5 Ways to Make Your House Feel Like A Home

As real estate agents, it’s one thing for us to find our clients the perfect house, but the real goal, is making them finally feel at home

Here are 5 tricks for making your house truly feel your own. Enjoy!
1. Buy Fresh Flowers

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Check out The Modern Collector for vintage vases such as this one!

There is no greater option for bringing life into your house, like a bouquet of fresh flowers. A local florists, like our favorite, Bloom in Cherry Creek North, will make a monthly arrangement, special to every time of the year and will guarantee to bring a pop of color to any room. Bloom’s Holiday Arrangement, is the cherry on top of bringing warmth, and Christmas spirit into this already beautiful house. We cant wait to see what they have in store for January and the rest of the year!flo

Bloom Denver. Holiday Arrangement.
2. Hire A Photographer


One of our favorite ways of feeling at home, is seeing the faces of those we love in it. Family pictures aren’t just for Christmas cards anymore! Rather, hire a photographer like ours, Corey Anthony, who takes the time to understand your family dynamic and the things that are the most important to you, and then capture them in a photograph.


This picture is one of our favorites, capturing the generation of hands in our family, and will surely be framed in our home for many years to come.

3. Invest In An Oriental Rug


Like a good bottle of wine, an oriental rug only gets better with age. One way of bringing the “at home” feeling to a new house, is to lay down that oriental rug, that has been with you throughout the years, under your bed or coffee table. This timeless piece can be a momento from home to home, and will always be worth the initial investment.

4. Display A Statement Piece of Art


Whether you are renting or owning your home, one way of having pride of ownership is having one piece of artwork you are proud of to display. Both Katie and I invested in one painting or photograph, which we will always display in our homes. Check out some of our favorite pieces from Z Gallerie!

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5. Incorporate A Family Heirloom


Many people have that one special heirloom that their grandmother recently passed down to them. For Katie, it was this beautiful, antique, diamond broach. Rather than spending a pretty dime on another decorative pillow, we pinned the broach to a furry pillow. Every time someone compliments that artifact, its an opportunity for Katie to bring up our Grandmother, whom we love so much. Have an old frame that is meaningful to your or your family? Revamp the frame by painting it a new color, change out the picture, and put it back out on display.  _MG_6425

Check out The Modern Collector for vintage, collective, pieces!
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Visit Bloom in Denver at their Cherry Creek or Union Station location!
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Visit Corey Anthony Photography to book your family portraits!

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Reside & Thrive Featured City: Austin, TX

Austin, TX. Whether you’re picnicking at the natural swimming grotto, Hamilton Pool, learning how to two-step at the Broken Spoke, or indulging in an Austin Eats Food Tour, this city never sleeps nor will it disappoint.

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Although Austin offer’s Millennials an abundance of activities, this isn’t the main reason that we have identified this city as one of the most promising destinations for young adults. With a 26.2% Millennial population within the city limits, young adults are thriving largely due to its booming job economy. The city is headquarters for large tech and telecom giants Dell, IBM, and AT&T and added 29,300 net new job since September 2014.

Reside & Thrive Featured City: Seattle, WA

In 2011, the rate of urban population growth across the United States, outpaced the growth within suburbs for the first time in nearly a century! The reason why? Cities like Seattle, WA are increasingly becoming more “livable!”

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Recognized by WalletHub as number one in the nation for their lucrative job market and second highest for participation in physical activities, Seattle promises Millennials abundant employment opportunities paired with an active, lively, and “foodie” centric city to reside and thrive!

Reside & Thrive Featured City: Atlanta, GA

ATL, Hotlanta, A- Town… whatever you want to call it, this city is one of the country’s finest destinations for young professionals! Known for its southern hospitality, diverse music culture, and sports teams, this city offers its residents a variety of reasons to call this place home.

So how about its real estate market? In July, Atlanta reported its strongest month in 2015 and best month-over-month performance since 2011. According to Trulia, Atlanta’s median sales price for homes between Jul 15 to Oct 15 was $255,000 or $183 per square foot. This is compared to the average U.S. home prices at $180,800 and $131 per square foot. So, are Millennials able to afford a great starter home in one of Hotlanta’s desired neighborhoods?

What does a monthly mortgage payment look like for $450,000 home?

Earlier this week, we published 5 of the top cities in America for Millennials to reside and thrive. Over the next few weeks, we will examine each city further by looking at their respective real estate markets and with the help of local experts, look at one example of a starter home in each area.

