Friday, May 25, 2007

Current Denver Real Estate Statistics

MAY 25, 2007

It may be seasonal, but who cares!! Showings have increased dramatically
over the last few weeks. During April we scheduled 21,758 showings (725 per
day average). Since last October the average has been about 500 showings
per day. This equates to 13% of all listings being shown each day,
comparable to last year.
April 2007 13%
2006 13%
2005 16.75%
2004 16.75%
2003 20%
2002 22%

MLS statistics show 26,430 active listings, which is down 3.2% from last
year. Unfortunately, the vacant properties still remain at 48%, and
continue to show a frightening increase compared to 46% in the fall of 2006,
42% in August 2006, 40% in the fall of 2005, and March 2004 with 35% being

According to The Zillow Index, values in the Denver-Boulder-Greeley area
have declined 1.9% from the same time period 2006, The Zillow Index uses
sales data that goes a step beyond Realtor data, and uses not only resale
homes but also statistics from new homes and for-sale-by-owner transactions.
MLS statistics are slightly more alarming, showing a decrease of 3.1% in
combined single family/condo sales or 3.59% decrease for single family homes
and condos dropping less than 1% from 2006. (Perhaps the condo market is
finally starting to improve!!)

Gordon Von Stroh, longtime guru of vacancy statistics for the Denver market,
reports the overall vacancy rate in the first quarter stood at 7.1%. The
last time vacancies were lower was in the first quarter was 2001 (4.5%).
Rents have continued to decline slightly, but historically when occupancies
rise, so do rental payments. This should be an excellent time for investors
to look hard at many of the great opportunities in our market. (Professor
Von Stroh's figures utilize numbers from apartment complexes and do not
include smaller multi-unit properties and single family homes. Although we
cannot statistically validate vacancies in these smaller properties,
anecdotally it appears to be even lower.)

Please be sure to keep us updated when the status of your properties change.
It only takes a few seconds on the internet ( or This makes you look more professional
in the eyes of your sellers as well as other agents AND means the showing
statistics we provide everyone are more accurate. (If you need a list of
the properties we show for you or your office, please just send us an email

Have a happy a safe holiday weekend.don't forget to buckle your seat belt
and wear your sunscreen.

Alice Marsh

For emails of the source articles or further information about Real Estate
Resource Center, Inc., Colorado's Premier Showing Service, currently
providing service to more than 3,000 agents, contact Julie Bobb or Alice
Marsh at 303 399-9930 or visit

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Selling Quickly by Eddy Kicker

There is a simple truth in the world of real estate. It is ideal for a home to sell quickly. When homes languish on the market for months the home's attraction decreases and people begin to wonder why the home has not sold yet. Have you ever noticed a home that has been listed for months? Sometimes through several different agents and companies? It is unfortunate that this happens as the home's selling potential is severely decreased by this process. Homes that stay on the market for too long acquire a stigma of being problem homes. This is a bit of a misjudgment as one of the main reasons that homes don't sell quickly is that they are overpriced.

It is easy to see how this happens, people have a strong emotional attachment to their homes and occasionally they price their home according to this link. Unfortunately for these people, home buyers do not take this into consideration when purchasing a house. When deciding on a price for your home, there are several factors which should be taken into account. One of the most important things to consider is the location and what homes have been selling for in the area. No matter how fabulous a home is, it is unlikely to sell for $500,000 in a neighborhood where the average home is worth $200,000. Buyers expect certain things out of certain areas, there may be a few exceptions but this is true of most neighborhoods.

The CMA is still the best tool to use in the pricing of a home. The CMA compares your home to other homes that have similar traits and are of similar size that have sold recently in the area. From this baseline a good realtor will be able to guide you to the correct asking price based on the additional assets that your home has or things that the home lacks. If you are mindful of these things then your home should end up priced properly. Also remember that homes that are on the market for too long have trouble selling even with an adjusted price. So make sure that your home has the right price tag when it is listed.

Eddy Kicker is a REALTOR servicing the Greenville, SC real estate market. Eddy is a dedicated professional that offers the best in customer service and attention in relocation to Greenville.

Top 10 Spring Staging Tips by DesAnn Collins

What is staging? I am asked this all the time. Staging is a verb. It is the action of doing something. Staging can be from one end of the spectrum-renting & setting furniture up in vacant home to making over 200 suggestions for occupied or vacant home. So “staging” is a word used to describe many things.

I do all of the above for my clients. As each home is different so are the actions taken to stage each.

It is definite that those consumer savvy buyers are looking for the BEST home they can find.

