Thursday, September 22, 2016

I'm back.

I’m back.  I know I've not written a blog for a few short months, and I never let that kind of time go by without getting you an update on the real estate market or a bit of information about managing money, or whatever.  But I’ve been away.  At home.

Truth be told, I had a heart situation and had open-heart triple-bypass surgery.  When that happens to you, the doctors and all the wonderful medical people around them tell you to take some time to lay back, take long walks and heal.  I did.  And now I’m back.

The nice thing about it is that I’m refreshed, newly energized about life and ready to go conquer the world.  The great people at WK Real Estate were fantastic about taking care of my clients and friends in their home and investment needs while I was away, but now I can’t wait to see you again.

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking on those long walks.  Money is so important.  Not compared to so many other things in life, but it’s the thing we don’t talk much about.  We don’t share our income and expense data, our budgets or what’s in our investment portfolios with even our closest friends.  Studies have shown that money is the most common subject about which we lie.  We talk openly about our spouses and kids, our vacations and plans for what we’ll do in our retirement years, the books we read and movies we see, and the things we’ve done in our lives.  Not money.  Money and how we manage it is a very private thing.

So I write these posts, because if we don’t talk about money, we don’t learn about money.  A good friend recently asked me about budgeting.  He’d read an article and thought it might be a great idea.  To me, it’s the very first thing we ought to have learned about money as we grew up.  To me, everybody should actively budget.  To me, it’s common sense.  People just don’t know much about it.

So in the coming weeks and months, I'll be writing these posts again.  Read them, pass them on to your kids and neighbors, call me if you have a name and address you’d like me to add to my mailing list.  Call me with ideas and questions.

This first new post, as I commonly do, let me throw out an idea.

If you own stocks or bonds, mutual funds or even a checking or savings account at a bank, you receive a statement on a regular schedule.  It shows you how much money you have in the account or have invested, the activity in the account, how much interest, capital gains or equity you’ve earned, and more.  You get this monthly, quarterly, or certainly yearly.  It’s important, because you should always know how much you have, whether or not that money is making you more money, slowly dribbling away your hard-earned investments, or crashing.  It shows you how much you have invested in equities, debentures or cash or cash equivalents.  If you understand what you’re reading, it can tell you when it’s time to adjust your asset allocation before the next technical correction, to help you manage the risk of investing where you have.  From it, you plan your retirement.

Statistically, owning a home is the biggest investment most people make.  People have more money tied up in their homes than in anything else in their portfolios.  Yet they don’t get a statement, other than the county assessor sending them a computer valuation for property tax purposes.  I honor tremendously the great work that goes into that valuation, but honestly, it doesn’t truly tell you what’s happened in the market or what your home is actually worth on the market.

So I think people should get a statement on their home.  I think people should get a statement on their investment real estate.  In fact, it’s so important that I think a good, professional person in the real estate industry should sit with them yearly and discuss what’s happened in the markets – nationally, state-wide and locally, and even into the immediate neighborhood in which they live or invest.  I think they should know what their homes and investments are worth.  From there, they can envision their long-term plans as they move from one phase of their lives to the next.  In that meeting, they can ask all the questions they have about real estate.

I’m ready.  If your property is in Colorado, I’d love to be that professional person to show you that statement, and do that on a yearly basis for you.  I think it’s important.  Let’s call it the yearly real estate review.

In this post, I invite you to call me to set a time.  That sit-down meeting at my office or in your home will take about ½ hour of your time.  ½ hour per year.

I love these long walks.  Walking allows me to heal.  It allows me to put things in perspective.  It allows me to set some goals.  It allows me to make some adjustments in my life that might better serve you.  Sometimes ultimately, it allows you to be better informed.

Call me.  We’ll set a time.  I’m very much looking forward to it.  I'm always here for you.

Enjoy the day,

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