Colorado Real Estate News

Kentwood Real Estate Announces Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Council

In its commitment to addressing homeownership disparity in Colorado and the real estate industry, Kentwood Real Estate has formulated a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Council. The council is actively identifying and executing on initiatives to help underserved communities and to educate the brokers and staff through education, community activation and engagement, and by influencing policies.

“Diversity, equity and inclusion within our brokerage and our neighborhoods has always been a top priority to our leadership team,” said Gretchen Rosenberg, president and CEO of Kentwood Real Estate. “The DEI (Diversity, Equity and Inclusion) Council is a place to create conversations in safe open dialogue. We want to unite the company, learning about our differences, and highlighting how this makes us stronger. We want to create a regular cadence of internal communication about opportunities for engagement in the community at large and in National Association of Realtors® affinity organizations.”

Members of the DEI Council are as follows:

Education is at the heart of the program. The DEI Council is planning an all-company panel on a range of topics tied to diversity, equity and inclusion. Furthermore, every broker in the company, plus a guest of their choosing, will be encouraged to attend at least one function per year with affinity or community groups. The ‘plus-one’ program will encourage brokers to tap into their sphere of influence to both expand education in the community and facilitate a level of comfort for people stepping into new situations.

On more granular levels, the DEI Council is examining all touchpoints within the company to find ways to ensure the brokerage is addressing diversity, equity and inclusion at every level – from translating homebuyer and seller books into Spanish, to confirming the equal housing guidelines are optimally represented on all marketing material.

Kentwood Real Estate is a proud member of the Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA), the Colorado Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (CAHREP), the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP®) Denver Chapter, the National Association of Gay & Lesbian Real Estate Professionals (NAGLREP) and the National Association of Real Estate Brokers (NAREB). Kentwood Real Estate is passionate about and committed to advocating for diversity, equity and inclusion in the housing industry and beyond. To learn more about Kentwood Real Estate and available listings, visit www.Kentwood.com.

Colorado Real Estate News

CEO Reflections

Rooted in Value

Accolades vs. Action

We have many accolades to tout at Kentwood Real Estate, but we’re laser-focused on the customer service actions needed to meet both our clients’ expectations and their goals. Without a deep concentration on the excellence of service, we would never get to the point of raving fans, testimonials, and accolades.

Consumers today have a plethora of models, systems, portals, and personalities to choose from as they embark on their real estate journey. Our team of commercial and residential brokers are at the top of their game because they recognize that we’re in a service business. Real estate “sales” is customer service and expert problem-solving at its core.

Service as Value

I used to joke with clients when I was still in sales that I did a lot more than the average broker. Unlike agents who used the “Three P’s” as a marketing plan, (Put out a sign, Put it in the MLS and Pray,) I offered my clients a list of over 40 behind the scenes activities that they may not have realized their real estate broker should be accomplishing for them.

Does your broker conduct an ownership and encumbrance and tax search on your property or the property you’re making an offer on? Research the condition of the title and zoning? Make sure the HOA covenants and declarations are in your hands for review? 

Does your broker complete a well-considered market analysis for the commercial property or home you’re selling and buying? (And explain how their knowledge and expertise informs that report?) How does your broker expose your property? Qualify prospects? Protect you from shady inquiries or unhealthy/unsafe showings?

Does your broker consistently seek feedback and provide it to you in a timely and valuable way? Negotiate on your behalf? Represent your best interests while balancing the needs of both buyer and seller to get to the end game desired? 

Have you received an estimated net proceeds for a variety of prices? Been guided through the maze of legal documents and referred to an attorney if needed? Do you know if a complete appraisal package has been prepared and provided to the appraiser? Have you been guided through the inspection process and informed on how to best tackle these secondary negotiations?

But Wait! There’s More!

The list of what your Kentwood Real Estate broker can and will provide you in terms of service and support during your transaction continues. It’s so robust that you should make an appointment with a Kentwood broker for more detail soon.

Now is a great time to be a seller, and many buyers are looking for property to purchase. Reach out and learn about why we consistently earn awards and accolades at Kentwood. It’s because we make it about YOU!

Colorado Real Estate News

Denver’s Housing Market Remains Tough For Buyers As Inventory Remains Low

September 2020 revealed the toughest market to buy a home in metro-Denver’s history. Housing inventory can’t keep up with the buyer demand, putting us in a very strong seller’s market. The average price for both single-family and condo homes in Denver hit a record high.

“It is incredibly difficult for buyers today, they’re just having to work like crazy,” said Jill Schafer broker at Kentwood Real Estate. “People are having to put all their cards on the table.”

