If you missed our Forecast event here is the link to watch the presentation as well as the link to the article composed by the Durango Herald that provides a summary:
Every year The Well’s Group hosts this event to educate the town on market trends and predictions for the coming year, on top of that the cocktail hour prior to the event is always a great time to see faces around town accompanied by drinks and heavy apps.
Mark your calendars for next year on March 11th
If you have any questions about the information in this years Forecast please feel free to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org
The 2018 year end statistics are here. These are provided by the Durango Area Association of Realtors using information from our regional MLS system. (inset stats summary page into body as an image)
As noted by John Wells in the article in the Durango Herald the theme that we saw in 2018 is that the number of homes sold remained farily stable (slightly lower than the previous year), however the overall dollar volume was up, suggesting an increase in median price or possibly the result of more expensive inventory selling.
For more information, and to view the statistics in full, please visit the Durango Area Association of Realtors website.
The Wells Group also prepares year end data, which I share montly in my newlsetters. Below is a snapshot of 2018 in its entirety.
If you are curious about the factors that effect the real estate market and what we can predict in 2019 and years to come, be on the lookout for an invitation to our annual Wells Group Forecast where we provide that information! As always, I would love to discuss the specific market sectors with my clients who are curious. So don't hesitate to give me a call if you have questions about how all of this information pertains to you.
For those of you who like statistics and are curious about what the real estate market has in store, you shoukd definitely save the date for our Annual Real Estate Forecast. It's coming up on Wed, March 13th at the FLC concert hall. I have been a member of the committe that puts this event together for several years, and I am always impressed by how much data is presented and how many different aspects of our economy are covered. This information is vital to understanding the health of our community and it also helps people make real estate related decisions.
Here are the quick facts on what you can expect:
- A fabulous catered happy hour before the presentation, for our special clients and guests... that's you! It starts at 5 pm.
- A cash bar- but if you come find me, I've got a stack of drink tickets so you can drink for free :)
- A very well rounded presentation by local appraiser and researcher, Bob Allen. This includes information on all of the factors that affect our real estate market, such as tourism, tax revenue, the energy and construction industries and more.
- A recap of what the Wells Group predicted in 2018 and whether we were accurate with those predictions.
- John Wells' Top 10 predictions for 2019 and what that means to you if you are invested in the real estate market, or planning to buy.
- The presentation ends around 7pm.
Hope to see you there! If you can't make the presentation, let me know and I can get you online access to the info later.
Is there a better way to start or end your day than with a little fresh air and some exercise? Thankfully Durango offers no shortage of outdoor activities that you can enjoy, even in those cold winter months. If you are looking for a mid-week activity that doensn't require driving to Purgatory, you can consider fat biking, snow shoeing, ice skating or even a good in-town sled. However, my favorite in-town winter destination is Hillcrest Golf Course. They have snowshoeing, skate skiing, and classic cross country skiing, which is all maintained regulary on a donation basis. A couple of years ago, a friend of mine taught me how to skate ski when she was 37 weeks pregnant. While I was busy flailing around and crashing myself with my own poles, she was effortlesly gliding along, barely breaking a sweat. Needless to say, after a few sessions, I was hooked! It's such a fun way to get outside, breathe hard and enjoy the views of the snow capped peaks from the rim of the college. The other good news about skate skiing is that the conditions are best when it's cold and there isn't fresh powder on the ground. This means that on the dreariest of days, you can still get a fabulous outdoor workout... and don't worry, you have NO chance of geting cold when you're working that hard! Next time you’re looking for something to do and don’t have all day to spend in the high country, consider a quick trip to Hillcrest! If you are new to the sport, Pine Needle Mountaineering offers a couple of demo days each year where they bring in gear for people to try out, and they also offer free clinics. You can also check them out for ski rentals. The last thing that makes Hillcrest so special is the very short window of time we have to enjoy it. In winter of 2018, there wasn't a single day of skiing up there. John Wells announced at our office meeting today that he mowed his lawn on March 1st last year! It's crazy to even think about considering we still have several feet of snow on the ground. Every time it snows in town, I smile because it means we have that much more time to enjoy the tracks at Hillcrest. Be on the lookout for me at Hillcrest! I'm not fast, but I will be rocking out with my headphones in and gasping for that fresh moutnain air!
