Why we moved 4 houses down


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Why we moved 4 houses down

In August, 2016, my wife and I decided to move our family just a few doors down in our cul-de-sac. Why would anyone do that? Most would assume we upgraded the size or condition of the home, the lot or view was significantly better, or we’re simply gluttons for the punishment of moving. All of those assumptions are wrong. In fact, the house we bought was the exact same floor plan – just mirrored. We did it for the investment.

We bought our last house in the downturn on the cheap. Put in tons of sweat equity and figured we’d live there forever. About 8 years later, I met with a very unique lender, Matt Nockels, who told me about the “5 in 10 Plan”. The plan suggests buying and moving into a new home every two years for ten years and renting the previous property at or above the mortgage. This enables you to build an investment portfolio with renters paying for it. We loved the idea, got pre approved, and then realized we didn’t want to leave our neighborhood… or even our cul-de-sac because we love our neighbors and friends we’ve built here. And that’s when it happened.

My friend and neighbor called me to list his house. We agreed on price and terms and began the purchase process. During the inspection period we found renters for the last house and everything came together nicely. We even used equity from the last house to provide down payment for the new house! I feel like this is a win all the way around because we can now provide a nice home in a wonderful neighborhood to a young family that can’t purchase a home, begin a small real estate investment portfolio, and we can choose our neighbors!

The rental property now cash flows nicely and we’re planning to do it again as soon as we can. If this sounds interesting to you, let me know. I’d be happy to answer your questions and help you get started.

Mastering a Market with Too Few Listings: Spotlight on Keller Williams DTC

This article was featured in the Sunday edition of the Denver Post on March 29, 2015.

When Denver’s shortage of homes for sale declined to a startling level last month, the dearth showed up in a drastic drop of new listings filed by area real estate agents – down 47% percent on average from February 2014. However, over at what has long been the metro area’s very largest office — Keller Williams at 6300 S. Syracuse in the DTC — agents were seeing new listings drop only 9.2 percent; pretty modest considering the severity of the market-wide shortage.

That was no surprise to Keller Williams DTC’s Team Leader/CEO, Tony Carnesi, who was going over Denver area’s latest inventory stats Thursday morning: only around 4,100 homes, total; and for homes under $200,000, only 181 properties in the entire 7-county metro area. “We’ve gone from a 36-month supply in 2010 to about a 3-week supply now, and in some price ranges, it’s just days,” Carnesi says.

Hard to believe, Carnesi notes, that the oversupplied market a few years back was a good one for Keller Williams DTC. During the downturn the office took the Denver-area lead in numbers of sales-closed by a single office, and has held the title 77 consecutive months since. Last year the office did $908 million in sales, and grew to 447 agents (Carnesi expects that to be well over 500 by end of year).

Denver Post DTC

Can you spot Marty? He’s on the left in the back.

“We’ve always been focused on the idea that you have to master the market you’re in,” Carnesi says. The challenge of doing that now – with way too few listings instead of too many – Carnesi sees as a perfect opportunity matched to Keller Williams’ assets.

First among those is a culture that gives agents more incentive to perform and cooperate with other agents: Keller’s model sets a cap on commissions that the agent can pay the firm. When DTC agents Dan Polimino and Gary Lohrman made the very highest sale in the Denver area last year — $5.25 million – they paid zero commission to the office; they had already passed their cap.

Meanwhile, Keller DTC is huge on coaching and training, both for new agents (Keller gives 84 hours and converts 82 percent of ‘newbies’ into production, well beyond industry averages), but also for experienced ones (DTC has 14 master faculty instructors who give classes; backed by 1,500-plus national trainers and coaches). Some sessions are on basics essential in this market, when potential sellers need to be coaxed out of their reticence. “We teach our agents specific techniques to go find the listings the market needs,” Carnesi says.

All of that ends up very important to agents who can imagine a day when they’ll no longer work. “The average age of a Realtor is 56,” Carnesi adds. “What is their exit strategy, anyway?” Keller DTC turned $1 million in company profits back to its agents last year – and agents will continue profit-sharing when they move on (one national agent averages around $800,000 a year, for retirement).

