The Denver Real Estate Broker Blog

Road X: Finally, a solution for the I-70 congestion to the mountains

Road X CDOT partnership with Panasonic

Ah, the Rocky Mountains, probably one of the reasons you moved to Denver, love living in Denver or brag about Denver. Those beautiful mountains represent so much recreation year round, that it's hard not to love them. Although getting to them, especially on the weekends, has become a bit of a nightmare. I don't know about you, but every drive on I-70 to the mountains includes at least one conversation about - How are they going to fix the congestion?!?

Well, Road X might be the answer!

Smart freeways and interstates

Building new lanes and infrastructure within the I-70 corridor presents immense challenges and costs. What if adding additional lanes of Highway didn't require new asphalt but required data? Road X represents Colorado's investment in innovative technology that is the future of connected roadways. This concept envisions smart vehicles and infrastructure sharing data about road conditions instantaneously. This data share and intelligent analysis, combined with autonomous vehicles could result in the capacity of I-70 being increased 4X.

 Connected vehicle mandates

New connected vehicle mandates combined with the rapid development of autonomous vehicles means that Colorado could have up 1.2M connected vehicles on the road by 2025. In addition, many companies such as ...

Kentwood Commercial

Kentwood Real Estate adds a commercial real estate division

Kentwood Commercial was recently (August 2017) created by Peter Neiderman, CEO of Kentwood Real Estate. This boutique commercial brokerage combines the exceptional local brand and referral network of Kentwood with the national strength and financial support of Berkshire Hathaway. The company has the ability to nimbly handle the range of large institutional and smaller entrepreneurial clients the highest level of skill, responsiveness, and experience in the industry.

The team includes:

Commercial brokers Karen Zeile

Karen Landers Zeile
Senior Vice President

Karen Landers Zeile has 17 years of commercial experience in Denver and sold and leased properties throughout the downtown area including LoDo, Uptown, the Golden Triangle, the Ballpark neighborhood and the RiNo District.

Commercial broker Rodney Gustafson

Rodney Gustafson
Senior Vice President

Rodney Gustafson has 20 years of experience in the Denver commercial brokerage industry and previously worked with Grubb & Ellis, Frederick Ross Company, Pinnacle Real Estate, and was most recently Founding Principle of Case Commercial Real Estate.

Commercial broker David Morison

David Morrison
Senior Vice President

David Morrison has 35 years...

Yes, Denver is this good!

The ultimate guide to what makes Denver so great.

Downtown Denver from Jefferson Park

What’s the deal with Denver? It seems like every week there is an article, post, tweet or broadcast about how great Denver is. Is it that great…..? What does the city offer that has the country buzzing about Denver? As a native of Denver, I have seen the city come of age over the past decade or two. It is certainly not the same city I grew up in and for the most part, it’s much better.

My opinion, the national hype is well justified as this city rules on a number of fronts. I put together this guide to Denver to help clarify what I see as Denver’s strengths. If you are thinking about moving here, I hope this article helps. If you live here I hope this article rings true. Hit me up in the comments if you think I missed something or I’m off base and yes, Denver is this good.

We are extremely lucky to live in a place that has so much to do and with such friendly people to do it with. If you need convincing you have found the right post. I’ll try to narrow it down to the top 14 reasons why you will love moving to Denver. I’m never leaving as it keeps getting better and better every year.

Somewhat less interesting facts about Denver:

  • Population (Denver Metro): 693,060
  • Population (Greater Denver Area): 3 million
  • Unemployment rate in Denver: 7%
  • Median Home Price (Denver County): $362,800
  • Median Household Income: $53,637
  • Average Commute Time: 26 minutes

1.) Denver Has Amazing Views

Views  of the Rocky Mountains...

Stapleton Denver Real Estate in Review

RTD A-Line to DIA2016 was a pretty big year in Stapleton Denver. With the opening of the Central Park Light Rail Station, the opening of Stanley Marketplace, Eastbridge Town Center is finally under construction and the launching of 2 new neighborhoods, its no surprise that Stapleton was named the 4th best selling community in the nation. We have so much to offer here and the numbers speak for themselves.