Thinking of listing your home and want it to be ready to hit the market running? Here are a few tips as well as recommendations on who can help.
Refresh Curb Appeal. We always want to put our best foot forward and that applies to your home as well. Even before a potential buyer comes to look at your home, odds are they have seen the listing on MLS or Zillow. Having the front of your home refreshed with trimmed trees and shrubs, tended flower beds, a fresh mowed lawn and a welcoming clean sweep makes all the difference. Make sure to weed and water throughout the time that your home is on the market.
Paint Touchups Wear and tear throughout the home is natural and happens in every home. Yet it helps the home look well maintained when the paint it touched up from door dings, moving furniture etc.
For Paint Touchups & Curb Appeal I Recommend: Random Tasks Inc.
Deep Clean Whether you want to hire someone to deep clean or do it yourself, this is the best time to get the house deep cleaned throughout. Your listing will benefit from reviews of being clean as well as a fresh clean scent to boost enjoyment of the showing.
Clean Windows Let the natural light pour into your home with spotless windows.
Carpets and Floors Cleaned Clean floors can make a major difference not only in the feel of your home but can bring that older carpet back to life making it seem like a newer update that it may be.
Un-personalize Your Home/Minimize the Impact of Your Pet Future homebuyers love to be able to put themselves into a home and envision what they will make it look like. Family photos are cherished memories so now may be a good time to wrap them up and box them in a safe box to make them move ready. Put away extra toys and beds, clean and hide litter boxes and make it look like they don't live there!
Clean and Organize Closets Another important room/space in your home is closets. Think of the less is more approach when it comes to your closets to make them appear larger and cleaner.
Declutter This is the number one way to make your home feel larger, empty space is good space. Have three containers ready with you: one for trash, one for donating, and one for items you’ll take with you to the new house but don’t immediately need. This way, half of the packing will already be done before you even sell your home.
Stage the Home/Spruce Up the Pantry There is no need to go crazy here but homebuyers will be curious about the kitchen and the storage space that it holds, by tidying up this area you can increase the positive reaction people have with your kitchen.
Consider Pre Inspection A pre-inspection provides sellers with a realistic assessment of the condition of their home prior to marketing it for sale. Sellers can then choose to make necessary repairs and provide proof of repairs to potential buyers. Over all makes the buyers more comfortable moving forward and helps to avoid extensive price negotiation later down the road.
For Inspection Needs I Recommend: Todd Wright (970)759-8241 and Jason Carter (970)759-0063
I thought it would be a good time to share some of my favorite indoor workout locations since we are dealing with some remnants of smoke in the mornings when it's cool and pretty high temps by mid day. I hope you enjoy!
Yoga Durango: This studio offers a wide variety of yoga classes from Hatha, Yin, to Vinyasa Flow classes and many more. If you are in the mood for Hatha yoga my personal favorite instructor is Sheryl McGourty (she also teaches a wide variety of classes at the studio throughout the week if Hatha is not your cup of tea). My Friday nights are typically spent at my favorite way to unwind from the work week, Candlelight Vinyasa Flow at 5:30 on Fridays. There is no better way to prep for the weekend than to breathe and unwind in the candle lit room. I also really love Lindsay D's classes!
The Sweaty Buddha: This is the place for those who like it hot. Although this may not seem like the best place in the summer they use a heating system that incorporates humidity into the air allowing for your dry skin and lungs to take a break. It feels SO nice!! Bif is one of my favorite teachers in this space. She offers powerful quick moving Vinyasa flows and a smile throughout class.
Pilates Durango: I have recently starting going to this studio over the past year and have been enjoying their 7 am classes on the reformer and tower. The space is welcoming for people who are new to Pilates, with a range of classes from mat, reformer, tower and even Yamuna Body Rolling they have a class for everyone interested in Pilates. I tried my first jumpboard class yesterday and my calves are SORE!
