conservation colorado, the conscious group, conscious real estate, denver real estate, socially conscious businesses

conservation colorado, the conscious group, conscious real estate, denver real estate, socially conscious businesses

Conscious Real Estate donates 10% of all home sales and purchases to a local nonprofit of their clients’ choice. Thank you to Sean and Marissa Laven for choosing Conservation Colorado and Conscious Real Estate.

colorful colorado, colorado, real estate, denver real estate, conscious real estate

“Welcome to Colorful Colorado,” the sign reads.

Colorado is a beautiful state full of natural beauty and color. Conservation Colorado is one local organization striving to keep our state colorful in another sense too – by including our residents of all colors in natural conservation efforts and supporting legislation to ensure environmental protection equally in all areas.

In Denver, some groups of people and entire neighborhoods have been unjustly slighted over decades. In particular, the Globeville area and neighborhoods affected by the initial construction of I-70 which cuts off local transportation in some areas and consistently produces more pollution. People who live in these areas now face increased health concerns and lower standards of air quality, among other health issues. Here is a report on the latest efforts from CDOT.

In Colorado, Latino residents comprise over 20% of everyone who lives in our state. Yet, according to statistics from our state government itself, they suffer more health problems and have lower incomes when compared to the entire population of Colorado. Just check out this fact sheet on the health disparities from the Colorado Office of Health Equity. Yes, there is an entire office devoted to this, but is it actually helping?

Local nonprofit organization Conservation Colorado seeks to positively influence legislation on conservation, clean water, curbing air pollution, and supporting fair development initiatives that do not unjustly isolate or harm one community over another:

“Unfortunately, our amazing state faces grave threats. Powerful interests are constantly pushing to put pollution and profit over public health. We are at the front lines of every fight working to protect the air, land, water, and people across our state.

We have a long and successful history in Colorado of collaborating on key environmental issues, working collectively at the State Capitol, and establishing strategic partnerships to find success on a variety of levels, including:

  • Ensuring that more than three million acres of wilderness will stay forever wild.
    Setting a statewide renewable energy standard, then increasing it to 30% and making it one of the strongest in the nation.
  • Working to minimize impacts from oil and gas drilling by updating public health, drinking water and wildlife protections in 2008 and continuing to push for further reforms.
  • Passing more than 130 different conservation bills at the state legislature in the past six years on a host of environmental issues ranging from water efficiency to air quality to energy efficiency to transit.
  • Electing pro-conservation candidates and holding our elected officials accountable in the State Legislature, Governor’s Office, and local government councils and commissions.” – Conservation Colorado

Conservation Colorado is doing an amazing job, but as a nonprofit, donations are needed to stay afloat and support their programming.

They have several initiatives that we find, well, awesome! In addition to working around the clock to support legislation, they are focused on diversity and are: “committed to building a more diverse and inclusive organization and being a leader in the broader conservation community to ensure diversity, equity and inclusivity are integral parts of our work.” Further, they believe that: “all Coloradans should be fully represented and engaged as we work to build as powerful a conservation movement as we can.”

The youth and adult Promotores and Protégete Programs through Conservation Colorado are specifically for Latino youths and adults to get a say. Side note… while researching for this article, we have to give kudos to the University of Colorado for creating a Certificate in Latino Health from the Colorado School of Public Health. Thank you for also being a leader in recognizing the unique health impact issues facing a huge segment of our population. More info here.

Conscious Real Estate Agent, Andy Robertson, recently donated $700 to Conservation Colorado as part of our Give 10% programming. We donate 10% from every home purchase or sale to a nonprofit of our clients’ choice.

conscious real estate, real estate donations, socially conscious businesses, denver real estate

“Sean and Marissa Laven knew immediately that they wanted to support clean water initiatives in Colorado, and Conservation Colorado seemed the natural partner for their donation.”

“Though the staff was busy planning their Rebel with a Cause gala, they loved the interruption to gather for a photograph so they could show the Laven’s how grateful they are for the support!” said Robertson.

At Conscious Real Estate, we love to support local changemakers.

We are grateful to donate to Conservation Colorado because, “they’ve had the wherewithal to be inclusive with diverse communities across the state – a lot of low income and Spanish-speaking communities and youth who often have not had a seat at the table when it comes to conservation,” says Allison Parks, owner and founder of Conscious Real Estate. Sign the petition to have your voice heard.

You can help too!!

