Author Archive

Jason Shepherd Quoted in Real Estate Business Institute Piece On Listing Strategies

June 22, 2018
Sara Russell

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Atlas Co-Founder and Partner, Jason Shepherd was recently quoted in Real Estate Business Institute’s online magazine discussing listing prices. Addressing the frequent valuation discrepancies of larger websites like Zillow, Shepherd says:

“To combat the pricing metrics of websites like Zillow or Realtor.com, it’s important to describe the shortfalls of algorithm-based valuation in real estate. The accuracy of housing value websites depends on the dataset, algorithms, and machine learning.

Artificial intelligence is only as good as the data it’s given, and with real estate, there’s not enough aggregated data for the algorithms to produce an output with a good confidence interval. It’s still very early in its data lifecycle, so it isn’t close to perfect, but it’s getting better.

The current issue with AI in real estate is the infrequency of data points. Real estate doesn’t transact as often as other forms of data-driven businesses. For example, stocks trade value every fraction of a second, and online poker bots can see hundreds of hands at a time. In these examples, the robust datasets allow a machine to learn and then determine valuation. The average homeowner buying or selling their primary residence once every seven years doesn’t allow for the most accurate valuation logic.

The even larger issue for accurate data resides in such housing variables as the interior condition, basement finish, views, whether there’s a liquor store next door, surrounding traffic, five pitbulls in the neighbor’s backyard, excessive HOA fees, and the list goes on. These variables can be so specific to a particular home that even the house next door or the house across the street might not be susceptible to these types of valuation adjustments.

These predictive valuation websites will continue to get better as a natural product of more data and information. At this time, they should be used as a starting point but never to determine list price.”

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Denver Metro Market Update: June 2018

The Denver area real estate market continues to sizzle into the Summer as homes sell quickly and prices increase steadily even with an increased housing inventory. In the Denver Metro market (including Adams, Arapahoe, Boulder, Broomfield, Clear Creek, Denver, Douglas, Elbert, Gilpin, Jefferson and Park counties), we also saw:

  • 3,807 total single-family homes sold; up 9.37 percent from last month
  • Average sold price in the single-family home market jumped to $540,624 (up 0.10 percent from last month)
  • Median sold price in the single-family home market jumped to $451,000 (down 0.88 percent from last month)
  • Average sold price in the condo market increased to $356,337 (up 0.56 percent from last month)
  • Median sold price in the condo market increased to $305,000 (up 2.52 percent from last month)
  • 6,437 active listings at the close of April, a steady seasonal increase as we head into what is traditionally the busiest real estate season

Even with prices hitting record breaking levels, investing in real estate is still possible! Listen to Atlas’ own Mike Hills talk real estate investment on Haystack Help Radio.

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Jennifer Reinhardt Provides Tips on Moving to Denver in Recent Closetbox Article

June 13, 2018
Sara Russell

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In “10 Things to know before moving to Denver,” Atlas Associate Broker, Jennifer Reinhardt, gives advice on adjusting to Denver’s high altitude, local entrepreneur culture, cost of living, food/beer appreciation and more:

“Know that we love to work out,” says Jennifer Reinhardt, an associate broker with Atlas Real Estate Group. “There are people running and biking all over the city. We love to plan hikes and stair climbs. We have Red Rocks Amphitheatre, not just for concerts, but for running up and down the stairs and hiking in the mornings.” But, first, she suggests, adjust to the elevation. You’re going to feel winded quick, even if you are in great shape. To get in on the fun, try renting a bike from B-Cycle, the city’s bikeshare that has stations throughout downtown, and explore the city on two wheels.

Denver isn’t all brawn; lots of brainpower is here, too, and entrepreneurship is celebrated. “Denver is full of small business owners and start-up companies,” Reinhardt says. “There is a culture to network, share workspace and grow a company. We have a strong, robust economy.” In fact, Closetbox is based in Colorado and was started by a Denver entrepreneur.

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Mike Hills Talks Investment Properties on Haystack Help Radio

Atlas Associate Broker/Property Manager Mike Hills talks getting started in real estate investment on Haystack Help Radio’s featured segment, “Your Money Matters.” Hills, host Scott Whatley, and Kurt Rogers, owner of Affordable Interest Mortgage, discuss what it means to invest in real estate, timing and actual cost. Hills also introduces listeners to Real Estate Investment Hour, a monthly presentation and networking event, developed by Hills, that teaches you how to build long-term wealth and save for major life events by investing in real estate.

