Colorado Real Estate News

Best Playgrounds in the Denver Metro Area

Central Park Denver Playground
Central Park Playground

As parents, we are constantly searching for new ways to engage our children in outdoor activities. Fortunately, Denver is blessed to have one of the best park systems in the nation. Most of our parks have fantastic playgrounds you can take your kids for an afternoon of fun in the sun. Below is our list of the best playgrounds in Denver. Did we leave any off the list you think should have made it?


Criteria For Making The List 

Fun 

Bicycle Icon

These playgrounds are a blast for the kiddos.  When you leave, they’ll beg to come back.   

Safety

Safety is a top criterion, so don’t worry about taking an eye off the little ones for a minute.  You deserve to relax while they play.

Neighborhood

Building Icon

Burning off all that energy at the park will mean it’s time to fuel up.  These neighborhoods offer great restaurants and waterholes.


Washington Park

Wash Park is 161 acres of entertainment in the heart of the city. This massive outdoor space has almost everything you’d desire in a park, from volleyball to tennis, basketball to paddleboards, and even an indoor recreation center.

But, most importantly, for the kids’ enjoyment, on the east side of the park, you’ll find a large playground containing several slides, a tire swing, a climbing station, and a miniature bike path.  After the kiddos finish sweating it out, cruise over to Old Gaylord Street for lunch or grab coffee at Wash Perk (making our list of best coffee shops in Denver). 

Washington Park Denver Playground
Washington Park Denver Playground

Central Park 

Central Park, located in the neighborhood formerly known as Stapleton, is one of the most desirable and child-friendly areas in northeast Denver.  Central Park is a design masterpiece, with natural vegetation co-existing next to sports fields, sand areas, and even a sensory area filled with chimes and drums.

It’s a showcase for some of the fantastic modern trends in playground design. For a post-park bite to eat, walk over to Stanley Marketplace – a collection of over 50+ independently owned Colorado businesses. 

Central Park Playground Denver
Central Park Playground Denver

Westlands Park

This 25-acre park is a must-visit that won’t disappoint! The play area is quite diverse, with a village of playhouses, a hillside slide, an observation tower, and a flower and sculpture garden. It’s a gorgeous park that showcases a well-thought-out design, resulting in a fantastic area for kids to have fun and parents to relax.

Bring your sports equipment because you won’t want to miss out on pickleball and basketball.  Afterward, take a short drive over to YaYa’s Euro Bistro and sit outside by the artificial lake overlooking Greenwood Village.  

Westland Park Playground Greenwood Village CO
Westland Park Playground Greenwood Village

Gates Crescent Park

Located on the western bank of the Platte River, Gates Crescent Park is ideal for younger kids.  The suspension bridge is the main playground feature, filled with ropes and climbing ladders. There’s also a trolley that goes around the outside of the park. Your kids will love climbing on a handful of giant rocks and playing on the traditional playground resting below the suspension bridge. 

Parents can enjoy a picturesque view of Mile High Stadium and Elitch Gardens Amusement Park. If the kids aren’t quite worn out after a couple of hours of play, take them to The Children’s Museum – located just a couple of blocks away.  You can grab a bite to eat inside while getting a respite from the sun. 

Gates Crescent Park Playground Denver CO
Gates Crescent Park Playground Denver

City Park Denver

City Park is the most historic park in all of Denver. It’s central not only in location but also in its cultural importance to Mile High City. Here you’ll find the Zoo and the Natural History Museum, along with a wide variety of events taking place every weekend, from Jazz in the Park to art festivals.

However, it’s also a wonderful place to take the kids, filled with open spaces, numerous playgrounds, and a beautiful lake where you can rent paddleboards. It’s the perfect oasis from the hectic pace of city life. Afterward, take a stroll down 17th Ave for a bite to eat at countless local favorites, including Dos Santos, White Pie, or Olive and Finch

City Park Playground Denver
City Park Playground Denver Colorado

Denver Premium Outlets

OK, we may have cheated a bit with this one. It’s not technically a city park; it’s a playground at an outlet mall. However, it’s a sprawling, fantastic playground with so many slides, swings, and climbing areas your kids will be busy for hours. It’s also ok to bring the kids here even if you’re not doing any shopping. 

