Friday, December 28, 2007

WESTWARD HO': did a piece on "Why the West is Booming" commenting on an issue we've seen first hand for several years.

Demographers say thousands of Baby Boomers are saying 'no thanks' to the warmth of Florida and Arizona and heading to the Rocky Mountain West.

They're drawn by low crime, fresh air, little traffic and abundant outdoor activities. Although people of all ages like these things, older people tend to be flexible enough in their careers, families and finances to finally kick up their boots on the porch rail.

A significant percentage of our clients are 55+. Southwest Colorado in general and Durango in particular have exactly what they are looking for. Four fantastic seasons, brilliant blue skies, clean air and lots of friendly people.

Monday, December 24, 2007

CHRISTMAS: It's Christmas Eve. A full moon is rising over the San Juans creating almost daylight conditions reflecting off the pristine snow - a white Christmas.

Mary and I, together with Max and Maggie, wish each of you a wonderful holiday season full of joy and peace. We look forward to serving you in 2008.

Friday, December 21, 2007

HOME SALES: According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR) existing home sales are in an upward trend that should carry into 2008. Their Pending Homes Sales Index is up slightly - with two months of consecutive gains in homes under contract nationally.

Prices are also on the increase in nearly two-thirds of U.S. metro areas, and not just in certain area of the Sunbelt. Prices are up in Gary, Indiana, Binghampton, New York, and Spokane, Washington as well as Corpus Christi, Texas.

Our website activity remains strong and we are constantly receiving inquiries from individuals seeking information about Durango and our real estate. People want to live here and as home sales improve around the country our real estate economy will only get stronger.

If you are considering buying real estate in the Durango area - now is the time!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

FICO: J.R. Spies with The Mortgage Link has provided this information about FICO scoring:

It is important to note that raising your FICO credit score is a bit like losing weight. It takes time and there is no quick fix. In fact, quick fix efforts can backfire. The best advise is to manage credit responsible over time.

What's in your credit score:

35% = Payment History
30% = Amounts Owed
15% = Length of Credit
10% = New Credit
10% = Types of Credit Used

* Pay our bills on time
* Keep Credit Balances at less than 30%
* Don't Close out your accounts
* Get New Credit if you don't have any
* Don't get new credit if you are new to credit
* Keep at least 3 to 4 active accounts
* Have a good credit mix (Mortgage, Auto, Installment, Revolving)

The importance of any factor depends on the overall information in your credit report.


Pay your credit on TIME! Recent late on $200 credit card is much worse than a $3,000 collection paid 3 years ago.

It is better to have some five accounts at less than 30% balance than to have 1 account at 100% balance.

It is better to have 5 credit cards with 50% balances than to have no accounts at all.

It is better to have recent inquiries and new accounts than to have no credit at all.

It is better to keep the credit you have and slowly add new accounts than to radically add 4 or 5 new accounts. New accounts will lower your average account age.

The FICO scores read types of credit and give a higher weight to the more important type of credit - Mortgage, Auto, Installment and Revolving.

Monday, December 10, 2007

MAGIC: Saturday a large herd of elk, I counted 80 - 90 animals, spent the day lounging in the #8 fairway along Trimble Lane. Every car slowed to view these magnificent animals but no one stopped to alarm them even though they were only 50 feet from the road.

Later in the day, about 7:00, I was on the deck grilling hamburgers. A light snow was falling, mulit-colored Christmas lights lined the deck railing and ice cycles hung from the roof. In the distance you could hear the elk moving. Cooing, chirping and squealing (elk are very vocal) the entire herd slowly meandered closely past. In the dark their eyes sparkled, reflecting the Christmas lights like fireflies in a eerie procession. Then they were gone and left was the muffled silence of a snow fall.

Special animals, special times, magical memories- why we live in the beautiful San Juans.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

A $3 MILLION CONDO? In Breckenridge One Ski Hill Place, a 90 unit development at the base of Peak 8, is about to raise the bar for luxury.

The first 15 of the 90 units will be released December 8 with the asking price of the first four penthouses of $2.67 million. The price per square foot will range from $963 to $1,385.

We were in Breckenridge last August and with all due respect to the fine citizens of Breckenridge - ARE YOU NUTS?

Breckenridge is crowded, over built and bumper to bumper traffic. Plus, the Ski Area Citizen's Coalition in its annual environmental scorecard gave the ski area an "F."

Our little corner of Colorado may not have the glitz of the Aspens, Steamboats, Snowmasses and Breckenridges but we wouldn't trade our little western town and open spaces for any of them.

Monday, December 03, 2007

HEY DUDE! Thanks to a prolonged snowstorm that dumped almost 3 feet of wonderful white powder Purgatory at Durango Mountain Resort was able to open Sunday with its annual benefit day. Upwards of 3,000 skiers and snowboarders packed the area with this year's proceeds going to the Durango Winter Sports Foundation and Durango Nature Studies.

Lifts 1 and 2 are running and most of the front side is open, nearly 100 acres. Purgatory hopes the back side will be open next week. We love the back side and can't wait until its open.

Meanwhile, here in the valley, the sun is shining, the sky is brilliant blue, temps in the low 40's. Life is good in the beautiful San Juans.