Babs DeLay

Babs DeLay

2014

Imagine that you wanted to buy a small commercial space with your partner. The two of you have come up with the newest thing every hipster needs and you have to start manufacturing it NOW. You don't have all the cash to just buy the place outright and must go to a bank and get a small loan. Imagine being turned down for that loan because your partner is of your same sex. Or, what if you were two enterprising, married, homosexual men who wanted to buy a home together and get a mortgage in both names? Up until 1974 it was totally legal to deny credit in the good ol' USA to people because of their sex, age, race, color, religion, national origin, or marital status.

Forty years ago this year the Equal Credit Opportunity Act was passed. This was during a time our country was changing faster than the truth out of a politician's mouth in an election year. I know I couldn't get a credit card in college until my junior year, simply because I was a woman (and an unmarried one at that!). Even when I got my real estate license in 1984 I experienced lenders who would not work with same sex couples to put together home loans for them to buy houses and condos. Lenders got out of this legal loophole by initially proclaiming "Gays/LGBT people are not a protected class and the 1974 law does not protect homos."

It would be very odd nowadays for a bank or mortgage company to deny a loans to people because they were from the LGBT community. Why? My humble opinion boils down to this: 1) banks are greedy; 2) many lenders work for companies that have valid anti-discrimination policies in place, and that to deny a loan to an LGBT person/couple would be against corporate policy; and 3) some lenders knew from the beginning what was right and what was wrong and gladly gave loans out to anyone with good credit and employment history.

The Human Right's Campaign reported on their website: "On January 24, 2011, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) published a proposed rule that would require grantees and participants of HUD programs to comply with local and state non-discrimination laws that include sexual orientation and gender identity. The public comment period on this rule has concluded and a core rule implemented the changes. They added that "Family is defined as one or more eligible persons living with another person or persons, regardless of actual or perceived sexual orientation, gender identity, or marital status, who are determined to be important to the eligible person or person's care or well-being." The key here though is what ARE the non-discrimination laws in Utah protecting the LGBT community? We still have not seen a successful vote in the Utah State Legislature protecting all people, including LGBT people from discrimination in housing. Happy Pride everyone.

May 30, 2014

Zonal Gardening

2014

If you've recently moved to Utah and have a bit of dirt available to grow things this summer, it's getting time to plant! If you lived here a while you do know what grows and what doesn't grow well. Putting in a garden area, improving landscaping is one of the easy ways to create value and gain equity in a home that you own. The challenge is you've got to figure out what to plant. Each state in the USA is in a different zonal gardening region, and once you look this up on the internet you'll see what vegetables, herbs, flowers, shrubs and trees do best in Utah. The Zonal Gardening system explains why you don't see palm trees growing outside in Big Cottonwood Canyon. Moab has a different climate than Logan just as Delta's is different from Salt Lake City.

When it comes to fruit and vegetable farmers we've got major state pride. Green River, Utah is where some of the best melons in the world are grown. The desert climate of hot days and cool nights helps the watermelons and cantaloupes store sugar and make them sweet as candy. If you're from north of the Capitol City then you know we've got terrific giant black sweet cherries and soft ball sized peaches. I was grinding my teeth the other day after one of our local grocers was interviewed on the news about the California drought, and he commented "I don't know where I'll be able to get my melons anymore." And this from the mouth of a guy who promotes locally grown produce!

Whether it's the mindset of a new generation or a reaction to the Crash of 2008, more and more people are getting their fingers dirty and growing things. My wife and I live in a condo and we plant in about 30 pots. We've experimented with our unique deck 'zone' and have been able to get a head start and trick Mother Nature to get fresh tomatoes by Memorial Day. I think many folks love the fact that it's easy to grow tomatoes, peppers, cilantro and zucchini in the back yard or in pots with not having to own a tractor and irrigation system. There are a multitude of community gardens where folk without dirt can come and plant in their neighborhood. Wasatchgardens.org exists to build community by providing the space to garden and the expertise if you don't know how to do it. And slco.org/urbanfarming/communitygardens/garden map will show you where there are gardens in the County.

The Winter Market of the Downtown Alliance is now closed but the Summer Market begins on June 14th. The 'People's Market', now called the '9th West Farmers Market' opens on Mother's Day at Jordan Park on 1000 South and 900 West. Those who don't garden can find early produce there. Statewide there are more and more markets popping up and you can find them listed at utahsown.utah.gov/farmersmarkets. For Zonal gardening and what to plant where and when go to garden.org or stop into one of our many local garden stores and ask the experts.