Held at Atlas Real Estate Group in Denver, Hills and his team use the hour-long session to teach attendees how to navigate the path to financial stability. They share their own personal experiences and “how to” stories about building passive income so that attendees walk away with an understanding of why they decided to invest in real estate and the success (and peace of mind) they’ve achieved through their investments. Click here for more info on this fun, informative and congenial event, with refreshments served!

“One of the things we ask is what’s your Why? Why are you here? You know. Why do you want to do this? Are you just trying to get a get rich quick scheme, you know people come to me, like I want to make 15% on my money in 2 years and sell. I’m not your guy for that. You know, again, we’re planning long-term. We’re trying to make fundamentally strong, smart decisions, in an up economy or a down economy, so that we’re not forced to sell. Because if we’re not forced to sell, we have options and in the end that is what we are all after, is options.”

Listen to the full podcasts on the right.

About Your Money Matters

Your Money Matters is presented by Haystack Help Radio, and is sponsored and brought to you by Affordable Interest Mortgage. Your Money Matters is on every Tuesday from 12PM to 1PM on 560 AM KLZ. The show informs listeners of different ways to save their money on a variety of consumer topics:

  • Mortgage Interest Rates
  • Improving Your Credit Score
  • Financial Planning
  • How To Sell Your Home
  • How and Why to Choose your Title Company
  • How To Become Your Own Bank

Each week’s guest is a local specialist from various fields that share ideas and knowledge of his/her profession to help listeners.

Podcasts

Mike Hills interview on Haystack Help Radio’s, “Your Money Matters” from 05/15/18

Mike Hills interview on Haystack Help Radio’s, “Your Money Matters” from 04/10/18

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Atlas Real Estate Group Named Finalist for Small Business Awards by Denver Business Journal

June 4, 2018
Sara Russell

Atlas Real Estate Group has been named a top 5 finalist in the “medium/21-30 employees” category for the 2018 Small Business Awards by Denver Business Journal.

This year’s group of 113 nominees consist of a wide range of locally based small businesses with 100 or fewer employees. The Small Business Awards finalists were selected based on a number of factors, including financial performance, historical achievements, contributions to industry, contributions to the local economy and potential to shape metro Denver’s business community.

“This year more than ever, the companies involved in this competition were outstanding – truly a tremendous group of finalists,” said Atlas Co-Founder and Partner, Ryan Boykin. “I want to congratulate the award winner in our category, TRIO Environments, for their remarkable efforts to make Denver a more beautiful and equitable place to work and live,” acclaimed Boykin.

Read the full Press Release

Read the Denver Business Journal Special Report: 2018 Small Business Awards

Mike Hills, Nick Hodapp and Nick Mertens of Atlas Real Estate Group celebrate being recognized as finalist by Denver Business Journal’s Small Business Awards at DBJ’s event party, May 24, 2018.

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WORKING RELATIONSHIP OF RYAN BOYKIN AND MOM, JOAN BOYKIN, FEATURED IN REAL ESTATE EXPRESS ARTICLE

May 24, 2018
Sara Russell

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Ryan Boykin and Mom Joan Boykin Atlas Real EstateAtlas Founder and Partner Ryan Boykin and his mother, Joan Boykin have been featured in Real Estate Express’ “Mother-Child Duos Proving a Family Business in Real Estate Works.” Just in time for Mother’s Day, the article highlighted the pros and cons of a parent/child working relationship and provided sound advice on how to ensure it is a success.

Pros of working together: “This is one category of my business that I don’t need to micromanage,” said Ryan Boykin. “The trust that comes from someone who is a family member and looking out for your best interest — they might have different decision-making outcomes but you know that the place the decision is coming from is pure and true.”

Joan Boykin shared similar feelings, “Working with each other gives us an ironclad assurance that I have his back at all times and he has my back at all times. It not only solidifies your working bond but your familial bond.”

Challenges: “I don’t approve of swearing,” said Joan Boykin about her son’s tendency to become passionate when he’s working hard on a project. “When I’m in operation mode and I’m in my place really needing to go out and execute and take care of things, I tend to be brief,” said Ryan Boykin.

While mom might not always like the way her son handles his passion, they’ve turned the challenge into an opportunity to provide two-way feedback. “I think when you’re the owner of a business, very few people are willing to give you feedback,” said Joan Boykin, “but I think that a parent can do it in a really constructive manner.”

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DENVER METRO MARKET UPDATE: MAY 2018

May 15, 2018
Sara Russell

Home prices in the Denver metro market continued to soar with the average and median single-family home price reaching $543,058 and $455,000 respectively. Homebuyer demand also remained strong due to the typical seasonal influx of properties on the market, however they were promptly pounced-on by waiting homebuyers.

