How Does Your Garden Grow? Local Planting/Harvesting Resources

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Community, Moving in Idaho, Woman Cave

City of Trees, Garden City—with monikers like that, it’s no surprise that Boise is home to an increasing number of community gardens, CSAs, and a bevy of professional growers.

baby tomatoes in palm

But thanks to the area’s nutrient-rich clay soil (along with a little extra composting and care, of course), even home-based gardeners can successfully grow produce in their own backyards/plots.

It’s not too late to get started, either. End of May/early June is a great time to transplant tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, tomatillos, ground cherries, melons, squash, cucumbers, and flowers, since the danger of frost has passed. It’s also the ideal opportunity to direct seed corn, beans squash, and flowers. (See the Old Farmer’s Almanac’s 2015 Best Planting Dates Calendar for Boise.)

Once you’ve selected your desired plants, it’s helpful to create a garden plan. The Old Farmer’s Almanac website offers an online garden planner (or a handy app for iOs devices) to help you map out where everything should go to best optimize your available space.

Next, it’s time to get planting. Here is a list of local resources for seeds, plant starts, and places to go for general advice on planting and cultivation:

plants in a bag

The farmer’s market can be a great place to find plant starts.

However, despite having access to the resources above, you may feel your thumb is less than green. Or if you lack space, time, or are too intimidated to plant and cultivate your own garden, consider volunteering at (or donating to) a local community garden. Many also offer CSA programs. There are many local growers who would welcome the support (find a comprehensive list here or view a full list of refugee gardens), but these are some of our favorites:

Jordan Street Garden Boise

Founded in 2009, the Jordan Street Garden is an urban refugee garden bridging cultural barriers in North Boise.

Want to get the kids involved? Boise Urban Garden School (BUGS) affords students ages 6 to 15 the opportunity to learn the ABCs of growing and cultivation—all in an organic garden setting, in the kitchen, or at the farm stand.


Shana Moore & Sherri B

Your local Boise real estate resources


You Deserve Real Results

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Moving in Idaho, Real Estate, Real Estate & Housing, Selling Boise Homes, Selling Homes

What to Expect from Your Agent

Have you ever wondered about an MLS listing missing photos or critical information. Or why your neighbor sold their home for so little. Or why a house sat on the market longer than it seems like it should, given the house’s price and appeal compared to overall market conditions. Sometimes I’m amazed by the evidence that a hard-working agent could have made the difference in the results.

You deserve great results, solid market information and helping-hand style customer service when working toward the biggest sale of your life – a home. Here are some things to look for when choosing an agent to make sure you’re not setting your sight too low.


  • Availability. Are they available to work with your schedule and responsive to your calls and emails?
  • Information with experience. Are they experts in all elements of real estate, including the art of making and keeping a good deal, adapting to adversity, and keeping things on track when all does not go perfectly smoothly?
  • Market knowledge. Do they understand the market and are they going to seek that careful balance between your wants and needs, while providing insight on the opportunities and limitations of the current market? Do they drive traffic to your listing?  Do they check out houses to personally seek out pertinent information that might be missing from the listing (e.g. an unlisted shop or bedroom)?
  • Understanding. Are they listening to and hearing your needs, answering your questions, understanding your goals and helping translate your interests into opportunities, while striving to be helpful? Your agent’s primary interest should be your goals.
  • Pressure-free. Are they helping guide you toward your desired direction without pressuring you to make a decision that’s inconsistent with your goals, or the less than what the market can do for you.

What Else to Expect from Me

As those of you who have worked with me before already know, or have said here in my reviews on Zillow, I’m not afraid of hard work and extra efforts to help a deal succeed. I like to go above and beyond. . To me, it’s not about making a sale – it’s about making the sale work for my clients because, as those in the service industry should understand, I’m happy when they’re happy. What does this mean in details? Here’s some extra things I do with my clients.


