Listen in as Dave, Thom and Michelle talk about the current happenings in the Boise Idaho area in regards to the Real Estate Market.  Listen to  candid conversation about the fees associated with getting a loan from the lender's perspective in Idaho.  Ever wondered about why anyone would buy a town home in Idaho?  find out Thom's opinion on the benefits of town home living along with things to think about when remodeling your home.   

Seg #1

Dave: This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz, I'm Dave Burnett along with Thom Dallman of Core Group Realty. CoreGroupRealty.com is the website to find out all things happening in real estate in the Treasure Valley. Or give them a call at 933-7777, there will be somebody to answer that phone call, even here on a Saturday, somebody will answer in the office and get you hooked up with what you need to know. Thom welcome back and no day like today to buy real estate!

Thom: Thank you, yes, no day like today. Yes, it's a great time to get out there and look at property and get those properties under contract. I'm glad to report that the inventory is coming up just a tad bit from the month prior so we've got some more inventory out there to look at. Even within our company, we ourselves have 4 brand new listings that I wanted to talk about today that have come on this week. 

Dave: Kind of excited to hear about this, there's some out in the rural areas with some property on them so there's some interesting properties you have for sale. What do you get with these listings?

Thom: So just starting out in Caldwell, we have two new listings that came on. Great price points, especially for the starter home as far as these properties go. The first one is in the Delaware Park subdivision of Caldwell, it's 11656 Cambria Street in Caldwell, its 1100 square foot home coming on at $129,000, 3 bedroom 2 bath with a 2 car garage. It's on .17 of an acre, it has irrigation which is really great, we were just chatting with someone earlier this week at one of our meetings that had clients who were very concerned about their water and the bill; they have to pay $200-$300 each month for watering their yard, so they are looking for irrigation which is usually a lower bill. 

Dave: And at that price point that's a great starter home!

Thom: Yeah, exactly, great starter home! It actually has RV parking in it too. We talk about the RV parking all the time. Also this home has the city and sewer water connections.

Dave: What was the size of that lot again that it's on?

Thom: It's .17 so it's average. 

Dave: Just a hair above average, so that's nice. 

Thom: So once again 11656 Cambria Street in Caldwell at $129,000 for 1100 square feet. Great little property.

Dave: You know I happened on your listing there and I'm kind of throwing a right hook at you while we're doing this, do you have the school districts that are listed out there?

Thom: I don't have them listed here but if you go to our website and look at our Featured Listings you can pull it up on there and it will connect you to the actual listing where you can see what school district this house is under. 

Dave: Core Group Realty and that's Core with a C. CoreGroupRealty.com. I just mention that because I know that in the Caldwell area, part of Caldwell is in the Valley View school district and they have a new high school coming on line this fall. 

Thom: We are hearing more and more from some of our clients saying that they want to focus only on home in the Valley View school district. 

Dave: Very good school district, it is very good and I can attest to that first hand with some kids and grandkids who live out in that district. What else do you have out there in Canyon County?

Thom: The next one that we have is a little bit of a smaller property, it a 900 square foot house, 2 bedroom, 2 bath in the West Valley Subdivision. Has a 2 car garage, on .19 of an acre, also has irrigation and is fully fenced. This house is at 4917 Pioneer Ave. in Caldwell, so once again it's a cute small house, a great starter house at 900 square feet with a 2 bed, 2 bath. Right there in Caldwell, it's got a covered patio and deck on the back for entertaining, that's always nice. And once again, on irrigation. I mean how can you beat that?

Dave: You can't. When you look at the price in some areas of how much the cost of water is, it's a lot. Now let me ask you this, we've talked in the past maybe we should be talking in the future as well about investment properties. This one would probably make a great investment property. 

Thom: Yeah, a great rental property, once again at $109,900 is the price of the house, for 900 square feet it would definitely be good cash flow for investor I think if they wanted to rent this out. I'm not sure what the current rent is going for a 2 bedroom, 2 bath out there but it's definitely work looking at as a rental. 

Dave: And you can call Core Group Realty at 933-7777 and one of the customer care agents will take care of you and get you to an agent who can talk to you. You know the nice thing is you have specialists here, you have people who talk about investment properties and they can let you know what exactly is happening there. 

Thom: Oh definitely, we have connections and people that can help you find out like I said what the rental market is like in that area and what people can get for rent. Yes, we definitely have those connections. 

Dave: Other properties that you have listed?

Thom: Yeah the next one I wanted to talk about is actually a really nice large acreage property out in Emmett. Lovely, beautiful Emmett in the valley there. It's on almost 4 acres, 3.81 to be exact, a nice 2508 square foot home, 4 bedroom 2 bath and the list price is $275,000 so it's a great property for acreage out there in Emmett. It's also really nice because it also has a lot of fruit trees, he's pretty much put in his own orchard on the property, so it has peaches, nectarines, pears, apples, cherry trees and so forth. 

