Trick Or Treat Safety

candy-2518372_640This is a wonderful time of year, and with the October season, many children are excited to go trick-or-treating. As the night draws closer and children are picking their costumes, here are a few things to remember to keep everyone safe.

  1. Mind where you are walking. Be sure to use sidewalks, driveways, and paths while trick-or-treating. Also, cross the street at the corner or on a crosswalk.
  1. Carry a cell phone. Not only can you call the authorities or emergency services (if needed), but the flashlight feature can help if you go into a darker area.
  1. Make sure kids are visible. Put a light or reflective tape on their costumes and have them carry a glow stick or flashlight.
  1. Feed kids first. To keep kids from hitting the candy before they get home, give them a snack or dinner beforehand. Also, before kids start eating their candy, check it out to make sure it is safe.
  1. Don’t lose the dog. If you bring along the family pet, use a leash and collar with ID.
  1. Drive extra carefully. If you drive, stay super alert and go extra slow through neighborhoods to ensure you don’t hit a child or family pet.
  1. Have ground rules. If your child is old enough to go trick-or-treating without you, agree on the route and make sure it only goes through familiar neighborhoods. Also, have them carry a cell phone.
  1. Go over stranger dangers. Remind kids they must never get into a stranger’s car. Tell them to scream loudly and run if someone stops and asks for help or offers them candy.
  1. Don’t forget to have fun. Halloween is all about having fun and enjoying time trick-or-treating. This year, make the most of the holiday with these fun ideas.

This information was provided by Danene Strand.

Welcome Shawn Cottle

Shawn CottleWarm Welcome to Shawn Cottle! We are excited to have you part of our RE/MAX Metro team!

Shawn Cottle joins RE/MAX Metro with nearly 4 years’ experience. Currently, Shawn serves Weber, Box Elder and Davis counties.

Shawn previously worked with Equity Real Estate as one of their top producers. He joined RE/MAX Metro due to their esteemed reputation, valuable training and a chance to learn from some of the industry’s best. By joining RE/MAX he knows it will better serve his clients.

When not working hard for his clients, you can find Shawn boating, hunting, camping and anything else outdoors. He also enjoys spending time with his family including both watching and coaching football for his two boys.

July 2017 Housing Market Stats

Housing Market by County

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Davis County Market

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Salt Lake County Market

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Killer Comps For CMA’s


3 Hour CE Class

June 1st 9 am

Courtyard Marriott

1803 Woodland Park Drive, Layton


The Killer Comps class grew out of response to student requests for more specific guidelines for adjusting comps after taking the Appraising for Realtors class. Neal Jackman, having worked with on the revision of the CMA program in 2009, presents the theory behind comp selection and adjustments found on their website. By gaining a better understanding of the process, the Realtor student will learn how to select better comps, gain confidence in the CMA program, and develop valuations more consistent with appraisal valuations. Specific hands on evaluations are developed in class to demonstrate the process. Laptops are encouraged for use in class.

After careers in the Marine Corps and the jewelry industry, Neal entered the wild world of real estate in 1993, as a Certified Residential Appraiser. Employed by a default mortgage servicer, he has
completed property valuations on preforeclosure and bank owned properties located in almost every state, and was the project manager (dirty little jobs officer) for the bank owned (REO) department working with the foreclosure, bankruptcy, and loss mitigation departments in resolving a wide variety of problems. This foundation, led to becoming the in house REO sales agent marketing northern Utah properties and obtaining his Broker license in 2009. He has served as a member of the Education Committee with the Salt Lake Board of Realtors for ten years and served as Chairman in 2011-2012. He has also served as a member of the Grievance Committee, Salt Lake Board Professional Standards Committee, and currently on the Utah Board Pro Standards Committee. Deeply committed to education, Neal is a continuing education instructor having authored three very popular classes on property valuation and the Code of Ethics, NAR instructor for the Pricing Strategy Analyst certification, as well as teaching pre-license classes for aspiring sales agents and Brokers.