  • Insight – I maintain a blog to share my market trend knowledge, insights and tips, but when working together, you’ll receive individual information pertaining to your house or the areas you need guidance. Leveraging more than a decade in the industry,  I can run the numbers with you, share my resources and local connections and point out reasons not to buy into a deal, if I see something that you miss.
  • Creativitiy. Creative, professional photos accompany each listing, in addition to flyers, placement on Zillow and well-written descriptions. Adaptive deal-handling skills.
  • Availability X 2 – You have double the coverage and resources because I partner with Sherri B, the active broker at Buy-Boise Real Estate Group. Our clients get two of us for the price of one.
  • Responsiblity. I take responsibility for researching the price points, helping you prepare your home for sale and helping you evaluate your opportunities and determine which next steps are most reasonable for you. It’s my goal that you have a good experience and my responsibility to do what I can to facilitate that.
  • Extras – it’s hard to summarize what the “extras” might be in any scenario, but I know them when I see them and am not afraid to take on the extra expense, effort or work. It’s my goal to make sure your house is ready to sell when the parade comes through. For buyers, I’ll take extra time with you on the process, followed by extra steps to make sure your offer is going to receive all due consideration (and then some) – sometimes by writing a personal letter other times through solid negotiations to help ensure that the right deal isn’t lost due to details.

If you’re considering selling your home, or interested in assessing your readiness in terms of an equity standpoint, we should talk. Value assessments are part of my job.


Shana Moore, Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional and source of real estate market trends in Boise Idaho



Shana Foster Moore,

Your Caring, Local Boise Real Estate Agent


Cashing In

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Housing Market, Local Boise Market Update, Local Boise Price Charts, Market conditions, Market Trends, Market Updates, Moving in Idaho, Real Estate, Real Estate & Housing, Selling Boise Homes, Selling Homes

Cashing In: The Costs of a Sale

Those accustomed to moving, or 11.7% of the population in any given year according to Census data, seem to understand that moving carries a cost. Buyers understand there are costs involved with buying – down payment, closing costs, initial repairs or improvements and maybe a new couch that fits the new space.

A lesser known fact is that selling a home also carries a fairly standard set of inherent costs. Greg Kester of Pioneer Title breaks it down, “The seller is usually paying for anything associated with the sale, to show they have a sell-able, insurable property where the buyer is usually paying for anything to finance that home.”

Seller costs can be less intuitive, or more surprising, but a good rule of thumb is to budget 8-10% of the price of the sale to be safe.

Seller-paid costs

  • Real estate commissions -this is not a fixed number for all real estate companies, but Buy-Boise charges 6% to sell your home, 1/2 of which is given to the Buyer’s agent’s brokerage
  • Title insurance – also a percentage based on the price (.5% or less)
  • Settlement fees – usually split 50/50 with buyers and $680 or less
  • Unpaid taxes (billed bi-annually), irrigation fees, dues or assessments

Other potential costs to sell a home in Idaho

  • Capital gains tax (if there was a profit, and the home was not owner-occupied 2 of the last 5 years)
  • Seller-paid repairs
  • Seller paid closing costs
  • Transfer of security deposits and rents (for an occupied rental property)

Seller-paid closing costs have been trending up in Idaho. I started noticing it back when the Boise real estate market conditions took a big dip, but the idea seemed to gain traction, even as the market recovered. Buyers find it attractive more so than sellers, who already face some costs of selling.

Buyers often choose this form of negotiation because it decreases the amount they have to bring the closing table dollar-for-dollar in a lending situation. A reduction in purchase price only reduces “cash to close” by a percentage, in financing situations. It also affects the monthly payment ever so slightly.

“Whether it’s a buyers or sellers market can really determine whether buyers are asking for closing costs,” says our Pioneer Title expert Greg.

Costs to Buy a Home in Idaho

  • Down payment
  • Closing costs (loan origination, documentation, settlement fees  recording, pre-paid insurance, etc)
  • Appraisal – paid by the buyer about 60% of the time
  • Home inspection

A home tends to account for our biggest life purchases, and then one of our biggest sales. It’s important to fully understand all the numbers when making decision about selling your home, and evaluating the costs and profitability of a change.

For more information, please don’t hesitate to email me, or comment with your individual questions.


Shana Moore, Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional and source of real estate market trends in Boise Idaho

Shana Foster Moore

Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional

The Boise Code: 15 Ways to Be a Good Neighbor

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Community, Foster Boise Communities, Moving in Idaho, Neighborhood Associations

If Mr. Rogers taught us anything, it was that showing friendliness toward one’s neighbors goes a long way toward bettering a local community.