How? Of course, when you buy or sell a home with us, 10% of our own commission is donated to your favorite nonprofit. This means a large lump sum that doesn’t come from your pockets whatsoever, but comes directly from your heart. Referrals for socially conscious friends and family who are looking to move to Colorado or to a new location in the Denver area are greatly appreciated and help local organizations make our hometown even greater and more inclusive. Contact us anytime for more information or to set up a chat with one of our agents. Thank you for reading!

colorado youth leaders, colorado nonprofits, conscious real estate, donations for youth

colorado youth leaders, colorado nonprofits, conscious real estate, donations for youth

Youth have a lot of serious stuff to face every day. Maybe more than any have ever had to. With school shootings happening often, mental wellness generally not prioritized, a lack of positive leadership, economic hardship, and failing school systems, young humans who thrive are like a flower growing out a rock. How do they do that? How can they grow despite the circumstances? How can teens thrive in a tough world to become positive leaders?

flower, rock and a hard place, colorado youth leaders, colorado youth, youth, nonprofit, conscious real estate

Truly passionate youth are nurtured at places like the Colorado Young Leaders organization, a local 501(c)(3) that matches ambitious youth with the opportunities making their dreams and impact possible.


Where there’s a will, there’s a way. It’s like water. Water, over time, will create spaces and valleys and paths exactly where it wants to flow. Our human willpower is exactly the same. While we don’t know what the road will entail on the journey, if we want something badly enough, we’ll find a way how.


Colorado Young Leaders believes in this same kind of “magic.” Specifically, they believe in the “Power of Yes.” It’s right on their website, but we like quotes like these, straight from the kids involved in the program:


“Saying yes is the start of something bigger than you could have imagined. You’ll know you love it when you do it.” – Max A.


What does the power of yes mean to CYL? They define it as: “the willingness to jump into an adventure even if you don’t have it all figured out just yet. It means you want to learn more about the world around you, discover your own gifts, and make a real impact.”


How does Colorado Youth Leaders empower youth and help them find opportunities? They have a unique structured program named after four of Colorado’s most well-known 14-ers. In the first phase, students work with the organization to discover and easily identify their trust and core passions. Next, the student commits to a cause. What follows is a perfectly matched internship to help the youth meet leaders and mentors who share their passion and learn valuable skills related to the individual impact they hope to make within their cause.


The program concludes with a legacy project, which can span a wide range of student-led initiatives for lasting impact, i.e. meaningful volunteering, creating programs to get more youth involved in service-based careers, or any number of awesome projects they come up with along with the help of CYL.


For example, one student was having a difficult time with reading, but had a passion for working with trucks. They took him out to meet a truck mechanic who provided the student with all of the manuals for working on trucks. Sure enough, he took to those manuals and this greatly improved his overall reading skills.

Another student felt passionate to do something about the fact that her school district had experienced several suicides of students. She took the initiative to start a program called “Offline October,” which encouraged students to take a pledge to stay offline for the month of October and encourage more interaction among one another. Thousands of people took the pledge nationwide.

We can get behind it 1000% (or actually 10%, which we donate from every real estate sale or purchase from our agents’ own commission). Recently, Owner and Founder, Real Estate Agent extraordinaire, Allison Parks, was able to donate $1221 to Colorado Young Leaders. Investing in youth leadership is one of the most direct ways to help our future.


“I think it’s not just fantastic, but also crucial to empower our young people in this manner,” says Parks. “All too often, young people are told that they can’t do something because they’re too young, or the project will be too big or too difficult… but how will we know what these young people are capable of until we let them try?

I think many times, they will surprise us… and sometimes the projects will be too big or too difficult, but that’s exactly what learning leadership is about. Leadership isn’t about success at every avenue, nor is life. Learning how to adapt to obstacles is a key part of success in which I wish I would had more supported learning experiences when I was younger.” – Allison Parks, Owner & Founder Conscious Real Estate, Do-Gooder, Mindful Broker


Does this sound like a cause you could support? There are many ways to help! You can consider donating your time. Get more info here. And, of course, another crucial way to help is to invest and support the organization financially. This way, they can distribute the funds to their particular needs or invest in a current project that needs support. Large, lump sums can go a long way, which is why we encourage you to work with a conscious real estate agency that donates to local positive nonprofits (Hint hint!! It’s us!!).

conscious real estate, the conscious group, real estate, real estate agency, denver real estate agency, denver real estate

The Conscious Group - Sh*t Agents Say - Post 8

The Conscious Group - Sh*t Agents Say - Post 8

(Another Sweary Real Estate Post by Allison Parks)

Note: This is the eighth post in a series. 

You should hire me, because all real estate agents are terrible, except me. Only I am good.