Dave: Which if you have mature trees that is just a nice thing to have on a property. 

Thom: Huge. 

Dave: Where you've got fruit that's already bearing right now..

Thom: Exactly, and the nice things too is that it's on a well so the watering of those trees and so forth is fairly minimal to water on a well. 

Dave: It's interesting, we were talking about irrigation water on the past two properties and well water. One of the big concerns in Idaho is just water and water usage, so when you get irrigation water or well water that is a definite plus, something you might want to consider, especially if you have acreage that you need to water. 

Thom: Correct, for those large acreages you definitely don't need I guess the city water bills. (laughing)

Dave: (Laughing) No that would not be good. By the way all three of these houses, we'll have one more at CoreGroupRealty.com, you'll find them there, you can find out the information about those as well.

Thom: Yep, just click on the Featured Listings tab and you should see all the information there that you need. 

Dave: Perfect. And number 4 on our list?

Thom: Number 4 is a great Boise property actually on a little bit bigger lot, it's .45 so almost a half an acre, right up here off of Overland and Five Mile.

Dave: Okay, so West Boise.

Thom: Great west Boise property, convenient pretty much to everywhere.

Dave: Yeah, you're not too far away from the freeway so if you're going to Nampa or downtown you're right there.

Thom: Exactly. It's an 1892 square foot house, 3 bedroom 2 bath, great sunroom off the back of it. It's listed at $225,000 and the address is 1480 S. Cotterell Way. Built in 1994, they've gone through and done some upgrades to the house and it's just a beautiful house with an East facing backyard and so forth. Once again that's 1892 square feet at $225,000 for half an acre. Great RV spot on it as well to park any toys. It's really just a lovely property.

Dave: And if I'm not mistaken, Cotterell Way that would be Mountain View school district, right there Mountain View high school in that area. Now they've changed some of the boundaries so..

Thom: Yeah they've changed some of the boundaries, so this is showing Borah High School. 

Dave: Okay, they juggled some of those up in there this year which that's a whole other show and a whole other time. (laughing)

Thom: (laughing) Exactly, school districts. 

Dave: So Borah High School, which is one of the long standing high schools and has a great reputation for education, athletic programs as well. 

Thom: For sure, I think it's very important because this house is on irrigation as well even though it is within city limits. So your lawn maintenance is fairly inexpensive to maintain. 

Dave: And all of these are on the Featured Listings tab on the website?

Thom: Featured Listings, yes, and you can check the Coming Soon's for when we do have those coming soon properties to get an advanced notice on those properties. 

Dave: In fact, something I might recommend to you if you are looking for land or property I should say, but if you're looking for properties, if you're looking for investments you might want to bookmark CoreGroupRealty.com just go onto the website just click on favorites and make it a favorite that way it's easy to get to. Or you could mark the Coming Soon's as a favorite, it's quick and easy that way to just go to your favorite list and not have to type it in every time. 

Thom: Check it out at least maybe twice a week just to make sure you're staying on top of the new stuff coming on and keep in contact with us, we have ways of making sure that you're getting the information as well via our systems to make sure that you're staying in front of the market place and other buyers that may be competing. Especially on the Coming Soon's you may want to have that head start on it. 

Dave: Yeah, mind you are competing in with Core Group Realty customers because it is exclusive to Core Group Realty, those coming soon's are. Still it beats being out with the vast multitudes out there looking for homes because there's a lot of people looking for homes right now.

Thom: There is. 

Dave: There's quite a demand we've talked in the past about new homes, new construction, and about existing homes, the four listings you have this week, one in Emmett with almost 4 acres, a couple in Caldwell, one in West Boise, I think these will be all prime places that people will want to look to go. 

Thom: Oh for sure, yes, I think there definitely are different niches that are being met for each of these properties and definitely have buyers out there for them, multiple buyers actually that are looking for these properties. 

Dave: My wife and I have talked several times that we wound up building in Eagle but maybe we should have built in Emmett. It is a little drive in but the thing is, you're living the country life and if you work in West Boise or in Nampa, easy access to Canyon County. 

Thom: Emmett is such a great community too, it's got that small town community feeling where everybody is just so friendly and gets along so well out there. 

Dave: I always like to consider it Emmett, America. (laughing). So take a look at CoreGroupRealty.com at their Featured Listings and take a look at these properties and see if there’s something that may be just right for you out there, at CoreGroupRealty.com and of course you can always call 933-7777, Thom Dallman's staff is here and they are ready to meet your need. Or if you happen to be in the mall area, you can stop by here at Emerald street and check out the offices, they'd love to sit and chat with you as well. We’ll continue, this is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz, I'm Dave Burnett along with Thom Dallman who is the co-owner and the designated broker for Core Group Realty here on 580 KIDO.

