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Date Archives: November 2020

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National Go To an Art Museum Day - and Any Day: Art Museums and Galleries Throughout Boise

Boise Art Galleries

The art scene in Boise offers something for everyone. National Go to an Art Museum Day was on November 9th, but any day is perfect for exploring the artistic side of the city! There are various art museums, galleries, and studios located throughout Boise, including places where you can learn to create your own art. Supporting these local galleries and museums is a great way to learn more about art and find unique decorations for your home. 

  1. Boise Creative Center – 1204 W Front St., Boise, ID 83702

    Part art gallery, part studio, and part learning center, the Boise Creative Center is the perfect place to explore your creative side. Artist Alex Vega founded the Boise Creative Center to connect locals with unique art and teaches many of the classes at the facility himself. The studio features an extensive collection of custom artwork, including murals, canvas paintings, and unique graphically designed prints.

  2. Boise Art Glass – 1124 W Front St., Boise, ID 83702

    Art takes many forms, and glass art can be as spectacular as any painting or sculpture. Boise Art Glass specializes in artistic glass, with beautiful fine glass to view and various classes to help you make your own creations. Much of the glass art here is created by three local artists, who also serve as instructors for the classes at Boise Art Glass. There are also plenty of unique pieces that you can purchase for your own home.

  3. Boise Art Museum – 670 Julia Davis Dr., Boise, ID 83702

    With an exceptional collection of permanent displays, rotating exhibitions, special events, and classes for all experience levels, the Boise Art Museum truly offers something for everyone. Stop by anytime to explore the museum yourself or schedule a tour to learn more about the stories behind the art on display. Founded in 1937, the Boise Art Museum has grown extensively over the decades and continues to expand its offerings today.

  4. LaBry Fine Art – 404 S 8th St., Boise, ID 83702

    Whether you're interested in exploring the work of local artists or shopping for the perfect piece of art to bring home, LaBry Fine Art is sure to have something that you'll enjoy. Every piece of art here is selected for both technical expertise and the ability to elicit an emotional reaction from the viewer. With new art rotating in regularly, there's always something new to see when you visit LaBry Fine Art.

  5. Delia Dante Gallery & Fire Fusion Studio – 1322 W Main St., Boise, ID 83702

    Searching for something a little different for your National Go to an Art Museum Day celebration? Delia Dante Gallery & Fire Fusion Studio features a wide variety of art made from welded metal and enamel, including unique jewelry that allows you to show off your Idaho pride. There are regular classes from beginner to advanced for welding and enameling, taught by instructors who are experts at the craft. You can also shop for unique jewelry, view metal sculptures, and explore work from local artists in various media.

Whether you're seeking an engaged audience for your own art or a place where you can explore the work of others, you'll find that Boise is a great place for art lovers to call home. Contact us to buy and sell homes throughout the Boise, ID area.


The National Housing Market Excels



The Housing Market Remains Strong

Overview: Growing concern about rising coronavirus case counts around the world was negative for stocks over the past week, but the mortgage market remained relatively quiet with rates near-record-low levels.

The housing sector's impressive rebound from the spring decline continues to gain momentum. In September, sales of previously owned (existing) homes, which make up about 90% of the market, rose significantly more than expected to the highest level since2006 and were 21% higher than a year ago. National median existing-home prices were up 15% from a year ago.

Inventory levels were down 19% from a year ago and remained the primary trouble spot. The number of homes for sale was at just a 2.7-month supply nationally, well below the 6-month supply that is considered a healthy balance between buyers and sellers.

After four straight months of solid gains, new-home sales, which account for the remaining10% of the market, declined 4% in September. Despite this small dip, however, they were still a massive 32% higher than a year ago.

Several factors have helped boost home sales activity over the last few months, including record-low mortgage rates and pent-up demand from March and April when many people were reluctant to buy or sell a home. In addition, the pandemic has caused many people to seek larger homes and less densely packed regions.



How to Make Your Own Wreath This Holiday Season

Holiday Wreath Tips

Any time our real estate agents consult with homeowners about listing their Boise homes for sale, they always recommend dressing up the porch to improve the curb appeal. Some potted plants, a welcome mat, and a simple wreath can make a major difference. 

Even if you're not thinking about selling your home, decorating your porch for the holidays is a great idea! If you want to make your decor even more special, consider making your own holiday wreath this year. 

It's easier than you might think! Follow these step-by-step instructions, and you'll have a beautiful wreath in no time. You may even decide to make extras and give them away to family and friends. 

