Colorado Real Estate News

Rollie Jordan | Featured Agent

Rollie Jordan

Rollie Jordan | Featured Agent

Hometown:

I grew up in Chagrin Falls, Ohio.

What Is One Special Thing About the Place You Grew Up?

My most wonderful memories are of our beautiful home on the Chagrin River and Polo Field, and of our horses and going trail riding with my parents every weekend.

Number of Years in Real Estate:

I’ve been in real estate for 24 years and am celebrating my 20th year anniversary with Kentwood Real Estate Cherry Creek.

How did you end up in Denver?

I went to the University of Denver and never left!

What Was You First Job?

In high school I volunteered at Mount Sinai Hospital in Cleveland, but my first paying job was as a salesperson at Gorsuch Ltd. in Vail.

Hobbies:

I have to say I still love to ride horses, as well as long walks and reading. Of course traveling is also high on my list too.

Describe Yourself In 5 Words:

Energetic, personable, family-oriented, professional, networker.

Favorite Colorado Past-time:

My monthly drive to Aspen and listening to great music along the way. Whether taking Independence Pass or Glenwood Canyon, the ride always clears my head and makes me grateful I live in our beautiful State of Colorado.

Favorite Place to Grab a Drink:

If I’m in Cherry Creek, Quality Italian at the Halcyon Hotel. The Palm if I am Downtown. And Ajax Tavern if I’m in Aspen.

In What Ways Are You Involved in Your Community?

I have been volunteering for over 30 years with many charities in town including being on boards, chairing events, and attending fundraisers. I recently received the “Volunteer of the Year Award” for Denver Health.

Who Inspires You?

My father was always my mentor and after he passed away I have been inspired by my 97-year-old cousin, who is smart as a whip and always helps me with my business and life issues.

What Is Your Proudest Accomplishment and Why?

Raising my 2 sons by myself, not an easy task while working full time.

How Do You Define Success?

What my favorite fortune cookie once said, “Success with pleasure.” But, I also consider raising two smart, successful loving sons to be one of my greatest achievements. I am grateful to have a beautiful, warm home for my family, friends, and clients to always come home to and visit.

What Career Path Would You Have Chosen If You Didn’t Become a Real Estate Broker?

I was in the wholesale and retail clothing business before I was a Broker and have fond memories of those years and my two retail stores, called JJ Trappings, that were Colorado legends before they closed.

If You Could Master Any Skill That You Don’t Currently Have, What Would It Be and Why?

To become a black diamond skier, so I can keep up with my friends and sons.

What Is the Most Adventurous Thing You’ve Ever Done?

I went to camp in Maine when I was 13 years old wearing an 8lb steel and leather brace for my Scoliosis, and rode horses with it on.

If You Could Have Dinner with Anyone, Who Would It Be and Why?

I would have dinner with my father. That way I could have it videotaped for permanent record of all his wonderful stories, and our family history…my one regret.

What’s the Best Concert You’ve Ever Been To? What Made It So Special?

Too many to even to mention! We are a BIG music family and our favorite family tradition is going to concerts together. Starting as a child in Cleveland, my father took me to many concerts: Frank Sinatra, The Beatles, and Bobby Short at the Carlyle in NY are memorable. My first date was to see Bob Dylan and my kids can’t believe I saw The Doors live in concert there too. Then my many years of shows at Red Rocks (before my sons were born and then with them) to see CSNY, Sting, and the London Philharmonic, my two favorites. Our summers are always spent at Jazz Aspen seeing too many musicians to mention.

But since my oldest son is a musician I’ve always enjoyed hearing him perform, especially his first CD he wrote and produced in Denver. My MOST memorable concert I will never forget, is seeing him perform at the Key Club in Hollywood, with my 85-year-old Mother, his grandmother, and many friends and relatives in the house.

If You Could Live in A Book, TV Show, Or Movie What Would It Be and Why?

