Friday, March 27, 2015

Special Olympics Healthy Athletes Initiative

Colorado resident Darwin Horan serves as the CEO of Ventana Capital and has worked in the development industry for over 20 years. With thousands of acres and square feet of land and office spaces as well as 17 subdivisions in the works, Ventana's portfolio is one of the largest in the state. Darwin Horan makes use of his successes as an executive in real estate to give back to his community, contributing to schools and nonprofit organizations like the Special Olympics.

The Special Olympics were founded in 1968 after decades of advocacy on behalf of people with disabilities. Since that time, the organization has helped those with learning and developmental disabilities grow in their confidence, fitness, and friendships. The Special Olympics emphasizes making health service provisions accessible to the underserved and underprivileged, and its Healthy Athletes program helps fulfill this mission by providing free health exams for its athletes around the world.

Within the last few years, the Healthy Athletes program has expanded its services with the Healthy Communities initiative. This addition increased the number of the program's available health clinics, broadened its range of care, and increased the number of people it serves. The initiative ensures health education for athletes as well as their families and coaches. Free health screenings before and after Olympic events are offered, and there are numerous accounts of athletes having their lives bettered after their exams caught illnesses early or discovered ailments that were treatable. With screenings offered in seven different areas of specialization, including vision care, dentistry, and podiatry, the organization's medical team can meet each athlete's individual needs.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Four Factors That Influence Home Sales

Darwin Horan, a Colorado-based builder and developer, has constructed and sold more than 15,000 single- and multifamily new homes. Throughout the process, Darwin Horan has closely watched the economic factors that influence the real estate market.

One major driver of housing sales is demographics, the make-up of the population as a whole. Right now, baby boomers (those born from 1945 to 1964) are beginning to retire. This raises the question of how many retirees will buy second homes for vacations. Many retiring people own large homes. How many will sell those homes for smaller ones as their children move out?

Interest rates also have a great influence on home sales. Low interest rates make obtaining mortgages easier, and as more people qualify, they go into the real estate market, looking to buy. This higher demand drives home prices up. As prices rise, sales tend to flatten. Similarly, if interest rates rise, demand and prices drop.

The general condition of the economy also affects demand and prices. Influencers such as employment, gross domestic product, and the cost of goods all have an impact. When these indicators are down, so are real estate values.

Government policies also affect housing sales. For example, in 2009, nearly a million first-time home buyers took advantage of a federal income tax credit. This was a significant boost; however, its effect was temporary, lasting only as long as the federal intervention did.