Section #2

Dave: This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz, I'm Dave Burnett along with Thom Dallman of CORE Group Realty and Michelle Guth from Diversified Mortgage, joining us. Diversified Mortgage which is an equal opportunity lender, is that how we officially state that?

Michelle: Perfection, thank you Dave.

Dave: And Michelle, phone number in case someone wants to get a hold of you there at Diversified Mortgage.

Michelle: 853-7878!

Dave: You know Thom, we talked a little bit last week about what to expect with earnest money and the different things expect, what kind of goes into that transaction...

Thom: Yeah, the financial obligations that you have when you're going through the purchasing process on a property.

Dave: So and the uh the funny thing is that it was about finance, so I think Michelle Guth with Diversified Mortgage is the person to talk to as far as what really nuts and bolts wise what we're looking to do when we get into that purchase and we talked about earnest money, we've had some questions that people talk about now wait a minute, earnest money, how does that all work? Michelle, let's talk about it. We found a home, Thom has picked out a beautiful home for me. Oh, you'll love this home, it's a great home that he's picked out for me, and we're ready to buy. We're pre-approved, we're ready to go. What's next?

Michelle: Well, that's when we'd love to get you into the office and kind of go through step-by-step of what to expect going through the lending process up to the point of closing, so I think it was a great segment I had the opportunity to listen to it. So from my side, we get a lot of questions about that earnest money. After they put it down it's like where does that money go? So we like to just basically explain that when we determine how much we're going to need in total at closing it's going to be a credit that is going to be applied towards their bottom line at the very end. So, in other words, dependent on how much they did for down payment, if they need to pay some of their closing costs, whatever that earnest money amount is, we're gonna deduct it right off of the bottom line at the closing table. So they will get that credit dollar for dollar off of what is needed at the very end.

Dave: So really Earnest money, that's the first check I'm going to be writing in this whole process of buying a home.

Michelle: It is, and a lot of times people are caught off guard that they need to write a check to execute a contract, so Thom's team as well as my team like to make sure that people are aware of approximately what they need to have set aside for their transaction up front before they can start the home buying process.

Dave: And Thom, you mentioned last week that it's usually around like 10%? Or..no..

Thom: 1% yeah. We usually suggest about 1% of the purchase price, rounding it up and down to the nearest thousand dollars so um, you know, like I mentioned if it's $100,000-$200,000 we usually do $1,000 of earnest money but it's not an exact science but it's pretty close to about that 1% of the purchase price.

Dave: So let me ask you this Michelle. Is that average and is there an advantage to give more or less? Is there an advantage one way or another with earnest money?

Michelle: Well I think Thom can attest to the fact that the more you put down on earnest money it's gonna make a seller feel a little more comfortable with the strength that the borrower. We do have clients though that are purchasing under the bond program and they only need to have .5% into the transaction and in those cases many times Thom's team will adjust the earnest money accordingly to say $500. Especially if their funds needed to close is only $750 for their half a point in those cases we can usually adjust the earnest money and the money accordingly based on their ability as far as what they have for down on that earnest money and again, it's case by case basis.

Dave: I guess let me ask this question, I'm not sure who to ask Thom or you Michelle on this. In a market place like we have now where sometimes there's multiple bids coming in on a house you're basically in a bidding war, does that earnest money by suddenly can say alright I'll put $2,000 instead of $1,000 or I'll put 2% does that help with the bidding war?

Michelle: I think it can, um, again it depends on the strength of the borrower with respect to what is their overall offer look like, are they doing a large down payment? Are they, you know, a 20%down borrower compared to somebody that's maybe doing a small down payment program? That's something that the seller may take into account when they're deciding what offer they want to accept.

Thom: Exactly. I would agree with that 100%. It really kind of, it can help the offer look better to the sellers because they feel more confident that that will go through all the way up to the end because it shows that the buyers have that financial ability of getting through the contract and getting it to close.

Michelle: On the flip side of that I would want to say though that a lot of our first time home buyers when they are competing, they are competing against the same demographic, so they're first time home buyers so I don't want them to feel discouraged that if they have a sum of earnest money that they're not going to be in a good position to buy. So they are typically competing with very like offers so again we're going to customize it to their specific needs.

Dave: But again, that money goes towards the purchase of the house and tell me again what is it that it goes to?

Michelle: Basically their down payment indoor closing costs, whatever their bottom line is at closing, so, um, another thing I thought we'd touch on is home inspection, so not only do they need their earnest money I know Thom you had mentioned about needing a home inspection. Not a requirement for any program, but we always encourage our clients to get a home inspection. Uh Thom what's the average price of those been in your experience?

