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Summit County, CO: Mountain Living Real Estate Blog

The Mountain Living Team


Displaying blog entries 271-280 of 281

Link to a great overview of Summit County restaurants

by Joanne Hanson

I found this article about Summit County restaurants on They missed a couple, but by and large it is a good list and the reviews are pretty much right on.
See also, a post I added on 7/17/2007, a review of the new Breckenridge restaurant, Modis.�

Recipe for a sale

by Joanne Hanson

The Five ingredients for your recipe for a sale:


We usually can’t move a home to a new location!  The favorite phrase of appraisers is “Location, location, location”.  The pricing of your home must reflect its location.  If it is close to I-70 it will usually be worth less than the same home in the trees or with views.


The upkeep and presentation of your property is crucial to obtain the highest value for your home in any given market and at any given time.  Condition also affects the time on the market, with properties in better condition selling faster than those that need work.


Price is the number One factor in the sale of a home.  Price overcomes all objections and any deficiencies in the other four ingredients.


The more methods of financing your home the more options you give potential buyers.  If you can sell through VA or FHA loans, or owner carry, you increase the pool of buyers.  If you do an owner carry, you may be able to get more than fair market value, (depending on the market) but you also take on the risk of the loan.


Interest rates, competition and the economy all make up the state of the market when you sell your home.  The price of the property must reflect the current status of the market.  Sales more than six months old may not be usable as comps if the market has changed, unless you make adjustments.  The market will tell you what your property is worth; if the property doesn’t sell after some time on the market, then you need to look at the other four ingredients and see what needs adjusting.  I may be that new carpet will do it, or it may need a price adjustment.

A sixth ingredient, which could also be considered the baking soda in the mix, is the Realtor and his/her marketing package.  Ask questions before you hire your Realtor and ask for references!


What to do with all the pine beetle killed trees

by Joanne Hanson

The Summit Daily ran an article today about the possibility of using the standing dead trees to heat buildings in Vail. Summit County has also looked into the possibility of using the wood (called biomass fuel) to provide heat with no additional carbon output into the atmosphere.

We do need to do something about reducing the global warming, and reducing our use of fossil fuels is one best ways to do it.

Resorts and global warming

by Joanne Hanson

I am on my way home from attending the Rocky Mountain Resort Alliance meeting in Sun Valley, Idaho. The focus of the group is on trends and concerns that affect the real estate markets in our resort areas. With the exception of Sun Valley, the resorts all reported that sales are strong, inventory is hard to come by, and prices are headed up. Sun Valley is coming out of a market correction that several people felt was overdue.

Prices in new, premium properties at the base areas of some resorts are approaching $3000 per square foot! Summit County’s $1000 a square foot for condos at the new base area in Breckenridge seems tame by comparison.

Auden Schendler of Aspen Ski Co spoke at our meeting about the affects of global warming on the ski business and our recreation opportunities. He brought home the very real concerns that we should have, and made me much more aware of my “carbon footprint” that I leave behind. I will write more about what we can do to alleviate it in the coming days. According to Auden, in 100 years we will not have snow except at the very highest elevations, and even 30 years from now, we will see dramatic differences.

It is certainly scary, and is not limited to ski areas. It will affect everything in our lives, no matter where we live. Unless we make drastic changes within the next ten years, the balance within the environment will be so affected that it will not recuperate.

Secon home real estate markets are different

by Joanne Hanson

Today I had an offer on a property that was $75,000 less than the asking price, which was just over $500,000. The Seller was insulted and wanted to know what the Buyer was thinking! I know what he was thinking; that is is a Buyer’s market, which is what all the media outlets are telling people.

Our market is a second home market, and like most other mountain resorts, having record sales. The Buyer was from another state, and perhaps where he lives, he can make offers like that. Yes, our transactions have not increased over this time last year, but last year was a record year and our lack of inventory is the only thing keeping the transaction numbers from growing. You can’t sell what you don’t have!

The dollar volume has actually gone up by 17% over a year ago, so I think we could safely say we have a Seller’s market!

Fire Evacuation Tips

by Joanne Hanson

My sister lives in Oak Creek Canyon, near Sedona, Arizona. She recently had to evacuate because of a large wildfire. As she has had to evacuate before, she was more prepared than most. I thought I would copy an email she sent to her friends in case you live in a high fire danger area.