We have enlisted the help of four Sotheby’s real estate professionals in each city, and asked them to choose one home that would fulfill the needs of a typical, young, working professional looking to live in a desired neighborhood, and priced somewhere between $425,000-$475,000.

Full of Upgrades!Before debuting our first featured city and home, we asked Brittni Biren and Brett Baird with Citywide Home Loans, to help us demonstrate what a monthly mortgage payment could be for a home purchased for $450,000.

For this project, we chose a 3 bedroom, 2 bath single family home in the coveted Highlands neighborhood in Denver. Here is what a mortgage payment on this home would look like using an individual with a 720 FICO score.


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Ready to purchase a home? Don’t forget to contact the McKenney Team!

5 Cities in America for Millennials to Reside & Thrive

Money  recently published the Top Five Cities in the United States for Millennials to reside. The list focuses on places where job growth is projected to be above average; food, rent, and other necessities are relatively affordable; and there are high concentrations of grocery stores, pharmacies, laundromats, and other amenities. They also considered which cities offer loads of fun bars, restaurants, and leisure activities. While we agreed that all five cities provide Millennials all of these things, there are two that we believe Money failed to mention; Minneapolis and Denver.

Intrigued by this article, we are curious what our top five city’s real estate markets look like and also what $450,000 can get you for a home in each area. Over the next few weeks, with the help of four young and driven brokers, we will look at each city’s housing market and an example of the perfect starter home for a Millennial living in each city.

To begin, here is our list of five of the top cities for Millennials to Reside & Thrive:

Seattle, WA


If you’re a young professional who needs their latte in the morning, Seattle is the city for you. With a Starbucks store for every 4,000 people, you are pretty much guaranteed to have starbucks-01vanilla frappuccino within a quarter mile of your home. With a thriving start up community and home to large corporations such as Amazon, Microsoft, and Boeing, Seattle ranks #1 for metropolitan cities for Millennials to live in according to Forbes. In the study, Seattle topped the charts because of its median pay at $55,500, 4% unemployment, and 70% job satisfaction rate for professionals. Above average employment opportunities is matched with the killer skyline, walkability, as well as one of the best destinations for foodies and singles.

Taking Design Collaborations To New Heights

We recently had the opportunity to catch up with Corinne Ekle, a fellow classmate of Katie’s at Cherry Creek High School about her success as the owner and principle designer of
c2Design, an interior design firm based in Denver. It was so exciting to hear about her experiences as a young entrepreneur working DSC00051in the Denver market and watching her dreams of working as a designer and business owner take flight!

Corinne shared a story about a recent opportunity she had to be a part of the Denver Life Magazine 2015 Designer Showhome, where she was selected to design the basement bedroom. Immediately, Corinne recognized that the basement bedrooms is one of the more looked over rooms in the whole home, so in order for it be recognized, she would have to think of an aesthetic slightly outside the box. After seeing what she put together, we asked her if we could PLEASE showcase this beautiful room and more so, if she would show our viewers how to recreate this idea!

CNBC warns, “Renters, get ready to take it on the chin”

Photo Credit: Craig Warga/ Bloomberg

Tuesday, CNBC’s Diana Olick reported that Americans can expect unaffordable rents to worsen.

According to CNBC’s report, by 2025 13 million renters will spend 50% of their income on rent. This comes at a time when we are seeing more renters than in U.S. history. Homeownership rates recently hit a 48 year low at 63.4 percent in the second quarter of this year.

Since 2010, the rental rates across the United States have increased 14 percent. In a recent study, Zillow found the cost of renting a home in the U.S. has risen to its least affordable levels ever. Renters in the U.S. can now expect to pay around 30.2 percent of their monthly income for rent, which is the highest percentage recorded in history.

One of the largest contributors of this problem, is the U.S. and private sector’s inability to provide affordable housing. According to one study, back in 2013 the median rents of newly constructed units was $1,290, which is about half the median renter’s monthly household income. Luxury apartment rentals are popping up all over major U.S. cities, while the supply of affordable multi-family homes remains meek.

The question is, how long will renters be willing pay rental rates that are increasing 4 percentage points faster than inflation and more than double U.S. home prices?

Millennials. Are we a generation with commitment phobia?

commitmentMillennials. Are we a generation with commitment phobia?

We rent our dresses, share our cars, and download our movies illegally so we can view it just the one time. Even our music, through applications like Spotify, is accessible without the commitment of actually owning our favorite artist’s music. If all signs point to our generation having a fear of ownership of something so simple like a handbag,  then are we really that surprised that Millennials are known as serial home renters?