After your kiddos have finished jumping and climbing around, check out the outlet mall, littered with an abundance of fantastic shops such as Under Armour, Kate Spade, and Hugo Boss. We recommend dining at Rise Pies, Charley’s Philly Steaks, or Sachi Sushi for a little post-play fuel. Thornton is a delightful unknown suburb of Denver that you’ll be sure to want to return and explore more. 

Thornton Colorado Premium Outlets Playground
Thornton Colorado Premium Outlets Playground

Denver Rock Park

Many parks end up having very similar layouts and attractions. However, some have some excellent options off the beaten path, like this Central Park neighborhood favorite. It’s smaller in size than some of the other options on our list, but it offers some unique opportunities for rock climbing. So if you think your kids might be interested in this outdoor Colorado activity, this is an excellent place for them to try rock climbing safely.

Central Park, formerly known as Stapleton, is one of the fastest-growing neighborhoods in Denver and filled with excellent dining and shopping options. We recommend cruising over to Stanley Market Place or Northfield Shopping Mall.  We promise your children won’t go hungry after burning energy on the rock climbing wall!

Rock Park Playground in Central Park
Rock Park Playground in Central Park

Estates Park

This Golden park has an elevation of over 6,000 feet with incredible views of the Foothills and Downtown Denver. The centerpiece is a skyscraper-esque slide sure to delight any adventurous kid. There are also tennis courts at the park, so be sure to bring rackets and balls. 

Downtown Golden is a short drive away for a quick bite to eat. Stroll down Washington and Ford street and take in all this cute little Colorado town has to offer. 

Golden Colorado's Estate Park Playground
Golden Colorado’s Estate Park Playground

Colorado Real Estate News

Summer Home Staging Tips

Homes are selling fast in Colorado, and a well-staged home is on and off the market in no time. Make sure your home is ready to sell and stand out among the rest with these four summer staging tips.

1. Make a Strong First Impression

Curb appeal is crucial; it is the first thing potential buyers see, so you want to make a good impression. Summer months can be extremely rough on grass, but you want your front landscaping to be looking its best. Skip the backyard if you need to manage water usage; buyers won’t blame you if all the neighborhood backyards are brown. Ensure your exterior entryway is swept clean and add a fun, welcoming element like a lush potted plant by the door.

First impressions go beyond the front door. When buyers walk into a summer showing, they want to feel the cool air conditioning as they enter, so make sure you get your HVAC inspected beforehand. Consider keeping your house off the market until fall if your home doesn’t have central air. Buyers don’t want to tour a warm home in 90-degree weather.

2. Set the Scene

When you’re staging your home for summer, put yourself in the buyer’s shoes. They should visualize it as their future home, and it’s essential to set the right mood. Set out a pitcher of fresh-squeezed lemonade in the kitchen before prospective buyers arrive (you can ask your listing agent to help if you’re out of town). Use fresh flowers and green plants or herbs around the house to brighten the atmosphere and add a splash of color. Play up any entertainment areas your home has, especially outdoor spaces.

3. Lights, Color, Action!

Throw open the curtains and let in the light! Take advantage of the summer sun and illuminate your home with natural light. If rooms don’t get much sunlight, amplify what’s available with some mirrors and decorative lamps.

One of the easiest ways to add some summer flair to your home is by incorporating bright pops of color into spaces with neutral color palettes. Whether that be some yellow throw pillows on the couch or hanging a bold, blue painting on the wall, it’s sure to bring life into the room.