I would be the attorney and ex-cop Stone Barrington, in Stewart Woods’s novels, as he travels the world flying his own plane, has beautiful homes everywhere, stays in the best hotels, eats in the best restaurants, and has fabulous adventures.

Colorado Real Estate News

Planting Wildflowers in Your Garden

Plating WildflowersPlanting wildflowers can seem like a risk in landscaping. But there is a way to plant and organize them without them taking over your outdoor living area. Check out these tips for adding wildflowers to your landscaping in the Denver area.

Choose A Sunny Spot

Creating a sunny and meadow-like spot in your garden is an ideal place to grow wildflowers. Choose an area in your garden that receives at least 6 hours of direct sunlight. Consider a bare patch that has little irrigation. Wildflowers are hardy and able to survive in even the harshest conditions. Another idea is to create a row of wildflowers as a border between two spaces or even create an island of wildflowers. You can even use feathered wild grasses sporadically, creating a luxurious lawn to have to look like an uninhabited woodland area.

Plant After Frost

Any time after the last Colorado frost is a great time to sow wildflower seeds. The seeds usually germinate quickly and can grow in warm weather after the danger of frost has passed. New patches of seeds will need some light watering a few times a week until they take hold. Choose one type of seed for a patch of the same colored flowers. Or consider using a variety mix that will create an interesting and diverse look in your garden.

Be Prepared For Losses

If you have a lot of fluttering activity in your neighborhood, don’t be surprised when birds decide to feast on newly thrown wildflower seeds. Neighborhood squirrels, rabbits, and chipmunks may also decide to stop by a freshly sown wildflower patch for some food. Consider lightly sowing seeds into the dirt, no more than 1/16”, in order to minimize the risk of losing your entire wildflower patch to area birds and wildlife.

Choose Native Wildflowers

There are plenty of wildflower mixes available, but choosing those wildflowers that already do well in the Denver climate will help to create a balanced outdoor living area. Popular Denver wildflowers include Scarlet Paintbrush, Bittercress, and Alpine Sunflowers. Using native wildflower varieties will keep your outdoor living space in tune with the environment as well as support local pollinators that thrive on wildflower nectar.

Choose Annual or Perennial

Most Denver homeowners are reluctant to plant wildflowers in their garden due to the thought that they will take over the entire yard. This is a valid point as many perennial wildflowers will do their best to spread out over a few years. However, planting annual wildflowers is a good way to keep your garden looking tidy as the flowers will only last one season. Planting a row of annual wildflowers is a great way to see if you like the look of wildflowers in your garden. And it gives you the chance to change the variety year after year.

Adding wildflowers to your garden is important in helping to support the local environment. Choose annual wildflowers to begin with if you want to add them in a concentrated or small area. Other homeowners may choose to fill in a bare patch of their garden with a meadow of wildflowers. Plant seeds after the last frost and be prepared for some losses to neighborhood wildlife. Enjoy the natural beauty of wildflowers in your outdoor living area for a naturally luscious garden.

Colorado Real Estate News

Platt Park | Community of the Month

At the turn of the 20th century, the Platt Park neighborhood – then a separate city from Denver – was a bustling borough of five-and-dime shops and sprawling family homes connected to the city by a clanking trolley line that ran up Pearl Street.

As the Mile High City grew, the neighborhood was incorporated, and Denver residents migrated south to make it their home. Today, the neighborhood’s storied history is still visible on Pearl Street. Here visitors can glimpse trolley tracks peeking through the asphalt overlay. While new shops and purveyors occupy original, historic buildings.

Homes in Platt Park

Platt Park adjoins Denver’s Washington Park neighborhood where tree-lined streets showcase a variety of single-family homes including bungalows, 1-1/2-story homes, Victorians, and more. Homes in Platt Park are generally more affordable than Wash Park. And the historic ambiance is complimented by a diverse population encompassing nearly every age group.

