Tag Archives: decorations

Talk about taste specific!

Although this is a very cute house and quite a novelty, it is a prime example of going a bit far in the realm of “taste specific” choices.  I am sure that there would be a niche market for a house like this. After all, there are a lot of Lord of the Rings fans out there ( I liked the movies too, and own them all).  But how many fans would actually want to live in a hobbit house on a full-time basis?  I am guessing that not many of even the staunchest Lord of the Rings fans would be willing to go that far.  Maybe as a vacation home-like a fun little cabin in the woods.

As cute as it is though,  I would like to use this little house as a slightly exaggerated example of a pretty common problem- personalization.  The longer we live in even a “normal” style home, the more personalized the tends to become.  In most cases, when you are selling your home, your goal should not be to find a buyer that “wouldn’t change a thing” and that has your same taste and hobbies.  To have a much easier time of selling, you want to appeal to as many potential buyers as possible.  The more people that want to buy your house, the better your chances of getting multiple offers, getting offers sooner, and getting full price or maybe even more than the asking price.  Isn’t that what the real goal when selling your house?

Sellers who “take their taste out of a house” help buyers more easily see themselves in the house, instead of being distracted by things like the seller’s family photos, a chartreuse dining room wall, and things like religious artifacts everywhere, a huge PEZ dispenser collection, and/or Lord of the Rings swords above the fireplace.  (Is the buyer going to be looking at the great fireplace feature of the home- or the cool sword that is probably not even included as part of the sale).

In the case of the Hobbit house in this post, the sword is probably okay!  After all, they are trying to appeal to a very tiny niche of buyers.  But chances are, most of us don’t live in a house that is this unusual.   So the rest of us are going to have better results if we stick to the tried an true rules of selling.  Paint the house in more universally appealing color schemes and present a clean and de-cluttered home that does not have any unfinished projects or repairs needed.  That is the formula for making buyers want to make it their home.

I hope you enjoy this little peek at the Hobbit house- I certainly did.   I think it would be “a nice place to visit”- but like so many buyers that see overly-personalized homes… “I just wouldn’t want to live there”.

If you are looking to buy or sell a home, I would be happy to help!  Feel free to contact me using the form below!


Home Buying After Foreclosure or Bankruptcy- How Long Until I Am Eligible?

Only a few short years ago, the Denver Market was flooded with short sales and foreclosure properties for sale. The bankruptcy rate in Colorado was still fairly high then. Many people lost their homes during that time and have been renting since then. With the current tight rental market and rising rental rates, they may now be wondering, “How long until I can buy again”?

The answer is “it depends…”. Bankruptcy, Foreclosure, Short Sales and Deeds-in-Lieu are all called, “derogatory credit events” in the lending world. The waiting period before you are eligible for a new home loan will vary depending on: which type of “event” you had, the circumstances that lead to it, and the type of loan you want to get for your next house (VA, FHA or Conventional).

The lending world breaks down these events types even further: Foreclosure, Deed-in-Lieu, Short Sale, Multiple Bankruptcies, Chapter 7 Bankruptcies, and Chapter 13 Bankruptcies.

VA seems to be the most forgiving of these derogatory credit events. With VA financing, the buyer is eligible for a new loan only one year after a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. The wait period for the other types of events is only two years.

For FHA, the wait period for Chapter 13 bankruptcies is also after one year of on-time payments and approval from the bankruptcy court. It is 2 years for a person having a Chapter 7 or multiple bankruptcies, and 3 years for a Foreclosure, Deed-in-Lieu, or Short Sale.

Conventional Loans tend to be less forgiving. Wait periods range from 2-7 years depending on the type of event. After the wait period is up, the buyer may also be required to come with a higher down payment amount for their new loan.

The following chart, provided by the Wynn Team with Citywide Loans, provides a “short and sweet” visual summary of the waiting periods required for each circumstance and loan type.  Here is the link to the chart:

Derog Waitng Period for mortgages

Buyers should keep in mind that even if the waiting period has elapsed, lenders still make loan approval decisions based on credit scores and debt-to-income ratios. The waiting period is an added requirement.

If you are ready to buy or sell a home, please contact me!  I would love to help you make that move!  Or, if you have any questions, also please fill out the form below.


