By Mary Lynn Bruny

Recently my husband and I got an email from Zillow informing us of our supposed increased home value, which made us happy. Then we got a letter from the city notifying us about our increased house appraisal value and subsequent new property taxes, which made us far less happy. Certainly we are not alone here. All of us homeowners living along the Front Range suddenly have properties that have dramatically increased in value.

While we’ve been quietly surviving the last year and a half (okay, some of us have been kvetching a wee bit), out-of-staters have been fleeing their crowded, more expensive metropolises and pouring into our state. Who can blame them? We live in an awesome place! I would contend it’s the best state in the country. Despite our trying to scare these folks away with news about blizzards and fires and bears (oh, my!), still they have figured out how great it is here. And these transplants are happy to pay way above asking price for homes here as these sums seem like deals compared to their former locales. Thus, our home values are skyrocketing.

While pondering our new home appraisal, I started wondering if we need to slick up our house to match its new value. For instance, we don’t have actual window coverings in many rooms. Being the classy lass that I am, the first week we moved in I taped rice paper to the bottom half of many windows to give us privacy. Seven years ago this was supposed to be a temporary solution.

But lo and behold time has frittered away and somehow getting real window coverings got demoted down my To Do list with “Organize the 27 boxes of old photos” and “Go through the tubs in the attic with your childhood junk.” Not too surprisingly, none of these items have been completed. (Really, why bother with the last two? I’ll just let our kids deal with them after I die. Only kidding. I would never do that because I’m such a very thoughtful mother. Just ask our sons – after I Venmo them some cash.)

Back to the window coverings: I do feel we should raise the bar a bit here and get some actual ones especially now that we supposedly live in such a swanky place. Plus I think window coverings and a bed headboard are signs that you are truly a mature, grown-up human. (I’m semi-constantly working semi-diligently on becoming this.)

I’m also wondering about myself. Am I posh enough for my own house? Are my ratty college sweatpants with holes and paint stains still appropriate for me wear while gardening? Are my old, threadbare flannel bathrobe and my ripped slippers proper attire for me to go out in the morning and pick up the newspaper from the front walk?

But here’s the thing. Most Coloradans are very down to earth. It doesn’t matter who you are and what you do or what you wear or what kind of house you live in (or what its current value is). Most people here don’t care about whether you have paper on your windows or ratty sweatpants on your behind. They’re just happy to be living here and happy to make your acquaintance. Like I said, we live in the best state and this is just another reason why it is so. Still, I’m going to work on those window coverings. And maybe I should get some new slippers. But the cozy robe and the sweatpants are definitely staying. Most times slicking down is just way better than slicking up.

By Mary Lynn Bruny. Mary Lynn Bruny writes about local real estate and home-related topics. Contact her at [email protected]. To read previous TLS articles, go to