Thom: Um, they're running around $250-$400 depending on the size of the house. So the average house size, um, usually runs about that $250-$300. So, it's very important like you said to make sure that that home inspection is done because that is someone that is going to go into almost every single little corner, crevice, and make sure that that house is safe and sound for the buyer. For their purchase, so.

Michelle: Huge investment, so I agree. Great, great thing to have done.

Dave: So that is something the buyer typically pays for then?

Michelle: Correct. So as a lender we're not even accounting for that when we are figuring what they need for closing costs, payment and so forth that is outside of the loan process but we do like to educate them up front that those are funds you probably should have set aside as a recommendation to get that done as soon as they get under contract.

Dave: So I would equate that to buying a car running it by a mechanic to take a look at it.

Michelle: Exactly, a great analogy.

Dave: Hey this funny noise, is that a bad thing? So yeah, so yeah something dripping from the ceiling? Probably not a good sign.

Michelle: Exactly!

Dave: OK so what's the difference between an appraisal and a home inspection? Are they one and the same?

Michelle: Great question, we get that one a lot. So the home inspection is something that is optional, and again they're getting in and looking at the ins and outs of that property from being in the crawl space to the attic and so forth. The appraiser is actually appraising the value of the home; the inspection is looking at the condition of the home. In addition, the appraiser is going to look for things that are obvious that maybe are requirements under certain programs like your government programs we can't have exterior chipped, peeling paint, cracked windows could be a health & safety thing, but outside of that, the appraisal is primarily to ensure that the home is meeting the value for what you're paying on the contract.

Dave: So that would be the lender wanting to make sure that since, let's be honest, the lenders want its owning the house until you buy it from them, so they just need to make sure the property is worth what you're paying for.

Michelle: Absolutely, and it’s or the consumers advantage as well, we wouldn't want them to over pay for a property if the value is not there.

Thom: There is a tie-in too between the inspection and the appraisal and the fact that the inspector will point out those items that could potentially be a hold up for the appraisal process and prolong the buying process. The inspection is very important to help us identify anything that the lender may require to be fixed so that when they fix it for that appraisal saving both the sellers and the buyers kind of a re-appraisal cost because if those are not caught and the appraiser is out there and calls them out then we have to deal with the re-appraisal costs to get them fixed, so.

Dave: Which some of those items, if suddenly your home needs a new roof...that can be $10,000 or better.

Thom: Oh easily.

Dave: So it's good to know that coming in. Alright so question for yeah and let me go to the dark side. Let me go to the negative side here. Back to earnest money I started thinking of this. You can lose your earnest money. What are the circumstances for losing your earnest money?

Thom: Um, the main issue that we face when it comes to earnest money usually tends to be the buyer is unwilling to complete the process, even though they've gone through the inspection and the house is fine, gone through the appraisal process everything is fine, people get cold feet. They say Oh my gosh, you know what? I just am afraid to complete this, I don't know if I want this obligation, um, and then they decide to just run away for no apparent reason.

Dave: So if you're buying a house, I guess hence the name earnest, you better be earnest. You better be sure that you want to buy the house. And that's what the whole purpose is to show the person selling that you're serious about it.

Thom: Right. A lot of time. Well, a lot of the time with new construction, especially with custom homes they do require the earnest money to be non-refundable up front because the buyer or the builder puts so much effort into the beginning of that process that they usually require kind of a little higher earnest money as well as making that earnest money non-refundable in case something happens and the buyer can't qualify or can't you know, finish up the project and if they've already started building they may kind of hold onto that earnest money because of that so

Dave: Alright, now a question about the earnest money again. Who is it that holds it? Is that Diversified Mortgage? Or does that go to a Title company? Let's say that's $1,000 who does it go through?

Thom: I'll cover that one, that one is, um, kind of depends on the brokerage. Because from brokerage from brokerage as a lot of brokerages do have trust accounts so they are required to hold that earnest money in a separate trust account at the brokerage and then once it gets towards closing they'll move it over to the Title company. Here at CORE Group, we actually write those earnest money checks out to the title company and have the title company actually hold them which is actually becoming more of a popular trend as well to have that unbiased hold party kind of hold that earnest money checks in their trust account so if there is a dispute it is an unbiased party that's kind of holding onto it and so forth so.

Dave: Michelle Guth is with Diversified Mortgage now Michelle if anybody has any questions about earnest money, inspections, about loans, about lending, how do they get a hold of you?

Michelle: Just give us a call at the office at 853-7878, and we'd love to visit with them!

Dave: And of course you have a website as well?

Michelle: We do! dmgloans.com!

Dave: Alright and again, I know I mention every week, you know, when we get to buying a home, we think of all the fun things of a home. This room, and that room, what are we going to do with the yard? But without financing, that's what makes the world go round when it comes to buying a home.

Michelle: That's gonna be my new logo, thank you!

