Well, friends, did you happen to notice that Allison failed to speak in this video?  That’s exactly what happened!  If you have met Allison, you know she is rarely at a loss for words, but she got camera-shy and failed to speak.  Curt had to do all the talking (which we didn’t mind, because he has a great message) and Kim had to jump in and save the day for Conscious Real Estate.  They both did a great job, though they may not let Allison live this one down…

We encourage you to learn more about the Art of War Project founded by Curt Bean.  This organization is spearheading some truly innovative work promoting well-being for veterans dealing with PTSD, including weekly yoga and meditation classes, as well as a variety of art classes.  The Art of War project has a monthly art show for the First Friday Art Walk and puts on a great party at the VFW Post 1 at 841 Sante Fe Drive in Denver Colorado, just a few doors down from 8th Avenue, so we encourage you to stop by and see the great work they are doing.

To learn more about Art of War and their upcoming events, you can follow them on Facebook or Instagram.

Remember, each time you buy or sell a home with Conscious Real Estate, 10% of agent commissions go to the nonprofit of your choice, so you can donate to the Art of War Project with your next real estate transaction and help them continue their great work in our community. If you would like to learn more about buying or selling a home with Conscious Real Estate, please contact Allison at 303-908-9873 or allison@theconsciousgroup.com.

How much do YOU want to change the world?

Here at Conscious Real Estate, we want to change the world a lot. Let’s talk about what we do… We help people buy and sell houses and we love that!  But we took it one step further and created a philanthropic real estate business model.

We are Colorado’s only real estate social enterprise.  Each time one of our clients buys or sells a home with us, we contribute 10% of our own commission to the nonprofit of our clients’ choice.

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Here is some sad news… On the day of this writing, August 21, 2015, Conscious Real Estate did NOT close on any homes.  Yet a quick look at the MLS states that 299 homes sold on this day in Colorado.  Our owner, Allison Parks, decided to tally up the total sales prices of 100 of these homes.  Taking the total of these 100 sales into consideration and considering that commission is negotiable, our estimate is that if those buyers and sellers would have used Conscious Real Estate on just one side of the deal, that would have generated around $75,000 to $100,000 for nonprofits.  That’s right… we could donate that in just one day of real estate sales.

Imagine what a DIFFERENCE that $75,000 to $100,000 could make in our local and global community from JUST… ONE… DAY of people buying and selling houses with Conscious Real Estate.  And that’s if we only represent 1/3 of Colorado’s home sales from that one day…

Now imagine if those buyers and sellers used Conscious Real Estate for those 100 home sales each day next week, just Monday through Friday.  That would create $375,000 to $500,000 for nonprofits in just one week.  What difference do you think that could make?

In one month, it would create $1,500,000 to $2,000,000 for nonprofits.  What difference would THAT make?

In a year, that would create $18,000,000 to $24,000,000. That is an enormous amount of money to give away and quite frankly, nothing would make us happier.

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Every day at Conscious Real Estate is Colorado Gives Day.

We’re here, folks.  We are willing to do the work.  We are willing to grow as big as we need to, we are willing to hire more people and create jobs, and we will always keep our commitment to customer service our top priority.  We know that, without our clients, we are nothing. We will keep our communities close to our heart every step of the way and implement innovative business practices that increase the greater social good.

If you would like to change the world with us and you have a friend who is planning to buy or sell a home, let them know that they can make a difference with their next real estate transaction if they work with Conscious Real Estate.  For more information, please contact Allison Parks at 303-908-9873 or allison@theconsciousgroup.com.

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A good friend of Conscious Real Estate has started a new meet up group for Denver Social Enterprises and “Do Good” businesses.  Changemaker Danielle Norris of Sovenco has started the “Denver Social Enterprise and Do Good Meetup” to bring together like-minded business owners or entrepreneurs who would like guidance and inspiration in starting a purpose-driven business.

 

“Social Enterprises are businesses whose primary purpose is the common good. They use the methods and disciplines of business and the power of the marketplace to advance their social, environmental and human justice agendas.” – SEA

We live in a world where profit has been the only bottom line and has been for many years, but things are changing. People realize the system is broken and inadequate to address the numerous problems facing this world.