And Boise has long been known for the kindness of its community members—even amongst seasoned world travelers. In Rick Steves’ Road Trip, he calls his afternoon in Boise “a delight” and even refers to its residents as “freakishly friendly.”

open hands in a circle, Boise community

As the city and its surrounding areas have grown, Boise’s reputation remains one of friendliness and goodwill. But this is no accident. Locals in neighborhoods throughout the area seem to live by an unspoken code, one that would make the late Mr. Rogers quite proud. Here are 15 ways to be a good neighbor:

  1. Keep an eye on your “hood.” Watch and question anyone who seems suspicious or out of place. Lead or volunteer in a Neighborhood Watch program.
  2. Greet new neighbors when they move in. That initial gesture not only makes a great first impression but will go a long way to create amiable feelings down the road , especially if its accompanied by homemade cookies or garden goods.
  3. Keep up the good work! Mow, weed, and trim your yard regularly (and compliment the good-looking lawn or fresh paint across the street).
  4. Stay in touch. One way is to create an email list and send out regular updates to keep your neighborhood informed about local events and issues that may concern them. Another is to join which is a broader, local classified and news-sharing site.
  5. Share the bounty from your garden and/or fruit trees.
  6. Reach out to neighbors who may need additional help (such as single mothers, those who may be sick, and senior citizens) and offer to assist them with small household chores or repairs.
  7. Be a connector. Coordinate a neighborhood running or cycling group, community garden,  annual block party or potluck or attend community events. (PS – Our block party is this Thursday, 9/26 – come on by!)
  8. Be considerate of differing lifestyles and what times your neighbors might prefer quiet. For instance, if you have a teen son who plays in a band, inform your surrounding neighbors in advance and ask them to let you know if it gets too loud.
  9. Plan, or participate in, a neighborhood garage sale.
  10. Keep your dog on a leash and clean up after its messes, especially if it has a tendency to run beyond your yard. If you have received comments about its barking while you are away, seek advice from your vet and/or training for the pet.
  11. Offer to care for a neighbor’s plants, pets, and mail while they are away on vacation.
  12. Show support. Buy the Girl Scout cookies, candy bars or latest fundraising items from the neighbor kids if you can afford them.
  13. Park in your garage, driveway, and in front of your own home (rather than in front of your neighbors’ homes) whenever possible.
  14. Let your neighbors know when you might be having a party. Better yet, invite them to attend!
  15. If you own a snowblower or feel strong, clear your neighbor’s walkway.

Most importantly, if any of your neighbors have done any of these things for you, let them know you noticed with a hearty “thank you.” Talking about their good deed with other neighbors is another sign of gratitude. Has one of your neighbors done something thoughtful for you recently? Tell us about it in the comments below.


Shana Moore, Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional and source of real estate market trends in Boise Idaho

Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional

Listomania: Boise Tops the Charts (Again)

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Community, Housing Market, Moving in Idaho

Our Secret is Out

Boise has often been referred to as one of the nation’s best-kept secrets, whether it comes to its affordable housing, outdoor recreation opportunities, or burgeoning tech startup community.

But it looks like our little secret’s out.

Boise, Idaho, best place to move, moving to Idaho

The City of Trees continues to appear at the top of “Best Places” lists: it was recently named the best place to move in 2014 and ranked in Livability’s 100 Best Places to Live list. I’m not one bit surprised, either.

When compared to cities of similar size, Boise may not seem out of the ordinary. What is unique, however, is that it really does have something for everyone, whatever their interests or stage in life. Whether it’s to raise a family, start a business, or retire; people—young and old— move here knowing that the Boise lifestyle is where it’s at.


A healthy economy is a city’s lifeblood; the speed and sustainability of its growth depend upon it. And affordability plays a huge role in whether newcomers (not to mention long-time residents) stay or go. Luckily for those desiring affordable housing and a manageable cost of living—especially for retirees, Boise is as attractive as ever. Here’s how we rank:

Recently, I’ve seen theses lists come alive in my work and personal life. I’ve added several new retirees to my favorite clients roster and also recruited my own retired mother to move to Boise part time, through a second home. She loves the foothills, but it’s the proximity to her Granddaughter and I that really sealed the deal.