5 Reasons to get a Pre-Approval Before Starting to Look for A Home

Blog-Post---5-reasons-to-get-a-pre-approval---DaneneI am sure you are seeing everywhere that interest rates are great and now is the time to buy.  You’ve been thinking to yourself that buying a home is starting to sound better and better and maybe there is even a cute one for sale in your neighborhood.  Before you schedule a showing or start posting pics of your dream house on social media, getting a pre-approval is a must and here is why:

  1. You’ll know if you are really ready.

To get a pre-approval, a lender takes a look at specific requirements in deciding if you can truly purchase a home.  They look items such as your credit and, income to ensure that when you do find the home you want, you can move forward to actually purchase.  Also, if you are not able to qualify at the current time a skilled lender might be able to put you on the path to be approved in the future.

  1. You will get a price range to work with.

Since the lender will look at your information, they should be able to give you a price range that you qualify for.  This will help you look for houses that are real possibilities for you to buy and help cut wasted time from your search.

  1. It weights your offer and increases your negotiating power. Once you find the home you would like to buy; your next step is to submit an offer to the seller.  When you have a pre-approval, it shows the sellers that you are financially able to purchase the home and also improves your power to negotiate the terms.  If you put in an offer without a pre-approval, the seller has no way of knowing if they accept your offer you will actually be able to go through with the purchase.
  2. Saves time. As soon as you decide on the home you want and submit an offer you probably will want the process to happen as quickly as possible.  Having already submitted much of the paper work and opened a file with a professional loan officer you can greatly shorten the from contract to close.
  3. Agents will want to work with you. On average, a person will look at 8-10 homes before they decide which they would like to buy.  Some people even look at up to 30!!  Every home you look at takes time behind the scenes for your agent.  Typically, an agent searches for home to match your criteria, then sends you information on homes that meet your search terms, and ask which you would like to see.  Once you decide on the homes to look at, the agent schedules the times with the seller or their agent.  The agent will also have to meet, with you to show the home as well as any follow up that is needed.  Agents spend hours preparing and showing each home, so it makes sense that they want to be sure you can actually purchase a home when you find the right one.

In closing, a pre-approval is great for everyone.  It allows you to exactly how much house you can afford.  It gives an agent incentive to help you in your search (and trust me having an agent is a must, especially if it is your first home), and helps to streamline the entire process with you and your chosen lender.  To see if you are ready to buy a home and how much you will qualify for click here to be matched with one of our Utah lenders.

Update Your Front Entry with These 5 Steps

Blog-Post---Front-Entry-Tips---DaneneFrom the moment, you move into your new house you being making it your home.  One way to make it feel more homey for you and your guests right off the bat is by creating a welcoming entryway, that conveys your personality.  Here are 5 easy steps to creating an entry way you are proud of.

  1. Color your door with a bold color. This will boost curb appeal and also provides protection from the elements.  Start by buffing down the door with 220-grit sandpaper, then apply a coat of primer and allow to dry.  Keep in mind when choosing your paint to select one with a smooth or glossy finish that will assist in keeping moisture out, and prevents mildew.
  2. Turn it up with unique lights. Whether you have the option for a hanging light or even simpler sconces, choose unique ones that add to your overall look.  Look at different materials such as unfinished copper or brass and also different textures of glass.
  3. Get real, with plants. Strategically place low-maintenance plants like succulents or any other plants that will thrive in your area.  Just check with your local nursery for plants that are fitted to your climate, amount of sun, and commitment level.
  4. Make a statement with your house numbers. Placing easy to read and stylish numbers can make it easier for your friends and family to find your home and round out your entry way.  Depending on the theme of your home you can place purchased number tiles, simple vinyl numbers, or hand painted numbers to help your address stand out.
  5. Add special touches with accessories. Adding trendy door knocker or vintage mailbox can be just like adding a dazzling necklace or bracelet to your favorite outfit.  Seasonal wreaths are also a great way to keep your look updated all year long.  Add just one or two extra touches, or you could be overdoing it.

Creating a welcoming entry to your home can make both you and your visitors feel comfortable from the first moment.  Remember first impressions last forever, so make it a good one.