In recent years, the neighborhood has seen a flurry of remodeled bungalows, foursquare homes, and classic Tudor-style homes. There are also new town homes in the neighborhood due primarily to the growing popularity of Platt Park. You’ll find new homes nestled next to 1920’s bungalows and even original farmhouses. The result is an eclectic mixture of old and established residents, first-time homeowners, and a trickle of nearby University of Denver students.

Platt Park

 

Platt Park Amenities

Platt Park is conveniently located near downtown Denver and is served by highly regarded schools. Great public schools and a diverse population of all types make Platt Park a socially desired neighborhood to live in. The light rail train system is easily accessible from all areas of Platt Park, with the Broadway & Louisiana/Pearl stations being the closest for residents.  The University of Denver is within a mile of Platt Park houses and provides the happenings of a large college campus.

Platt Park is near a variety of shops, boutiques, and restaurants that cater to students and young professionals. The area, known as Old South Pearl Street, is the heart of the neighborhood. It is one of Denver’s most historic, charming, and popular shopping districts. Pearl Street is always alive with activity. You can find an authentic mix of real people, locally owned one-of-a-kind shops, upscale restaurants, the hottest night spots, and popular seasonal events all year long.

Platt Park

Colorado Real Estate News

Best Mountain Bike Trails Near Denver

Colorado’s Front Range is treasure trove of epic mountain bike trails waiting to be explored. There are around 1,200 rides and trails within striking distance of downtown Denver alone! Whether mountain biking is your long-time passion or a new-found hobby, these mountain bike trails are sure to satisfy your craving for adventure, speed, and new terrain.

North Table Mountain

15+ Miles of Trail 

6 Green / 3 Blue / 0 Black

North Table Mountain is the perfect place to ride when you don’t have much time on your hands but still want to feel somewhat remote. Choose between a mellow ride which circles the base of the mesa or make the ascent to the top for something a bit more challenging. On your way up you will encounter some steep, rocky sections. Once on top, take in the incredible views of Denver from the Rim Rock Trail. It’s a fun, easy addition to any route you take, but is only open from August 1st – January 31st. The Waterfall Trail is a more advanced decent featuring a rock garden and a small waterfall beside the trail.

West Magnolia Trails

24 Miles of Trail – 9 Green / 14 Blue / 0 Black

The West Magnolia Trails are located just southwest of Nederland and have been repaired within the last five years. This trail system features forested single tracks and double tracks with a few access roads mixed in. Aggressive climbs lead you to fast and twisty descents. Technical and non- technical spots create a trail system that has something for everyone. Fall is a wonderful time to ride West Magnolia and watch as the Aspens change.

William Hayden Park at Green Mountain

39 Miles of Trail – 9 Green / 7 Blue / 0 Black

With more than 2,400 acres of open space, Hayden Park is the second largest park in Lakewood. It features a network of mixed-use trails. And the summit, at 6,800 feet, offers stunning views of the Denver metro area, the flatirons, and high mountain peaks to the west. The area is perfect for those in need of a quick ride or who are just learning. With the exception of Box o’ Rox, none of the mountain bike trails are particularly challenging. You can also combine some of the trails to create a longer ride if you are out looking to explore.

Buffalo Creek

150+ Miles of Trail – 15 Green / 14 Blue / 2 Black

The mountain bike trails at Buffalo Creek offer some of the most fun riding near Denver, and are arguably some of the coolest rides along the Front Range. There are possibilities to link up all kinds of trails to create everything from short, family-friendly rides to full day, epic adventures. Buffalo Creek truly has something for everyone and generally offers mellow climbs rewarded with fun, fast, flowy descents. Stunning rock formations are often worked into the trail, making each ride a unique. The Buffalo Creek Recreation Area also offers camping so you can spend the weekend exploring everything this trail system has to offer!