May 02, 2014

Comic Con

2014

I just got to spend time with 100,000 of my closest friends at Comic Con: The FanXperience this past weekend at the Salt Palace Convention Center. Holy spandex, Batgirl! That was like Burning Man meets Nerds in Space. I was asked to be on a panel on sexism and objectification in Cosplay and then afterward I got to consensually hug and drool over Elvira in the flesh. As I walked away from the crowd in a self-induced cloud I saw a sign hanging high in the vending area with the word "Evermore". What is it you ask? It's a Harry Potter meets Jack the Ripper-smelling Victorian 'adventure park' that is to open next year in Pleasant Grove, Utah. Poor ol' Lagoon ain't gonna know what hit it when this "First Adventure Park in the World" opens.

Lagoon, the 27th oldest amusement park in the U.S.ofA operating in the same location was not our first playland, but it was the first park west of the Mississippi River. It first opened in 1886 and was one of three amusement parks that operated on the shores of the Great Salt Lake. Today it is located in downtown Farmington, Utah and open on Saturdays and Sundays and weekly during the summer season. The rides weren't electric powered like they are today - think Jet Star and the Wild Mouse, Wicked and Flying Aces. The fun back then came in the form of row boats, dancing, music and food and the first 'ride' was a sled down a hill into the lagoon pond. The first Fun house at Lagoon opened in 1929 and OMG there was betting and legal horse racing there until the State Legislature but a stop to that bunch of sin!

As a side bar, Utah is famous for its mega roller coast designs. Arrow Dynamics in Clearfield, Utah designed the Matterhorn Bobsled at Disneyland, the Corkscrew at Knott's Berry Farm, the Haunted Mansion and X at Six Flags Magic Mountain. Lagoon has one of their coasters but doesn't have the space or money to put in a giant one on its property.

Evermore is not selling itself on rides, roller coasters and rowdy fun. Their website is touting the Victorian mysteryland as an attraction open all year round featuring themed events like a Carnival of Wonders, a Rippers Cove and Christmas/Halloween seasonal events. The park with have a dozen retail shops, three high end restaurants, a three acre lake, a two acre town square with a performance stage, elaborate gardens and a huge cast of professional performers. Professional makeup artists and costumers from amusement parks and haunted houses will be making the people and the 40 acre place period believable. Will it attract visitors? The founder of Evermore is the same man who's banking that non-drinkers in Utah will pay $15 a piece for virgin cocktails at his high end club he's building on 400 South and West Temple in Salt Lake City.

A news item I saw on television the other night stated that some dance clubs in Las Vegas are taking in more than the casino's attached to them these days. Amusement parks like Lagoon are just as popular as they were a century ago. I think we have more Halloween horror houses than anywhere else in the country raking in millions. We'll all look forward to some great escape, even if it is in beautiful downtown Pleasant Grove, Utah.

2014

The East High Alumni Association likes to say, "One cannot travel anywhere in Utah and not meet someone who went to, or had a relative who went to, or knows someone who graduated from East High." That's probably a very true statement since the school is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. West High School in Salt Lake City is the oldest public school in Utah but its arch rival, East High, used to be the same school and they were formerly known as East Side High and West Side High. East's school colors were red and black and West's were black and red. They had one school newspaper and just one yearbook between them.

Utah in general has a unique education history. My alma mater, Wasatch Academy in Mt. Pleasant was established in 1875. Rowland Hall is the oldest co-ed college prep school in the state as it opened its doors in 1867. In southern Utah the first school opened at Fort Cameron, near Beaver back in 1883. After the state began being populated in the 1950's most schools were located in church meeting houses. Services were held on Sundays in Stakes and Wards and then the doors would open the rest of the week for classes offered to local school children. That makes complete sense since church buildings were generally the largest and most well built structures in our early history. The Utah Historical Encyclopedia states that from 1867-1900 there were 100 private schools in Utah created by Presbyterians, Methodists and Congregationalists to "Christianize" Utah Mormon children. In 1933 the LDS Church turned over its secondary schools statewide over to the State of Utah.