Dave: The financing makes the world go round! Well, it is true, I mean, I can have a lot of pipe dreams I could go buy a half a million-dollar home, but I may not be able to.

Michelle: Well and that's why it's so important to go through the process early on, we want to make sure that we are setting them up for not having any level of disappointment, we want to know what price point, what payment range, the full gamut after they meet with us, so get in and get qualified.

Dave: And at Diversified Mortgage very comfortable atmosphere, you know, it's not intimidating at all. Now, see, for you guys, you deal with this business all the time. For us consumers we'll do this several times in our lives it can be intimidating but at Diversified very comfortable atmosphere, so. I encourage that you go on in to Diversified Mortgage easily found right there on Marigold in Garden City. And that phone number again Michelle?

Michelle: 853-7878.

Dave: Alright, we're gonna remember that. 933-7777. That's the number for CORE Group Realty, and they'll get you in touch with Michelle Guth with Diversified Mortgage. We'll continue on the other side with 580 KIDO

Section #3

Dave: This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz, I'm Dave Burnett along with Thom Dallman who is the co-owner and the designated broker for Core Group Realty, and that's Core with a "C". CoreGroupRealty.com, 933-7777, that is the number to call if you want to get ahold of them, their customer care team, you can call right now as a matter of fact, 933-7777 and they will answer those questions you have. Now Thom, with your customer care team, they are not licensed realtors so they're not going to try to say, "let's get you to buy a home!" 

Thom: Yeah they're not going to try to make you sign on the dotted line from the first get go. They are there more for helping you navigate our website and understanding our systems and so forth. 

Dave: And really to get you in the direction you need to go whether you are looking for an investment property or bare land or whether you're looking for a certain area. They can then say, "here's the agent you need to work with."

Thom: For sure, yeah. 

Dave: I guess another thing is and we were talking about this in the break a little bit that one of the nice things about Core Group Realty is that it's not a case of "Deal with the agent, we've sold the home, see yeah bye bye have a nice life." 

Thom: Exactly.

Dave: But you really work with your staff to continue servicing a person after they've bought a home.

Thom: Yes, I think that it's really important and I encourage it all the time with my real estate agents, it's really super important for us to not only be advisory through the process but to be advisers after the process. We have resources, we have the capability to help people and they don't think about that after the fact. Also long term, we want to be in this relationship long term and be there for our clients for whatever needs pop up, everything from what's the current housing value in the market place? All the way up to if I'm doing upgrades where can I go to get those upgrades done and/or what value does that add to my house if we do that? 

Dave: Well when you mentioned it I started thinking with my home which I've owned since we built in 1997, but it's not the same home today as it was then. It's not the same investment to me today as it was, that home has changed over the course of time and the neighborhood has changed completely as well. 

Thom: Mhmm, they usually do. 

Dave: But yet I'm not really in touch with what the values are or what... You know maybe it's not right for me to sell, maybe it's better for me to remodel. And that's something that your people would be more willing to talk about.

Thom: Oh we get questions like that all the time from you know past clients who have been in their homes for a while, and not only past clients but newer clients as well; asking us what things add value to the house and are worth the money to spend to add that value. When we have those conversations we have to discuss things such as, how long are you planning on staying in the house once you do the remodel? There's some concept of the meaning to the client as far as usage for that certain upgrade. 

Dave: Right, and for example if you're looking to re-do your kitchen... Depending on the value of the homes in the neighborhood, you may not want to put a $70,000 kitchen in that house because you may not be able to recoup half that money.

Thom: You may not, there's a certain point where you are not going to get those investments back if you spend too much you become over priced for your specific neighborhood. 

Dave: And see I'll be honest; I really don't know the value of the homes in my neighborhood...

Thom: Right. 

Dave: But that's something where Core Group, your real estate agents, and mind you there's really no money involved in it for you, there's no commissions to get some advice. But you can advise someone and say, "you know what, the average price of those homes is $250,000, you don't want to do more than this..."

Thom: Totally free of charge, there's no charge to ask for our advice, all of my agent’s love sharing that information, sharing what the house values are currently in the market, what upgrades to do, what not to do, what might not bring value. I think a perfect example of this is recently just in this last week I've got a phone call from one of our past clients that bought a new home in 2012 with me; and they're looking at doing some upgrades but they big thing they are looking at upgrading is their RV pad. They are debating whether to do just some hookups on the exterior for the sewer, water, and electricity or does it add value to the house to actually build an RV garage onto it?

Dave: Oh to add a garage on?

Thom: You know the average price for building that garage is between $30,000-$50,0000. So we had that conversation of, how long do you plan on using this garage? Which they told me they plan on at least living there 10 years to probably 20 years before they even will consider moving or selling. So that was that conversation is, how much value do YOU place in that 10-20 years of usage for that vs. are you fine with just having it parked outside? Because a $30,000-$50,000 RV garage is not going to add that value to the house, it may add maybe $5,000 in resale but it's not gonna add $30,000. You can't just up your purchase price if you're gonna go list it next week by $30,000 just because you added a $30,000 garage onto it. 

