Grand Junction Home Valuation

How Do We Find The “Best” Realtor To Help Us In A New Location?

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Dave,

We will be moving out of state, to a city where we know absolutely no one.  How do we go about finding the “best” Realtor to help us in our new location?

Thanks,

Andrew - Grand Junction


Andrew,

Great question. There are several ways to go about finding an agent in the city where you are moving. First, if you need to sell your home here, you can ask you real estate agent to refer you to an agent in their network with their company. This typically works great, because your local agent will do their due diligence to make sure the agent in your new city is experience, professional and knows the ins and outs of your new market.  

You can also get on line and look for homes in the area and take note of names that you see over and over.  Those agents, are probably well known and well connected and have a good base of knowledge of the local market.  Be careful to just take the recommendations of “find an agent websites”, because many times the agents that are referred off these sites are not producers, they are paying the web sites a referral fee for buyer referrals, It may have nothing to do with ability, knowledge or results, but who is paying for the website for the referral. Your best bet is to find a local agent here that has connections and can find you a qualified agent in your new city!! Best of luck, I hope this helps.

Dave Kimbrough

The Kimbrough Team

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What Are Your Thoughts On Converting A Two Car Garage Into A Living Space?

Dear Dave,

grand+junction+real+estate

I own an older home, built in the 1980’s. I’m doing some upgrades this spring and am considering adding on to it. I recently saw a home that was a similar age and when they remodeled they turned the two car garage into a living room and opened up the adjoining wall into the house. Something like this might suit our needs perfectly. What are your thoughts on this? Is it good for potential resale or would I be better off leaving it as a small garage and not adding living space.

Thanks. I would appreciate the advice.

 John - Grand Junction, CO


John,

This one is a tough one. If you need extra living space, it does not get any more convenient or inexpensive than to convert the garage to a new living room or couple of bedrooms. Keep in mind that the conversion does come at the expense of valuable resale space, the garage. I am one of those who believe the garage is sacred space!  Where would one put his duck decoys, bikes (motor or pedal), ATV’s, kayaks, canoes, dog kennels, gun safes, hunting gear, tool boxes, work bench, etc.? I am sure you see my point. A garage, especially here in Western Colorado, is valuable space and hard to replace. Oh, and I nearly forgot, you might even have enough room to park your car!

For resale purposes I am of the belief that the conversion will generally cost you money and not increase your value. That being said, if you convert and add two bedrooms and go from a 3-bedroom home to a 5-bedroom home, you might find someone who has a large or blended family that has a specific need for the extra bedrooms. In this specific scenario I could see the possibilities of the conversion adding value. Outside of this specific situation I think the loss of the garage outweighs in cost and function the addition of added living space.  

For resale purposes I am of the belief that that a garage conversion will generally cost you money and not increase your value.

The last thing to consider is to go ahead and make the conversion, but do so in such a way that you will be able to easily convert it back when/if you sell in the future. By doing this you will have a cost effective addition and keep the flexibility to convert it back easily. This is a common practice and is easy to remedy when the time comes to sell.

As you can see, I am a fan of garages and believe that having a garage is an important and valuable feature. I will close with this, if a conversion will fit the needs of your family perfectly, then go ahead and do it and enjoy living there with the added living space. Converting and then converting back in the future will surely be less expensive than selling and buying. If the rest of the house fits your needs, just convert and do so in a way that leaves you the flexibility to easily convert back if needed. Hope this helps! 

Dave Kimbrough

The Kimbrough Team

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Why is there such a big increase in my property valuation and taxes this year?

Real estate investment

Hey Dave,

We just received the property valuation notice for our new house. The current value is $71,000 higher than the previous year. Certainly, the current property value they have listed is lower than what we recently paid, but is this jump in value reasonable? It's just a little freaky thinking about our bills getting larger, but maybe that's just how it goes?

We still love our new home, but were just surprised to see such a significant jump. Thanks again!

K., Grand Junction


K.,

Great question.

Since all the new property valuations hit everybody’s mail box in the past couple weeks, (they went out on May 1, 2019) we have had had several inquiry’s just like yours. You can feel some comfort/consolation that you are not the only person that has had questions about the increase in property taxes and valuation. What happened is the county had not really done a thorough re-assessment of property values for several years so it was time for it to happen again. With the recent surge in the overall real estate market it was to be expected that valuations would increase, but its always a bit startling when it actually hits your monthly payment.  

The evaluation period used to establish the new property values was Jan 1, 2017 – June 20, 2018. Keep in mind that since 2012 our property values have been on a steady increase, but specifically 2017 and 2018 saw median home prices climb nearly 13% over the 18 month period. 

The evaluation period used to establish the new property values was Jan 1, 2017 – June 20, 2018. Keep in mind that since 2012 our property values have been on a steady increase, but specifically 2017 and 2018 saw median home prices climb nearly 13% over the 18 month period. This 18 month period saw the most significant 18 month increase since the market peak of 2007/2008, so seeing all our property valuations increase is hard to argue. Speaking of arguing, you do have the right to protest your property valuation. You can go down to the Assessors Office (544 Rood Ave #2) and speak with them about your property value. Make sure you bring with you information that supports your estimation of value. There is no guarantee of change, but at least you will get the opportunity to make your case! 

Look on the bright side, because of the down market between 2009 & 2012 you might have caught a little break as values struggled and did not show any increases. Remember that rising tides lift all boats so we are all sharing in the increase in property values that will be generating more property tax money for the city and county! One last silver lining, according to Investopedia.com Colorado is still on the “lowest 10 states for property taxes” and nationally low as compared the rest of the United States. Unfortunately taxes are just part of the program and as long as values continue to rise, you can expect them to continue to increase! Hope this helps. 

By the way, Happy Mother’s Day! If you have not called your Mom today to thank her and tell her you love her, stop reading and pick up your phone! Remember, without our moms, none of us would be here so when you think about it, we really do owe them!  We should do it much more often, but at least today stop and honor your Mother…she deserves it!

Dave Kimbrough

The Kimbrough Team

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