I remember East High on the corner of 1300 East and 800 South. It burned mightily in 1972, gutting the historic building. That was two years after Saltair burned to the ground and unfounded rumors were rampant at the time that a major arsonist was on the loose. Both properties were eventually rebuilt and East High became even more famous thanks to several Disney Channel films (High School Musical, 1, 2 and 3) were filmed in part there. For locals you may have heard of the following people who attended East High: Roseanne Barr (dropout, age 17); James Irwin (astronaut who walked on the moon); folksinger, story teller, labor organizer Utah Phillips; Ken Sansom (voice of Rabbit in Disney's Winnie the Pooh); Pulitzer Prize winner Wallace Stegner; and a multitude of athletic-types like Sione Pouha (defensive tackle for the New York Jets), Herman Franks (major league baseball manager and Will Tukuafu from the San Francisco 49ers.

Sadly, East High school has received bad press over the years. In 2007, three members of the football team were arrested and expelled after raping fellow football players. In 2012 a soccer team player assaulted someone during a soccer match that was in such poor tastes it appears as an example of bad sportsmanship on YouTube. The first gay-straight alliance club at a school in our State debuted at East High in 1995. That was a good thing for human rights but student Kelli Peterson who created the group was not welcomed with open arms in the conservative atmosphere at the time.

You are welcome to tour East High school any day as a visitor or alum. At the peak of the High School Musical phenomenon they were getting requests at least 50 times a day by folks who wanted to see where the movies were shot.

May 02, 2014

Group Bathing

2014

I've been spending a lot of time lately at the north end of Salt Lake City, our new 'frontier' for residential and commercial growth. As the Kingdom of Sugar House prepares for the filling of the Sugar Hole with beer, renters and boutiques, the Marmalade Hole awaits attention. Rumors are that the library plan for the site is a million bucks over budget. The commercial buildings across the street still stand empty since they were built but never leased during the Great Recession but the Landis Lifestyle Salon is booming, Club Jam is well, jammin' and I personally believe the Garage Bar on Beck Street still has of the best burgers in the State. There are boarded up buildings being sold to investors along this route and within a few years this forlorn part of the city will be completely new and shiny all along 300 West up to North Salt Lake via Beck Street.

Who was Beck that got his own street named after him? He was a miner who built a destination hot springs in 1885 up there by the train tracks and refineries. Back then people did not have indoor plumbing. There was no water wasting toilets and no hot steam showers off the master bedrooms of early Utah homes. Folks went to natural hot water spots to bathe, and bathe with others. Becks little spa was a hit with dirty rail road men getting off shift and it lasted as a public bath for just under a hundred years until the State took the land so a little road called I-15 could run through it.

Warm Springs Hot Springs (just north of 800 North as 300 West turns into Beck Street) was once as hip as Bar X and Beer Bar (sans alcohol). You can tell it was RuPaul 'faaaabulous' by the remnants of the Spanish Colonial style building that stands where the Children's Museum used to operate from. The pools and parties were grand at Warm Springs. And there used to be four hot springs options within three miles of the park along the underground geothermal fault zone: Becks, Hobo, Clark and Wasatch. All are known as the Warm Springs area, but Warm Springs is the only one that was restored by our fair city leaders. The building where the baths and pools were closed by our city commission when pieces of the building started sloughing from the ceiling and hitting swimmers. It reopened a few times but it sits abandoned and unsafe and now deteriorating in our harsh elements. In the park surrounding the old building is a nature trail where you can walk your dog and read placards about the history, ecology and geology of the area. The 93 degree spring water is still there but no longer deep enough to float in and relax. However it has enough hot water left to become a bath for the transients who live in camps on the hills above it. It is also the only park I know of in the city where there is a bronze statue dedicated to a dog.

In this national month that pays tribute to the bike, head up to 840 N. Beck Street (300 West) and explore. There are tennis courts, a playground, trails and picnic tables. If you catch the rays for too long, head a little further north and catch some tunes and burgers on the patio of the Garage Bar as a way to enjoy our warm spring weather and discover our town.

March 23, 2014

The Scary Shilo

2014

The scary old Shilo Inn is getting a new owner and a total multi-million dollar rehab. You know the hotel. It's the only building here in the Capitol City that looks like bad Vegas hotel with red neon running up on all the 12 floors. If you were born in the 1970's or recently moved here you wouldn't know the history of the place. It is sadly the scene of the largest murder/suicide in Utah's history back that took place back in 1978 and it's a horrible story.