Axiom Cycling Studio: New to Durango, this studio opened in October, 2017 as a way to keep the Durango community in cycling shape throughout the winter and keep training active in the summer. My favorite instructor here also happens to be my assistant, Lexi. She is certified with the USA Cycling seal of approval which is a fancy way of saying she does in fact know how to train you to ride outside with your best health in mind. The beauty of the studio is that you can book your exact bike ahead of time online (which is a good idea since some classes sell out). Seriously, you guys, Lexi is everyone's favorite for great reason-- she has an amazing positive attitude and will make you work HARD! Her Friday afternoon class is an absolute must-try and you get a free beer after!
The Vault: If you have been around Durango for a while you have more than likely heard of The Vault. They specialize in "Circuit X" a dynamic circuit training, which utilizes many muscle groups at the same time. The trainers and environment are extremely welcoming to all fitness levels. I haven't been to the Vault in a number of years but have a ton of friends who go regularly. They offer many classes throughout the day so you never have an excuse to miss class!
Also, if the gym is your thing, I highly recommend Fitness Solutions. Don, the owner, keeps the place immaculate and it's open 24 hours. They have a great variety of equipment there. I've done group fitness classes there with Lisa Nielsen, who is amazing! She is a great trainer and her group class is awesome! You can also hire her for personal training as well.
How lucky are we to have such amazing fitness options in our community?! Let me know what you guys end up trying... maybe I'll see you there!
With the start of June also came the start of fire season. June 1st at 10:00 am, a fire north of Durango was reported. Since then it has been named the 416 Fire and has consumed 5,000 acres with 10% containment as of Thursday June 7th. The air quality throughout town has decreased due to the thick smoke that settles overnight, it is recommended to stay inside during these times and close the windows to your home to avoid over exposure. As of June 7th a Type I federal firefighting team will take over command of the fire, this team is called in for a variety of reasons such as size, need for additional resources and threat to structures.
It's really tough to wake up every morning to desne smoke, thinking about the burning land, the animals, worried home owners, and the air quality. It's a reality about living in the west. Thanksfully we don't have earthquakes and hurricanes and other disasters. The GOOD news about this is that we were prepared with tankers and crews, we have amazing community support and to date we have not lost any structures. Also, as we've experienced in the past with the Missionary Ridge fire.... We Are Resilient!
With a dry summer ahead of us with potential of more wildfires in the area here is what you need to know in order to prevent future fires: This is from the San Juan National Forest website.
STAGE 2 FIRE RESTRICTIONS
Beginning June 1, 2018, Stage 2 Fire Restrictions will be in effect on all National Forest System lands within the San Juan National Forest, including Wilderness. Fire restrictions are designed to protect people, property and the area's natural resources, and are in response to the exceptional drought rating in Southwest Colorado, increased fire activity throughout the area, and continuing hot dry weather forecasts.
Stage 2 Fire Restrictions on the San Juan National Forest means that the following are
- Building, maintaining, attending or using an OPEN FLAME, including fire, campfire, stove fire, charcoal grills and barbecues, coal and wood burning stoves, and devices (stoves, grills or lanterns) using liquid fuel such as white gas or kerosene. This prohibition applies to the entire San Juan National Forest, including Wilderness and developed camping and picnic grounds.
Except: Devices (stoves, grills or lanterns) using pressurized gas canisters (isobutene or propane) that include shut-off valves, or within an enclosed vehicle, trailer, or building.
Except: Within an enclosed vehicle, trailer or building.
WELDING or operating acetylene or other torch with open flame.
Operating or using any INTERNAL COMBUSTION ENGINE (e.g. chainsaw, generator, ATV) without a spark arresting device properly installed, maintained and in effective working order meeting USDA Forest Service or SAE approval.
Operating a CHAINSAW without an approved spark arresting device, a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher (8 oz. capacity by weight or larger and kept with the operator) and a round point shovel with an overall length of at least 35 inches readily available for use, or outside of the “Hoot Owl” restricted hours of 5am – 1pm.
Using an EXPLOSIVE. This includes but is not limited to fuses or blasting caps, fireworks, rockets, exploding targets, and tracers or incendiary ammunition.
Discharging a FIREARM, air rifle, or gas gun
Possessing or using a MOTOR VEHICLE OFF ESTABLISHED ROADS, motorized trails or established parking areas, except when parking in an area devoid of vegetation within 10 feet of the vehicle.