For the Realtors® that work with me they are seeing a significant increase in the sellers interest in “staging”. They, the Realtors®, are enjoying the attention they are receiving for showing their professionalism by offering my services at time of listing the home for sale. These Realtors® homes are selling VERY quickly. The Realtor® and home-seller reap the benefit of staging their home, (product), by enjoying having sold the home at the higher end of comps and in very little time.

As always it is best when seller makes changes suggested by stager BEFORE house is listed. When house starts to advertise it will be “show” ready from day 1! MLS photos will reflect the correct “product”. You don’t want to have your first days on market not reflect the house at its best. Your best perspective buyer may be the one that sees house first, as soon as it is listed. It is important that you not “lose” those important first days.

Ideally the following list should be implemented BEFORE listing. Of course it will still be effective no matter how long house has been on market. It is never to late!

The only guarantee I have is that the investment to stage will ALWAYS be less than first reduction in price!

Now with all that said lets get down to some practical information.

“Top Ten Spring Staging” to-do list

#1.) “Happy” colors on front door. Choose a contrasting color of house or door. Such as if house is tan and door is red, use yellow decorations. Use yellow marigolds and other fragrant flowers in a nice large container. Do not over-fill space. Use yellow in door decoration.

#2.) First Impression- What are your own first impressions that you have when seeing the house? Would you want live here? Would you even come in the driveway?

#3.) NO empty flower pots-especially filled with dead flowers! It is better to have nothing rather than dead flowers.

#4.) Rake and tidy-up yard. Having nice clean lines will make yard appear large and un-cluttered. It is difficult to have yards pretty this time of year. Put out new mulch in beds, this will at least cover-up winters wrath. Landscaping will appear neat. Be careful… make sure that mulch doesn’t have any manure smell or other unpleasant odor. That is not the impression you want perspective buyer to experience. The yard is part of what perspective buyer will see first. It is “curb appeal”. When buyer sees that yard is neat & tidy they are willing to see the inside. They should make the connection that if the yard is tidy than most-likely the interior is neat & tidy too!

#5.) “Spring” clean the interior. No matter what problems a particular house may have, no one wants to have to clean their NEW home. Dig in and clean, hire professional cleaning crew if needed.

#6.) Box and store off-premises your winter wardrobe. Why have items in house that seller probably doesn’t need for several months? Rent a storage unit and edit items that are not crucial to ones well being.

#7.) Have a garage-sale. Seller can have a sale BEFORE advertising the house. It will make their move to new home less stressful, why schlep these things to new home. Seller can than use profit towards any minor staging suggestions or for items needed for their new home.

#8.) Have “WOW” factor when new buyer steps in the door. This is EVERYTHING! According to NAR perspective buyers make connection to house in 15 seconds! Make sure your “wow” is a positive one. You don’t want the thought..”Wow, this is awful, or stinks. You need a magazine “WOW”. You need them to WANT to live there.

#9.) Place a new “Welcome” mat at doorways. This seems so simple, but many seller’s fail to understand the significance. The mat is the house’s way of saying “Hello, come on in and stay awhile”.

#10.) Use silk greenery and spring flowers for that added touch throughout your home. Plants=life. Not only will good silks add aesthetic value, they have a subliminal effect. Think about it….dried dead flowers in pots or the appearance of living plant life.

Remember that first impressions are everything make sure their “wow” factor is a good one…NOT “Wow did you see that? Or smell that?"

Make it a GOOD experience and buyer will certainly remember that!

I hope that I have helped those of you in need of some practical advice from a professional staging Interior Decorator.

DesAnn is a Professional Real Estate Stager & Interior Decorator. She is Ohio’s 1st provider & instructor for Realtors® 2hr C.E.U. about the POWER of staging. Her homes have sold in as little as ONE DAY! 84% sell usually in 30 days!

Best of luck & happy selling!

Key Strategies for Sellers

How do you prepare a house to sell?

Doing whatever you can to put your house's best face forward is very important if you want to get close to your asking price or sell as quickly as possible. Short of spending a lot of money, here are several ideas for making your home show better: Sweep the sidewalk, mow the lawn, prune the bushes, weed the garden and clean debris from the yard. Clean the windows (both inside and out) and make sure the paint is not chipped or flaking. And speaking of paint, if your home was built before 1978, new federal law gives a buyer the right to request a lead inspection. If you think you might have some problems, do the inspection yourself beforehand and make any fixes you can. Be sure that the doorbell works. Clean and spruce up all rooms, furnishings, floors, walls and ceilings. It's especially important that the bathroom and kitchen are spotless. Organize closets. Make sure the basic appliances and fixtures work. Get rid of leaky faucets and frayed cords. Make sure the house smells good: from an apple pie, cookies baking or spaghetti sauce simmering on the stove. Hide the kitty litter. Put vases of fresh flowers throughout the house. Having pleasant background music playing in the background also will help set your stage.

