Boulder will be a bit more squeezed: $1,500 a month will afford just 760 square feet of space.

That’s decidedly more than the shoeboxes available in New York or San Francisco for that price (340 square feet, in case you’re wondering). Still, Boulder apartments remain among the most costly in the state, fetching more than comparable units in Denver, itself among the priciest markets in the country, alongside major metros like Boston, L.A. and Washington, D.C.

“Apartments tend to be smaller in the most expensive markets,” said Chris Salviati, who authored the study for Apartment List, so the disparities “are more extreme.”

For example, he said, Denver — where $1,500 a month pays for 840 square feet of living space — is 2.1 times more expensive than Indianapolis, the most affordable of the major metros at 1,770 square feet for $1,500.

In fact, compared to Denver, the rest of Boulder County is a steal. Apartments in Louisville at that price average 1,050 square feet; in Lafayette, 1,150. Longmonters can call 1,200 square feet home for $1,500 per month.

But generally, the trend across the nation has been one of renters paying more for less. In 2006, the average apartment was 1,015 square feet. Ten years later, that had shrunk 8 percent, to 934, according to leasing platform Rent Cafe, an affiliate of real estate software company Yardi.

Meanwhile, median rents during that time rose 41 percent, from around $600 in 2006 to just shy of $850 in 2016, according to Census Bureau data compiled by Time magazine.

In response to increasing costs, many renters locally are fitting more people into apartments, said Bob Danos, owner of Longmont property management company PML.

“I’m seeing a lot more two-family households under one roof, splitting the rent,” Danos said. “A lot more people with roommates than what you’d see before.”

Danos said Apartment List’s per-square-foot figures sounded “a little high,” arguing that Longmont, for instance, was in the $1 to $1.10 range on average. (Apartment List has before admitted that listings for luxury units skew its data, and has taken steps to correct that imbalance.)

Prospective tenants don’t typically inquire about price per square foot, Danos said, nor are they considering the total square footage. Typically, the most important factors are numbers of bedrooms or bathrooms.

Apartment List’s Salviata said it is important to visualize rental costs in this way because it throws into relief just how expensive things have gotten.

“Stating it in terms of the number of square feet you can get a fixed price point helps put the disparities across markets into a unique perspective,” he said. “Most people have a sense, for example, that apartments in Denver are (less) expensive than those in San Francisco, but probably don’t realize that in Denver you get 2.5 times more space for the same price.”

Shay Castle: 303-473-1626, castles@dailycamera.com or twitter.com/shayshinecastle