  1. Gather Your Supplies
    It's a great idea to keep all of your decorating supplies together in one place so you can easily see all of your options and tap into your creativity. You also don't want to get part-way through your project and find that you're missing something important. Prevent this by gathering all of your supplies before you start. For this project, you'll need:
  • Round metal wreath frame
  • Floral wire
  • Pruning cutters
  • Wire cutters
  • Evergreen tree cuttings 
  • Pinecones
  • Holly berry or holly branches (real or faux)
  • Holiday ribbon
  • Gold spray paint
  • Holiday floral decorations (optional)
  1. Spray Paint Some Pieces 
    To give your wreath some dimension, you may want to choose a few clippings and berries and paint them gold (or another color). Do this ahead of time and make sure the pieces are dehydrated before you add them to your wreath. 
  1. Attach Your Branch Cuttings
    If necessary, cut your branches into smaller, workable pieces (approximately six to eight inches). Then, choose a small bundle of greenery and lay it on top of the wreath frame. Use the floral wire to attach the stems to the frame, wrapping it around tightly three times. Do not cut the wire. Continue adding bundles, overlapping each one half-way over the previous one, and wrapping the wire around the stems. (Take a look at this helpful video for more detailed instructions.) Keep repeating this process until you get back to your starting point. Tuck the wire into the underside of the frame and tie it off. Finally, cut the wire, leaving a few extra inches on the end. 
  1. Add the Cones and Berries
    Once your frame is completely covered with the branches, it's time to add some cones and berries. Use the wire to attach them to the frame, making sure to do it carefully so the wire doesn't show. 
  1. Trim Your Wreath
    Now, you'll want to trim the outside edge of your wreath so it takes on a rounded shape. It doesn't have to be perfect, and you don't want to overdo it. Trimming is often easier if you hang the wreath up and look at it from a distance as you work. 
  1. Add Some More Decor
    You're almost done! The last step is to add the finishing touches. This may include beads, ribbon, and other types of holiday decorations. There's no right or wrong way to do this, and you can keep making tweaks until you love it.

If you're planning to hang the wreath on your front door, you may need to create a wire loop and attach it to the back of your wreath. That's it! Hang your wreath up and enjoy it. 

Are you thinking about buying or selling a home before the holidays? We're here to help! Contact us today to discuss your goals and get started. 


Ada County Home Sales Remain Strong Despite Low Supply


Home Sales in Ada County are Strong Despite Low Inventory

By Breanna Vanstrom, Chief Executive Officer, Boise Regional REALTORS®


For years now, Boise Regional REALTORS® has reported on how the demand for homes has outpaced supply and the impact that has had on home pricesOctober 2020 was no exception as the median sales price for homes sold in Ada County was $406,684 in October, up 14.7% year-over-year, but down slightly from September 2020. 

This was based on 1,112 home sales, aincrease of 11.9% compared to October 2019. But looking at the supply of homes for sale, according to data from the Intermountain MLS (IMLS), there were 443 of single-family homes available for purchase at the end of October, down 73.7% compared to the same month last year. 

This begs the question, "How can home sales be up while inventory continues to drop?" 

It's important to note that the inventory metric fluctuates daily and is based on the number of homes listed as "active" in IMLS on any particular dayFor consistency purposes, our reports use the number of single-family homes available for sale on the last day of each monthso it does not represent the total number of homes that may have been available for sale throughout the month; however, the closed sales metric reflects all homes sold during the month. 

That one-day "snapshot" of inventory compared to a monthly total of sales is one reason we can see more closings than available inventory in our monthly reports 

Adding to that, once a seller accepts an offer, the home is no longer considered available inventory. With homes spending an average of only 20 days on the market before going under contract, some may not make it into the reported inventory numbers.  

Looking specifically at inventory trends for existing/resale properties, there are a variety of reasons the supply has been so constricted: homeowners delaying listing until they find their next home, which takes longer due to already limited inventory; some homeowners may not feel they can "trade up" from their current home due to current prices, despite equity and low mortgage rates; the surge in mortgage refinancing may have reduced some homeowners' monthly payments, making it more affordable compared to what they may spend on another home; and in response to COVID-19, some have delayed listing to limit the number of people in their home, or, they may be unable to manage a sale while working from home or if they have children at home for school 

These kinds of situations are when a REALTOR® can be incredibly valuable to a homeowner in helping them understand their options. Discussing new construction opportunities for those worried they won't be able to find their next home, or explaining how virtual open houses and showings can limit in-person visits while still exposing the home to the widest pool of potential buyers can help homeowners find a path forward.