For the past thirty years I have lived in an area that is at high risk for wildfire. I have evacuated twice. The first time, I had several hours warning and was only gone for 8 hours. The second time, I had 30 minutes warning and was gone for 10 days. I have been told to ‘prepare to evacuate’ another two times.

I’ve found that when I’m told to evacuate, I don’t think straight. The first time, I evacuated things that were easily replaced and forgot the photo albums.

Now, I follow my list. It also helps to lessen the panic.

If you can’t find an animal, such as an outdoor kitty, sometimes animal rescue groups are allowed in to evacuate pets. During my last evacuation, some homeowners were allowed an escorted visit home (in the back of the sheriff’s car) but only for emergency items that included pets and prescription medications.

A few days after I was evacuated, we knew we wouldn’t be going home soon. As my only means of calling anyone was by cell phone, I called my cell phone company, explained the situation and they generously gave me an additional 150 minutes at no charge.

Before a fire

  • Make sure you have adequate insurance before a fire hits.
  • Your fire department would be happy to come to your house and make suggestions on what you can do to make your home/neighborhood “firewise”.
  • Have an evacuation alert plan for your neighborhood to make sure everyone knows of the evacuation order. I am responsible for calling or alerting three of my neighbors.
  • If you live in a high fire-danger area and have been given information critical to evacuation, such as the radio station frequency to tune to for evacuation instructions, keep this in your car or wallet/purse.
  • Organize your important things. For example: I keep all my photo albums in one cupboard so I don’t have to collect them from different parts of the house.
  • Take photographs of your house and contents. In addition to photographing your home’s exterior, interior, furnishings, etc.
  • Photograph the contents of drawers and cupboards. Take close-up photos of things such as CD & book collections. Photograph not only the front of valuable china or pottery – but also the back so the hallmarks are identifiable. Keep the photos in a safe deposit box.
  • Insurance adjusters will expect you to prove what you had with either receipts or photographs.
  • Exchange cell phone numbers with your family, friends and neighbors.
  • Make sure your insurance agent has your cell phone number.
  • Carry a list of your prescription medications in your purse or wallet, including the prescription number if you have refills available.
  • In my area, when the fire department has asked that when we evacuate the house, we hang a white cloth on the front door. This shows the house is empty and saves precious time for the sheriff or fire department. Ask your fire department if they have a similar plan for your area.
  • Also ask if you should leave your house unlocked when you leave.
  • Find out how to turn off the gas to your house. If you need a wrench to do this, keep one handy.
  • If you have pets, make sure your pet carriers are in a convenient place during fire season so you don’t waste time looking for them.

Tips for evacuating

  • It may be several weeks before you are allowed home. Keep this in mind when packing prescription medications, etc.
  • Use pillow cases to “grab and run”
  • Use bathroom/kitchen trash containers to pack fragile items, wrapping them in towels or clothes first.
  • Put similar size artwork face to face and wrap in a blanket. I use my quilt collection to wrap my paintings.
  • If you have time, pack a suitcase! You REALLY feel homeless when you are an evacuee with only the clothes on your back.
  • Remember things like cosmetics, toiletries, extra shoes. It’s expensive to replace all of this stuff if you’re gone from home for a couple of weeks.
  • Time permitting: before evacuating, put a ladder, shovels, garden hose, etc. where they are easily seen.
  • Time permitting: Check the outside of the house and move flammable things, such as lawn furniture, away from the house.
  • Time permitting: Take down light curtains. Close metal blinds.
  • If you have an outdoor kitty that you can’t find, leave a tub of dry food and large bucket of water out for it.

My priority list

During fire season I keep this in an easy to find place!

  • Car keys
  • Glasses
  • Purse or wallet
  • Pets
  • Prescription medications
  • Cell phone and chargers, AC and DC
  • Insurance papers and other important papers
  • Bottled water
  • Emergency food supplies for you and your pets
  • Turn off cooler or air-conditioning
  • Turn off gas to house
  • Close windows tightly

I do these things first, then if time permits I start collecting things such as photo albums, art work etc. My list includes:

  • Computer
  • Framed photos throughout the house
  • Photo albums
  • Jewelry
  • Family movies, videos etc.