In the Denver Metro market (including Adams, Arapahoe, Boulder, Broomfield, Clear Creek, Denver, Douglas, Elbert, Gilpin, Jefferson and Park counties), we also saw:

  • 3,102 total single-family homes sold; down 3.51 percent from last month
  • Average sold price in the single-family home market jumped to $543,058 (up 4.40 percent from last month)
  • Median sold price in the single-family home market jumped to $455,000 (up 3.41 percent from last month)
  • Average sold price in the condo market increased to $351,433 (up 0.40 percent from last month)
  • Median sold price in the condo market increased to $297,000 (up 0.68 percent from last month)
  • 5,160 active listings at the close of April, a steady seasonal increase as we head into what is traditionally the busiest real estate season

With all these increases, is Denver in a housing bubble? Altas broker, Eddie Reynolds, tackles this Frequently Asked Question in a recent video blog.

 

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Spring Home Maintenance Tips

May 14, 2018
Jason Jones

With spring finally creeping into the Front Range and the weather warming-up, we are reminded of some simple steps to take to keep our homes looking great and operating efficiently.

Included below are our top Spring home maintenance tips.

Interior:

  • Clean your dryer vent. While keeping the lint trap clean is a priority, some lint will inevitably make its way into the vent. A clean vent will save you money by reducing the amount of time it has to run and prevent potential home fires, which are often caused by clogged vents.
  • Clean or replace your furnace filter. This will this provide cleaner air throughout your home and reduce the cost of your utility bill.
  • Inspect your water heater. Look for signs of rust or leaks.
    Note: Atlas residents should contact us immediately if you see any of these warning signs.
  • Vacuum your refrigerator coils. Located at the bottom or back of your fridge, the coils are forced to work harder when covered when dust. Cleaning them ensures your appliance will run more efficiently and save you money on your electric bill.
  • Change the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Test your detectors every month.
  • Test your attic fan, a/c unit, central air unit, or evaporative cooler (swamp cooler).
    Note: If you reside at an Atlas managed property and your unit is not functioning properly please contact us so that we may service the unit.

Exterior:

  • Maintain the lawn and shrubbery. Remove leaves and debris that may have collected over winter. Mow your lawn regularly and keep the grass below 3” at all times.
  • Inspect the gutters. Remove leaves and debris from the gutters to assure water can properly flow off your roof and away from the homes foundation.

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Ryan Boykin Discusses the 1 Trendy Solution to Millennial Homeownership Issues in Realty Times Article

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In his latest piece for Realty Times, Atlas Co-Founder and Owner Ryan Boykin discusses the 1 trendy solution to millennial homeownership problems—a rent with right to purchase (RTP) or rent to own (RTO) program.

“Millennials were the largest group of U.S. home buyers in 2016, according to Zillow Group Report. Nevertheless, they still lag behind previous generations by about three years in the age at which they are becoming first-time homeowners.

The solution for many aspiring homeowners, of any age, is renting. For example, even if they have enough for a down payment, 62 percent of millennials shop for a rental while looking to buy a home, according to a survey cited on CNBC. However, deciding to keep renting does not get them closer to their goal of purchasing their own residence.

Instead of just renting to buy time until inventory improves or building a down payment fund, prospective homeowners may want to consider a rent-to-own (RTO) option.

These agreements can be excellent alternatives for those who want to get into a home but are not financially ready to become homeowners. This helps them lock in the home they would like, improve credit worthiness and, with a percentage of rent going toward the purchase price, build some equity in “their future home.”

Read the full article here

Interested in renting to own? Learn more about Atlas’ Rent with the Right to Purchase Program.

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Atlas Named Best Property Management Company in Colorado for Second Year

May 3, 2018
Sara Russell

The tallies are in and Atlas Real Estate Group has been named Best of Colorado Property Management for the second consecutive year by ColoradoBiz Magazine. This recognition comes as part of the fourth annual Best of Colorado Business Choice Awards. Among 80+ categories, almost 20,000 readers voted for their favorite Colorado businesses, from best coffee shop to best place to mountain bike, best financial firm to best attraction.

For the fourth year in a row, voting was conducted by Data Joe over several months.

“Our remarkable growth over the past decade has been fueled by our committed, client-focused team,” said Partner/Co-Founder, Jason Shepherd. “I’m sincerely grateful to be surrounded by skilled and passionate professionals who make recognition like this possible.”

Read the full press release

See the complete Best of Colorado publication (note, Atlas is featured on page 30)

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