Federal, state, and local officers and persons with a valid Forest Service permit or contract may be exempt from these prohibitions.
May marks the start of summer and all of the activites that come with it for those that live in Durango. May seems to be centered around bikes and all time spent outside.
Kicking off May events is the first farmers market of the year. If you are new to town or just want to start getting out and meeting new people or taking a walk with old friends the farmers market is a great way to spend a Saturday. The early season farmers market don't carry alot in the ways of fresh veggies and fruits but they are full of homemade goods, fresh coffee and pastries, and socialization under the sun.
As far as bike events go May has some popular races amongst professionals and weekend warriors alike. May 12th features 12 Hours of Mesa Verde. It began as "Ride the Lightning" in 2003 but developed into its current 12-hour endurance race in 2007. Since its inception in 2003, the race has donated more than $350,000 to local organizations that focus on at-risk youth.
Then comes the Iron Horse Bicycle Classic on Memorial Day weekend. Its a full weekend with a professional road race, a citizens road race, kids activies and a mountain bike race.
Spring this year came with a nice surprise that was a few years in the making. Lake Nighthorse (Southwest from downdown) became open to the public for the first time since 2003 when construction began to create the lake.
If you are planning on giving the lake a visit here are a few things may want to know:
Gas & electric motorboats will be allowed on the lake from May 15th-Nov 14th. Jet skis, houseboats or open-air-exhaust crafts are not allowed.
Mondays and Wednesdays will be "quiet" days where no wakes are allowed.
Aside from boating visitors can fish, picnic, and swim.There is no overnight camping or trail systems for hiking.
The lake is currently open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekends from April 1- May 14th. From May 15th-November 14 the lake will be open every day.
Annual vehicle pass: $70 Annual bike or walk-in pass: $20 Vehicle day pass: $8 Day bike or walk-in pass: $3
With the start of spring heading our way The Wells Group held their annual Forecast event on March 13th. This event is packed full of information about the Durango real estate market, both looking at trends from the previous year, as well as making predictions of what is coming in the future. Here is the link to the article that the Herald wrote about the event so you can learn a little more as well as the "Wells Talks" which include John Wells Top 10 topics as we enter 2018. Whether you are a buyer or looking to sell your home it is always a good idea to stay on top of your local market and this event tries to bring that information to the public.
With 2017 coming to a close and us entering the first months of 2018, here is the summary of La Plata County's real estate market in 2017. These statistics compare the 2017 market to the market in 2016. The Durango Area Association of Realtors forecasts continued steady growth throughout the year of 2018.
Another year, another Harvest Party. I am so thankful to have such incredible future and past clients that make a Sunday at Ska a time to come together, let the kids play, and drink a beer. Ska always puts on such a great venue with games for the kids, delicious food and fun atmosphere, in all honesty though it's the people that make it such a great day. For those who have never had the chance to make it I throw a Harvest Party every year for my clients as a way to say thank you and catch up. Supporting local business and bringing clients together helps me build the community of what makes Durango such a great place to live.
Already can't wait for next year!
This has been one of my favorite stuffing recipe's since I found it on Paleo Running Momma's blog! It is perfect for those guests that have dietary needs (Paleo, grain free, gluten free, dairy free, and Whole30 friendly), not only that but it is delicious. With full cook and prep time around an hour its easy to have going while you whip up everything else in the kitchen.
- 1 large butternut squash peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes, about 5 1/2-6 cups
- 1 1/2 tbsp cooking fat for roasting
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 2 tbsp cooking fat ghee, coconut oil, or lard, more as needed
- 1 small onion chopped
- 3 celery stalks chopped
- 1 lb pork sausage no sugar added for Whole30
- 1 large apple or 2 small, cored and chopped
- 1/4-1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp + 1 tsp dried poultry seasoning
- 3/4 cup dried cranberries *fruit sweetened for Whole30
- 1 egg whisked (optional**)
- Fresh parsley for garnish optional
- First prepare to roast the butternut squash cubes.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Toss the cubes with the 1 1/2 Tbsp preferred cooking fat and 1/4 tsp salt, and spread out in a single layer on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Roast in the preheated oven for 30-40 minutes, stirring or turning once for even browning. Squash should be soft and toasty brown before removing.