Frisco Restaurants

by Joanne Hanson

We have a wonderful selection of restaurants in Frisco, and they all have great food! Those that don’t, go out of business fairly quickly.

My favorite is probably the Silverheels at the Orehouse. They have a tapas bar with great appetizers and sushi, and a restaurant with a variety of food, mostly with a southwestern flavor. I usually order the salmon, but they have other fish, steak, lamb and vegetarian dishes too. The only downside is that it can be a little noisy when they are busy. They have a nice outdoor patio with a firepit and lots of flowers. They are only open for lunch in the summer, but try and have at least a couple of meals there!

Tuscatos is a good choice for Italian food and the large bar is usually hopping during happy hour. Summit County is smoke free so you don’t have to worry about whether it is well ventilated or not; it won’t be smoky!

The Boatyard is my favorite place for lunch as they have a great selection of salads and a nice summer deck. Tell Cindy that I sent you! They have a good wait staff and are very accommodating.

If you are looking for a good, quick breakfast, try the Log Cabin Cafe. You can be in and out in a hurry as the waitstaff hustles! They serve breakfast all day, but are only open for breakfast and lunch.


Mt Royal hike

by Joanne Hanson

On Tuesday, June 13th we hiked Mt Royal, above Frisco. It was a warm day, and once you reach Masontown and continue up to the Summit, the hike gets steep, so we were feeling the temperature! It is a bit of a slog up the hill for a while, but once you reach the Mt Royal summit turnoff, it eases up a bit. If you continue on the trail without turning off, you will go to the top of Mt Victoria, or possibly even Peak One. At the top of the Mt Royal trail you will find a large cairn, and after you add your rock to the pile and admire the view, follow the trail to the right past a couple of old limber pines down the hill for a little bit. To really be able to say that you have hiked Mt Royal you need to go to the second summit. The trail will go uphill again to what seems to be a big rockpile. It is actually the rock outcropping that is so visible from Frisco. Here you can rest and admire the fabulous view of the lake and the Continental Divide.

One you are rested and think about your return, follow the trail back the way you came. Taking what looks like the “easy way” downhill, will take you to some precarious spots and you are putting yourselves in some danger. The little uphill back to the first summit makes you appreciate the rest of the hike, which is downhill all the way. We did the hike in about 3 and a half hours for the four miles roundtrip, so we are not the fastest hikers in the world, but for four women over 50, we did ok! What we lack in speed we make up for in stamina.

Interest rate review

by Joanne Hanson

In Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Mkt Survey (for the week ending June 9) in which the 30-yr fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) avg. 6.62%, down from last week’s avg. of 6.67%. Last year at this time, the 30-yr FRM avg. 5.56%.

The avg. for the 15-yr FRM is 6.23%, down from last week’s avg. of 6.26%. A year ago, the 15-yr FRM avg. 5.14%.

Five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) avg. 6.20%, down from last week when it avg. 6.26%. A year ago, the five-year ARM avg. 5.01%.

One-year Treasury-indexed ARMs avg. 5.63%, down from last week when it avg. 5.68%. At this time last year, the one-yr ARM avg. 4.21%.

This information is courtesy of Mountain Equity Mortgage in Summit County, Colorado.

Hiking the North Ten Mile Trail

by Joanne Hanson

On June 7th, Marie, Eileen, Ruth, Mahea,her dog Chloe and I hiked the North Ten Mile trail. The wildflowers are blooming already and it was a beautiful day. We hiked about 8 miles altogether.

The end of the trail is about 3.5 miles from the trailhead, but we weren’t ready to finish, so we decided to go a little way toward Uneva Pass on the Gore Trail. However the river is high with snow melt and we were unable to cross it. Instead we took the Gore Trail the other direction, toward Eccles Pass and climbed the first couple of switchbacks before we ran out of time.

It was good we turned around when we did as the last ten minutes of hiking back to our cars was accompanied by thunder and lightning, although the rain held off until we were actually in our cars. It was a good hike! Next week we will be doing Mount Royal, which will have some great lake views. I will be taking my camera.

Displaying blog entries 271-280 of 281




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Photo of Jason & Meredith Adams Real Estate
Jason & Meredith Adams
Mountain Living Real Estate
PO Box 4115
Frisco CO 80443