Are you a business owner? How is your business making the world a better place? Does your business have a purpose besides just making money? Or maybe, you would like your business to have more than just a profit-driven motive. Come join our group and share your stories of IMPACT. How is your business making the world a better place? We believe the combination of money and purpose is the most powerful thing on the planet. So, what is the impact you want to leave on this world? If you’re looking to have your business leave a lasting impact on the world other than just profits and sales goals, we can help.

Our goal of this meetup group is to make this world a better place, all while increasing your profits and leaving the least negative impact on the planet. We help you build PURPOSE or support you in building a greater PURPOSE into your business model.

So, what is the impact you want to leave on this world? If you’re looking to have your business leave a positive lasting impact on the world, we can help. If you’re a little overwhelmed, no problem. If this all sounds a little froufrou, that’s fine too. Just join the group and have some great conversation, fun activities, and a strong support group, as you venture into the unknown of changing the world.

If this sounds like a group you would like to join, please join the Meetup group or the Facebook group to learn about upcoming events.  We would love to see you there!

You may already know that Conscious Real Estate is Colorado’s only philanthropic residential real estate company that contributes 10% of all commissions to the nonprofit of their clients’ choice.  If you would like to learn more about Sovenco, you may follow them on Facebook or Twitter.

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Greetings All!  This weekend, Kim Johnson of Faceted Media and I volunteered at the First Friday event with the Art of War Project.  While I was there, Erika Righter, owner of Hope Tank (that cool gift boutique on South Broadway, which gives a portion of EVERY item to nonprofits) introduced me to the artists of the VSA Colorado Access Gallery.

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The VSA Colorado/Access Gallery is an inclusive nonprofit organization that provides creative and educational opportunities for people with disabilities to access and experience the arts.  Each summer VSA Colorado/Access Gallery works with 15 – 20 high school students with disabilities to develop skills and strategies to increase access to economic opportunities.  I think these kids are awesome and I think you will think they’re awesome.

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A GREAT way to support these teens is through the “We Make Great Pets Project,” through which you can commission a portrait of your pet!  The goal is to develop, implement, and support arts-integrated education and employment programs for teens and young adults with disabilities.

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Commissioning a portrait of your pet is simple.  Come to the gallery at 909 Santa Fe, Denver, CO 80204.  See examples and pick three artists whose style you like.  They will make every effort to have one of your selected artists complete the piece, and for an additional fee, they can guarantee your top choice.  In two weeks, your portrait will be complete.  It’s fun for you OR it’s the perfect gift for any animal lover.

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It costs $80 for an 11 X 14 portrait of your pet.  You provide them with a photo of your pet and a deposit and the artists will begin the portrait.  You can commission any animal you choose.  The artists are encouraged to use their creative talent, so the painting will be an interpretation of your photograph.  (No refunds on commissioned paintings.)

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Find the artist that fits your pet’s flair and email them a photo!  For more information, call 303-777-0797 or email cris@accessgallery.org, you can stay updated on their events through Facebook, or if you’re feeling inspired, you can donate.  I hope you’re all having a great summer!  – Allison

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willy-wonka-zestimate

Do NOT trust “Zestimates.”

Maybe the Zestimate for your home’s value will be correct… I would say they are correct about 20% of the time by accident. The other 80% of the time, they are WRONG. Sometimes Zestimates are higher than your homes value, sometimes they are lower. I have seen them be off by $100,000 on a $300,000 home! Point being, there currently is no technology that can correctly assess a home’s value. It’s best to get a good realtor to give you a Broker Price Opinion for your home’s value and we are happy to provide those for people at any time. (Note: a Broker Price Opinion is NOT an appraisal, nor are realtors qualified to provide you with a home appraisal unless they are also a licensed appraiser.)

With that being said, we have also run into tons of problems with our clients shopping for homes on Zillow.

At Conscious Real Estate, we like to refer to Zillow (or it’s best friend, Trulia) as “The Heartbreaker.”  Why? Most often, when our clients find homes on Zillow or Trulia, the home has been under contract for quite awhile. We have seen numerous cases where the home has sold months prior. 

Here, we’ll break down what the MLS system is and how it is the only system to use when looking for your new home…

MLS stands for Multiple Listing Service and is endorsed by the National Association of Realtors. The system originated in the 1800’s when real estate agents would get together and share information on the properties that they had available.

Over time, more and more realtors joined the National Association of Realtors and as technology advanced over the last century, the service became digital.