 

  • Single Family average sales price hit a high water mark with an average sold price of $603,791, which is an increase of 6.36% over 2015.

StapletonDenverappreciationstatistics

  • Our average Days On Market (DOM) was (and still is) under 60 days which means it is still a Sellers market out there.
  • Despite inventory being low, 599 home were sold in 2016, which was a record number of homes sold in a year, ever.
  • A new high water mark for sale price was achieved for the sale at 3106 Dayton  which sold for $1,475,000.
  • 11 homes were sold over the $1,000,000 mark in Stapleton, which is a 266% increase in this...

What to do on St. Patricks Day in Stapleton 2017

There are only two people in the world: those that are Irish and those that wish they were. Whether your are Irish or not, we’ve got your go-to guide for how to sham”ROCK” St. Patricks Day/weekend in Stapleton. Here’s a look at the Neir Team’s top 5 things to do in Stapleton to make your way through the Emerald celebration. 

caseysbistrostapletonstpatricksdayCaseys Irish Bistro & Pub – 7301 E. 29th Avenue. This is THE place to be on St. Patricks Day in Stapleton. Located in the 29th Avenue Town Center Casey’s will be featuring a modified menu including fish and chips, shepperds pie and other various traditional Irish dishes. They will also feature live bagpipes and Irish dancers to get you in the spirit. Their patio will be tented with heaters in case it gets cold. We’ve been told that “all hands will be on deck” for this fun-filled Irish celebration.

stpatricksdayparadedenverTake the Light Rail downtown for the St. Patricks Day parade. With the opening of Central Park Light Rail Station getting to downtown Denver is easier than ever.  Denver’s St. Patricks Day parade will actually be held on Saturday March 11th  this year which is the weekend BEFORE most St. Patricks Day celebrations.  The parade starts at 9:30 am but you will want to arrive well before then to secure a spot.  We suggest taking the 8:04am westbound train to Union Station...

2016 Neir Team Sales Performance

Thank you to all of our 2016 clients for helping make 2016 a wonderful year for the Neir Team.

Neir Team Sales Stats

We would love to help you too. Please call us at (720)935-4399

...

8 Secrets to Selling Lowry Denver Homes for 10% More

How to sell for moreAfter all the talk of the booming real estate market and rising home prices in the metro area over the past couple years, you’ve finally decided to sell your Lowry Denver home. Now what?

In a highly competitive market like Denver, It’s especially important to make your house as attractive as possible in order to stand out to the ideal buyer. What’s the best way to do that?

Here are eight marketing and open house tips that are sure to help sellers get a 10 percent or more boost to the sales price for Lowry Denver homes.

  1. A Clean Home Sells - A messy house knocks thousands of dollars off the sale price. Cleaning your house thoroughly is a prudent idea. It’s low-hanging fruit that far too many sellers don’t pick.

  2. Price Your Home Right - It’s obvious that pricing too low takes money out of your pocket. However, overpricing your house does the same. In the real estate industry, new listings shine the brightest. If you price too high in the beginning, your house will stay on the market. People will wonder why you haven’t sold, and the perceived value of your house will dip.

  3. Don’t Leave Repairs Undone - Leaving a repair undone will cost you more than the repair itself. It adds negative emotions like doubt to the equation. Buyers will wonder what else you left unrepaired.

  4. Make Sure Your House Smells Great - Do you have odors from pets, smoking, or cooking? Remove all traces of these smells before showing the house to buyers.

  5. Communication Is King - People want to feel their time is respected. Don’t delay requests for information about the house and sign...

First-Time Homebuyers in Denver: Common Regrets to Avoid

Avoid Regret with a home purchaseMore than one in five first-time homebuyers report having at least one major regret with their purchase. We don’t want first-time homebuyers in Denver to have to deal with the same dissatisfaction.

Buying a house can be a fun and rewarding experience without disappointment. The best way to avoid any big mistakes that end up costing you frustration or money down the line is to learn from the most common regrets of those who came before you.

Here’s our list of the most common regrets of first-time homebuyers. Listen up, because avoiding these mistakes will go a long way to ensuring that your experience is everything you want it to be.