- While the squash is roasting, get your other ingredients chopped and ready.
- Heat a large skillet (cast iron/ovenproof is ideal) over med to med-hi heat and add the 2 Tbsp cooking fat. Once heated, add chopped onion and celery and cook for about 3-5 minutes, until softened.
- Add the ground sausage to the skillet and use a wooden spoon to break up lumps and stir as it cooks. Cook the sausage with the onions and celery until browned, lower heat to medium.
- Add the chopped apples and cook for a couple of minutes until just softened. Now add the salt and poultry seasoning. Lower the heat and stir to combine all flavors. Simmer for 2 more minutes, remove from heat and set aside.
- Once the butternut squash is roasted (it should be light brown and crisp on the outside) add it to the sausage mixture along with the dried cranberries and toss to combine. Now add the whisked egg** to the mixture and toss/mix to incorporate.
- Lower the oven heat to 375 degrees. If you used an ovenproof skillet, you can bake right in the skillet. If your skillet is not ovenproof, transfer the entire mixture to a 2-3 qt baking dish and spread out evenly.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes (less, if omitting egg) or until toasty and set. Garnish with fresh parsley if desired. Enjoy!!
Looking at our County's real estate picture year-to-date through the third quarter, some interesting sales statistics present: 1. TOTAL number of real estate transactions grew 8.5%, as reflected by 1/1/2017-9/30/2017 total real estate transactions of 1166 compared to the 1075 real estate transactions 1/1/2016-9/30/2016. 2. Number of sold properties priced over $900,000 sold within these same nine months in 2016-a whopping 37% increase of sales in this price range. These figures encompass sales in all categories-residential, farm/ranch, commercial, vacant land and are not reflected in the table below.
Chelsea's Client Appreciation Party!
This year's client appreciation party will take place at Ska Brewing on Sunday October 22nd from 11:00 to 1:00. Come rain, snow or shine! We will have the upstairs reserved and hopefully its nice enough for yard games!I'll provide food and beers! (Vegetarian and Paleo options)Bring the kids--- in Halloween costumes if they want!
Hope to see you there!
The Peanuts Great Pumpkin Patch Express
This special train will run three weekends in October. During the ride, kids will receive a trick-or-treat bag to collect goodies during their time at the Pumpkin Patch. Snoopy and Charlie Brown will be available for photos as kids enjoy an assortment of fun activities during their adventure at The Great Pumpkin Patch! There is also a straw bale maze with a pumpkin for every child to take home.
Three Springs Fall Festival
Three Springs Fall Festival on Saturday, October 28th from 11AM-2PM at Three Springs Plaza. Bring your kids in costumes and let them explore the festival, fun games, contests, and of course trick or treating.
Murder & Mayhem Tour
An adult option or possibly older children option. These tours start at El Moro and focus on the secrets of Main St from the wild west days of Durango. "The tour focuses on North Main Avenue. It starts at the El Moro Restaurant and ends at Durango Craft Spirits. This tour will take you to notorious saloons and past the sites of legendary gunfights. Durango in the late 1800's and early 1900's was truly the Wild West."
The SKA Anniversary party is not a party to miss! It typically sells out within a day when tickets come out in the spring but if you are lucky enough to get a ticket it is not to be missed. You can expect to know at least half of the people there and drink enough beer to make some new friends as well. This year the party falls on September 9th and features the ska band Less than Jake.
Here is the excerpt from SKA's website:
"Every year we throw a party for you to help us celebrate our anniversary. This year we'll be joined by 30+ of our craft brewery friends, Less Than Jake, Chris Murray and tasty food vendors.
Your ticket price includes generous tastes of all the beer our friends brought with them, live music by Less Than Jake, Chris Murray and more!
All proceeds go to La Plata Open Space Conservancy because we believe in protecting the lands we love!"
Summer is coming to a close this month with all of the 9R kids going back to school. This means that those amazing summer programs the kids were involved in are coming to a close and if you can't get off of work at 3:30 everyday we have researched some of the afterschool programs that are available to our children.
Nifty Nanny Not only does Nifty Nanny offer after school programs but they adjust for no school days, holiday breaks, and snow days so your children always have an activity when you can't be there.