Also over time, and with the advent on the Internet, also came commercial businesses trying to emulate the MLS by way of Trulia, Zillow and the many others out there. Unlike the MLS, Trulia, Zillow and Realtor.com are not regulated by any oversight such as the National Association of Realtors.

They are called “aggregate syndicators” in the industry because essentially, they are just media companies who take the legitimate information (and often copyrighted photos and more) from the MLS system and duplicate the listing on their site. The “suggested realtors” that appear on the sidebar for these properties are simply agents who are paying for advertising with them – not the agent on record and usually an agent who has no idea they are being suggested for that property – they simply showed up there due to the program’s marketing algorithms.

Additionally, realtors know they don’t have to follow the rules on Zillow.  If a realtor posts her listings on Zillow, she can leave it up for as long as she likes with no regulation.  Interested buyers will see this property, get excited, and call the realtor.

The realtor then informs the prospective buyer, “I’m so sorry. This home is under contract, but I can certainly help you find something similar.” See what she did there? She just got a new client from Zillow, by being sneaky. On the MLS, properties must have their status updated very quickly and realtors can’t play such reindeer games.

Further, these aggregate syndicators take listings from wherever they can find them. Take this case study for example from Geoffrey Shiering, a San Diego real estate agent and California broker:

“I’ve personally published a “house for sale” advertisement on Craigslist (a home that was not on the MLS), and in less than 24 hours the property description and photos that I’d posted on Craigslist were being displayed alongside my local San Diego MLS listings on Zillow. Anyone can publish anything on Craigslist, whether it’s real, fake, exaggerated, or a downright scam. And when Zillow displays unverified, junk information right alongside MLS listings, the public assumes that the junk is just as accurate as the MLS data.”

Unbelievable. So, before you spend all your time researching online, contact your local real estate agent and tell them what you’re looking for so that they can get you accurate, real-time listings and get you on track for that new home you’ve been longing for.

If you have any questions about the MLS or want to start getting notifications, contact us here and we’ll get in touch with you right away. Just let us know some of the details (how many baths, bedrooms, fenced yard, neighborhoods, open floor plan, price range etc.) and how often you want to receive notifications by email. You can choose from daily, weekly or monthly and can always change the frequency as well.

And, when you purchase a home with Conscious Real Estate, you will be making a positive impact on your community. We donate 10% of our own commission to a nonprofit of your choice. Find a home, make a difference – that’s the way we do business.

 

The title pretty much says it all, but if you need more reasons, read on…

1)  Riding a bicycle will make you calmer, happier, and more clear-headed. 

Most of my buyers get stressed out when they are looking for homes. They are making a major life decision. The market is aggressive. So many decisions to make! Exercise is always a fantastic stress reliever and when you’re making a big decision, you want to be relaxed, feeling good, and maybe even have a little wind blowing through your hair.

2)  You will see more of the neighborhood on a bicycle than you will in a car.

I prove this to myself EVERY SINGLE TIME I ride my bicycle around my own neighborhood – I always notice something while riding my bicycle that I have never noticed before. So, when you’re deciding which area you would like to live in, wouldn’t you get a better sense of the neighborhood if you can experience more of it?  For better or worse, if you’re riding a bicycle, you will see it, you will hear it, and you will smell it – I promise!

3)  It’s eco-friendly.

We don’t have to waste gas on a bicycle and contribute to emissions.  Furthermore, we don’t have to worry about parking!  Many popular neighborhoods in Denver are tough to find parking, so let’s focus on the house and not where we should put the car.

4)  It’s fun.

Buying a house can be fun! Some stressful moments may come up and I coddle my clients through such times, but I also think it’s great to add in fun moments. Whoever said that being an adult can’t be fun was just doing it wrong!

If you’re interested in having a realtor that will tour Denver homes for sale with you, give me (Allison Parks) a call at 303-908-9873 or email allison@theconsciousgroup.com. I’m happy to drive as well, but I’m just trying to make real estate awesome! Whether you tour homes via bike or car with Conscious Real Estate, we always contribute 10% of our commission to the nonprofit of your choice after closing. conscious-bike-tours

 

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For two years, everyone has been asking me whether I expect a housing bubble to occur in Denver. Like any market, it will have to drop or plateau eventually. No commodity enjoys a steady increase until the end of time.