Common Regrets of First-Time Homebuyers in Denver

  •  62 percent of first-timers report that they outgrew their home faster than they thought they would. These buyers wish they had done a better job of predicting the amount of space they would need as their families and assets grew. 

  • 40 percent say they ultimately feel they paid too much for their first home.

  • 38 percent wish they had budgeted more accurately for the costs of maintaining a home. More than a third of first-time homebuyers say they underestimated all the little expenses that go into repairs and maintenance.

  • 34 percent would search around and negotiate more to find a better mortgage rate if they could do it over again. Many feel they are paying too much. “We should have put more money down upfront” is another common regret that’s highly related.

  • 25 percent say they ended up not liking the surrounding neighborhood they moved into.

These are just a handful of the pitfalls that can spoil one...

The Best High Schools in Denver

Denver's Best High SchoolsIn the 2016 U.S. News Best High Schools report, there were well over 100 Colorado schools that received recognition. There were 14 that earned gold medal honors and another 35 that earned a silver.

Let’s take a closer look at a handful of Denver-area high schools that ranked the highest.

Best High Schools in Denver

  • KIPP Denver Collegiate High School

    KIPP ranks number two in Colorado and number 164 in the nation for high schools. Some of the reasons cited for its high ranking include the Advanced Placement exam and course options and the 95 percent AP participation rate. KIPP students achieved a 73.5 on the college-readiness index.

  • DSST: Stapleton High School

    Like KIPP, the DSST student body has very high participation rate in AP programs (79 percent) and wide access to Advanced Placement exams and coursework. As a whole, the school scored a 70.2 on the college-readiness index.

  • Denver School of the Arts

    DSA is the eighth highest rated high school in Colorado and number three in Denver. The relatively low 22:1 student to teacher ratio, the very high english proficiency scores of the student body (94 percent), and the high AP participation rate (84 percent) are all reasons why the Denver School of the Arts cracked the top ten in Colorado and achieved a national ranking of 298.

Learn About Other Top Schools in Denver

To get more information on top high schools, middle schools, elementary schools, and private schools in neighborhoods all over Denver, check out the Neir Team’s section on ...

Denver Home Insurance Advice for New Buyers: Key Do's and Don'ts

Home Insurance PitfallsShopping for a new home is an exciting time. Hopefully, your search is inspiring you to envision a bright future for you and your family in the house of your dreams.

It's not a time when you necessarily want to start thinking about things that could go wrong down the line, but that's just a necessary part of being a savvy home shopper and owner.

Securing the right kind of home insurance is absolutely essential to having a good experience with your property investment.

Here are a handful of the key do's and don'ts when it comes to Denver home insurance:

Don't...

Bundle for convenience -- bundling with other types of insurance MIGHT save you some money, but that doesn't mean it's the right choice. It might be right for you, but don’t automatically assume it without doing your due diligence.

Pay for land -- Protect the buildings and structures you own, but don't be talked into insuring the land they sit on.

Forget to protect additional items -- special items, like jewelry, that are contained within your home will require additional insurance. Don't forget to protect these valuable as well.

Do...

Check for special rates -- good credit, your age, or certain features of your home could all earn you discounted rates, so do ask any prospective home insurance provider.

Shop around -- get multiple quotes to ensure you get competitive rates and services from the provider you ultimately choose.

Take note of limits -- if you have limited time to file a claim after an incident, you need to be aware of the restriction. Ask for info about limits and get it in writing.

Photograph damage immediately --...

Required Documents for Mortgage Qualification

What do I need for a home loanUnless you're paying entirely in cash upfront, you will need to get a mortgage to buy a new home in Denver.

To qualify for a mortgage, you're going to authenticate the income and tax information in your application by providing a list of documents.

Do you have everything you need? Check out the list of the required documents to double check:

  • Signed disclosures
  • The social security card belonging to each person involved in the purchase
  • A list of home addresses for all properties lived at in the last two years
  • Two to three months of bank statements
  • Two previous pay stubs
  • Proof of down payment
  • Previous two years' W-2 forms
  • Previous two years' tax returns
  • The purchase contract (if it's available)
  • Details of your employment

In certain circumstances, a borrower may also have to provide:

  • Evidence of other income (child support, etc.)
  • Divorce settlement papers
  • Balance sheets (if self employed)
  • Gift letter (if, for instance, parents are providing the down payment)
  • Evidence of other debt (student loans, credit card debt, etc.)