Click here to hear more about the Denver housing market, and what else the DMAR October Market Trends report revealed.

Link: CBS4 Denver – Denver’s Housing Market Remains Tough For Buyers As Inventory Remains Low

Colorado Real Estate News

Why Pricing Your House Right Is Essential

In today’s real estate market, setting the right price for your house is one of the most valuable things you can do.

According to the U.S. Economic Outlook by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), existing home prices nationwide are forecasted to increase 4.7% in 2020 and 4.1% in 2021. This means experts anticipate home values will continue climbing into next year. Today, low inventory is largely keeping prices from depreciating. Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at realtor.com, notes:

“Looking at the sheer number of buyers, low mortgage rates, and limited sellers, the strength of home prices–which are now growing at the highest pace since January 2018–makes sense.”

When it comes to pricing your home, the goal is to increase visibility and drive more buyers your way. Instead of trying to win the negotiation with one buyer, you should price your house so that demand is maximized and more buyers want to take a look.

How to Price Your Home

As a seller, you might be thinking about pricing your house on the high end while so many of today’s buyers are searching harder than ever just to find a home to purchase. You’re thinking, higher price, greater profit, right? But here’s the thing – a high price tag does not mean you’re going to cash in big on the sale. It’s actually more likely to deter buyers and have them looking at the houses your neighbors are selling instead.

Even today, when the advantage tips toward sellers because there are so few houses for sale, your house is more likely to sit on the market longer or require a price drop that can send buyers running in the other direction if it isn’t priced just right.

Our Trusted Real Estate Professionals Will Help

It’s important to make sure your house is priced correctly by working in partnership with a trusted real estate professional. When you price it competitively, you won’t be negotiating with one buyer over the price. Instead, you’ll have multiple buyers competing for the home, and that’s what ultimately increases the final sale price.

The key is making sure your house is priced to sell immediately. That way, it will be seen by the most buyers. More than one of them may be interested, and your house will be more likely to sell at a competitive price.

Bottom Line

If you’re thinking about listing your house this fall, connect with a Kentwood broker, to discuss how to price it right so you can maximize your exposure and your return. Find a broker at www.Kentwood.com

Colorado Real Estate News

CEO Reflections

Written by Kentwood president and CEO Gretchen Rosenberg

Rooted in… Change

In 1996 when I embarked on my career in real estate, I quickly learned that no two transactions, no two clients and no two co-op agents would ever be the same.

Experienced real estate brokers, whether they practice residential, commercial or leasing services, know this is a fluid business. They understand how change impacts people’s need for different surroundings. They also become adept at managing expectations and outcomes.

Managing Expectations

It’s reasonable for you to believe your real estate broker will be honest, forthright and ethical throughout your relationship and transaction. In fact, we have a duty to be just that. These relationships are bi-lateral, however, and in order to have the best working relationship it’s important for the consumer to be able to receive news and advice from their broker with an open mind. The best way I found to help clients manage expectations was to give them their options, wait a beat, and then ask them if they had any questions and how they wanted to proceed.

Managing Outcomes

Once the options are weighed, sometimes with the advice of counsel, sometimes with the input of home inspectors, the next steps can be plotted. This is where an adversity to change can negatively impact the outcome. Real estate isn’t a zero-sum game, there are people on the other side of the transaction. People with their own motivations, hopes and desires. We must always keep the best outcome for our client front and center, while being open to changing course, giving here and there, or getting what we may not have expected. That’s negotiation.

Changes in circumstances, even when they’re a positive step forward in a life plan, can cause stress and anxiety. Top real estate brokers are attuned to this dynamic and assist their clients in finding the best way forward.

At the end of all of this change lies the outcome, and this is what Kentwood has always been about. Results for the people who have entrusted us with their life changes.

Our company purpose says it best:

At Kentwood, 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.

Colorado Real Estate News

Polo Club mansion listed for $8.95M

Listed by Sandy Weigand and Chuck Gargotto 1 Polo Club Lane has been listed at $8.95M. The owners spared no expense in entirely rebuilding and renovating this 5-bedroom, 7-bath residence to create a stunning transitional Beverly Hills style designer jewel. With inspiring indoor and outdoor spaces everywhere, clean modern lines blend harmoniously with tradition throughout the property.

Read more about this incredible property on the Denver Business Journal site by clicking here!

Colorado Real Estate News

Top 5 Reasons Why Real Estate Won’t “Fall Back” in 2020

Written by Kentwood Real Estate President and CEO Gretchen Rosenberg

2020 has been a year like no other. At Kentwood Real Estate, our hearts go out to the families impacted by COVID-19 due to the loss of a loved one, a personal illness, or the loss of employment or housing.