Dave: So it's something that your agents would look at and go, "you know what there's no other RV garages in this neighborhood..."

Thom: Correct.

Dave: So it does add a feature that is not offered somewhere else but it's not going to be worth it, or maybe it is worth the investment...

Thom: Exactly, that's exactly what I did this week, I looked at the other homes that have sold recently in the area and did some comparable homes to see, for example, these certain number of houses sold without an RV garage and these certain homes sold with RV garages and here is the comparison price per square foot and so forth on the land and see what the value is. 

Dave: Okay, so I'm trying to find out, what was the advice?

Thom: (laughing) The advice is once again going back to how long are you going to use it? Is it worthwhile to you? Because like I said the values were kind of in that $5,000-$10,000 range... houses sell for about that much more with RV garages in their area, so they are not going to recoup the $30,000-$50,000 that they want currently. 

Dave: You're going to get $5,000-$10,000.

Thom: Exactly. 

Dave: So is it worth $20,000 to you to do it?

Thom: If they are going to live in house for the next 10-20 years is it worth that extra money for them to be able to park their RV garage inside? 

Dave: And so they said yes?

Thom: They haven't made a decision yet. 

Dave: Oh okay. 

Thom: They're also looking at other things like the inside of the house, to upgrade the countertops to granite and things like that. 

Dave: See and that's the point where my wife and I are at with ours. We want to kind of re-do our kitchen, she wants to re-do it and make an investment into it, but the question is how much do you invest? And is it worth the cost? 

Thom: Yes, definitely things to think about. 

Dave: There's a lot that goes into it, but it's a nice resource for somebody to have whether they are a past Core client or not to be able to come and say, "tell me, would it be worth doing this or not?"

Thom: Yes, love having those consultations and helping people out with that. And all the way on the other side of things, we've been asked to do evaluations on homes. One example is from a few months ago I think last summer, I was contacted by a past client that asked me to do an evaluation on a home because the state had decided to take some of his land by eminent domain, where they're gonna go in and pay "fair market value" as the state views it and he felt like they were trying to pay for that land under the market value, and so he asked me to put together a market analysis on that specific property so he could go dispute it. So we are here for resources like that as well. Some people want to dispute their assessments, assessments vary from house to house and community to community, and sometimes they get kind of high for properties, so I've had clients contact us for values on homes so that they can fight assessments as well. There's things out there that clients don't necessarily think of that we can help with. We're a resource for those things, free of charge to help the whole time that you are living in the property and to give advice. 

Dave: You may be driving around this afternoon and thinking to yourself, "that sounds like the kind of company that's working for me." Let me tell you who it is, it's Core Group Realty, they've been around and have been serving the needs of the treasure valley for years and they are here to help you. We've talked about this before, the purpose of this show, the Idaho Real Estate Buzz is not just to sell homes. 

Thom: Nope. 

Dave: You know that can be done with a sign and whatever. It's to give you knowledge and power which allows you to make the right decisions when it comes to buying and selling a home and that's really what this is about. And not only buying and selling, but living in your home, because it is a huge investment, Thom...

Thom: Yes, it is. 

Dave: ...for people to make and you want to make sure that you're getting out of it everything you can.

Thom: Exactly, I agree with that 100%, not only getting out of it everything you can, but also having that trusted adviser that's giving you everything that they can, not just through the sale and not looking at it as just a number and a sale, but building that relationship with their clients all the way through, that's what our agents are really good at. 

Dave: And that's what we've talked about before that if you call Core Group at 933-7777, they are not going to rush out to your house and make you sign a contract and stick a sign in the yard, they want you to come in and see what's offered with Core Group Realty when it comes to social media, when it comes to services, when it comes to people. You want to feel comfortable with your decision and you want to make sure you're a right fit for them and they're a right fit for you. 

Thom: Absolutely, once again I highly advise people to always do an interview with different agents.

Dave: So you're not insulted by that?

Thom: No, oh no not at all, oh my gosh I'm so excited this week because one of my agents came to me this week and said, "oh my gosh, I met with a client, he showed up, opened up a notepad full of questions for me, asking such things as, "what makes you stand out from other agents?" and "what makes your company better than others?" And so he was ready and primed and got all of those answers done for him and got the client committed to him, the client at the end of the day said, "you gave the best answers, I really like what you're doing and I want to work with you." So I’m always a proponent for interviewing.

Dave: I will say, this is my statement, this is not Thom's statement, okay? This is my statement, if you are looking to buy or sell a home and you're not interviewing the person and if you don't have a bank of questions like that you're a fool. And again, that's my statement not Thom's. But the reason I say that is it's such a huge investment. 