It was a regular summer morning and commuters were getting off the freeway and heading in their usual routes to work when bodies starting falling out of the sky on onto the corner of 200 South and West Temple from the Shilo Inn. Pedestrians and cars alike had to dodge what turned out to be a woman and her seven children falling out of the warm sky. Some folks on the ground were screaming STOP! up at the hotel room balcony where the woman stood and yet others yelled JUMP! in anger when the mother finally stepped over the edge. I remember that morning. We didn't have cell phones back then and there were no Instagrams of the bodies littering the streets.

Rachel David threw her children or ordered the older ones off the balcony of her hotel room there and then she followed them to her death. One child survived. Ms. David was the widow of an excommunication Mormon known as Immanuel David. He had committed suicide a few days earlier by sucking up enough carbon monoxide to die, because the Feds were after him. His given name was Bruce Longo and he believed he was God, Jesus and the Holy Ghost. God was about to be indicted on tax evasion-although press at the time never said what God did for a living, only that he was head of a religious cult and lived from hotel to hotel with his wife and brood. His cult was his family and he didn't have any known followers outside the hotel rooms.

Only one of the family survived: a daughter also named Rachel. I heard that she landed straddling a wall and horrific injuries. She was in surgery for a full day and was confined to a wheelchair and later moved to a relative's house in Coloroado. I think she recently passed.

If you got to www.hauntedhouses.com there are reports of a woman and a little girl who haunt the hotel to this day. The ghosts (like other hotel guests) "enjoy the first floor pool area" and guests here laughter in the video gaming area when no else is in there. Supposedly the ghosts of the David mother and one of the children play at lot of tricks on the maintenance crew by unscrewing light bulbs and moving tools around.

The new owners are going to turn the Shilo Inn into a Holiday Inn. The neon is going away and the only outside glass elevator in the city will be torn off the north side of the building. You may have noticed this past holiday season that the giant red Christmas tree was not lit up on top of the roof-an indication of the sale of the property. It doesn't matter what the owners of the Holiday Inn franchise do to the cosmetics of the building. The place will always be a murder scene and the ghosts of the mom and children may forever wander the building.

March 23, 2014

Sidewalk Pennies

2014

Have you ever walked down a sidewalk in Salt Lake City and noticed a penny on the ground but when you bent over to pick it up you realized it was permanently attached to the concrete? That odd little disk is actually a survey marker from long times past. We don't see new ones much anymore because GPS technology has replaced them. These bronze markers were placed as part of land surveys to show a reference as to where a property line was and where a surveyor had dropped a plumbbob.

As humans began to stand upright they began to mark their territory. It was important to let the neighbors know where one plot of land began and another ended. Originally lines were marked by cairns. Maybe you've run into the odd pile of rocks while hiking out in the wilderness? That marker may have been someone's claim to that land, that edge. Over time people have used clay pots and even liquor bottles to show their ownership. Pioneers carved arrows into rock faces pointing to their boundary lines. As the country grew up so did the need for accurate surveys. Orson Pratt and Henry Sherwood were the locals who surveyed Temple Square in 1847. There they set up the center marker for all government surveys in Utah, called the 'Great Salt Lake City Base and Meridian'. The original meridian stone was inside the walls of Temple Square and is on display at the Museum of Church History and Art. You can now visit a replica of the original marker with a memorial plaque on top of it sitting just outside of Temple Square on the Southeast corner.

When you buy a home or a piece of land, your deed will have a description of the property written on the document. Most often, a title insurance company will ensure that deed you have in hand that this is the right property. As a side note, title insurance is a U.S.A. thing and was created in this country because surveys were bad and recording of liens against title holders was poorly tracked in many cases. The very first title company was created just 4 years before Temple Square was surveyed.

There are hobbyists who search out survey benchmarks around the world because of their odd locations and various designs. That obscure bit o' fun probably led to the most current trend of geocaching. If you can read your GPS coordinates on your phone or a hand held device, you can treasure hunt. According to 'geocashing.com' there are over 6 million geocachers and 2,300,000+ cashes to find in the world. Caches can be found in just about any city. They are put there by other geocachers. Some are easy to find, others take hours because they are hidden so well. Once you do find the treasure you jot down your name in a log book to mark down the date you found it and your name. Some larger geocache locations have bags or boxes full of oddities or toys that one can take and replace with like-weirdness. There are over 50 caches in the Salt Lake/Ogden area alone. Here's an example of one local Salt Lake clue:

"This cache isn't for everyone. This is not your typical 'urban' cache. You will be required to think about your surroundings and perhaps you may have to step out of your box. You will have problems with your co-ordinates. You will be around buildings and trees which will cause you problems. I spent 30 minutes trying to get an accurate set of numbers and was able to get within 7' after the cache was hidden. So let this be fair warning that you may be calling me every name in the book, but I hope you enjoy it! Coordinates N 40 º 39.753' W 111º 53.111' "

February 19, 2014

Oh, CRAP!