In the meantime, I come across a lot of articles and blog posts making some pretty broad claims about the Denver real estate market. The ideas are not necessarily wrong, but there’s more to the story.  

So, why should I just read this stuff over breakfast and roll my eyes, when I can share what I know with all of you?  I’m going to burst some of these bubbles, but not without a quick review of Economics 101.

Supply and Demand – Part 1: Denver’s supply of homes for sale is still very, very down. As long as this continues, Denver’s supply of homes for sale (or lack thereof) is a major contributor to our current seller’s market. Think about it… if, all of a sudden, the amount of homes for sale on the market increased by 500%, that would decrease the competition amongst buyers. If competition amongst buyers decreased, prices would go down

Supply and Demand; Part 2: We still have a lot of demand. People are moving to Denver at record rates. Denver consistently is rated as a top city for job-seekers, a top city to start a business, a top city for IT job-seekers, a top city for young people, and the list goes on. Based on historical trends, the U.S. Census Bureau estimates that an average of 50,000 people will continue to move to Denver on a yearly basis.  Demand isn’t likely to go down; there is a limit to how quickly builders can build and many builders won’t want to over-speculate this soon after the recession. Therefore, we are likely to continue to have a demand greater demand than supply.

Our Local Economy: The Denver metro area economy is diverse and consistently growing. I read a blog post recently saying that “Denver is just a boom town and will fail like Detroit.” Doubtful. Detroit depended primarily on the auto industry; they did not have a diversified economy. Denver has a variety of industries which are flourishing.

As mentioned in every article about Denver for the past few years, we have weed. We have tourism, for the mountains… and for the weed. This keeps our restaurants full, our hotels full, keeps people shopping in our stores, drinking in our bars, and smoking our weed. We have tons of tech companies, most of which are growing, including a new Google campus which is coming soon in Boulder. We have an ever-growing clean energy industry. (On the flip side, we have a quite a lot of oil and gas companies here in Colorado, although, this industry has recently taken a major hit and people have been losing jobs in oil and gas. Note: oil and gas only accounts for about 10% of our total industry.)

National Interest Rates:  They’re still pretty low. A lot people, including myself, thought interest rates would rise by the end of last year. We were wrong. As long as interest rates remain low, it will keep mortgage rates lower, even if the home price is higher, so people are still very interested in buying now. The Fed has been meeting to discuss raising interest rates and although a couple of folks are bulldogging to raise them, most members of the Fed are interested in keeping interest rates low for a considerable amount of time. If there is a rise in interest rates, it’s not expected to be a major rise for at least several years.

*Note: although this is dependent on your home price and monthly mortgage payment, overall, you will save a lot more money over the course of a 30-year-loan if you buy at a lower interest rate than if you wait around for home prices to drop. The highest likelihood of Denver home prices dropping is if interest rates rise, and that doesn’t necessarily mean that you will save money.

Got it?  

I’m ready to get really dorky. Let’s analyze some Denver real estate statistics, so I can justify that Master’s degree that’s stashed in my closet…

Here’s one I saw recently from a Denver real estate authority…

In 2015, 10% less units sold under $500,000, while 34% more units have been sold above $500,000 compared to 2014.” It goes on to say that this indicates an overall price appreciation…

Here’s the thing… Sure, any Realtor working in the front lines of our local market will acknowledge that prices have been rapidly increasing. However, you can’t use that statistic to necessarily indicate an overall price appreciation. It could simply mean that less properties went to market under $500,000… If less properties go to market under $500,000, then less properties will sell under $500,000. It’s simple. If we are staying abreast of real estate statistics, we know that properties are generally being absorbed into the market within 4-6 weeks… Therefore, what is released into the market will be absorbed. If properties over $500,000 are being listed, they will likely be sold.

It’s likely that people with properties under $500,000 heard the news about how competitive it can be to find a home under $500,000; therefore, they are choosing not to sell at this time because they believe it will be difficult to find a replacement home. People selling properties over $500,000 don’t face as much market competition if they purchase a similarly priced replacement home in the Denver metro area, so perhaps people at that price point are simply selling their homes at a higher rate than people with homes priced under $500,000.