4. Make Yourself Scarce

It may seem obvious, but everyone who lives in the home needs to get out of the house whenever buyers come in for a showing. Many prospective homebuyers do not feel comfortable if the seller is present and often are discouraged from purchasing. Find a coffee shop or spot nearby where you can hang out for an hour or two. If you have kids on summer break, take them out to the park and grab some ice cream to cool off while you wait.Taking a few extra steps to create a welcoming and pleasant environment can make a world of difference when listing your property. To further maximize your home sale, partner with an experienced Kentwood broker for marketing assistance and leverage Kentwood’s Amplify service for a spectrum of home improvements that will garner more profit for your residence. With renovation payments deferred until your home closes escrow, explore how to elevate your property and earn a premium when it sells at the link above.

Colorado Real Estate News

Best Disc Golf Courses in CO

When you think of Colorado, outdoor activities immediately come to mind. With over 300 days of sunshine and beautiful mountain weather, how could you not go outside? Besides hiking and water activities, Denver is known for being one of the best areas for disc golf in the U.S.A. These mountain courses have tons of elevation and are more on the technical side. However, you won’t find a course like this anywhere else, so we recommend exploring these places if you’re an invested disc golf player or simply looking for a new outdoor adventure. 

Here are our top five best disc golf courses.

Beaver Ranch Disc Golf Course in Conifer

As the top-rated course in Colorado, you can enjoy two courses and 62 baskets with various shots from meadow drives to crafty tree work. You can purchase a day pass for $12 or an annual pass for $100. No reservation is needed. 

Address: 11369 S. Foxton Road, Conifer.

Cross Creek Disc Golf Course in Gypsum

This course is deep in the mountains with heavily wooded terrain. You will have to navigate your way through the trees to get to the end, where you will find more open meadow shots. Day passes are $15, and no reservations are needed. 

Address: 13119 Gypsum Creek Road, Gypsum.

Ghost Town Disc Golf in Central City

This town isn’t just known for its casinos and prime rib. Central City offers a private disc golf course featuring 20 holes. The holes may be short in distance, but the advanced layout provides a challenging course. It is $10 for a day pass and $5 for children and walkers—Call 303-582-3083 to reserve your spot. 

Address: 190 Russell Gulch Road, Central City.

Double Cabin Disc Golf Course in Telluride

Telluride is already known as a top place to visit in Colorado, and its disc golf course gives you another reason to check it out! This 18-hole course is located on the ski run and has you throwing uphill and downhill, along with a scenic view of the San Juan Mountains. This course is free for all players, and no reservation is needed.

Address: 470 Mountain Village Blvd., Mountain Village.

Wondervu Disc Golf Course in Golden

On the mountaintop of Coal Creek Canyon, you will find this 19-hole private course. Wondervu is also known for its annual tournament called Disc-n-Dabs, where teams can register for a cannabis-friendly disc golf competition from Sept. 3rd – 6th. Otherwise, you can purchase a day pass for $10 and make a reservation at the link above. 

Address: 136 Camp Eden Road, Golden.

Each of these mountain courses will provide an enjoyable experience for your next disc golf excursion. If you’re a seasoned player, we recommend downloading the app UDisc, which helps navigate courses and keep the score even without cell service. 

Colorado Real Estate News

Market Trends

July 2021 Showed That Seasonality Is Beginning to Occur in the Market

While still in a robust seller’s market, the July 2021 report indicates that as we head into fall, buyers will start to have more time to review properties and less competition on the number of offers overall. The DMAR market trends report showed an increased inventory of 29.92%, while it also represented a decrease in closings of 12.30% compared to the previous month, indicating a supply increase and demand decrease.

July Inventory Reflected the Flow of the Market

While the average closed price was 16.40% higher this July than July 2020, and July represented the lowest number of active properties at month’s end in July’s history with an inventory of only 4,056 properties, this number actually increased from June to July, reflecting the flow of the market.

The Luxury Market Continues to Quickly Move and Remains Strong

Both the attached and detached segments showed close-price-to-list-price ratio averages at 101.39% and 103.40%, respectively. In the attached segment, the Luxury Market had slightly more inventory month-over-month, more pending sales, fewer closings, a lower sales volume and less days in the MLS. There was also an increase in the close-price-to-list-price ratio and in the price-per-square-foot. Meanwhile, month-over-month in the detached segment reported less inventory, fewer pending, fewer closed homes, a lower sales volume and a lower average days in MLS.