New construction inventory was also down significantly, year-over-year, while sales were up by 16.7%. With new homes selling almost twice as fast this year than last year, similar to existing homes, it reduces the numbers captured in our monthly inventory snapshot. But as many builders have had to alter their construction timelines, with fewer tradespeople or difficulty obtaining materials (including home appliances) causing delays, some have also delayed when or how they list a home as available in IMLSSome builders are able to pre-sell units through model homes, which then later show up in our reports as a closed sale but never as active inventory. 

The low inventory conditions have put tremendous demand on builders, and they have been responding. Between January and September of this year3,374 permits were approved for new single-family homes throughout Ada County, according to Construction Monitor, and another 380 permits were approved in October. While a few of the newly approved permits were for existing owners, most were for homes that will be available for purchase in the coming months. 

Again, this is where working with a REALTOR® is so important for home buyers. They can help guide you through the complex process of a new buildand often, can identify new construction options before the ground has even been broken, or, for existing homes, they may have insights on those that may be getting ready to sell. So, while inventory remains low compared to demand, higher year-over-year sales show that there are properties available to be purchased. 

NOTE: While this month's report provided an explanation on our inventory metrics, even with the variables that affect the monthly counts, the information from IMLS remains the most complete and reliable database for tracking our local housing market, helping home buyers, home sellers, and their REALTORS® make the best decisions for their unique situations 

To view the Treasure Valley Market Report for October, CLICK HERE.



5 Tips for Buying a Home in a Different State

Buying a Home in a New State

When exploring Boise homes for sale, your to-do list will look a little different if you're moving from a different state. Interstate home purchases require careful planning and preparation to minimize the expense and hassle associated with purchasing a home while you're living in another state. Check out these helpful tips to follow to help the process go as seamlessly as possible. 

  1. Research All the Costs Associated with Living in a Neighborhood
    If you're buying a home in another state, see that you research all the costs associated with living in a specific area. It's easy to focus only on the amount of your potential mortgage payment, but this is just one portion of your housing expenses. You should also consider:
    • Property taxes
    • Housing insurance (more expensive for some neighborhoods)
    • Homeowner's association dues
    • The city's cost of living
  1. Look for Neighborhoods That Fit Your Lifestyle
    To ensure you'll be happy in your new home, you want a neighborhood that's compatible with your lifestyle. For example, if you prefer a home with lots of shops and eateries within walking distance, you're unlikely to be happy in a house that's nestled out in the country where it's a necessity to own a car. Getting a feel for a neighborhood can be tricky when you're doing the majority of your home shopping out of state. When you contact our real estate agents, tell us what you're looking for in a neighborhood. This will help us match you with properties that meet your priorities. Social media groups and online neighborhood groups are two other useful resources to help you get a better feel for the environment in a neighborhood. 
  1. Choose the Right Real Estate Agent
    An experienced real estate agent is always a valuable resource, but their expertise is even more invaluable when you're buying a property out of state. Look for a real estate agent who has extensive experience selling homes in the area you're interested in.
  1. Utilize Technology To Learn More About Potential Homes
    While a virtual tour can't completely replace an in-person examination of a potential house, it's the next best thing. Look for an agent who is willing to conduct video walkthroughs of properties that you're interested in. Don't be afraid to ask the agent to zoom in on any areas that you want to reexamine or that warrant a closer look. Virtual tours can cut down on the amount of travel associated with purchasing your new home, as they can help you decide which homes have characteristics that are deal-breakers.
  1. Prioritize Attending the Home Inspection Over Other Home Buying Milestones
    Some out-of-state buyers can't see their homes in person at all until after closing; if you can only see the home once, try to make it to the home inspection. This will give you a chance to learn about any prospective problems the home has and receive an explanation as to how the major systems work (like the HVAC system or fireplace). Your home inspector is also a fantastic resource for what items in the home will require ongoing maintenance.

Ready to get started on your out-of-state home purchase? Contact us today!

Disclaimer: All information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. All properties are subject to prior sale, change or withdrawal. Neither listing broker(s) or information provider(s) shall be responsible for any typographical errors, misinformation, misprints and shall be held totally harmless. Listing(s) information is provided for consumers personal, non-commercial use and may not be used for any purpose other than to identify prospective properties consumers may be interested in purchasing. Information on this site was last updated 02/07/2023. The listing information on this page last changed on 02/07/2023. The data relating to real estate for sale on this website comes in part from the Internet Data Exchange program of INTERMOUNTAIN MLS (last updated Tue 02/07/2023 6:13:32 AM EST). Real estate listings held by brokerage firms other than Coldwell Banker Tomlinson may be marked with the Internet Data Exchange logo and detailed information about those properties will include the name of the listing broker(s) when required by the MLS. All rights reserved. --

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