And where do those new listings come from? “There are only two places,” Carnesi says. “You either teach your team to go out and get them, or you recruit experienced agents that already have them.”

Veteran agent Okie Arnot, who came to Keller DTC a decade ago, says the former method works great, but the latter works even better: “It was the best decision I ever made,” she says.

WHERE: Keller Williams DTC, Denver area’s largest real estate office, 77 months ranked for greatest number of units closed. 6300 S. Syracuse Wy, Ste 150, Centennial. Take Orchard Rd. west from I-25 1 long block to Greenwood Plaza Blvd., south 1 blk, continue onto S. Syracuse Way, half mile to Caley.

PHONE: 303-522-1161 or 303-829-5900


(From http://www.denverpost.com/real%20estate/ci_27799608/mastering-a-market-with-too-few-listings:–keller-williams-dtc-office-does-that-with-a-different-kind-of-agent-culture)

Low Inventory. Builders to the Rescue!

If you’ve recently been a buyer or seller in the Denver real estate market, you’ve felt the heat of this insane housing market firsthand. If you haven’t, prepare to hear some shocking news: according to the Denver Post and Denver Metro Association of Realtors, the 12-year average number of homes for sale at any time in the Denver area was 16,717. In February 2015, the number of homes for sale was 4,079.

Needless to say, such a shortage of homes has lead to some changes in the market for Metro Denver in recent months. The median home price has jumped 14.7% in the last year, the average Denver rental price is triple the US average, and homes are selling in a record number of days leading to bidding wars. What are buyers to do to find and win their dream home?

Builders think they have the answer. In Arapahoe and Adams counties, new communities are popping up left and right. But don’t consider them the “urban sprawl” of the past; these new communities plan on having everything today’s buyers want, including walking trails, hospitals, town centers with office buildings and retail shopping, and more. The biggest and most notable new communities are Prosper (9,000 homes), Sterling Ranch (12,000 homes), and Green Valley Ranch East (10,000 homes). Most have 20-30 year horizons to completion, similar to Highlands Ranch today which was originally built in the 1980s. Projections show that the Denver metro area will have 4.3 million people by 2040; these projects couldn’t have been started at a better time.

If you’re considering buying a new construction home, give me a call before you tour any model homes. You need someone on your side protecting your interests in a new build transaction.

Record Snowfall Leads to Real Estate Headaches

This February, Colorado broke a snowfall record set back in 1912. This was the snowiest February on record with 22.2″ and counting. All this snow is great for our drought issues, but for those in the real estate industry, it’s just a headache.

Agents have had to cancel open houses because of weekend snowstorms, deals are being delayed due to inspectors not having full access to the home because of snow and ice, and sellers and buyers are struggling to move out of or into their homes.

Even without a tough winter, the spring months are when the real estate market really begins to heat up. This spring may prove to be even busier than usual; many sellers are choosing to delay putting their homes on the market until the weather is better.

Post-Holiday Real Estate Rush

We’re past the holidays, and you know what that means! Besides being a few pounds heavier than before Thanksgiving began, January also brought us a 62% increase in new listings on the market from December. Now that Christmas decorations are put away and holiday guests have gone home, sellers have gotten serious about getting their properties on the market.

While more listings going active on the market was a good thing, it didn’t mean that it was easy for buyers to get under contract on their dream home. The number of new listings in January was 3,964… and a whopping 4,514 homes went under contract in the same time frame.

Real estate professionals worry that this lack of supply could stall the market. Potential sellers worry that they won’t be able to find a home to buy and may choose to stay put. Buyers could get frustrated with high prices and bidding wars and choose to rent for another year instead.



Denver Among Fastest Growing US Cities

According to CNN Money, these 10 cities grew faster than in any other major metro area between July 2012 and July 2013 (pulled from data from the Census Bureau):

  1. Austin, Texas
  2. Houston, Texas
  3. Raleigh, North Carolina
  4. Orlando, Florida
  5. San Antonio, Texas
  6. Denver, Colorado
  7. Nashville, Tennessee
  8. Charlotte, North Carolina
  9. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  10. Phoenix, Arizona


Population: 2.7 million

% gain: 1.9%

New residents: 50,782

Great skiing, biking and hiking are just some of the reasons people flock to the Mile-High City.