Here’s the thing… yes… a lot of realtors are sucky. However, there are agents out there who are fantastic, knowledgable, dedicated, and compassionate. As much as it kills me to say this, some of these badass agents are not named Allison Parks and are not employed with Conscious Real Estate. That is the real truth. Anyone who tells you otherwise might be a “stable genius,” similar to Donald Trump who is also incompetent, lies consistently, does not take care of the people who hired him, and (not coincidentally) has made a shitload of money in real estate.

One of the owners of a local brokerage much larger and far more successful than mine spoke to a women’s group a couple of years ago and I had the misfortune of being in that audience. This brokerage owner sat in front of 100-plus women and said that, essentially, only brokers at her brokerage give a shit about their clients and that’s what they are doing differently. That’s what sets them apart. Only they provide top-notch service. Any other agent who does not work with her brokerage is shit-poop.


I squirmed in my seat as I thought to myself, “There is a special kind of hell for someone who would stand in front of a room of female entrepreneurs and lie through their teeth like this. This is NOT an honest way to build business and she has no business guiding entrepreneurs who are trying diligently to cut their teeth in business, especially other women who actually need good and real advice to compete in a man’s world.”

(Side note: I have closed at least two properties with agents who are employed at this woman’s brokerage. One was a total bad ass… she was personable, professional, and knowledgeable, and I have nothing but good things to say about her. The other was a shit show and her clients paid the price, literally and figuratively, for her lack of knowledge and/or caring.)

Truth: If a real estate agent who wants your business is telling you that only they are qualified, they are already lying to you. Why would they lie? Do they have a proclivity to being dishonest or are they simply lacking valid reasons as to why you should work with them? In either case, I think you can do better and you should continue your search for a Fantastic Agent.


Want a Fantastic Agent instead of a Problem Agent?  Give us a call at 303-908-9873.  

For more on Shit Real Estate Agents Say to Get You to Hire Them, read the series.


Buying vs Renting - The Conscious Group

Buying vs Renting - The Conscious Group

Buying a home can be a major responsibility. If something breaks, you fix it. You have upfront costs. You have to fill out paperwork. And then you have to fill out more paperwork. And then, just when you thought you were done… you guessed it! Even. More. Paperwork.

Many personal finance bloggers who are way more hip than me write compelling articles about why they will never buy a house again. They talk about the huge costs required to purchase a home. The tax advantages aren’t what they used to be. One article suggested that a reason to continue renting is to avoid the responsibility of changing the outdoor light bulbs. Sigh…

I admit, buying a house is typically less exciting than going to a music festival… unless you have really weird ideas about what constitutes a good time or unless you are being filmed on HGTV as you purchase a two-million dollar tree house with your fortune gained from making contemporary art sculptures out of rubber bands and recycled wig hair.

However, owning a home isn’t without its own fun. You can paint murals on the walls, you can adopt as many ferrets as the law will allow, and any improvements you do on the property will contribute to your equity rather than the equity of your landlord.

If you own your home, the rent won’t be raised, or the landlord can’t kick you out because they decide to sell the property or move back into the home once you have made it beautiful and cozy.

Buying a home could be right for you… or not. Let’s address your concerns…

Are you afraid of being tied down?

Everyone is afraid of being tied down, except for Capricorns.

Let’s talk about that… what does “being tied down” mean to you? If you need to move to go back to school next year, that’s valid. You are literally being tied down by something and you probably shouldn’t buy a home this year. If you’re not even sure if you like the area where you’re living, then maybe you shouldn’t buy a house yet.

Often, the feeling of being tied down is just that – a feeling. If you further examine that feeling, you may actually find freedom in the things that you perceive as being limitations. For instance, if being “tied down” means that you don’t like having to spend a lot of money on your living expenses, buying a home could actually provide you with more freedom.

One of my clients was ambivalent about buying a home, so we discussed what made him feel tied down. He wanted the ability to travel at a moment’s notice and to not be encumbered financially. However, he didn’t mind having roommates and sharing his space with friends. I helped him to purchase a 5-bedroom home and he immediately rented out 4 of the bedrooms. He lives in his home for free, because the income from his tenants covers the entire mortgage. He is able to save his living expenses, he makes an additional payment toward his principal every month, and he still goes to Burning Man every year. How does that sound for “not being tied down?” This guy nailed it.

Do you want to be able to travel?

We all do. Even my dad travels now… he’s the guy wearing socks and sneakers at the beach.

Owning a home isn’t necessarily an obstacle to travel, you just have to make it work.