Overall, Historical Perspective Indicates a Common Transition From June to July

The Denver market indicates that an increase in inventory and a decrease in sales volume is not uncommon in the transition from June to July. With the relative lack of inventory, it can be expected that the balance between supply and demand will stay steady through the remainder of the year.

Colorado Real Estate News

Kentwood’s Top Producer Dinner 2021

On June 30th, 2021, Kentwood held its annual Top Producer Dinner, honoring leading agents and brokerage teams. This long-time tradition is one of Kentwood’s most influential and distinguished events, commemorating award-winning brokers with sales between 10 million and 90 million-plus in 2020.  

The spectacular event was hosted at Denver Country Club, one of Colorado’s most prestigious and well-known country clubs, overlooking the breathtaking 18-hole golf course – originally designed by James Foulis in 1905. The dinner was held outside to practice social distancing. 

Contrary to the traditional sit-down style of years past, premier bars and grazing stations were casually sprinkled throughout several terraces and perfectly manicured lawns. Food stations included Italian charcuterie, assorted sushi and seafood, and build-your-own tacos. Sophisticated polyrhythms and melodies filled the night sky with live music by The Pet-Friendly Jazz Collective – a local Denver band. 

This was Kentwood’s first signature event since the pandemic. The event was a stunning evening bringing together colleagues and friends separated for the past 18 months – an exclusive gathering of Kentwood’s most brilliant talent. 

With cell phones required to be turned off, intimacy and connectedness were a focal point. For the agents and teams themselves, the event exuded excitement, celebration, and inspiration.  

 “That was one of the best parties…everything worked!” raved Luisa Staerkel, Managing Broker. 

“…and everyone was so happy to get back together.” 

Luisa Staerkel

“Could not have been a more elegant evening, and nobody could have made the night more special for us,” said Edie Marks, Broker Associate and Top of her Profession since 1977

With 30+ years of gathering top-producing agents, Kentwood looks toward the future for continued excellence in the Colorado real estate market. 

Notable venues from past Top Producer Dinners include The Art – a Hotel, Ruth’s Chris Denver Tech Center, STK Downtown, EDGE Restaurant at Four Seasons Hotel, Coohills, and The Venice Ristorante and Wine Bar. 

Colorado Real Estate News

Denver Real Estate Market Trends

Image of a fireplace and patio lounge furniture

April 2021 Showed Blatant­­ Hyper-Demand In the Residential Housing Industry

The market continues to result in historic low months-end inventory, even with months-end active inventory increasing by 35.03 percent. Altogether, there were still only 2,594 active properties at the end of the month, representing the lowest April on record and 48.38 percent less inventory.

The Importance of One Year Ago

April 2020 was a month of confusion and uncertainty for the world. The ebbs and flow of being an “essential” worker were reflected in new listings last year, which were down 43.02 percent compared to April of this year. Since last year, the market has seen a steady rise in competition and therefore prices have as well. With only two weeks of inventory, year-over-year appreciation continues to be staggering for the market while also bringing homesellers inevitably great returns, increasing 24.20 percent in April. 

The Luxury Market Has Experienced the Most Growth

In 2018, 2019 and 2020, year-to-date closed sales of properties over $1 million were 649, 654 and 661, respectively. So far, in 2021, there have been 1,353 closed sales, more than double the number of the past three years. The median days in MLS for the Luxury Market was seven, down from 23 in 2020, 22 in 2019, 32 in 2018 and 48 in 2017. 

Where We Stand With Inventory Lows

Historically, the market has seen annual inventory reach its low point in February and March, followed by increased listing activity until it hits inventory peak in August and September. The Luxury Market appears to follow the trend with 28.82 percent more new listings in April than March, showing that it may be possible for buyers who outlast the competition fatigue to find themselves with more options than they have seen in the past few months. If so, with only one month of inventory for attached homes and 1.97 months for attached homes, buyers will need to keep vigilant. 

*Written May 10, 2021. Updates may be available after this date.