(This would explain a lot, because if these folks are simply moving within the metro area, then the seller’s home will go on the market, be purchased by a new buyer, and then the seller will buy a new home which likely also costs over $500,000, therefore resulting in two homes over $500,000 being sold. Generally, someone purchasing a home over $500,000 is less likely to be a first-time home-buyer, whereas someone purchasing a home under $500,000 is more likely to be a first-time home-buyer. A first-time home-buyer is someone who is no longer renting or living in mom’s basement, so they are only taking place in ONE real estate transaction. Buyers and sellers over the $500,000 price point are more likely to be participating in TWO real estate transactions, as such, creating a higher statistic of homes being sold over $500,000. In any case, although rapid appreciation is certainly real – we cannot simply assume that this statistic is indicative of purely of home price appreciation.)

I mean, hey… murder rates and ice cream sales both rise during the same time of year, but should we assume that ice cream causes murder?

Lets talk about some more statistics I’ve seen out there…

Another real estate agent/blogger calls himself “The Denver Expert” and encourages readers to “outsource their nerd.” Excuse me while I outnerd this guy and not break a sweat in the process… The “Denver Expert” posits that areas with higher home prices appreciate less than areas with lower home prices, while areas with the lowest average home prices are experiencing the highest rates of appreciation. The 5 areas listed with the lowest home prices are San Rafael, Clayton, Wash Park South, Whittier, and Cole, and it is reported that these neighborhoods are appreciating at a rate of around 19% per year. I live in the zip code of 4 of these neighborhoods and sell properties in these neighborhoods regularly.

What I can tell you is that, yes, the neighborhood has appreciated… a lot! But it has not truly appreciated at a rate of 19% per year. If it were unadulterated appreciation, the homes would have just increased in price with no outside forces at play —–> which means you could have purchased a home five years ago, done absolutely no upgrades beyond necessary maintenance, and had your home value increase by 19% each year.

That would be awesome, but that’s not what’s happening here… I can tell you from living and working extensively in the 80205, this phenomenon can largely be explained by a human species called “A Fix-and Flipper.” As the traditionally posh neighborhoods in Denver remain out of reach for many, people move to up and coming neighborhoods where prices are more affordable. Home-flippers get hip to these trends and they start flipping in these neighborhoods knowing that they can make money on their investment.

I purchased my home in July of 2013 and in that time, 5 homes have been fixed and flipped within 2 blocks of my home. Therefore if someone bought these homes at $350,000, put some work into them, and sold them for $500,000 within the same year, it looks like prices are increasing rapidly. The statistics don’t control for fix and flips; they only show the overall numbers. When you see these dramatic statistics for Park Hill, Whittier, City Park West, and so forth… you’re not getting the whole story.

Similarly, when you purchase a home in Wash Park East or Country Club, that home is already going to be outfitted with luxury upgrades. There isn’t a whole lot one can do with a such a property to add value. It’s already a luxury home. It already has Viking appliances, a top of the line bathroom, and maybe a heated garage. It already has the best roof that money can buy. Therefore, the value increases for these homes will not be nearly as grandiose.

All in all, my advice is to not be too scared of the market. It possibly will plateau or maybe even drop at some point. (A lot of people who were afraid to buy two years ago, but if they would have bought then, their home values would have appreciated during that time. In the meantime, their rents have only gone up.) All commodities drop. And they usually go back up. If your home value drops, treat it like a stock and don’t sell when the market is down.

As a final note, from everything I’ve seen, I do expect rentals to continue to rise. If you are renting, but are fearful of buying a home, you should probably fear the opposite. Home prices may drop at some point, but rentals are likely to go up and up and up. In fact, if you’re looking to invest some money, I would strongly consider getting a rental property in Denver.

If you have any questions about the Denver housing market, are interested in buying a home, or would like to find out your home’s current value if you are considering selling, please call Allison Parks at 303-908-9873 or email her at allison@theconsciousgroup.com. We are Conscious Real Estate – the brokerage that loves our local and global community – contributing 10% of all realtor commissions to the nonprofit of our client’s choice in our efforts to change the world through real estate. 

With Memorial Day coming up (and just because we love dogs), we decided that Freedom Service Dogs should most definitely be this month’s featured nonprofit. Last week, we got an exclusive tour at their facility in Englewood. It was dog-tastic and we learned a ton!