If you are currently living in a rental and are able to travel, how have you achieved this so far? The same method should apply to home ownership, unless you simply travel between leases and put your stuff in storage each time you want to leave. Furthermore, as someone who has traveled quite a bit, I personally appreciate having roots. Having a home to return to has been key to reintegrate into life upon return. Do you really want to get off that plane with hellacious jet lag and then have to figure out how to rent a new place and drag your stuff out of storage while you’re trying to process all of the life-changing experiences you just had? (Maybe you do! If so, you have far stronger constitution than myself.)

If you would like to travel long-term, you can rent your property and the tenants can cover your mortgage while you are away. Hire a reputable property management company to manage your rental in your absence. (Technically, you could do it yourself, but if you are traveling off-grid, you wouldn’t be able to call a plumber if a pipe bursts or something.) Depending on the area, it’s possible that you could even make a profit by renting your property during your absence.

If you are traveling for a shorter period of time, you can rent out your property on Airbnb. Several companies and individuals professionally run Airbnbs for homeowners. They handle the bookings, guest communications, and clean your property between guests. In Denver, I have had several friends who earned enough money by renting their home on Airbnb, it was more profitable for them to live in Bali and do yoga than it was for them to stay home and work. This is especially great for people who can work remotely, like web designers, graphic designers, and so forth. (Check your local laws before moving forward with a short-term rental, as many areas require a license.)

Do you not have $50,000 (or 20%) for your down payment?

This notion that you have to have a lot of money saved for your down payment is often a misconception. If you have good credit (or even decent credit), you probably don’t need to have a 20% down payment.

Conventional loans allow you to purchase a home as low as 3% down if you have excellent credit, while FHA loans allow 3.5% down payments for folks with mediocre credit. In Colorado, CHFA loans allow home-buyers to purchase a home with .5% down, which is typically going to be less than what you would pay for first and last month’s rent with a deposit on a rental. If you are a United States Veteran, you are likely eligible for a VA loan which will allow you to purchase a home with zero money down. (Note: in all of the cases above, you will likely still need to have closing costs available.)

(The 20% down payment myth likely originated from misunderstanding the rules about mortgage insurance. If you don’t put 20% down on your home, then you will have to pay mortgage insurance until you reach 20% equity. Once you hit that 20%, you can refinance to drop the mortgage insurance. Mortgage insurance sucks and it doesn’t benefit you whatsoever, but it can be a necessary evil to purchase a home. Chat with a lender to see if you could purchase a property for less than what you pay in rent, even with the mortgage insurance included in your monthly payment.)

Do you tend to trust the wrong people on a very regular basis?

This can be an issue. If you wind up hiring a shitty real estate agent, they may pressure you into buying a home that isn’t right for you. If you know this about yourself, get some friends to help you interview the agents or get agent referrals from someone you trust. Watch out for answers that sound flaky. This is not a time for you to be worried about hurting other people’s feelings or whether you are coming across as “nice.” There is too much at stake. This is a time for you to really vet these “professionals” and ensure you’re picking the right person for the job. Don’t be afraid to say no if it doesn’t feel right!

Maybe bring your bitchiest friend to interview real estate agents – it sounds silly, but seriously… we all have a bitchy friend and we might as well put their skills to use! If the real estate agent can pass the Bitchy Friend Test, you can hire this person to be your buyer’s agent.

And make sure to check out the  Shit Real Estate Agents Say to Get You to Hire Them series for more things to watch out for!

Will you have to use your nest egg to purchase a home?

This can be a bit of a sticky wicket. Many of us purchased our homes and then quickly scrambled to rebuild our nest egg in the event of unexpected, but necessary home repairs. Most of us were able to do so successfully. However, there is always the chance of a SNAFU occurring before you have replenished your savings. In this case, if something major goes wrong with your home, you may not be able to cover it. This is a valid concern and I would suggest that you take this possibility very seriously.

To decrease the likelihood of this scenario, you should have the home professionally and thoroughly inspected prior to purchase. (Of course, things may look fine one week and fall apart the next. That’s life.) Strongly weigh the pros and cons of this scenario. I purchased my home on a prayer and dime and everything worked out. My home greatly increased in value, very quickly. Had I not taken the chance, I would not have received the rewards, but it was a risk. Of course, I do real estate, so I knew what I was doing. Make sure that you are aware of the market in which you are buying and that you have a trustworthy agent who will work to find you a home in an area that is likely to appreciate.

Do you have a super unique rental situation in which you pay rent that is priced well below the market?