After School Art Durango Arts Center has partnered with Durango School District 9-R to bring After School Art to all 9-R elementary schools. "The After School Art program is held weekly (one-hour classes) at each of the elementary schools, the monthly sessions enroll 12 students to ensure personalized attention. Sessions are themed (such as art around the world, architecture, folk art, impressionism), with age-appropriate art/artist history lessons and a fine art project."
Boys and Girls Club Boys and Girls Club offers and after school program for kids. They even offer transportation from some schools to their location by the Durango Rec Center.
Durango Devo Devo also provided their bike coaching for all grades starting at 4:00pm every day allowing your kids to keep up their mountain bike skills and burn off some energy from school.
After last months blog post we had alot of interest in summer programs for the kids and thought we should research it a bit more. In our research we decided that we would rather be doing all of these amazing summer camps than sitting and work...sadly that isn't an option but we wish it was. Here is a list of our favorites that we have found so far as well as a little information about each one and the links to their websites.
Gametime Through Rec Center
“The Durango Parks and Recreation offers an all-day program for school aged youth. Parents may register their child for specific days, weeks or entire months. Children will play games, create arts and craft projects, go swimming, take field trips, and much more. Children must have: a sack lunch, sunscreen, bug spray, swim wear, towel, and rain gear for each day. Occasionally, children will go on a field trip or tour that will require a small supplemental fee. Weekly schedules are given out for easy transition between summer Gametime and your child's other activities.”
“At Purgatory Adventure Camp for Kids (PACK), children ages 5-13 experience activities that foster their curiosity and creativity, like rock climbing, ropes courses, nature projects, animal tracks, arts & crafts, and more.” Weekdays Monday through Friday starting June 5th through August 18th with the ability to pay per number of days your child wants to attend.
“Parents can take joy in the fact that their kids will be spending their summer catching crawdads, building forts, hiking, exploring, river tromping, and learning about the natural world” Each session has a different theme such as Wilderness Survival, Hydrology, Powerful Nature, Nature Detectives, Destination Desert, each two weeks in length.
Bike Polo- This camp is for ages 10-18 to explore the sport of Bike Polo. Practices include learning rules of the game, tactics, bike handing and ball handling drills, live games and building a mallet and will be coached by local experts and Polo professionals.
Cycling Science-bike exploration and bike related hands on science at the Powerhouse in the afternoons. Kids will learn anatomy and physiology, nutrition, bike engineering and physics of biking.
Purgatory Summer Camps Through Devo- Devo coaches will lead rides and serve as your kid’s camp counselor all day. Groups: Kids will be placed in groups based upon ability (beg/int/adv. Camp activities include; special guest appearances, gravity skill sessions, bike fit, trail building.
The Durango Arts Center provides a number of summer camps/courses in visual and performing arts for a variety of ages and interests. There are too many to list here! Conveniently locatedat the Durango Arts Center, it provides easy drop off for the day as well as easy pick up if your kiddos don’t feel well.
“Our philosophy is community driven, non-competitive, choice-based, and outdoor oriented.” They offer five programs tailored to four different age groups. The age groups are grades 2-4, 5-7, 8-9, and 10-11. “Each program offers a wide variety of activities and expeditions in addition to a safe and comfortable environment where kids can be themselves entirely.”
“From robotics, coding, and animation to animals, plants, rockets, and more! Fuel your child’s interests with these fun and engaging learning opportunities! Each camp is carefully planned and taught by qualified, enthusiastic scientists and teachers. Our camps serve ages 3-15.”
School is officially out for the summer for the children of 9-R. Here are some of my favorite activities to take the kids out for the day or their favorite activities to do while I need to get some work done. Durango is great about getting kids active and entertained:
Durango Devo has amazing summer camps for all ages of kiddos and all lengths of time.
Some very hot days we like to take it inside for a little adventure. Honeyville located north of Durango has all sorts of honey treats as well as the ability to watch the bees make the honey the kids can enjoy later. Turning this trip into a little learning activity is fun for the kids and adults too.
We always love to buy the family pass to Trimble Hot Springs. It is a great place to pack up lunch for the day and spend all day getting some sun, playing in the pool and soaking in the hot springs.