Colorado Real Estate News

Real Estate Market Trends

March 2021 Depicts an Emotional Market in the Greater Denver Metro Housing Area

With nearly every statistic in the report justifying how much competition there is for buyers, the market can visibly observe how far buyers are willing to take their offers in order to secure a home.

Whether Looking at Detached or Attached Properties, It is a Strong Seller’s Market Across the Board

Year-over-year appreciation is at 15.26 percent from $511,511 to $589,587 this March, while month-over-month appreciation is at 6.90 percent from $551,542. On par with recent months, median days in the MLS went down to four, while close-price-to-list-price ratio went up to 103.32 percent.

New Listings in the Luxury Market Are Also Unable To Keep Up With Buyer Demand

Reports show that as prices and appreciation continue to soar, more homes cross the threshold into the Luxury Market as a result.

Sales Volume for the Attached Segment of the Luxury Market Is Up Substantially

62.63 percent year-over-year to $64,182,709 and up 63.56 percent month-over-month from last month’s $39,240,156. As volume has gone up, median days in MLS has fallen from 27 days last year and even a whopping 35 days in February to only seven days in the month of March.

New Detached Listings Increased, Barely Keeping Pace With the Pending Sales

Listing increased 28.03 percent with 402 new listings, up from 314 last month. This barely kept pace with the pending sales topping out at 399, a 26.27 percent increase month over month. As a result, sales volume was also up month-over-month 57.43 percent reflecting $558,253,910 at month-end.

In a Highly Emotional Market, One Must Understand How Much Competition Is Out There

Instead of using past sales as an indicator, one must also understand how much competition one has when submitting an offer. The data is a small piece of the puzzle. The bigger question is what are buyers willing to offer to beat out your competitors?

Colorado Real Estate News

What to do With 40 Years – Build a Brand

Written by Kentwood Real Estate President and CEO, Gretchen Rosenberg

I have exciting news! Kentwood Real Estate is 40 this week!

Henry Ford said, “Coming together is the beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.” We’ve completed 40 successful years of changing lives.

In 1981 five brokers formed the beginnings of our brand, The Kentwood Company, which was renamed Kentwood Real Estate in 2008.

The incorporation papers were signed by Roger Campbell this week in 1981. Roger told me, “We wanted a name that was easy to say, easy to spell, memorable, and upscale so we settled on Kentwood.”

Colorado Real Estate History

Other notable names in Colorado real estate who contributed to our success as founders, owners, and leaders are Jim Nussbaum, John Fitzpatrick, Jerry Weigand, Bill Moore and Peter Niederman, Julie Hummel, Dee Chirafisi, Jim Theye, and Chris Vuletich. 

Our original office remains the DTC flagship. In 1998 we added Cherry Creek, in 1999, City Properties, and in 2018 we expanded to Northern Colorado. We added Denver Rental in 2011. Kentwood Commercial and Prosperity Home Mortgage were both launched in 2017.

Our previous owners sold the company to HomeServices of America in 2016, beginning the adventure of our Berkshire Hathaway affiliation.

To our brokers, our staff, and the management team – thank you for your ideas, collaboration, and professionalism. YOU make this company admired, productive and competitive.

To our clients, we say thank you for 40 years of working with the best brokers in the business, for your business, and your support. A focus on clients fostered our success over these 40 years. That laser focus on client experience and market knowledge keeps traditional brokerage relevant into the 21st Century.

Our brokers, loan officers, and support staff make our company special. An organization, no matter how well designed, is only as good as the people who live and work in it. We celebrate all who have contributed to 40 years at the pinnacle of real estate.

We have so much to be proud of at Kentwood Real Estate, Kentwood Commercial, Denver Rental, and Prosperity Home Mortgage, and much more to look forward to. 

At Kentwood Real Estate we believe in community. That we accomplish more together. That deep roots matter. We inspire people to imagine the next steps in their life journey.

Cheers to 40 years!

Colorado Real Estate News

Real Estate Market Trends

February 2021 Depicts an Icy-Hot Spring Market With Buyer Demand on Fire.