What repairs should the seller make?

If you want to get top dollar for your property, you probably need to make all minor repairs and selected major repairs before going on the market. Nearly all purchase contracts include an inspection clause, a buyer contingency that allows a buyer to back out if numerous defects are found or negotiate their repair. The trick is not to overspend on pre-sale repairs, especially if there are few houses on the market and many buyers. On the other hand, making such repairs may be the only way to sell your house in a down market.

Do sellers have to disclose the terms of other offers?

Sellers are not legally obligated to disclose the terms of other offers to prospective buyers.

What are the standard contingencies?

Most purchase offers include two standard contingencies: a financing contingency, which makes the sale dependent on the buyers' ability to obtain a loan commitment from a lender, and an inspection contingency, which allows buyers to have professionals inspect the property to their satisfaction. The purchase contract must include the seller's responsibilities, such things as passing clear title, maintaining the property in its present condition until closing and making any agreed-upon repairs to the property.

Whose obligation is it to disclose pertinent information about a property?

In most states, it is the seller, but obligations to disclose information about a property vary. Under the strictest laws, you and your agent, if you have one, are required to disclose all facts materially affecting the value or desirability of the property that are known or accessible only to you. This might include: homeowners association dues; whether or not work done on the house meets local building codes and permits requirements; the presence of any neighborhood nuisances or noises which a prospective buyer might not notice, such as a dog that barks every night or poor TV reception; any death within three years on the property; and any restrictions on the use of the property, such as zoning ordinances or association rules. It is wise to check your state's disclosure rules prior to a home purchase.

How does someone sell a slow mover?

Even in a down market, real estate experts say that price and condition are the two most important factors in selling a home. If you are selling in a slow market, your first step would be to lower your price. Also, go through the house and see if there are cosmetic defects that you missed and can be repaired. Secondly, you need to make sure that the home is getting the exposure it deserves through open houses, broker open houses, advertising, good signage, and listings on the local multiple listing service (MLS) and on the Internet. Another option is to pull your house off the market and wait for the market to improve. Finally, if you who have no equity in the house, and are forced to sell because of a divorce or financial considerations, you could discuss a short sale or a deed-in-lieu-of- foreclosure with your lender. A short sale is when the seller finds a buyer for a price that is below the mortgage amount and negotiates the difference with the lender. In a deed-in-lieu-of-foreclosure situation, the lender agrees to take the house back without instituting foreclosure proceedings. The latter are radical options. Your simplest, and in many cases most effective, option is to lower the price.

What are the two most important factors when selling a home?

Price and condition are the two most important factors in selling a home, even in a down market. The first step is to price your home correctly. Use comparative sales information from your agent, or pay for a professional appraiser (usually $200 to $300), to objectively evaluate your home's worth. Second, go through the house and repair any obvious cosmetic defects that could deter a buyer. In a down market, you may have to consider lowering your price and/or making a major repair, such as replacing the roof, in order to lure a buyer. If this isn't happening, take it up with your agent or agent's broker. If you are still not satisfied you are getting the service you need, you may have to switch agents.

Do I have to consider contingencies?

If you are a seller in a seller's market, in which there is more demand than supply, you probably won't have to entertain too many contingencies. But if you are selling in a buyer's market, when buyers are few, prepare to be very flexible. Granting contingencies also depends upon what kind of price you want to get and on the condition of your property, most experts agree. Remember, contingencies are written into the contract and are negotiable during the negotiation phase only.

What is the best time to sell your house?

There is no "best" time to sell per se. Selling a house depends on supply, demand and other economic factors. But the time of year in which you choose to sell can make a difference both in the amount of time it takes to sell your home and in the ultimate selling price. Weather conditions are less of a consideration in more temperate climates, but most of the time, the real estate market picks up as early as February, with the strongest selling season usually lasting through May and June. With the onset of summer, the market slows. July is often the slowest month for real estate sales due to a strong spring market putting possible upward pressure on interest rates. Also, many prospective home buyers and their agents take vacations during mid-summer.

Following the summer slowdown, real estate sales activity tends to pick up for a second, although less vigorous, fall market, which usually lasts into November when the market slows again as buyers and sellers turn their attention to the holidays. If this makes you wonder if you should take your home off the market for the holidays, consider the advice of veteran agents: You are always more likely to sell your house if it is available to show to prospective buyers continuously.


Parker and Denver, Colorado Real Estate

This is the initial post of the Real Estate blog dedicated to Real Estate. Specifically in Parker, Colorado and the Southern areas of Metro Denver.

We feature articles and information for Sellers and Buyers. Check back often. We update regularly.