Freedom Service Dogs began with Mike Roche, a paramedic injured in the line of duty. Together, with his wife PJ, the couple trained what would be the very first Freedom Service Dog, “Oreo”, to help Mike with daily tasks.

Freedom Service Dogs is a nonprofit organization that enhances the lives of people with disabilities by rescuing dogs from shelters and custom training them for individual client needs.

Michael, a lucky boy who received a custom-trained dog put it this way when talking about his new best friend Fender on the Freedom Service Dogs website, “He has become my best friend and given me self confidence. He is also helping my walking. People no longer stare at me because I walk differently.  They now look at me and my dog and smile.”

Allison Parks of Conscious Real Estate started her firm in order to fulfill her two obsessions:

1) Real estate (she can’t get enough of learning about trends, eco-friendly building materials, and the rich history of Denver neighborhoods)

2) Making a difference to nonprofits like Freedom Service Dogs by donating 10% of her commissions to nonprofits of her clients’ choice after every completed home sale.

Allison says, “I like Freedom Service Dogs because it’s one of the few nonprofits that helps people and dogs.”

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Allison Parks, Conscious Real Estate Owner/Broker, with Lindsay Ganassa, FSD Development Manager and “Cargo”

The dogs are rescued from shelters and trained to become service dogs for people who otherwise would not be able to afford one. Getting a service dog trained is very costly and can cost over $25,000, and these dogs demonstrate how amazing dogs rescued from shelters can be! Also, if you have ever seen a dog work, you know how happy they are to have that opportunity. It’s truly amazing to see these dogs have a second chance at life, happily working to help the people who need them.”

Freedom Service Dogs is thriving. They have expanded by helping veterans with PTSD and traumatic brain injuries by custom training dogs to help children as young as 12 live more comfortable lives – despite such daunting conditions as autism, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome and more.

Noticing the extreme PTSD that military personnel were coming back with after fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan, Freedom Service Dogs started Operation Freedom to help wounded warriors returning from traumatic conditions abroad.

Freedom Service Dogs Development Manager, Lindsay Ganassa filled us in on some of the details of the program. “Operation Freedom provides custom train service dogs to help mitigate multiple issues. Our clients might be facing PTSD, traumatic brain injury, or mobility impairment.  We can teach the dogs to perform room sweeps where they go into each room, turn on the light, scan for intruders, and signal “all clear,” which is important for flashbacks and anxiety.”

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Allison Parks, Conscious Real Estate Owner/Broker and “Cargo”

Ganassa told us that their custom-trained service dogs “can find phones in case of emergency, open and close doors, and can learn more than 50 custom commands.”

On average, Freedom Service Dogs rescues between 105-110 dogs per year. Out of that bunch, about 35 dogs are chosen to be trained as highly specialized service dogs. Those who do not make it as service dogs are adopted into forever loving homes.

There are many ways to support Freedom Service Dogs! Our favorite is buying a home with us and choosing to donate to Freedom Service Dogs through our Conscious Real Estate philanthropy program.  To date, we have had two clients select FSD after purchasing their homes and we look forward to the opportunity to multiply this number and increase our impact on this fantastic organization!

You can also attend the Ryno & Tracy’s Rally for Freedom on June 13th. Or, you can donate directly, volunteer to walk dogs, foster a service dog, or start your own fundraiser. (Think: dog wash for charity!).

For more information and to learn about all the different ways to give to Freedom Service Dogs, check out their website here.

And, if you’re thinking about purchasing a home the socially conscious way, contact Allison at Conscious Real Estate today to set up a complimentary Q&A session.

Finally, please share! The more you share, the more you care.

Check out more from our tour of the Freedom Service Dogs facility in Englewood, Colorado right here.

 

zonta-clubMary Benoit, President, Zonta Club of Denver

The Zonta Club of Denver stands up for women worldwide, seeking to improve the legal, political, economic, educational, health and professional status of women, both globally and locally. Since 1927, the group has raised over $2 million toward the cause.

Recently, the Zonta Club held a fundraiser at Sie Theater to raise awareness and highlight a brutal cultural practice that continues to this day – Sati.

In some Hindu communities, a recently widowed woman either voluntarily, or by force or coercion, commits suicide as a result of her husband’s death.

The practice varies in how it is performed and perceived, however in most cases, the woman is thought to have brought upon her husband’s death by negative actions in her previous life or lives. The thought is that if she honorably burns herself to death alongside her husband, she will erase the shame she has brought upon her family and restore abundance and good will in future reincarnations.