If you are one of the lucky ones who would actually have to pay a lot more to purchase a home than what you’re paying in rent (and you’re happy), stay right where you’re at! Take advantage of the situation while it lasts but be aware that it won’t last forever! Save your money. If your situation changes unexpectedly and you didn’t plan ahead, you may not have enough money saved to purchase a home or even to pay rent if the market has greatly increased.

In Conclusion:

For the past few years in Denver, home ownership has more often been a better scenario than renting, as rents have continued to rise. If these renters had purchased a home at any point, they would now have a good amount of equity in their home. Their living costs would be stabilized instead of continuously rising. All in all, home ownership is a good move for most people, but there are always the exceptions to the rule and buying a home is not a decision to be taken lightly.

Not all houses are created equal. Not all housing markets are created equal. Not all real estate agents are created equal. Do your research and dig deep into your values to discover the life you would like to create. With the right information, the right team, and some creativity, home ownership has the potential to help take you to the next level… or not.

The Conscious Group - Sh*t Agents Say - Post 7

The Conscious Group - Sh*t Agents Say - Post 6

(Another Sweary Real Estate Post by Allison Parks)

Note: This is the seventh post in a series.

You should work with me because I have been in the business for a super freaking impressive amount of years.

Oh, bullshit.

Here’s the thing… listen to their tone when they say this. Listen closely for any level of smugness. Typically, any level of smugness means that they’ve probably learned less than the next agent in those years.

If I ever quit real estate and need a real estate agent to represent me, knowing what I know, years in the business would not be a determining factor for me whatsoever. Just like there are plenty of bad drivers on the road who have been driving for decades, plenty of agents have been doing real estate incorrectly for 20+ years.

In the state of Colorado, an agent only has to be closely supervised for their first two years of their licensure. If they were not trained by an attentive and knowledgeable supervising broker, then those first two years were not very valuable. In fact, many supervising brokers are also Problem Agents. They don’t give their trainees much attention, but still take a portion of their commission. I have heard many horror stories about neglectful supervising brokers at both well-known national brokerages, in addition to smaller local brokerages.

Truth: Some agents may have been in the business for 20+ years and will be incredibly talented and client-centered Fantastic Agents, but there are many Problem Agents with decades of experience who are less knowledgable than a new agent who just started a year ago.

How do you tell the difference? Someone who has worked in real estate for that long will communicate well. They will be able to answer your questions in ways that you understand. They will likely anticipate your concerns before you have even expressed them. They won’t be fast-talkers, rather they will be humble… and they will have so much knowledge about real estate that it will make your head spin.  


Want a Fantastic Agent instead of a Problem Agent?  Give us a call at 303-908-9873.  

For more on Shit Real Estate Agents Say to Get You to Hire Them, read the series.


The Conscious Group - Sh*t Agents Say - Post 6

The Conscious Group - Sh*t Agents Say - Post 6

(Another Sweary Real Estate Post by Allison Parks)

Note: This is the sixth post in a series.  

Have you ever heard this?

You should work with me because I am a REALTOR®.

When agents provide this as a reason, they will likely explain that they are special because they have committed themselves to adhere to a code of ethics prescribed the National Association of REALTORS®.

Sigh… bullshit.

Yes, ethics are awesome. Of course, real estate agents should utilize the highest level of ethics at all times and not be self-serving assholes.

Here’s the thing… the fact that someone has sworn to adhere to a code of ethics does not necessarily mean that they will exhibit ethical behavior.

If a person is generally unethical, they will most likely continue to act unethically whether they have been sworn in to the REALTOR® code of ethics or not. Similarly, if a person is ethical, they will simply continue to act ethically whether they choose to belong to the National Association of REALTORS® or not. Seriously, this is just high school level philosophy…

Being a REALTOR® simply means that an agent belongs to a professional real estate board – the National Association of REALTORS® and likely a local real estate board. Agents must pay several hundred dollars per year to attain this status and must take the aforementioned required ethics class every 4 years, after which everyone stands and swears to remain ethical. Being a REALTOR® is not dependent on merit and no one is actually governing the agents to ensure their ethical behavior. An agent’s REALTOR® membership could be revoked for unethical behavior if they were found to be guilty of said behavior, but that would require getting caught and getting turned in.

Truth: At the end of the day, approximately 50% of all agents are REALTORS®, so it’s not something that truly sets a Fantastic Agent apart from a Problem Agent. I have been a REALTOR® for over five years and I don’t feel as though my membership has strengthened my real estate prowess.

I was ethical before I joined and if I ever cease my membership (or if they kick me out for talking smack in this blog post,) I will continue to be ethical because I’m not a self-serving asshole.