Welcome Judd Stanger

Judd Stanger WelcomeWarm Welcome to Judd Stanger! We are excited to have you part of our RE/MAX Metro team!

Judd Stanger comes to RE/MAX Metro as an upcoming real estate professional. Stanger obtained his realtor license in 2016. He has more than six years experience in sales, which has helped him develop the necessary communication and negotiation skills critical to success in the real estate industry.

Stanger has always had a passion for real estate. He finds helping people solve problems along with overcoming buying and selling challenges the most rewarding aspect of real estate. He currently serves the entire Wasatch Front community.

This Utah native’s roots run deep. Both of his parents are from Utah and have lived in Layton for more than 20 years. Stanger received a Bachelor of Science degree in finance from Weber State University.

When he’s not busy helping people overcome obstacles, you can find Judd outdoors. He loves to sky dive, bungee jump, white water, hunt, fish and camp. You may not know that Judd is a world traveler whom has visited 17 states and 19 countries.

Welcome Sherice Sparrow

Sherice SparrowWe would like to give a warm welcome to our newest agent Sherice Sparrow!

Sherice boasts more than 15 years of experience in both the residential and commercial real estate industries. She strives to use her knowledge along with her experience to represent clients to the best of her ability. Educating and communicating with them throughout every step of the process ensuring they make the best decisions possible.

Real estate has always excited Sherice. The industry allows her to combine her enthusiasm for property and design with her love of working with people. Her hard work, passion for serving clients’ needs and helping them achieve their goals sets Sherice apart. Sherice serves the entire Wasatch Front to ensure a positive and seamless buying and selling process for all.

Sherice married 16 years now has three beautiful children. You may find Sherice and her husband cheering loudly on the ball court and the dance floor. Nothing makes them more proud than to support their children in all of their endeavors.

Sherice spent 15 years as a successful business owner. Sherice earned a bachelor’s degree in technical sales from Weber State University.

She enjoys time outdoors, skiing, hiking, wakeboarding, traveling, and spending time with family and friends. When not working tirelessly for clients, Sherice enjoys running. In fact, she has ran many half marathons and the Ogden Marathon. You can always count on Sherice for her honesty, commitment, passion, and fun-loving aura.

Top 10 Things to Buy Before You Move into Your 1st Home

Blog-Post---10-things-to-have---DaneneThe first couple of nights in your new home will be exciting and memorable. Make sure that you are prepared to make those memories good ones by having these 10 things readily available.

  1. Coffee maker-Waking up that first morning in your new home the last thing you will want to do is leave!! Running down to Starbucks won’t be nearly as alluring as starting to settle into your new morning routine.  Make sure that you have filters and coffee grounds as well.  Bonus points if you unpack two coffee cups the night before so you won’t have to fumble around in the bubble wrap to find them.
  2. Fire extinguisher- Let’s face it stuff happens. New stove, new cooktop, and maybe even a new fireplace.  Even though you may think it could never happen to you, a small fire may have your new home dreams up in flames, if you aren’t prepared.
  3. Cutting boards and knives- Whipping up a tasty meal in your brand spanking new kitchen usually is top of the list for most new homeowners who love to cook. Having your supplies on hand will make it so much easier, and cutting boards are essential to protect your new surfaces.  Picking up a few flexible cutting boards is a quick fix and very inexpensive.
  4. Bath Mat and Towels- Hopping out of the shower can be chilly and slippery if you don’t have the basics. Your first home calls for fluffy new towels and definitely a bath mat.  Depending on if you already have décor themes in mind these could be the first steps to making your house into a home.
  5. Corkscrew or Wine Key- Before turning in on even your very first night a little celebration is in order. Whether or not wine is your go to beverage of choice, it is a very common new home gift.  Have an easy to use corkscrew or wine key on hand to open a bottle for yourself or for friends and maybe a few glasses (your morning coffee mugs work great too)!
  6. Curtains- new builds and most existing houses tend to come without curtains and other window coverings. Curtains start to build the character you will bring to the home but also keep out the light early in the morning, or the peeping eyes of curious neighbors in the evening.  If you haven’t settled on paint or accessories, just get a few inexpensive curtains to cover up for now.
  7. Plunger and toilet brush set- You never know when nature’s call won’t be well received by the plumbing. Make sure to have a plunger and toilet brush handy just in case.  Especially if you are moving into an older home that may have older pipes.
  8. Vacuum- While you hope that nothing is broken in the move, you want to be prepared.  A good quality vacuum is a must for any home.  They come in many different styles with different functions such as cordless, wet/dry capabilities, or the fancy robot ones that drive around all by themselves.  No matter what kind you are leaning towards, invest in a good vacuum that will last a while.  This is one item you will ALWAYS have in your home so don’t just buy the cheapest option or you may end up replacing it often.
  9. Document Holder- Having a safe and consistent location to keep all the documents you will receive when you first move is critical to being able to stay on top of all the must do’s you are likely to have. An expandable file with write on tabs make it easy to keep your incoming documents organized and accessible.  Documents you may need to keep track of are your loan documents, utility set up paperwork, and lists of important number for your new area.  (You never know when a mean Chinese craving will attack in the middle of unpacking!)
  10. Crock Pot- Slow cookers are a great way to have a hot meal on hand at the end of the long days ahead.  Toss some meat, veggies, and sauce or stock into the slow cooker in the morning and forget about it.  By the time your stomach is rumbling for some dinner, you will have a hot and ready meal you don’t have to go out or order out for.