Thom: It is!

Dave: I mean I don't think you're going to find a house out there for under $100,000 and you could be looking at millions of dollars. What a huge investment, whether its $100,000 or $1,000,000, it's a huge investment and it's something you want to feel comfortable and trust the person that you're dealing with, that they are going to take good care of you.

Thom: Exactly, there are a lot of agents out there and a lot of agents that just have not mastered the craft and I hate to say it that way...

Dave: No, it's true!

Thom: ...but there's a lot of people that just do it part time and what not and so you really want to make sure that you are asking those specific questions. How long have you been in the industry? How many sales have you done? What resources do you have available for questions and what not? 

Dave: When's the last time you sold a home? 

Thom: Yeah!

Dave: I think those are important questions to ask people and again...

Thom: The market changes so quickly.

Dave: ...not all comments are necessarily those of Core Group Realty, I mean those were mine, but I mean come on, if you're making that kind of investment, buying or selling you need to trust the people that you are dealing with and I would say and I would just request that you give Core Group a chance. Make them one of the list of people you are going to interview. "We're gonna go talk to Core Group and then we're gonna go talk to brand-x and then brand-r and then we will make a decision. See what's out there and as you always like to point out, Thom, make sure you are dealing with a trusted, licensed real estate agent, somebody who is trained and knows what they are doing, whether it's Core Group or not. 

Thom: Definitely, make sure you ask those questions. 

Dave: Ask the questions, be comfortable with the answers and then you can make the logical decisions. 

Thom: Exactly.

Dave: Boy, I'll get off my soap box now. Holy cow.

Thom: (laughing) It happens!

Dave: We'll continue on the other side, this is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz, Thom Dallman with us the co-owner and of course the designated broker for Core Group Realty here on 580 KIDO.

Section #4

Dave: This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz. I am Dave Burnett along with Thom Dallman who is the co-owner and the designated Broker for Core Group Realty. We talk about a lot different topics on this show when it comes to properties, investments, homes and how to keep them up. A couple of question that have come up and by the way if you have a question fell free to go to Core Group Realty you can email a question off to Thom. You have your link on there when it comes to staff, and they can email you a question.

Thom: Yep, all of our emails are on there!

Dave: I wanted to talk about different kinds of investments you can make. We have your traditional home you see on the Brady Bunch with the split level. You have your traditional home that is out there in the subdivision. But there are other kinds of properties that you can buy to live in as well.

Thom: I wanted to touch a little bit on the advantages of buying a townhouse! A lot of people have question of townhouses are tending toward less money for more square footage. So people have asked me over the late few weeks. So I thought that would be something we can talk about. 

Dave: Let me ask you this question. I was recently out towards east Boise towards Harris Ranch and I know there are some townhouses being built out there. The difference of the townhouse of the 1990's and the townhouse of today there really is quite a bit of difference now.

Thom: There is. And I would say one of the biggest things that is happening now with townhouse right now that make them attractive. Is the amenities the builders are putting in granite counter tops, beautiful wood floors, because they are able to do that on a mass scale when they are doing town homes. It is a lot more affordable for them.

Dave: Back in the 1990's town homes were nothing more than a glorified apartment. That is what it was. Now you have some nice cabinets, like you said beautiful thing that go into it.

Thom:  Yeah! Beautiful amenities if you have had a chance to go through the Parade of Homes this last spring there were a couple home on that and the builder is not coming to mind at the moment. One of the kitchens had this beautiful mirrored back splash on it which I have never seen it before. It was very contemporary very modern look to the kitchen. Which was a neat way to have your kitchen to stand out. 

Dave: What are some of the advantages to having a townhouse?

Thom: The first advantage is the square footage per dollar. You can get more for your money. Especially if you are a first time home buyer, but you still need the space. it is a way to get into a home that has the square footage you need for a little bit less money. there is the value of it. 

Dave: It is the Price point. 

Thom: the affordability of getting in to a home with the space you need. I like to think one of the biggest advantages is the maintenance the outside of the house. Usually they have smaller yards so there is almost no maintenance for you and a lot of these town homes the HOA take care of the yard. so you don’t have to worry about it.

Dave: You don’t have to own a Lawn mower!

Thom: correct!!!! I have known people who have lived in town homes all they have is a weed Wacker. they go out in the back, they have a small section of back yard that they may need to maintain. 5 to 10 min with the weed eater and its trimmed up.

Dave: you know it’s funny there are a lot of people," Oh I love yard work I want to work out in the yard and garden.” But there is a big portion of people who hate yard work. If you saw my house, you would understand. But seriously there are a lot of people give me a patio, give me something I can go barbeque on and I am good. So that is where a town home is a big advantage. 