Westminster Public Art Project- Are You Artistic?

rock painting flyer0001

Looking for a creative outlet? This Saturday could be just the chance you have been looking for to let your “inner artist” come out to play!  The Members of the Paletteers Art Club are inviting members of the community to paint rocks!  Yes, you heard right- paint rocks!  The painting project will take place on Saturday, July 27th from 10 am to 4:00 pm at the Aar River Gallery at 3707 W 73rd Ave in Historic Westminster, Colorado.

The painted rocks will be placed throughout Adams County in parks, trails, and landscaping around public buildings. Take a look at the photo above to see examples of the rock paintings!  Now’s your chance to help make our county an even more beautiful place to live!  And it is fun for “artists” of all ages.  All supplies will be provided at the event- but you do have to give the rock to the Art Rocks Project (can’t take it home).  Who knows- maybe your friends will be seeing one of your “masterpieces” the next time they take a walk in the park!

Call 303-426-4114 to participate!

Photo and Information Source:  Art Rocks- A Public Art Project flyer.

Indoor Halloween Party Decorations

Here are a few ideas for indoor decorations if you are planning a Halloween get together this year.  I usually have a “cheap & easy” rule when it comes to decorating the house for Halloween.  I try to have a focal point for each room- not a ton of little things spread throughout the house (fewer items are easier to put up and take down, and take up less space in my already burgeoning crawl space the rest of the year).  The biggest challenge for me, is reigning myself in to either make only very inexpensive purchases, or re-use things I already have in a different way.  This could be re-purposing the “normal” things around my home or re-using Halloween decorations from previous years.  Here are a few ideas…

Decorate your wine bottles!  Here I have used labels that I printed using clip art of a skull and crossbones that’s a lot less expensive than buying pre-made labels.  Also pictured, are two wine bottles are wrapped like mummies.  I used cheesecloth that I soaked in tea, to give it an aged look.   I found the inspiration and the “how-to” for these at http://www.marthastewart.com/264244/mummy-spirits.  You could glue on little “googly eyes” peeking out from the opening in the wrapping for a little added fun.  You can find those at a craft store.

Add these uninvited little guests (wired to the light fixture) above your food/appetizer table!  No party leftovers!

On the dining room wall, above the “buffet” cabinet, are a bunch of bats (a flock?, a herd? a gaggle?) – what ever you call them, they are flying this way.  In this case the bats are made from construction paper, folded at the wings joints to give it a 3-D look on the wall.  The bats are stapled to the wall (I used a swipe of black magic marker on the staples to eliminate reflection off the staple).  This was inspired by a project in Better Homes & Gardens magazine, Halloween edition.  (Could not find an online photo of theirs).  For my project, I added a full moon in the background.  I cut out a big circle on yellow poster board and painted it like  a “blood” moon.

This was the centerpiece for my dining table at a Halloween dinner party a few years ago.  The “tree” is a bunch of branches from my yard, spray-painted black.  The “shrunken heads” are made from dried apples that have a little faux fur glued to the top to simulate hair.  The inspiration for these came from here: http://www.marthastewart.com/268080/shrunken-apple-heads  Normally the drying process can take up to 2 weeks, but you could probably speed that along with a dehydrator or your oven.

Instead of just adding Halloween stuff to your room, try temporarily replacing the normal stuff with the creepy stuff.  In this case I have used a painting, painted by my mother (an artist in Phoenix).  It is given the prominent spot above the fireplace temporarily replacing the wall clock I usually have in that spot.  If you are not artist or have a friend who can paint something “Halloween-ish” for you, you could alway use a grouping of photos (either your own or some free stock photos online).  Maybe something like black and white photos of gnarly trees or Victorian head silhouettes.

Okay- so this one broke the “cheap & easy” rule this year.  But it was fun!  This is my Halloween tree, reminiscent of the costumes and the trick or treating of my childhood.  The tree is topped with a witch’s hat.  There are pumpkins and Jack-o-Lanterns under the tree. Feather boas act as a garland.  Masks, novelty head dresses, black birds, spiders, & miniature plastic pumpkins filled with candy corn act as ornaments.  There are strings of purple and “candy corn” lights to make the tree glow.  I also made colorful “crackers” filled with wrapped miniature candy bars.  Not only do they add a little color to the tree, they can also act as party favors for guests. Variations on the theme might include using a Halloween village or train set under the tree…  maybe next year.

Here are a couple of my favorite places to find inspiration for Halloween decor.  But I think it is always more fun to put your own spin on the projects inspired by others.

www.bhg.com, www.marthastewart.com, www.hgtv.com, and Lowe’s Creative Ideas magazine (fall editions)

Happy Hauntings!