Want a Fantastic Agent instead of a Problem Agent?  Give us a call at 303-908-9873.  

For more on Shit Real Estate Agents Say to Get You to Hire Them, read our next post, I Have Been Doing This Forever, Which Shows What an Expert I Am.

The Conscious Group - Sh*t Agents Say - Post 5

(Another Sweary Real Estate Post by Allison Parks)

Note: This is the fifth post in a series.  

Here is one of them:  

You should work with me, because I am a neighborhood expert. (Or school expert or foreclosure expert and so forth…)

BULLSHIT. 90% of the time, “expert” is just a marketing gimmick.

In the case of “neighborhood experts,” agents often choose the neighborhood in which they reside to be an “expert,” meaning that they are an expert because they live nearby. An agent who has branded onself as a “neighborhood expert” are using “hyperlocal marketing,” as it is highly recommended practice for real estate agents to market themselves heavily in a very small area.

What does “neighborhood expert” even mean? Do these people not know how to sell homes in other neighborhoods?

Here’s the thing…  there could be an instance where an agent has legitimately only sold homes in Cheesman Park for the past five years… they haven’t even sold a property in Congress Park on the other side of York Street, so they are a neighborhood expert, right? Not necessarily. If this agent has only sold Cheesman Park mansions for five years, they may not be familiar with the condos in Cheesman Park or they may not know how to accurately price an investment property in Cheesman Park. As such, even an agent who genuinely only sells properties in one neighborhood may still not be familiar with the type of property that you own or desire. As such, the term “neighborhood expert” is most often just shit real estate agents say to get your business.

Also in this realm of bullshit marketing are “experts” in vintage homes or “experts” in modern homes and such. These people may be Fantastic Agents, but it’s more likely that they are great at marketing themselves. One such agent who is a “Victorian Home Expert” called me for feedback from my clients about our showing we had. (Note: listing agents only call buyer’s agents for showing feedback if they cannot sell the home because they priced it too high and they are desperate.) I informed her that my clients weren’t interested because the floors were far more wonky than in most homes of that era, indicating potential structural issues. On top of that, the only bathroom in the home was not on the same floor as the bedrooms and was only accessible through the kitchen. DO YOU REALLY WANT TO PARADE THROUGH YOUR KITCHEN EVERY SINGLE TIME YOU TAKE A SHOWER?

She smugly responded that many Victorian homes have their quirks. (Thanks, honey. My Victorian home was built in 1899 and is put together like the car in Johnny Cash’s “One Piece At A Time” and it’s still better than this house you’re trying to sell, so you better lower your damn price and quit yer caterwauling.) Essentially, this “Victorian Expert” didn’t know enough about pricing a home to sell this one for asking price, but she is great at marketing herself and makes a shitload of money.

Truth: If an agent knows how to do their research, price properties effectively, assess the trends, negotiate well, and listen carefully to their clients, they can be a Fantastic Agent in any neighborhood with any type of home. An agent choosing to brand oneself as an “Expert” is just marketing.


Want a Fantastic Agent instead of a Problem Agent?  Give us a call at 303-908-9873.

For more on Shit Real Estate Agents Say to Get You to Hire Them, read our next post, I Have a Fancy Certification that Makes Me Uber-Ethical.

Spotlight on a Recent Conscious Real Estate Donation to the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless


We are a community.

We forget that sometimes. When it comes to our Denver community, homelessness and the brink of homelessness due to rent and home prices is an everyday reality. Yet, many people pretend these issues or people don’t exist, pushing them into corners (literal corners, like Lawrence Street and Park Avenue and figurative corners, like not being able to get credit, rent a place, find a job, etc.). This is our call to open our community, minds and hearts. We’re all on the same team.


Yet, how little our homeless community is valued can be reflected in the 2018 Denver Right to Survive Initiative. It’s an incredible movement establishing basic human rights for the homeless. What whatttt?? Yes. It’s 2018, and our homeless friends and neighbors are having to establish their own ‘Bill of Rights’ because our local, national and global human rights protections are ignored so commonly for them. It’s movements like this and support of hyper-local nonprofits that can help with building up our homeless neighbors. (Psst… you can read more and support the Right to Survive Initiative here.)



Housing: necessity and luxury.


The foundation of Maslow’s hierarchy of human needs is shelter. We need a place to rest and protect ourselves from the elements. Without that support, there’s not much to build on. Local Denver shelters are crowded, many are completely full daily. The silver lining is that there are so many dedicated people, organizations and businesses that understand we are all part of the same community and want to help. Yet, it’s true… housing, especially in Denver, is a luxury.