Thom: It is a big advantage you don't have to deal with that yard maintenance as well as the home maintenance the exterior of the home is a common maintenance with the HOA’s will maintain the exterior of the house so those extra bills you may encounter for exterior house problems usually are covered by the HOA's. You don't have to have huge amount of out of pocket if something does happen.

Dave: Now we kind of eluted to the fact that it is good for somebody to get into for their first home. but it is also good for somebody who is downsizing, kids are all gone, they are older and don't want to do yard work anymore. It is a good way to downsize.

Thom: They don't have the kid to force out into the yard to do the yard work

Dave: you kids are going to mow that lawn!

Thom: A lot of people who are downsizing, downsize into town homes because of easy maintenance, and not only that those downsizing tend to be more in the elderly age range. for the convenience of having neighbors that can keep an eye out for you. Think about the safety of having next door neighbors that know your habits. There is an advantage to that they will recognize that stranger who is prowling around the house and neighborhood, and call you and say hey there is a guy over at your house that doesn't belong. SO there is that community feeling and safety in having everyone look out for each other.

Dave: let me ask you this question. What is the difference between a townhouse and a patio home? Is there a difference? 

Thom: They are kind of the same. I would say that patio homes tend to be more individual single family homes they don't have the connection wall. If I am not mistaken patio homes have a little bit more yardage to them. So there is more maintenance to them. Some patio home they come thought and to do all the back yard maintenance as well. So you have people coming through to maintain the laws. You have a little bit more yardage to work with.

Dave: So patio home would be between the traditional home and a townhouse. again Core Group Realty and your folks here at Core Group can help direct people if they are interested in patio homes.

Thom: we actually have one listing that is a town home that we are really trying to get someone into. It is a really beautiful town home in Southwest Boise, Meridian area. 1732 W Annalee in Pepperwood Estates. Its $225,000.00 for 4 bed 2 bath 2196 sf for $225,000.00. It’s a big town home with lots of space and once again $225,000.00 for 2196sf it puts it right around that $102.00 per square foot which is a great price for the amount of space you get.

Dave: Somehow saying town home I was thinking much smaller. They do come in small sizes. But that is a luxurious town home.

Thom: And it has some great features as far as the Granite the kitchen tile back splash, stainless steel appliances and stuff like that.

Dave: Do you as a designated Broker, little off topic. Do you try to get thought all the properties listed at Core Group at some time to look at them?

Thom: I try to yeah! I encourage most of our agents to get out there so as they get phone calls and information on them they can be familiar with them to be able to talk about them as client talk about the homes.

Dave: you were talking about the different things ok you have been there! I wondered if you try to get out to very property.

Thom: I try! I don't make it out to every single one. 

Dave: So once again when it comes to town home for a lot of them maintenance is taken care of and the lawn. What is the difference in living in a town home when it comes to day to day life?

Thom: I think the only real difference is that shared wall. With the shared wall you want to be considerate about you neighbors you want to make sure you are not having any wild party's at 2:00 am.  But really that is the difference the living space is the same, it can have upgrades that you may not be able to afford in a single family home because you are paying a little bit more for the single family home. They have amenities such as swimming pools. 

Dave: So it is about life style. You have a pool you don’t have to clean. someone else is taking care of the yard. It gives you time to go to Idaho City or Jackpot. Whatever you want to go do. It is about life style.

Thom: Very popular style for executives that once again busy at work and don’t have time to take care of yards.

Dave: Or someone who travels a lot. You don’t have to think I have to get up and mow the lawn. If you are interested in a town home or patio home or regular home Core Group Realty is the place to call and talk to them. 933-7777 that is the phone number to call and of course your website it is open 24 hours a day CoreGroupRealty.com

Thom: Yep! Check it out.

Dave: We have talked about the featured listing before, MLS is updated every 15 min. So that way you can log in now and log in later and have some new homes in there. So check that out at CoreGroupRealty.com the website to go to. and Thom in the 60 seconds we have left, your staff here are Core Group a great group of people!

Thom: YA they are awesome they do a great job. when you call out numbers it goes to our customer care department who are not licensed and are really here it figure out who the best contact is the best for you if you have Real Estate questions. But are really here if you have neighborhood question, area questions or question about our website they can really help with that stuff. Love my staff.

Dave: CoreGroupRealty.com is the website to go to. We do every Saturday and as I mentioned before at 2:00 pm and we do this to give you power and knowledge about the differences between town homes, Patio homes, traditional homes. Whether Michelle is in talking about the financing that is available for those, because all the programs are a little bit different. They can give you the expertise but the whole purpose of the Idaho Real Estate Buzz is to get you educated as you get ready to sale and or buy a home and Core Group Realty can help you do that. Thom will be back next week. Thank you so much and this is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz. I am Dave Burnett here on 580KIDO


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