Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Park City Home Buying by the Foot

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

Park City home buyers and sellers often consider the home’s dollar per square foot price when setting the home or condominiums’ price or making an offer. How much should attention should a buyer be paying to the dollar per square foot price when considering a home?


Dollars per square foot is only a useful number if you are comparing two homes or condominiums that are identical. The problem here is that it doesn’t matter if it is a Park City Home or a New York City home, no two homes are identical. Even two side by side homes by the same builder will likely have differences. Views can be different, neighbors will be different, access may be different, the distance to an amenity (pool, hot tub, ski run, gym, front desk, elevator, etc.) will be different. Wear and tear on an older home as well as how the previous owner handled maintenance will make the homes different.


Things to consider when looking at a dollar per square foot price:
Park City Real Estate by the square footIs the calculation made using the total square feet or the finished square feet? An unfinished basement or room can add greatly to the total square feet thus lowering the dollar per square foot value, but how much value does it add to the home?


Are the finishes the same for the properties you are comparing? Are the base and case stain grade or paint grade? Are the doors solid or hollow? Are the countertops custom slab or something you can buy at Home Depot? Are the appliances “professional grade” or not? Is the flooring real wood or laminate, travertine or ceramic tile? All of these items while serving the same purpose come at dramatically different prices and thus impact the dollar per square foot value of the home.
If two homes are different sizes, where does the difference lie? Does one have a theater room that the other doesn’t, or does it have an extra bedroom and bathroom? Is the size difference extra space in each room? And how does that change the way you feel about the home? Sometimes bigger makes rooms just too big while at other times it adds value. Sometimes the extra space you may buy with the lower price per square foot is unusable space or space you just don’t need to heat and maintain. The square foot of the home calculation does not take the lot size into account; nor does it consider views and open space.


When comparing two Park City homes, it is important that you are making true apple to apple comparatives. Our three ski areas are not equal, Old Town is not the same as Kimball Junction and Park Meadows is not the same as Silver Springs.


For assistance in determining the value of your home or condominium and to better understand the values of homes and condominiums in Park City, Utah contact a local realty professional with the Group (888)968-4672.


Park City among top 10 of Best Town Ever 2013

Monday, May 27th, 2013

Park City, UT is among the finalists in this year’s Best Town Ever competition in Outside Magazine. The magazine is recognizing Park City for the:


Skiing; three resorts named in the top ten in North America (Deer Valley, Park City Mountain Resort, and Canyons) make this pretty easy.


Road Biking; Outside notes the Mirror Lake Scenic Byway outside of Kamas as a riding highlight. I’d say that with Park City having been named the first Gold-Level riding center ever by the International Mountain Biking Association (IMBA), mountain biking, with the hundreds of miles of trails in Park City, could easily have been the highlight (note that Outside while highlighting road biking notes in its description of Park City that the mountain biking is “absurdly good”).


Food & Nightlife; there are well over 100 restaurants that Park City offers without a bad one in the bunch, Outside highlights the High West Distillery “world class” is the descriptive phrase the magazine uses in describing Park City.


Easy Access to Green Space; it is nearly impossible to stroll ten minutes in any direction from Park City and not find yourself in some type of open space.


Outside closes its brief description of Park City by calling it “the best mix of adventure and culture of any mountain town in the West”. We here at agree wholeheartedly!


Vote for your favorite “Best Town Ever” at:


Park City, UT is up against Boston, Bozeman, Carbondale, Greenville, Honolulu, Oklahoma City, San Diego, Spokane, and Waitsfield.

Why Choose Park City?

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

Park City Barn Winter


Park City has so much to offer in all seasons! Located all within minutes of each other you have three world-class resorts – Canyons, Park City Mountain Resort, and Deer Valley Resort. This town is also filled with other activities and events that the whole family can participate in. Take a look for yourself….enjoy!




A Sellers Market in Park City(?)

Sunday, July 29th, 2012

Are we entering a Seller’s Market in Park City, UT?


The Salt Lake Tribune reported that the median sales price for single family homes in Salt Lake County rose last quarter for the first time in 5 years. Will Park City real estate see similar statistics soon?


National statistics are beginning to show strength and there are many reports indicating prices on the rise (similar to the reports from Salt Lake City). Park City and other resort communities tend to lag the national indicators as people must feel comfortable with their primary home before purchasing secondary homes and condominiums.


Sales statistics so far for the year have been flat with the previous year in terms of volume and again this last period showed a slight decline in the median sales price for single family homes in Park City. The decline was not even across all areas and some areas experienced an increase in median sales prices. Inventory levels are having an impact on sales in most areas and especially in the lower price points in all neighborhoods.