White Ranch Park

20 Miles of Trail – 4 Green / 6 Blue / 2 Black

Sitting just 30 minutes northwest of Denver, White Ranch has some fun mountain bike trails for advanced riders. The trails here have mostly sandy soil with smooth spots mixed in, very typical of Colorado Front Range rides. The embedded rocks and technical sections are what make these trails well suited to advanced riders who are in good shape and ready to climb hard. The downhills can get pretty gnarly with lots of rock and log drops to watch out for.

Apex Park

11 Miles of Trail – 1 Green / 10 Blue / 2 Black

Apex Park provides a popular, accessible foothills experience just minutes from downtown Golden. A stream runs alongside a trail in part of the park, and dense forest provides shady areas on the west end. The Apex, Arogs, and Enchanted Forest trails are directional use trails where bikers are required to ride in one direction only on odd-numbered calendar days.

Betasso Preserve

16.2 Miles – Green / Blue

A popular trail for many Boulder natives, Betasso blends into pine forests with open sections of mountain meadows and a few stream crossings. The climbs sustain only moderate angles – just enough to test the lungs of any rider. While the fast sections are smooth and the trees become a blur as you settle into the flow of the ride. You can make this ride a quick spin by doing the 7.4 mile version or make a days ride out of the full 16.2 mile loop.

Lair O’ The Bear Trail

12.2 Miles – Blue

This multi-use trail sitting just west of Morrison is a fun, intermediate ride with mostly flowy single track. You’ll encounter rock ramps and other rock features, tight turns, and even have to squeeze through trees in some places. Even the most experienced rider will be hard pressed to ride everything challenge free. The rolling terrain offers frequent “whoop-and holler” descents with a few testing climbs.

Centennial Cone

17.2 Miles – Blue

This ride is a great example of a modern, purpose-built trail. It’s smooth, flowy, and not eroding as lots seem to do in the Front Range. The single track takes you high up on the ridges above Clear Creek, offering incredible views with a near back-country feel. Long climbs and precarious drop-offs will challenge your stamina. But you may be rewarded with an elk (or other wildlife) sighting. During the weekends, bikers are only allowed on even numbered days.

Colorado Real Estate News

Choosing the Right Buyer’s Agent

What Is a Buyer’s Agent?

Buyer's Agent As a buyer, you are looking for someone to help you find the right home, give you the best advice on the value of homes, and help you navigate the intricacies of the buying process. Having a good buyer’s agent on your side could be the key to finding the right home at the right price.

But what’s the difference between a regular listing agent and a buyer’s agent? The issue with typical real estate agents is they’re not necessarily required to work in your best interest. Being commissioned salespeople, their pay flows from the deal. With a buyer’s agent, they’ll soley represent your side of the transaction fairly.

This isn’t to say that working with a listing agent is a bad thing. In fact, that’s how many people find their home. But in some instances, agents who represent both buyers and sellers may end up on both ends of the transaction. Representing both buyer and seller makes them a dual agent. In this situation, it’s hard for that agent to fully represent the interests of either party.

Some agents prefer to only represent the buyer’s side of the transaction, they are known as buyer’s agents. And the NAR (National Association of Realtors) has a specific course of study for people who want to earn the Accredited Buyer’s Representation designation. First-time home buyers especially might want to consider a buyer’s agent to represent them, since they have advanced education and may be more up to speed on loan programs gear toward first-time buyers.

What to Look For

Compatible Personalities

Buying a home is a lengthy process. Regardless of whether you’re purchasing a house or a condo, you will be spending countless hours with your real estate agent. If you and your agent don’t see eye to eye or don’t get along, you’re going to have a rough time. Look at their social media accounts and online presence to get a feel for their personality. Or have a brief face-to-face meeting with them to have some of your questions answered and see if it’s the right fit.

Negotiation Techniques

When it comes to negotiations, you want your agent to take an approach that you’re comfortable with. The best agents can adapt their style to meet your wishes. This is important when you consider the levels of stress you will encounter during the purchasing process. Negotiations included everything from the price and closing costs, to repairs and appliances/furniture. You want an agent who is going to negotiate the best deal for you without stepping over any lines with the seller.