Sadly, many of the women are forced into this practice, leaving behind their children and suffering an unthinkable and painful demise.

sie-film-centerZonta Day of Film at Sie Theater in Denver

The Zonta Day of Film brought home this alarming practice in a fictional story of one family who is torn apart by a father’s death and a mother’s sati. Later, hope is restored when bv chance, the mother’s only son happens to find her in a cave while tending his small herd of cattle. She had escaped in the night as the flames began to engulf her and dove into the river. Together, with the help of family members, mother and son were able to escape their community and tell their tale.

Sati was formally outlawed in 1920, however the practice continues to this day. And, in 1987 was brought to the media’s attention when an 18-year-old woman committed sati in the name of her husband.

At Conscious Real Estate, we are committed to giving back to organizations like Zonta Club. We donate 10% of our own commission to a non-profit of our client’s choice. We’d love for you to consider Zonta Club of Denver and also to spread the word about Conscious Group. Together, we can make an impact.

To set up a free consultation with one of our realtors, please email: allison@theconsciousgroup.com or kim@theconsciousgroup.com or, call us at 303-908-9873 and mention this article!

For more information about the Zonta Club of Denver, please visit: www.zonta-denver.org.

The Hope House of Colorado really does bring hope to young women, especially 16 – 21 who often lack resource provided to pregnant teens and low-income women.

hope-houseSara Littlejohn (left) of Hope House and Kim Johnson of Conscious Real Estate

I found out from a recent tour of Hope House that there aren’t many programs to help teen moms after they give birth. Hope House seeks to provide them not only with outstanding resources, but also a sense of family, community, and strength.

There are two parts to Hope House. One is the residential center where teen moms and their children actually live. I was shocked (utterly surprised!) to find out how much Hope House cares about the girls down to the smallest, special, important details. They actually interview them ahead of time to get a sense of their style and then paint and decorate their rooms based on that interview.

Hope House offers teen moms lots of in-kind donations like diapers, clothes and toys for their children

The moms get their own rooms and their child gets his or her own nursery. It’s not clinical feeling or looking like some would expect. It’s homey, it’s safe, and Hope House makes it theirs.

Hope House also has a separate building, a few miles away, which holds the development and program team. There, teen moms in the Hope House program can get childcare, a meal or snack, activities for bonding (think: pedicure and movie nights!), as well as help with resumes, classes on how to carry yourself in an interview, and free GED assistance (so awesome!).

The GED program is a huge cornerstone of Hope House’s offerings. One of the many goals of the organization is to help the girls and women graduate high school, go to college, or find a career. The ultimate goal is to help these women and girls become self-sufficient and off government assistance.hope-house-2Hope House offers daycare and early learning classes for kids of teen moms in the program

Hope House recently won a substantial grant which allows them to build on a plot of land they had purchased in the same block as the residential program. With help from the grant and donors, Hope House will soon be able to combine both sides of their organization and help even more teen moms become confident, self-sufficient women.

At Conscious Real Estate, we know how important donors are to the health and stability of a non-profit. That’s why we’re committed to donating 10% of every commission when we sell a home to a non-profit or charity of our client’s choice.

We want to urge donors of Hope House to consider us for their real estate needs. The impact is huge. We can help together!

To set up a free consultation, just call us at 303.908.9873 or email us! Expert Realtor, Allison Parks can be reached at allison@consciousgroup.com and Kim Johnson, Sidekick Do-Gooder Extraordinaire, can be reached at kim@theconsciousgroup.com.

We also want to urge our clients to consider Hope House as their beneficiary of choice. Donations from our home sales average between $500 – $2500 (of OUR money, not yours!).

Curious about the impact you could make?

$80 = Counseling (one professional session for a teen mom or child)

$79 = Bus Pass (one-month bus pass for a teen mom)

$125 = GED Test (covers the government fees for GED certification)

$50 = Computer needs (covers Hope House’s computer, IT, & software needs)

$25 = Educational Software

$100 = Glasses (Help a teen mom cover vision costs)

$500 = New Tires (Self-sufficiency requires reliable transportation)

$30 = Prepare a teen mom for her first day of work

$75/$300 = Groceries (Feed a teen mom and her child)