2014

What looks like a metal beach towel that hides your naughty bits when you want to take a poop, has its own Facebook page and is coming to downtown Salt Lake City? Plop, it's the infamous PORTLAND LOO!

This sustainable urban outdoor toilet is a brand of a public toilet designed to stand up to the worst weather and the most public abuse while offering a clean alternative to taking a shat on the sidewalk. Let me get down to the dirty basics here: 1) if you're homeless and you look sketchy, no small business is going to let you use their rest room; 2) if you don't have access to a rest room, you'll do your business in an alleyway; or 3) if you're psychotic and suffering the ill effects of Bath Salts or Meth, you may have lost your personal boundaries and will crap right in the middle of the street.

Salt Lake City will be getting its first two public toilets soon, one at 500 West and Rio Grande and the other in the sidewalk between Toasters and the Shilo Inn on 200 South. Up until recently there were no public toilets around the homeless shelters downtown. Spyhop Productions is located directly across the street from one of the shelters and has too many experiences to recount about fecal and urinary behavior around them. Four Port-O-Potties were set up this past year on 500 West and 200 South but you can't see what's going on inside the plastic outhouses. Thank goodness they were installed but they have also become a nasty place for more drugs, sex and bad behavior in the neighborhood. The option of a Portland Loo is so fantastic because you can see the person in the stall from the outside (18" from the ground up). Your bits are protected from view but everyone can see who's in the toilet. As their Facebook page says, "We can see your trunk, but not your junk."

What's really great about these toilets is that they have been tried out and are hugely successful. They are easy to maintain with little visible plumbing and a faucet on the exterior. There are no mirrors, no paper towel holders, and no sinks inside. The steel construction is prison-grade metal and the power for lighting at night is via solar cells above it. They will be 'open' 24 hours a day.

Give it up to Salt Lake City officials always looking to Portland, Oregon ... lusting endlessly to be our own 'Saltlandia'. We need these toilets now as badly as P-Town did back in 2008 when they first installed this airy alternative near the Greyhound bus station in the Old Town-Chinatown neighborhood. Their fine city had been spending $200,000 a year to keep one bathroom open 24/7 in City Hall for the homeless to do their business. A Portland Loo reportedly costs less than $2000 a month to maintain. They are manually cleaned twice a day and the finish on the steel makes it easy for workers to remove graffiti with simple cleansers. Some other designs of this urban outdoor facility are self-cleaning but these new ones about to come to Utah are not of that ilk.

Don't be scared. When you gotta go, you gotta go. Our conventioneers from out of state will know what this loo is all about and they'll use it to and from events and their hotels. The homeless shelter area further west will hear grumbles that has been taken away but our police force will be happy to see two legs instead of six in the crappers by the shelters on 200 South.

February 07, 2014

Groovy, Baby

2014

I know this will date me as two years older than a pterodactyl, but I remember when the coolest thing in college that you could own was a waterbed. If you've never seen a waterbed, it's like a giant pillow made of thick vinyl, full of hose water and held in a clunky wooden bed frame. Think air mattress, only full of water. The only way you could get the water into the bed 'bladder' was to use a hose and hope you would have the proper attachment to get the water in the bulky thing. The bigger the bed, the longer it took to fill. You were totally screwed if you got a new bed in the dead of winter, your outside water spigot wouldn't work and your hose was frozen.

Then again, everyone always wanted to get sleep in a water bed and it was the mandatory piece of furniture for the sexual revolution that took place at the end of the last century. If you got the 'waves' moving in sync together in the bed, you'd have a swell time. If you didn't figure out the water movement in the big bladder the two of you would be bounced out of the bed with the backlash wave. Anybody that was cool in the 70's and 80's had a waterbed. The place in Utah to buy water beds during those avocado and gold tinted years was at the Stone Balloon waterbed store in the 9th and 9th neighborhood in Salt Lake City. The owner had the grooviest headboards and Naugahyde-lined bed boxes in town. I never owned one although I remember going in and coveting the beds on a monthly basis after shopping trips to another neighborhood store-Mother's Earth Things.