Business and Technology

When it comes to the startup tech scene, survey says: Boise is hot, hot, hot. We were recently ranked the number one best “Under the Radar Tech Hub.” Further still, small businesses in general fare well here, as noted by the following sources:

Boise, Idaho, move to Boise, Boise real estate, idaho recreation

Culture and Recreation

In addition to being featured in National Geographic’s Adventure Magazine, Boise (and Idaho at large) continues to shine, thanks to an abundance of outdoor travel and recreation opportunities, as well as a growing arts and culture scene. Here’s how we ranked:

Quality of Life/Live-Work Balance

Time Magazine’s March 17th, 2014 edition ranks Boise as number one for “getting it right” in their recent story Red-Hot Town. The article cites the City of Trees as “a techy boomtown with a thriving cultural scene.” I can’t agree more. Here are additional kudos Boise has received for its stellar quality of life:

I love this city for so many reasons, many of which can’t be quantified by a series of lists (although there are plenty more). We are just minutes from the river, an ever-expanding foothills trail system, community gardens, outdoor markets, and a thriving downtown scene, complete with food truck rallies and pop-up shops. And that’s just the beginning. Check out my Bucket List for 20 things all Boiseans should try at least once.


Shana Moore, Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional and source of real estate market trends in Boise Idaho




Shana Foster Moore

Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional

Fall in Boise. Is Your Home Ready for What’s Next?

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Moving in Idaho, New Home Maintenance

Winter Preparation Tips

Fall brings more than pretty colors and a farewell to summer. It brings work. I’m back to blogging with reminders of the home maintenance tasks that will save you strife next spring.

Have you imported to Boise from a warmer climate (e.g. California)? Read on – some of this could be news if it’s your first winter in Idaho. For the rest of us, sorry to be the bearer of annoying reminders – it’s part of my job to help you take good care of your home and prevent future headaches.

October is time to:

  • My backyard’s canopy has shrunk! These newly trimmed trees are ready for whatever winter may bring (I hope)! Reuse with permission citing

    Blow out your automatic sprinklers. Many people skip this step with great luck for years and years in a row. The one year that luck fails, you’ll be hit with a difficult and costly charge up in spring. We sure had a cold winter last year. I recommend this for anyone who has an automatic sprinkler system.

  • Bring in the hoses. Disconnect your hoses, be sure to drain them onto your toes-es and put them in the shed, garage, basement or wherever you’ll store them for winter. Wet feet required.
  • Check out the trees. For some trees and shrubs, fall is a good time to prune or trim dead branches. Winter snow or ice often is the straw that breaks off that dead branch, and once in a while they land safely and exactly where we’d hope.
  • Prepare for rain.We’re getting down to details with this one, but our rainy season is here – how’s your water management system? Is it draining away from the house? Do you have gutter extenders you kicked aside during the summer, for easy mowing? Gutters should be cleared out after the leaves fall.

    Time to disconnect your hose from the house. Image of hose stored in old laundry tub found on

  • Bring in the deck furniture. Keeping a dry deck surface also extends the deck’s life.
  • Don’t stop mowing, bagging or raking too soon. Grass still thrives with light and doesn’t want to be smothered during winter.
  • Seal cracks. Visualize either your best joke or the impact of the freezing and thawing cycle here. Also reverse your ceiling fans and sweep your chimney.
  • If you’re a landlord. Landlords can put gas heat into a “continuous service agreement” to ensure move outs don’t create a freezing house. Some landlords have to schedule salting or shoveling helpers for the winter too.

Email or call if your list contains any check boxes that involve comparing your home’s value with the latest local home values, or using winter to take on value-adding projects or prepare your house for sale.

Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional

Storytime with Shana Foster Moore

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Community, Moving in Idaho

Your local Boise real estate professional


Moving and Have an Old Fridge?

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Moving in Idaho

In an effort to rid the world of inefficiency, Idaho Power is offering $30 for working refrigerators. As bribery for your participation and help, they’ll give you $30 for your working, old fridge (as long as it meets their conditions).

They’ll even pick it up.

Idaho Power Wants Your Old Fridge.


  • It works
  • It’s yours (you being the Idaho Power customer who calls for the pickup)
  • It’s between 10 and 30 cubic feet
  • Doors are on
  • It’s plugged in (so they can prove it works)
  • Limits – 2/address

They’ll recycle it. Call 866-899-5539 or visit