An unexpected outcome from this massive disruption is the roaring housing market. Who could have predicted in March, when we fell off a cliff and couldn’t show homes or safely put new listings on the market, that we’d be booming in September? Now that we’ve figured out how to safely work in this environment, we’re helping countless consumers find a home or sell their current one. We’ve also been helping landlords re-lease their properties and tenants find a place to rest their head. Kentwood Commercial closed the largest office lease since COVID-19 began at the end of August.

Why is all of this happening and how long will it last?

Here are 5 reasons I believe Fall 2020 will continue to be a robust market:

  1. Homeschooling. Families with school-age children are coping with working from home and learning from home. Some homeowners need to relocate closer to daycare or family so the parents can go to work while the children are still at home. Others want more space.
  2. Financing. Mortgage rates are insanely low and are projected to stay this way through at least the first quarter of 2021. Currently, a 30-year fixed rate is bouncing between the high 2%’s and low 3%’s.
  3. Pent up demand. We have a lot of buyers living in Colorado and coming to Colorado, and not enough inventory. Universally in every price point except the very high end, we’re selling around 50% of new listings in 7 days or less.
  4. First-time home-buyers. The millennials are of home buying age. Those that aren’t laden with student debt and have a bit of savings or help from family are launching into home-ownership. They understand what a boon to their futures home-ownership at 3% means.
  5. Spring delay. We got a late start this year. In Colorado, we like to say the spring home sales market starts in early January unless the Broncos are in the playoffs. Then it starts in early February and lasts through the end of May or mid-June. This year, our spring market was delayed until early May. We still have a large number of buyers hoping to find their next home by year-end. We’ll have a shorter gap between the selling season lull in 2020 and the spring market in 2021. We may not even see much of a lull at all this year.

What does this mean for you if you’re considering buying or selling a home? That you should proceed with the help of an experienced broker who can help you wade through the myriad complexities of the housing market, or the commercial real estate market, in this day and age. Buyers may be able to find more deals in the coming months, but there’s every likelihood that in many price ranges bidding wars will continue. Homeowners who are thinking of selling will need to carefully assess pricing, marketing plans, and whether to stage the property.

We’ll be “falling back” to standard time on November 1st, but these times are anything but standard.

Colorado Real Estate News

Top Denver-Area Luxury Homes sold in Q2

Lakehouse, located on Sloan’s Lake in Denver, was designed to blend comfort and sustainable design. With an extensive list of amenities, and no detail overlooked, it is Colorado’s only WELL Precertified community. Lakehouse provides a healthy and connected lifestyle, some amenities include a yoga studio, a pet spa, and an organic garden. Our Kentwood City Properties agents Dee Chirafisi, Kevin Garrett, and Matt McNeill are the exclusive listing agents at Lakehouse.

Denver Business Journal reports that Lakehouse “accounted for 6 of the top 25 attached home sales in the Denver metro in the second quarter, including a $3.3 million penthouse that claimed the No. 1 spot.” Check out their article to learn more!

See the link below for the full article: https://www.bizjournals.com/denver/news/2020/09/02/denver-luxury-home-sales-q2-2020.html

Colorado Real Estate News

Rooted In… Local Roots, Global Reach

Written by Kentwood CEO and President Gretchen Rosenberg

Our Global Presence

Kentwood Real Estate is a member of Who’s Who in Luxury Real Estate, a compendium of the finest residential real estate firms from around the world, as well as Luxury Portfolio International® and Leading Real Estate Companies of the World®, the largest global networks of premier locally branded companies. 

These esteemed networks cover over 70 countries and include more than 130,000 real estate professionals, selling more international and luxury properties than the large brands. The network companies are dominated by many of the world’s most powerful top-tier independent brokerages and we take networking seriously.

The exclusive affiliate of Berkshire Hathaway’s HomeServices of America in Colorado, Kentwood produces more sales volume per agent than 99 percent of all real estate companies in the nation and is connected to brokerages around the globe.

Combined with Local Roots

Founded in Denver nearly 40 years ago as a premier local brand, you’ll get the inside scoop from your broker for everything from community information, market trends to commute times in actual time. Plus, the regular weather report because we’re obsessed with the weather in Colorado.