Some Other Requirements

  1. After completing your mortgage application, you will need to provide consent for the lender to proceed. This gives the mortgage provider permission to investigate your application.
  2. After all required documents have been submitted and the application is completed and submitted, the lender is required to give you a Loan Estimate within three days. This estimate will summarize your monthly payments and loan terms.
  3. Before approving the loan, the lender must order...

5 Tips for Buying a New Construction Home in Denver

New Construction TipWith the intense competition for existing homes in Denver, more and more buyers are looking to new home builders for a solution.

While building a new construction home in Denver does solve one problem, it also presents a few unique challenges that buyers need to be aware of.

Here are some things you should be aware of before you decide to go the new construction route.

Incomplete Phases

In some cases, new construction homes are part of larger development projects that won't be complete for years. If you're on a short timeframe for moving into a new home, these situations won't work for you. Make sure your new home would be move-in ready within a reasonable amount of time.

Construction

There are different definitions of "move-in ready." If you're going to be expected to live in a home surrounded by dirt, machinery, and loud construction noise for the first year, you need to be aware of it. This can be the case sometimes when one new construction home is part of a larger development that is still in progress.

Model Home vs Real Home

Builders are excellent at creating model spaces that appeal to buyers. However, sometimes the actual home doesn't appeal to the buyer quite as much as the model did. Make sure your attraction to the space and design goes beyond the professional staging and finishing that only applies to the model.

Included Items

The model home may have had tons of high-end appliances, but that doesn't mean they'll be included in your new construction. Find out what's included and discuss your needs with the builder.

Completion Date

Make sure you get the developer's projected finish date down in writing. This should be official...

12 Real Estate Terms that Shouldn’t Scare You

Real Estate TermsAre you confused by some of the terms popping up in your first attempt to buy or sell a home in Denver?

Don't worry, you're not alone. The real estate industry is filled with unique terminology that can trip up homebuyers, sellers, and even unseasoned agents.

Here are some quick definitions for the terms that you're most likely to encounter.

Appraisal -- It's the estimated value of a property

Certificate of Title -- The document that verifies the home is legally owned by the person claiming to own it

Closing Costs -- All of the expenses and fees associated with closing a home purchase. They can add up to as much as 4-6 percent of the cost of the home.

Contingencies -- Certain conditions that need to be met in order for a buyer's offer to be accepted and for things to proceed

Due Diligence -- Actions that the buyer should take to protect their real estate investment

Debt to Income Ratio -- To qualify for a loan, your monthly debt should add up to less than 43 percent of your monthly income.

Earnest Money Deposit -- A payment the buyer includes with their offer in order to prove serious interest to the seller.

Escrow -- An account where all closing costs are collected while the lender approves the deal.

FICO Score -- A numerical value assigned to a buyer based on their credit history.

Good Faith Deposit -- A payment made to the lender at the time of the offer to show serious interest.

HOA -- Homeowners associations (HOAs) are organizations that set and enforce rules and standards for properties within their community.

Prequalification -- the process through...

5 Real Estate Listing Photography Mistakes to Avoid

Photo TipCrisp, high definition photographs are an essential part of a real estate listing. If the pictures of your home aren’t as good as the pictures of competing homes on the market, it might not even matter that your property is actually better in real life. 

Image is everything when it comes to real estate listings. If you want buyers to fall in love with your home and offer you your ideal price, you need to make the listing photos a priority from the start.

Here are 5 common real estate photography mistakes that you should avoid if you want to create an excellent listing for your home:

Blurriness

Reduse blur in your photos

Blur is caused by a shaky camera. The best way to avoid it is to use a tripod. It's a relatively cheap solution to a problem that will sink your listing photos. Set a tripod and camera up at chest height and you're much more likely to get sharp, appealing photos that entice buyers.

Clutter

Avoid clutter in your photos

Get rid of the clutter! Putting personal items away, removing items from counters, and taking unnecessary decor from walls and corners are all essential steps for preparing a home for sale to be photographed. Also, please remember to put the car in the garage for exteriors.