Park City Median Home Sales Price


Recent Park City area home sales statistics report that inventory levels are at a five year low. This lack of inventory shows very prominently in the lower price levels in all neighborhoods and also can be seen in the lack of REO product. For example, single family homes in Park City under $500K that aren’t considered cabin properties actively for sale numbers under 50 while over 100 such homes have sold in the past 12 months. A look at the Promontory area shows 14 home sales (non-“cabins”) in the past 12 months under $1.5M and only 9 active non-cabin listings offered at under $1.5M.

Park City Home Sales and Inventory


The lack of inventory is causing multiple offer situations in many situations as well as frustration on buyer’s sides trying to purchase a deal.


Lower inventory levels and lower prices will not last long as the demand will begin to force prices up.


As mentioned above, sales statistics and inventory levels vary between Park City neighborhoods and price ranges. Contact for specifics about the price point and neighborhood matters most to you (888)968-4672.

Park City Home Value Appraisals

Friday, May 25th, 2012

Two appraisals of the same Park City home result with a large dollar discrepancy.


A buying client of the Group was set to purchase a home and was paying cash. Even though it was technically unnecessary, we felt that an appraisal of the home would be good for everyone’s peace of mind ensuring that the second home they were buying was a good value. With the cash purchase, we were on a short timeline and our first choice of local Park City appraisers was on vacation. We asked around and got a few good recommendations for another qualified local appraiser.



The buyers asked that the appraisal be made without the appraiser knowing the contract price of the home. The appraisal came back at approximately 10% below the agreed upon purchase price. Upon getting the appraisal, the Sellers agreed to pay for another appraisal (feeling that this one was incorrect).


For the second appraisal, the Sellers gave the appraiser (another respected local Park City appraiser) a copy of the Purchase Contract. This time the home appraised at the contracted purchase price (10% above the previous appraisal).


We asked both appraisers about their findings. Both stood behind their appraisal values for the home but there were some interesting differences.


Most of the homes used as the comparable sales were the same. In looking at the two appraisals and the adjustments made for the same subject property values of the same item were very different. While one gave a $2500 adjustment for A/C, the other valued it at $5000. A fireplace was valued by one appraiser at $4000 while the other valued it at $2500. One placed a dollar value on the hot tub while the other considered it personal property not attached to the home and gave it no value. The largest discrepancy between the two appraisals was the adjustment for size; one gave a $30/sq ft adjustment versus a similar home (same number of beds, baths, kitchen, etc.) while the other valued the added space at $70/sq ft. This difference was magnified by the 100 sq ft difference between the two measurements stated in the appraisals.


Which one of the appraisals was correct? As it is with most things, it depends upon which side of the transaction you are on. I believe that the value lies somewhere in-between.


Park City Luxury Ski Condos

Thursday, December 15th, 2011


The Hyatt Escala Lodge


About a month ago we toured the changes at The Hyatt Escala Lodge at Canyons Resort and had a fantastic dinner in one of their mountain view 3 bedroom luxury condos. The Lodge, which was rated as one of the top 12 “Hot Hotels” in North America, continues to step it up and is delivering on the news that they announced months ago, the opening of The Escala Provisions Company, “The Restaurant” and bar. Other additions include 5,000 sq. ft. of meeting space, a staffed children’s center and 7,000 sq. ft of “flexible indoor /outdoor space”.


Hyatt Escala Lodge Canyons Resort

This gives Park City Real Estate another amenity rich, high end luxury condo option for clients who are considering a ski in/ski out Park City home. There are currently 21 Hyatt Escala Lodge Condos on the market ranging in price from $365,000 for a 1 bedroom, 1 bath condo to $2,000,000 for a 4 bedroom, 5 bath residence. In the past 12 months there have been 5 sales at the Hyatt Escala Lodge. The sold prices ranged from $299,000 for a 1 bedroom to $1,916,000 for a penthouse 3 bedroom 5 bath.


Another factor to take into account when considering purchasing Canyons Resort real estate in general are the many changes that have taken place in the last year or are on the books. The Winter Zip Line tour is in and is something I have to try. The tour is comprised of two zip lines; one is 800 feet long has an 8% grade the other is 2100 feet with a 10% grade. Just thinking about this makes me grin. Additional snowmaking, new lifts, a remake of the resort center area and the beginning of construction on the new golf course are just a few things that have happened recently. For skiers and boarders (and owners of any Park City real estate) the proposed “Skilink” which will connect Canyons Resort in Park City to Solitude Ski Resort in Little Cottonwood Canyon will have positive impacts too many to list. If and when the Ski Link goes through final approval and is built skiers and riders will be able to access Solitude from Canyons ski resort and avoid the 45 minute drive.