Kentwood Real Estate is invested in our communities, and our brokers support numerous civic and community endeavors. Every year, Kentwood and its brokers demonstrate their commitment to the community by volunteering and supporting local charities and events. Kentwood brokers participate in hundreds of worthy causes, including Denver Urban Gardens, the Wash Park Home Tour, Metro Cares, Toys for Tots, Mercy Housing, HomeAid Colorado, Be the Gift, Pie in the Sky, LoDo Cares, CRUSH Walls, and the Denver Film Festival.  

You’ll receive first-class service no matter your price range or the style of property you’re interested in buying or selling, from brokers who are connected to the global markets while staying rooted in the communities they serve. From Castle Rock to Fort Collins and Evergreen to Elizabeth. What could be a better combination?

Colorado Real Estate News

CEO Reflections

By Kentwood CEO and President Gretchen Rosenberg

Top 5 Reasons to work with a traditional broker versus an iBuyer

You may have heard a term that came on the real estate scene a few years ago, the iBuyer. You might even be considering using one to buy your home or looking at iBuyer listings without a Buyer Broker to represent you. Before you do, consider these top 5 reasons to stick with a traditional real estate agent.

iBuyer is a term coined to describe “internet” or “instant” real estate companies. They have a simple value proposition, make the transaction easier. That’s not a bad alternative for a certain percentage of the public and offers another resource to be carefully evaluated. However, iBuying is not a panacea for all real estate situations.

What You Need to Know

  1. Net Proceeds: As you evaluate, consider that convenience comes with a cost. These companies are not in a charitable business, they’re designed to make money. A traditional broker will help you prep your home for the highest return and act as an advisor on what consumers are looking for today. At Kentwood Real Estate, we have the Amplify program, which can even help you renovate and stage your home for sale and defer the cost until closing. If you sell your home to an iBuyer, your net proceeds will most certainly be less, and they’ll be marketing you ancillary services long into the future.
  2. Loss of Control: With a traditional agent acting as your advisor with a fiduciary duty to you, you can remain in the driver’s seat as you make decisions and progress through the transaction. Choosing a price, negotiating the inspection items, choosing a closing date. iBuyers will speed up the transaction and simplify many aspects, but they’ll give you a non-negotiable offer and then further deduct after they conduct their property inspection.
  3. Fees: A traditional broker’s fee covers extensive behind-the-scenes work, yet often consumers think our job is simply to put houses in the MLS and show property to buyers. Your agent should also advise you on home preparation for the highest return, best timing for hitting the market, how comparable homes are selling in terms of price and days on market, create a comprehensive marketing strategy, detail what a reasonable inspection list is, anticipate what issues might come up on title, potential easements and encroachments and how to discern who the best buyer is in terms of qualification. An iBuyer theoretically smooths out the transaction, taking on many of the steps an agent would be helping facilitate. They take much off the plate for sellers and they charge high fees for assuming that risk. iBuyer fees typically range between 7% and 14%, all in after inspection discounts.
  4. A Buyer’s Advantage: When you’re able to see everything in the Denver Metro, Boulder and Fort Collins MLS, you’ll be exposed to the entire market. With a Buyer’s Agent representing you, there’s more ability to negotiate the price, inspection items and confidently know you haven’t waded into any title or easement landmines. If you’re directly buying from an iBuyer company’s inventory, you don’t have an advocate helping you navigate the complex waters of a real estate transaction. They may have fixed up the house for sale, but how much time and quality were put into the work?
  5. We Hear Stories: Every week one of our brokers tells us a client had decided to use an iBuyer to purchase their home or made an offer on a property listed in an iBuyer inventory. Most of these stories end when the client decides to come back to their Kentwood Real Estate broker because they realized the fees were too high to make the convenience worth it. Even in the era of COVID. We’ve all found ways to show properties safely and keep our brokers and consumers healthy. Make sure your broker is following the COVID rules and protocols. Buyers have found that they aren’t exposed to the entire market when they’re searching on the iBuyer sites, and with such a lack of inventory these days, they want to be kept apprised of everything hitting the market in real-time.

The Final Takeaway

There is room for many models in the large market we call real estate. Some business models highlight price, speed and convenience while others focus on customer service and take their responsibility as fiduciaries to their clients seriously. Those relying on customer service and acting as fiduciaries also work hard to maximize net proceeds at the end of the transaction, making their fee a valuable investment. They also work hard to advise buyers when to negotiate and when they have to put their best foot forward.

You may like to shop at a discount store like Target and Walmart some days, while choosing Nordstrom or Nieman’s another. With housing or commercial real estate, consider your options carefully and feel free to reach out to a Kentwood Real Estate Broker for thoughts and advice. We’re here for our clients.