Having just a few things when you move into your first home that will help make the first couple of days easier, will make all the difference.  Especially because mom and dad’s towels aren’t likely to make the move with you and probably weren’t at the top of your list of awesome stuff to get for your new space.

What are some of the items you would add to your list?  Does your top 10 differ much from ours?

The First 3 steps Millennials must do when preparing to buy their first home

  1. Blog-Post---3-Steps-for-Millennials---DaneneStart Saving. When you start planning for buying your first home having some money in the bank is a must.  A recent study showed that 61% of first time home buyers paid for their down payment from their savings.  Considering your down payment could be anywhere from 3.5%-20% of the total purchase price, it is unlikely you’ll be able to save that amount over night.  Also, most first time home buyers only plan for the down payment; however, there are additional out of pocket costs you’ll need to account for.  You may end up paying for the home inspection, appraisal, and in most cases closing costs.  You also want to plan for unexpected circumstances not just with the home but your life in general.  You don’t want to wipe out your savings to purchase your home and then become unable to work or have a major expense surprise you.  It is recommended that you have 6 to 9 months of living expenses in an emergency fund in addition to the costs you are anticipating.  ***
  2. Understand the importance of your credit score. Your credit score affects much more of your life than just whether or not you will qualify for a home loan.  Knowing what makes up your score and what your score says about you is crucial.  Employers, credit card companies, and many other institutions look at your credit score as a stamp on your financial situation and sometimes your character.  There are many free resources online to find out your credit score but keep in mind they are not 100% accurate.  Knowing your score and better yet steps to improve it will put you in the fast lane to getting approved for your mortgage.
  3. Understand the lingo. What is PMI and what does ARM stand for? Of all the processes in your life there may be none more foreign than the processes when it comes to purchasing a home.  In an effort to reduce the risk of loaning an incredible sum of money and to keep your information secure home loan paperwork is very… thorough.  With that being said you are likely to hear terms that you have never heard before and that may be intimidating.  Get familiar with some of the terms you are likely to hear or read by checking online for a mortgage term glossary ( and always make sure to choose a professional loan officer who will take the time to ensure you understand not only the terminology but the process of buying a home.  (Click here to find an officer in your area today).

Even if a home purchase seems a few years away it is best to start planning for it now.  Not only will you be ahead of the curve on the financial end of things but you will also be more familiar with the process as a whole.  Most of the hiccups or horror stories you hear about first time home purchases are due to the fact that the borrower (you) was not educated or prepared for a home purchase.  Again, having a professional and experienced lender will help you through the process effortlessly.

*** This is not an offer of credit or commitment to lend. Loans are subject to buyer/property qualification. Loans programs are subject to change without notice.