If you have questions about The Hyatt Escala Park City, Canyon Resort Real Estate or Park City Real Estate in general please contact the Group Real Estate Professionals at 888-968-4672


Click for more information including all for sale listings at the Hyatt Escala Park City or contact the group.


Click here to learn more about SkiLink.


Voters Support Open Space, Recreation, Arts & Parks

Friday, November 5th, 2010

 Park City and Summit County registered voters opt for taxes and bonds.
            The November 2, 2010 election in Summit County, Utah drew a large number of voters for a non-presidential election year. Nearly 50% of the registered voters in Summit County (home of Park City) cast ballots in this year’s election.

         Two big initiatives on the ballot this year were the extension of the Recreation, Arts & Parks tax (RAP tax) and the Snyderville Basin Open Space and Trails Bond (Proposition 2). With the current economic situation the nation faces, it appeared as if initiatives that cost voters money would face strong opposition from voters. On the contrary both measures passed with overwhelming support.

Park City Election            The RAP tax which adds a one tenth of one percent tax on purchases made in Summit County received a positive voter endorsement of nearly 67%; keeping the tax for another 10 years. In the past 10 years the tax has generated more than $7 million which has gone to fund art, cultural and recreational activities in Park City and Summit County. Over half of the revenues generated by the tax have gone to support non-profit groups providing cultural activities such as the Egyptian Theatre, Park City Performing Arts Foundation, Kimball Art Center, Mountain Town Stages, Swaner EcoCenter and Utah Symphony and Opera with the remainder going to publicly owned recreational facilities like the Basin Recreation Fieldhouse, Park City Ice Arena and Oakley Recreation Complex.

            Proposition 2 which asked voters to approve a general obligation bond of $20 million to go toward the acquisition of open space and non-motorized trails in the Snyderville Basin. The cost of the bond was estimated at $10.51 in property tax per year for each $100,000 of assessed value (about $70 per year for the next 20 years for the average home in the Snyderville Basin area of Park City, UT). Of the $20 million, $12 million is to be used for open space acquisition, and $8 million is to go to trails.

            The passing of both of these ballot initiatives in the current economic climate points toward the commitment of Park City and Summit County, Utah’s voters and residents to the lifestyle and values that make this a special place to live. For assistance in making Summit County and Park City your home, or home away from home, contact a real estate professional with the Group at Keller Williams Park City Real Estate (888) 968-4672.

A poem for the New Year

Thursday, January 1st, 2009
  • I hesitate to make a list
  • Of all the countless deals I’ve missed;
  • Bonanzas that were in my grip -
  • I watched them through my fingers slip;
  • The windfalls which I should have bought
  • Were lost because I over-thought;
  • I thought of this, I thought of that,
  • I could have sworn I smelled a rat,
  • And while I thought things over twice,
  • Another grabbed them at the price,
  • It seemed I always hesitate,
  • Then make my mind up much too late,
  • A very cautious man am I
  • And that is why I never buy.
  • When tracts rose high onSixth and Third,
  • The prices asked I felt absurd;
  • Whole block-fronts bleak and black with soot
  • Were priced at thirty bucks a foot!
  • I wouldn’t even make a bid,
  • But others did — yes, others did!
  • When Tucson was cheap desert land,
  • I could have had a hip of sand;
  • When Phoenix was the place to buy,
  • I thought the climate much too dry!
  • “Invest in Dallas-That’s the spot!”
  • My sixth sense warned me I should not,
  • A very prudent man am I
  • And that is why I never buy.
  • A corner here,
  • then acres there,
  • Compounding values year by year,
  • I chose to think and as I thought,
  • They bought the deals I should have bought.
  • The Golden chances I had then
  • Are lost and will not come again,
  • Today I can not be enticed
  • For everything’s so overpriced.
  • The deals of yesteryear are dead;
  • The market’s soft — so’s my head!
  • Last night I had a fearful dream,
  • I know I wakened with a scream;
  • Some Indians approached my bed –
  • For trinkets on the barrelhead,
  • (In dollar bills worth twenty-four,
  • And nothing less and nothing more),
  • They’d sell Manhattan Isle to me,
  • The most I’d go was twenty-three.
  • The redman scowled: “Not on a bet!”
  • And sold to Peter Minuit.
  • At times a teardrop drowns my eye
  • For deals I had, but did not buy;
  • And now life’s saddest words I pen
  • “If only I’d invested then!”   