Crooked Horizon

Crooked photos...

Homebuyer Checklist: 10 Things to Check Before Falling in Love with a House

What to watch out forWhen you’re in the market for a new home, It’s all too easy to fall in love with a property at first glance and forget about all the potential challenges.

Buying a home, you have to think about the long-haul as well as your first impression. Here’s a list of 10 items that you should check off for every new property you look at in Denver. If you complete this checklist every time, you have a much better chance of ending up with a home that keeps you happy for years to come.

Permits

Research to find out whether or not the property has had any work done on it and whether or not it was properly permitted

HOA Restrictions

Determine if the property is part of a home owner's association. If so, research any rules or restrictions that apply.

HOA Stability

If there is an existing HOA in place, is it financially healthy and able to enforce its own restrictions?

Parking Rules

If there are frustrating restrictions on vehicle parking, that can be a deal breaker.

Future Area Plans

Are there any construction projects planned for the area surrounding the home that would impact its future value?

HVAC Condition

Hire a home inspector to verify that the property's air conditioning and heating systems are working properly

Roof Life Expectancy

The inspector should also be able to tell you the condition of the roof and how long it's expected to last before requiring replacement or significant repair.

School Zoning

Research the school district and local elementary, middle, and high schools to judge their suitability for your children.

Pet Restrictions

Are there any neighborhood...

Denver Home Sellers: 4 Ways to Win Over Buyers at First Glance

Ways to win over buyers

Studies show that the longer a home sits on the market, the lower the offer will be when the seller finally receives one. That’s why you really need to do everything you can to make buyers fall in love with your home from the first day it goes on the market, or at least from the first look they get at it.

You may feel that your home will sell itself, but that can be a costly presumption if you’re wrong. If there are other homes for sale in your area, you need to be competitive.

In this article, we’ll review a few of the most important steps you need to take to get buyers to fall in love with your house from the get go.

Complete Necessary Restorations/Repairs

Probably the No. 1 thing keeping a home from selling is its overall condition. It’s a lot of work to get a home ready to sell. Understandably, some sellers try to cut corners.

Evaluating the repairs and restoration to be done before listing can be complicated if your house is very large and/or you’ve been living in it for many years. This is something that your Denver real estate agent can coach you through.

If you can get the interior and exterior of your home in great show condition, you’re going to win buyers hearts when they find your home online.

Minimize Your Footprint

Buyers have a hard time imagining themselves in a home if it is covered in someone else's stuff.  To do this you need to act as though the home is no longer yours, and pretend that you are just temporarily staying there.

Remove all of your personal pictures from the walls and use minimal decorative items throughout the house. It may be a difficult step for some, but it’s definitely worth it once you’ve...

5 Things You Need to Buy a Home in Denver

What do I need to buy a home“What do I need to buy a house?” It’s a simple question that real estate agents hear often from first-time homebuyers.

The question may be simple, but the answer can get confusing quickly. That’s why it’s especially important for home shopping neophytes to work with a seasoned Denver real estate agent when embarking on one of the biggest investments of their lives.

There are several key steps involved in purchasing a home, and it’s easy for first timers home to completely overlook one or more.

In this blog, we’ll quickly recap all of the important items that must be checked off your list before you can close on a new home. Of course, there will be additional requirements from your mortgage lender. But, in this article, we’ll just stick to the key factors that pertain to the amount of money you need. 

Mortgage Pre-Approval

If you're not able to buy your home with cash upfront, then you'll need pre-approval on a mortgage. Contact a mortgage lender to discuss the steps involved in obtaining pre-approval.

Earnest Money

Earnest money is a measure of good faith that is typically paired with a sales contract. This money acts as proof to the seller that you have an "earnest" intent to buy their home.

Money for Down Payment 

Many down payments range from 3 to 5 percent of the home's sale price. The mortgage lender can help you determine the appropriate down payment.

Money for Closing Costs

Typically, 1 to 4 percent of the amount of the mortgage loan should be set aside for closing costs. Sometimes closing costs will be negotiated within the sales contract. 

Money to Hire an Inspector

...