It can be mind numbing to think about… Did you buy your home before the Denver market boom and are lapping up your property values this year? Or, are you looking to buy and have been saving for some time, concerned about the prices out there? Finally, you could be like the best friend of a Conscious Real Estate employee… renting a studio for $1700 and sharing it with your partner. These are the common scenarios in housing these days. While more affordable housing is going up and some really cool projects like the Beloved Community Village have been changing the scene, donations are needed to help more people.


And, also… check this out. This stand-up judge is currently refusing to drop a class-action suit against the city of Denver for confiscating the property of homeless people (remember those awful vides of law enforcement taking their blankets on Capitol Hill last winter in the snow?) This is the kind of positive, for-the-people government action we like to see. We’re coming together!!


How does homelessness happen?

Many of our homeless neighbors are vets coping with trauma. Many have been homeless since they were kids. One man was literally thrown from a bridge. Another was just an infant when he became homeless. Their stories show just how strong human resilience can be despite the circumstances. This inner strength is, well, awesome.

Stories of the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless: Bruce

A lot of stories start out like any other. Bruce, for example, was a marine who made it big during the era. He was making six figures, was married and living a family life when everything came crashing down. The money ran out after the bubble. His wife divorced him. He lost contact with his son. He began to drink, heavily. Life spiraled out of control. His drinking left him physically disabled, having to use a cane to walk.


It wasn’t pretty and Bruce didn’t have a lot of options except to try to reverse time. And, he did. He went through programming through the Colorado Coalition of the Homeless and started college courses in Applied Science. Did we mention he got a 4.0? “Looking toward the future, Bruce says that professionally, ‘my ultimate goal is to run a nonprofit for addicted Veterans who are homeless.’ But more importantly, ‘my goal after I leave is to [continue to] build a relationship with my son.'” – Colorado Coalition for the Homeless

Stories of the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless: Caden & Ria

Two toddlers, Caden & Ria, became homeless when their family was evicted from their apartment (for reasons that are not mentioned on the site, but with the prices in the Denver area, we can only imagine…). Due to this hardship, the family was not able to maintain requirements for the Colorado Childcare Assistance Program (CCAP) Subsidy and they stopped bringing the kids to school.


This was especially alarming as Caden tests on the autism spectrum. After learning about the circumstances, through the Colorado Coalition of the Homeless, the family learned about programming that would allow the children to continue to come to school, getting much needed nutrition and support. The family also received help on career assistance and finding a home. Through the organization, the family now is employed and living in an apartment.


Stories of the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless: Jessica

Jessica went through what no mom should ever have to. She lost her three month old to SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.) Devastated and still caring for her other children, a series of events led to her dismissal from work and then eviction from her home. She lived with her mother in a small mobile home, but was targeted as at-risk of losing custody of her children unless they found a more stable environment.


Through the Colorado Coalition of the Homeless, Jessica was able to go through the Family Reunification Program and helped her move into a suitable home with her children. She is also now able to regularly meet with a trauma counselor to work through the grief over the loss of her child. She plans on working in the medical field and works every day to make a better life for her children.


…read more incredible stories here.


What this donation means to us.

We find great inspiration in:

Thriving where you’re planted.

Getting past all the odds.

Dismissing people who say: “that’s too difficult.”

Ignoring the thoughts that tell you, “you can’t do this or that.”


Nonprofits like Colorado Coalition for the Homeless exist because homelessness may never be solved. Donations help give much needed funding to a nonprofit that needs staff, shelter maintenance, outreach, medical assistance, financial coaching and the many other services they offer.


“This was our first donation that ever supported people experiencing homelessness, so that’s a big deal, to me at least.” – Allison Parks, Owner & Founder, Conscious Real Estate


We have been donating to the nonprofits of our clients’ choosing for over four years now. We have no regrets about the many wonderful organizations that our clients have selected to receive donations. This is exactly why we created our business model as such – we care about all of the causes. The environment matters. Free speech matters. Veterans matter. Social justice matters. Animals matter. ALL OF IT MATTERS.


But still… four years is a long time to go without donating to a group of people who we all see on the streets every day in Denver – a group of people who are clearly in need. This donation landed an extra special place in our hearts… why shouldn’t the donations from our home sales contribute to the homeless?


From the start, Conscious Real Estate always had a socially conscious mission. Since the beginning, we have donated to scores of global, national, local and hyper-local nonprofits. We love focusing on Colorado nonprofits and this donation was especially meaningful. We genuinely hope to generate more business that allows us to continue to give back to the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless.