Market / Niche Knowledge

The agent you choose should be able to demonstrate competency within the market and niche you’re focused on. For example, if you are a first-time home-buyer searching in a specific area, your agent should be well-versed in market trends and activity for that specific area. And they should be able to walk you through each step of the transaction. This is very different from the skills you’d be looking for in an agent to advise you on your investment.

Well-Connected

Agents, lenders, escrow/title companies, and inspectors are all on the list of industry professionals involved in most real estate deals. Most people don’t have these connections all on their own. That’s where your real estate agent steps in. A quality agent should not only have these connections, but should have options for you to choose from. And their connections should be just as knowledgeable as they are.

Ability to Communicate

The real estate industry is full of jargon, nuances, and intricacies that aren’t intuitive to the average person. Therefore, it is up to your agent to be able to effectively explain and guide you through those obstacles in a way you understand and that resonates with you. Otherwise, you could wind up unknowingly making a bad decision.

Colorado Real Estate News

Home Prices Appreciate at A Slower Pace in Denver

Home Prices | Denver Real Estate

This past month, many people celebrated Independence Day by watching fireworks, enjoying a barbecue, or perhaps escaping to the mountains. This year, Denver’s continued robust housing market was another cause for celebration. The Denver Metro Association of Realtors released its latest report on home sales activity in the metro area on the 4th of July. The report found the local housing market remains strong. While home prices are appreciating at a slower pace than in recent years. That is good news for prospective buyers, who on average are no longer facing double-digit price increases. At the same time, sellers are still enjoying solid increases in the value of their homes.

The average price of a single-family home sold last month set a new record of $539,934. That is less than a 1% increase from May and an 8.75% increase from June 2017. When you throw condos and town homes into the mix, the average price of all homes hit a record of $492,029, up slightly more than 1% from May and an 8.8% increase on a year-over-year basis.

Buyers also have more homes to choose from in June than they did in May. There were 7,436 active listings on the market in June, up 15.52% from May. Such a big percentage increase from May is not unusual. This time in 2017 and 2016, for example, the month-to-month percentage jumps were about 20% and 24%, respectively. Year-over-year, the number of active listings increased by 5.34%. The last time more active listings were on the market was at the end of June 2014. At that time, there were 7,791 homes on the market.

The number of homes placed under contract also picked up a bit in June. There were 6,043 homes placed under contract in June, a 2.46% improvement from May and a similar increase of 2.55% on a year-over-year basis. In the first half of the year, 37,311 new listings came on the market. That’s a 1.45% increase from the 36,779 new listings in the first six months of 2017.

Sales activity in the first half of the year was not bad considering rising home prices and interest rates. There were 27,228 total homes sales in the first six months of 2018. Which is a 3% drop from total sales in the first half of 2017. The average sales price of all homes in the first half of the year was $476,100, a 10.47% percent jump from the average sales price in the first half of last year. Despite the dip in sales, thanks to higher prices, the total sales volume in the first six months of the year hit a record $12.96 billion, a 7.08% increase from $12.1 billion in the first half of 2017.

Yet, the market remains tight. There was only a 1.43-month of inventory of single-family homes available to buyers at the end of June. That translates to slightly more than 6-week supply, which, believe it or not, is almost an 11% increase in MOI from June 2016. For homes priced from $200,000 to just under $400,000, there was less than a one-month supply of homes on the market. The luxury housing market is the most balanced of all markets, with a 4.64-months of inventory of homes priced at $1 million or more. That is about a 17% drop in the MOI for luxury homes.

Kentwood Real Estate broker and DMAR Markets Trend Committee member Jill Schafer described the luxury market as “astounding.” In the first six months of the year, a record 978 luxury single-family homes were sold, a 32.52% increase from the same period in 2017. The sales volume of luxury single-family jumped 32.6% from a year earlier to $1.486 billion. The total sales volume for luxury hit $1.63 billion, when including luxury condos.