Top 3 Museums in Denver

Top Museums in DenverDenver might be best known as a sports town or as a gateway to some of the world’s best skiing and hiking destinations, but it also has a thriving cultural scene that shouldn’t be overlooked. Fun, unique, and convenient museums are scattered out all over the Denver Metro area.

Whether you want to explore science, art, history, culture, or something more, there will be an excellent learning destination for you somewhere in the Mile High City.

Check out our list of the top 3 museums in Denver and see what memorable cultural adventures await you.

Denver Museum of Nature and Science

With a Planetarium and IMAX Theater right on the premises, the Denver Museum of Nature and Science offers visitors incredible value, diversity, and convenience. Tickets are $14.95 for adults, $11.95 for seniors, and $9.95 for students.

This massive museum is one of the largest of its kind in America. It began humbly at the beginning of the 20th century, but has expanded to include an impressive list of exhibits and features that undeniably make it one of the top museums in Denver. There’s always plenty to see and learn about at DMNS -- dinosaurs, space exploration, biology, and much more. The interactive exhibits are great at giving kids and adults a hands-on education on some of the most interesting topics in science and nature.

Denver Art Museum

Many people want to go to museums specifically to marvel at great art. If that’s your top priority, the Denver Art Museum should be your destination of choice. Designed by renowned architect Daniel Libeskind, even the building itself is considered a work of art.

A day at the Denver Art Museum open your eyes to a range of classic and contemporary works by master artists....

Top 10 Breweries in Denver

Top breweries in DenverDenver is undeniably one of the beer capitals of the world. The city already boasts one of the highest rates of microbreweries and breweries per capita, and it seems like dozens of excellent new watering holes are opening every year.

Whether it’s ales, lagers, pilsners, porters, or IPAs you’re after, the Mile High City is sure to have multiple breweries or tap houses pouring your craft beer of choice.

Have you worked up a thirst yet? Here are our rankings for the top 10 breweries in Denver:

Call to Arms Brewing Company

My absolute favorite in the city. Denver’s beer community had high expectations for Call to Arms Brewing Company, and so far those expectations have been exceeded. Consistently high-quality craft beer options across a broad range of styles. The Amigos Borrachos is my favorite.

Little Machine Beer

This Jefferson Park brewery instantly became a favorite watering hole for beer enthusiasts across the city when it opened. It doesn’t hurt that it’s located right next to Sports Authority Field, but Little Machine Beer offers some amazing craft brews (the winter lager is a popular choice) that keep people coming back even when it’s not a Broncos game day.

Ratio

RiNo is a beer destination neighborhood, and Ratio, located at 2920 Larimer St., is one of the breweries that have helped cement that reputation. Fun events, relaxed atmosphere, and absolutely killer beer options combine to make it easily one of the top breweries in the city. Local hop experts will tell you that Ratio’s top of the line, twenty barrel brewing system gives it a leg up on the competition.

Declaration Brewing Company

If you’re looking for variety,...

The Top Apartment Buildings in Denver

Best Apartments in DenverFinding the right apartment rental in Denver seems to get harder and harder with each passing month.

As metro area home prices have skyrocketed over the past few years, many potential buyers are content to stay out of the market, pick a rental, and wait for things to settle down. With no end in sight, the demand for rentals is becoming a problem city-wide.

Getting a spot in one of Denver’s top apartment buildings has probably never been tougher, but that makes it all the more important that you go into your search prepared. To get started, you need a clear set of wants and needs and a short list of rental companies to contact.

You’ll have to decide your top priorities for yourself, but we can provide you with a list of the top local apartment complexes based on some common priorities for renters in Denver.

Here’s our list of the top apartment buildings in Denver, according to best view, best amenities, and best deals.

Denver Apartments with the Best View

Denver offers a mixture of breathtaking natural surrounding landscape and exciting man-made urban cityscape. Some of the city’s best apartments offer stunning views of one or both of these elements.

Which apartment complex has the best overall view is a pretty subjective thing, but there’s little doubt that Platform At Union Station should at least be near the top of anyone’s list. Check out the exterior views of this stunning high-rise in Denver’s LoDo neighborhood, right next to one of the city’s best landmarks -- Union Station.

Denver Apartments with the Best Amenities

Even though...