“People see Colorado as a place for opportunity,” said state demographer Elizabeth Garner. And when they arrive, it’s not too hard to find one.

Area employment grew nearly 3% in 2013 thanks to hiring in sectors such as mining and energy, construction, professional and business services, and education and healthcare services, according to Denver’s Metro Area Economic Development Corporation.

And while unemployment is still just a few ticks lower than the national average, it’s improving fast. In January, the unemployment rate fell to 6.4% from 7.8% the year before.

Home prices, at a median of $259,000, aren’t exactly cheap, but they are affordable relative to median family income of nearly $78,000.

Click here to read about the other cities that made the list.

Is it Cheaper to Buy or Rent in Denver?

These are good housing bubbles.

Trulia’s Winter 2013 Rent vs. Buy report is out. They use a fairly complex set of data to come up with their results (at least they seem complicated to this English major.) But what they reveal has got us excited: In Denver, Colorado, it is up to 53% cheaper to buy a home than to rent.

Yeah. 53%.

The percentages vary based on your tax bracket, what interest rate you can qualify for, and how long you plan to stay in your home, but most combinations still result in significant savings over renting. See the full report here.

So if you’re in the Denver Metro Area and are thinking of making the leap to home ownership, the numbers are saying it’s a good time. Mortgage interest rates can’t get much lower than this. True, there’s low inventory and you’ll need to really be on top of things to snag the place you want, but that’s what you’ve got us for! See what’s available in your price range and area here, and set up listing alerts to keep you on top of what becomes available each day. And call Marty to get started at 720-891-9000.

The Denver Market is HOT

Here is a real-life example of what the Denver metro market is like right now: We put a house on the market on Friday morning. In four days, we had over 40 showings, over 30 parties came through the Saturday open house, and we received half a dozen offers, 4 of which were OVER asking price.

Buyers are swarming new listings like bees are swarming this guy. Except in a good way.
There’s not much else to say, except that home prices are now back to pre-recession levels, and we don’t know how long this trend will last. Inventory is still extremely low: a major contributing factor to the strong interest in any home hitting the market right now.
It’s a magic moment for selling a house in the Denver metro area. If you or someone you know is considering it, call Marty today for a free, professional estimate of your home’s current value! 720-891-9000.

Denver and Littleton Will Help You Buy a Home

We’ve never seen a program like this before! This new homebuying initiative aims to help middle- to low-income buyers become homeowners, but it’s not limited to first-time buyers.

The mayors of Denver and Littleton want to make it rain.
Here’s an excerpt from the Denver Post article: “The program offers a competitive, fixed-rate, 30-year mortgage, along with a 4 percent grant for down-payment and closing-cost assistance — money the borrower does not repay.”
Did you catch that? Free money! That’s $8,000 on a $200,000 house.
There is a minimum credit score and maximum income level to qualify. Additional cities are expected to offer the program as well.
If you’re thinking of buying in Denver or Littleton, this is something you must check out!
Marty would be glad to help you get started today: 720-891-9000.

Rookie of the Year!

It’s Jaclyn here, folks, and I’ve just got to tell you how proud I am of my husband. This morning, he was surprised and honored to receive the Rookie of the Year award for Keller Williams DTC! Just so you know, this is the office that sells more real estate than any other office in the state of Colorado, so it’s kind of a big deal.
And since we’re celebrating Valentine’s Day this week, I’m going to list the factors that have contributed to his remarkable success (in no particular order):

* A lot of very hard work
* A natural knack for marketing and networking
* Irrepressible optimism
* Contract skills, negotiating skills, market knowledge skills…clients only want realtors with great skills
* Dashing good looks
* Irresistible, magnetic personality
* Boyish charm
* Overall attractiveness

Feel free to add your own.
Marty would be the first to say that he wouldn’t be here without the support and referrals of all of you: our friends, family, and clients. Thanks again for a fantastic first year!