I don’t know who to attribute this poem to, but I found it timely given our current market and peoples’ wish to buy at the bottom. 

  • Wishing everyone a happy and prosperous 2009 
  • Todd

Sundance Resort Living

Sunday, November 23rd, 2008

          For many people the name Sundance brings to mind a famous, high profile, independent film festival held each January in Park City. Crowds, traffic, famous and not-so-famous Hollywood types and paparazzi complete the idea of Sundance for these people. Sundance Resort is truly the opposite of the festival image.

            The Sundance Resort is located about 30 miles southwest of Park City, Utah, and a short drive northeast of the Provo/Orem area of Utah. It is a quiet area tucked up a canyon with a feeling that is miles away from city hustle and bustle. The area is known for its rustic charm and its owner Robert Redford. Redford stumbled across this place in the 1950’s and purchased a cabin lot in Sundance in 1961. As development threatened to move into the area in the late 60’s, Redford rallied friends and investors to purchase 3000 acres and stave off the development. What has resulted from these actions that started thirty years ago is an area of 6000 acres of which more than 5000 acres is part of an environmental easement and a 450 acre ski and summer resort.

            The Sundance Resort has space for only 250 nightly guests in its 95 cabins. In addition to this, there are only 300 private homes in the area. The residences here vary from A-frame cabins to magnificent homes with beautiful interior finishes and fabulous views masked behind an unpretentious mountain contemporary exterior.

   2983 Ridgetop Rd. Sundance, Utah resort home  views from 2983 Ridgetop Rd. Sundance, UT            It is the unpretentious nature of Sundance that makes it a truly special place.  Sundance has great restaurants and spa amenities, but its beauty is natural and comes from its lack of development and awe inspiring views of Mt Timpanogos’ 12000’ peak.  The resorts’ environmental easements and wilderness area feel will keep it genuinely different from its nearby ski resort neighbors in Park City. The true scarcity, low-key feel and lack of mega-resort status make Sundance priceless in comparison to other resorts.

            For more on skiing at Sundance Resort, see the December 2008 edition of SKI  or go to For information on Sundance estate opportunities including the home pictured above, go to and  

Remodeling your Home to Sell

Monday, October 6th, 2008

Park City Remodel          Saturday Morning TV seems to be filled with shows on HGTV and the DIY network among others that show people upgrading their homes followed by a Realtor telling them how much more it is worth.

          The country’s present real estate market shows us that those upgrades may not all be good and definitely don’t necessarily make you money in the end. This is not to say that something can’t be bought at a great price have a few cosmetic upgrades done and be sold for a profit, but the days of the easy fix and flip may be gone.

          The Park City area, having a resort originally built in the 60′s and 70′s (not to mention miners shacks from the early 1900′s), has some properties that are in need of a remodel. The majority of the guests coming here expect a world class resort and accommodations to match.  Real estate buyers in Park City have come to expect granite countertops surrounding professional grade appliances, jetted tubs and travertine tile in bathrooms, LCD or Plasma screen TV’s, hot tubs plus plenty of snow in the winter and sun in the summer.

          Maybe your Park City home or condominium doesn’t currently have all this. Do you have to upgrade? If so, what should you do and how much should you spend? To answer these questions you really need to consider what end result you are trying to accomplish. Are you looking to sell soon? Are you looking for better rental revenue? Are you looking to just please yourself or spouse by making your place more comfortable? Do you just want to smile when you turn the corner and see your home come into view? Each of theses answers may lead to a different upgrade and investment in your property.

          If your intention is to fix up the property and sell it, consult your local Realtor about which project to tackle first and the resulting revenue difference it may make in the sales price of your home. Remember that the most important part will be to get people to come into your Park City house or condominium, so work on the outside “curb appeal” first (this is the first and last thing people see when they come to look at your property).

          If your intention is to remodel the inside of your home, take a look at the cost of remodels and the average return on that investment in the Sellers section of our website. Remember why you are making an upgrade, if it brings you happiness while you are living in the home; consider that value in your return on investment calculation.

          Also, for those of you that plan to “do-it-yourself” note that it is never as easy as the ½ hour TV show would lead you to believe. Think about what type of person you are (are you a perfectionist or do you settle for adequate?), make sure that you finish the project to the end and not just do “good enough” especially if your end wish is for better resale value.