The Greater Denver Metro housing market proved that the underlying theme of this market is speed: the speed at which buyers are purchasing relative to the number of sellers listing, and the speed at which active properties are going under contract while prices are accelerating. 

The Gap for Detached Properties Over Attached Properties Shrank in February. 

While many metrics still show that detached properties are in higher demand than attached, that gap decreased in February. There were 3,641 closed properties, up 3.70 percent from last year at this time, and in part because attached properties were on the rise. Attached properties saw a 16.29 percent increase in closings relative to last year at this time. The increased demand for attached properties propelled the market to an average close price of $401,552. Meanwhile, detached properties saw a 1.80 percent decrease in closed properties relative to last year.

Competition Remains Incredibly High. 

The report confirms that with median days in the MLS at five, close-price-to-list-price ratio at 101.90 percent and months of inventory at 0.55, competition remains exhaustive. With properties frequently going over asking price, full appraisal gap waiver appreciation continues to rise. Savviness, creativity, knowledge and guts are all components that will help buyers move towards a path of homeownership in this market.  

The Luxury Market Shows Interesting Trends. 

Last month, DMAR reported that the luxury detached market alone closed on 206 homes, a 10.75 percent increase in this category from last month and a 46.10 percent improvement from last year. More buyers are ready to purchase property over $1 million than the market saw in 2020 and single-family home sellers are enjoying a more crowded and hotter marketplace. While less competitive than other market segments, it remains high with February’s close-price-to-list-price ratio at 97.63 percent.  

*Written March 10, 2021. Updates may be available after this date.

Colorado Real Estate News

Three Reasons to Sell Your Home Now!

photo depicting a mother holding up her toddler daughter in a kitchen

If you are a real estate fanatic like we are, you know that 2020 has been a record-breaking year for the market and it likely won’t be slowing down in 2021. Zillow expects home values to increase 10.3 percent from November 2020 to November 2021 despite the ongoing pandemic challenges. The sales growth continues to be affected by similar factors such as strong demographic trends and a shift in buyer preference ignited by the pandemic. If you considered selling in 2020, this year proves to be just as promising. Still not convinced? Here are three reasons why now is the perfect time to sell your home: 

Interest Rates Are Expected To Stay Low
Get excited because the 2020 below-average interest rates are here to stay! Last year, interest rates were below 4 percent and while they may slightly increase in 2021, they are predicted to remain low compared to historical averages. Let’s put these rates into perspective. According to Freddie Mac, December 10th had a record low rate of 2.71 percent for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage. Compared to a year like 2018, where the annual average was 4.54 percent, these record-breaking rates are incredibly beneficial to all homebuyers. Buyers can secure a long-term mortgage at an insanely low rate, and sellers can capitalize on high prices. It’s a win-win situation!

There Are More Buyers Than Sellers
As demand continues to rise, inventory remains low. But this isn’t necessarily a negative situation for individuals looking to sell their homes. Buyers are eager and anxious to purchase a house quickly, especially when the real estate market provides such ideal financial solutions for potential buyers. As mentioned earlier, the low interest rates provide affordable mortgages, ultimately resulting in an inadequate supply of homes to satisfy consumer demand. With such high competition to close a deal, buyers are aggressive with their purchase offers. So why not benefit from these multiple offers and rising prices?

TIP: if you are looking to sell your home, consider investing in house repairs to amp up the curb appeal and receive a higher asking price.

Seasonality of Homebuyers.
Did you know there are seasonal trends for selling and buying a home? In previous years, the spring months are historically the best time to list a home. However, with the unpredictable and uncertain living conditions that we are experiencing, the usually defined “peak of interest” in the market has become blurred. With that being said, the most desirable time to list your home is NOW, so do your homework and prepare to capitalize on the eager homebuyers.

How Kentwood Can Help
Have we convinced you? While there is no better time to sell your home than now, we understand the process can be daunting and often complex. With our local expertise and exceptional service, Kentwood is here to guide you through a pleasurable selling experience! Reach out today!