Waterbeds went out of style when foam, cloud, pillow top and dial-your-own-number beds started appearing. By then renters and homeowners were fed up with having to drain them and patch them when they sprung leaks. I can remember making every excuse in the book to avoid helping friends move the beasts from apartment to apartment. Landlords began not allowing them after a decade of popularity because of the water disasters they could cause to floors and ceilings. You can still buy them for special needs though, but Stone Balloon and waterbed stores a thing of the past.

Flip ahead 30 years. The 9th and 9th neighborhood is no longer a bastion of hippie shops and small stores where you could by tickets to a night in heaven. Gone are far out concerts at the Terrace Ballroom on Main Street with groups coming into town like Lydia Pense and Cold Blood, Frank Zappa, the Grateful Dead and Jefferson Airplane. Man, even the Doors played that venue with the faux-star lit ceiling. You'd spark a few from your dime bag, dance in your platform shoes all night and then crash at someone's pad on their waterbed in the wee hours of the morning. You'd hope the heating coils under the bladder had been left on during a cold January night and that you wouldn't get too nauseous riding the waves-because those beds were next to impossible to get out of quickly.

Sigh. Don't read me wrong. I love the 9th and 9th hood and all its quirky local shops these days just as I did back then. Standing outside of the Tower Theater and reading the weathered 'bark' of music posters for local bands and venues that are stapled or taped to the utility box and light poles just takes me way back to memory lane.

2014

Condominium owners in Utah and Salt Lake County saw increasing values in 2013, just as single family homeowners enjoyed last year. I think the condo market is back to damn healthy levels and we've now leaped over that ugly abyss of the crash. For some reason condos here were not initially affected by the tumbling economy in 2008 but they soon caught up with all the bad short sales and foreclosures losses along with single family properties. Most condo owners who didn't lose their homes are seeing equity come back - enough to sell if they want to or need to now.

There were 1267 condos sold in 2012 in Salt Lake County at an average price of $153,000. In 2013, there were 1600 condo sales at an average $176,880. That is an average increase of 16% in values in one year and 26% more sales in just twelve months. Currently there are 506 condos for sale in the County at an average asking price of $263,725 and 106 units with sales pending at an average asking price of $178,840.

Right now the condos that have sales pending show a lower than average asking price probably because the data represents the final big shakeout of condominiums with owners under financial distress facing short sale or foreclosure from the crash. We won't be seeing so many of those bargain hunter deals in this 2014 recovery unless random banks decide to release hidden inventories we don't know about. In the downtown area I watch there were 175 condos that changed hands in 2013 and 136 in 2012, a rise of 28% in sales. Prices jumped up almost 19% from an average sale of $205,200 to $243,000 in one year.

The Metro condominiums at 350 South 200 East were one of the last, large, high rise projects built before the economy tanked. In 2012 and 2013 the number of sales there were 9 and 8 respectively but prices jumped in that one year from an average sales price of $260,000 to $299,000. The Parc at Gateway which saw a large number of Asian investors buy-in during the Olympics when they were put on the market had only three sales in 2012 at an average sales price of $206,000 but 11 sales in 2013 with boost in closing prices to $248,000. The Dakota Lofts, one of the first modern urban conversions in the city had no sales in 2012 but four in 2013. The huge American Towers condominium project that opened in the 1980's during that's decade's economic crash saw 6 sales in 2012 at an average of $285,000 and then 18 sales last year with a bump in the average sales price to $306,000.

Around the state, St. George condominiums increased the most in value in the last year, albeit sales volume wasn't that much higher. According to WFRMLS web data 34 units were sold in 2013, 5 over the year before. St. George was hit hard by the recession as so many of its condo inventory there is second home business. When a family is in financial trouble, a second home is the first to go into foreclosure. Prices jumped from and average sale in of $101,000 in 2012 to $150,000 in 2013. That's proving to me we've bottomed out in real estate values here in Utah.

The highest reported sales prices of condominiums in Utah in 2013 were: $1,249,000 at the Village at Sugarplum at Alta; $1,250,000 at the Chateaux on the Green (at the north of Bonneville Golf Course) and $2,650,000 at Silver Star in Park City. All three luxury condos sold for more than offering price.