Look! It’s us!

Here is Conscious Real Estate Agent, Kimberly McAleenan (center), with her client Adrienne (left), and John Mezger (right) of the Colorado Coalition of the Homeless. Let’s just say those smiles are thinking about what can be done with $854! A lot!!! Are you looking to buy or sell? Join the conscious movement and contact us to learn more.


When you buy or sell a home with Conscious Real Estate, you’re able to donate a large chunk to a nonprofit of your choice. So many of our clients already make smaller monthly donations and attend the events of the organizations that they love, but this really allows our clients to give in a bigger way – using our money.


The Conscious Group - Sh*t Agents Say - Post 3

The Conscious Group - Sh*t Agents Say - Post 3

(Another Sweary Real Estate Post by Allison Parks)

Note: This is the fourth post in a series.  

If you are interviewing multiple agents to list your home, you may find yourself in a situation where several agents say that your home should sell around, for instance, $460,000. Another agent comes in and says they can sell it for $510,000 because they are incredibly talented and special. Beware, my friend. This is a tactic that many agents use to capture listings. They say that they are the best agent. They have special unicorn powers. All they have to do is click their heels, use your bathroom on a Wednesday without washing their hands afterwards, and like magic, your home is worth $50,000 more. I’m sorry, but often these agents are lying… but of course, all of us want our homes to be worth $50,000 more, so we hire the agent who says they can get us those 50 bonus racks.

Guess what actually happens?

Many moons later, your home sells for $460,000, like all of the honest agents told you it would. In fact, since your home sat on the market so long, your listing became “stigmatized” in the eyes of many buyers. As such, your home might only sell for $450,000-455,000, when it should have sold for $460,000. The agent with special unicorn powers purposefully quoted you a higher price than could actually attain for you, because they wanted your business. They aren’t smart enough to get your business in an honest fashion, so they have to use slimy tricks.

Truth: As a result of falling for this tactic, you have made less money, your home was on the market for much longer than it should have been, and you have to live with the fact that you paid a lot of money to an Uncool Agent, instead of an Honest Agent.


Want a Fantastic Agent instead of a Problem Agent?  Give us a call at 303-908-9873.

For more on Shit Real Estate Agents Say to Get You to Hire Them, read our next post, I am an expert on [insert neighborhood here].

The Conscious Group - Sh*t Agents Say - Post 3

The Conscious Group - Sh*t Agents Say - Post 3

(Another Sweary Real Estate Post by Allison Parks)

Note: This is the third post in a series.  

You should hire me because I work at ___________ brokerage.

When I first started out in real estate, I went on a date with one of the top-selling real estate agents in Denver, because he was kind of cute and I wanted to see if I could glean any useful real estate information from him. He was more than happy to talk about himself and his successes at length…

At the time, he worked for Coldwell Banker. He told me that when potential clients interview him, he sells himself by touting that he is employed with Coldwell Banker, because they are a successful nationwide company that has been around for 100 years.


Here’s the thing… Yes, Coldwell Banker is a successful nationwide company that has been around for 100 years… but this has nothing to do with the quality of his work or his competence as an agent. He’s just blowing hot air, because he’s a Slimy Salesperson. Coldwell Banker, like any major franchise real estate company, has some amazing franchises and some terrible franchises. They will have some amazing agents and some terrible agents. Same goes for Keller Williams. Same goes for Re/MAX. Same goes for Sotheby’s. You get the point…

Fantastic Agents work at a shitty brokerages, Problem Agents at fantastic brokerages, and a bunch of average agents breathe the recycled air at a variety of brokerages.

When agents sign on with a brokerage, the brokerage takes a (typically significant) portion of their earnings for training, office space, and so forth and the brokerage turns a profit from these agents. More agents at a brokerage generally means more money for the brokerage. As such, many brokerages will hire just about anyone, because they want the cut of their money. That’s how brokerage owners get rich. That’s how they expand statewide or nationwide. That’s how they exist for 100 years.

Truth: Coldwell Banker is not a real reason to work with someone. Knowledge, competence, skill, and giving a shit are all real reasons. (I’m not dissing on Coldwell Banker, but I am dissing on agents who can’t give their potential clients a real reason that they should choose to work with them.)


Want a Fantastic Agent instead of a Problem Agent?  Give us a call at 303-908-9873.

For more on Shit Real Estate Agents Say to Get You to Hire Them, read the next post about super freaking impressive amounts of money for your home.