May 2019
Believe in Better:
A drive around Helena provides an opportunity to see the benefits of functional landscaping that provides a better look and feel for the community. Improvements in landscaping requirements within the city and the commitment of businesses that create an environmentally friendly approach to building and development are beginning to pay off. Seas of asphalt that were prevalent in shopping center parking lots built in decades past have given way to groups of parking spaces divided by islands of landscaping with trees, that over time, help build the urban forest. Parking in front of buildings and businesses are now shielded from the street by green beltways, trees and flowering plants that provide a sense of fresh air and breathability amidst concrete and brick. Opportunity Bank on Prospect with its big trees on all sides and banks of grass, Valley Bank with its lush landscaping along Montana Ave., and Stockman Bank with its welcoming green space, patio and bench in front of their home on Custer set the bar for what can be done to integrate function and beauty within the city sphere. Landscaping on private property serves the same purpose. Discovering creative ways to keep spaces open while masking exterior appurtenances contribute to attractive streetscapes in residential areas as well as business districts. Well-placed bushes, rocks and trees can hide spas, barbecues and garden sheds from street view and create living fences that provide privacy between homes. "We encourage residents to use landscaping for function as well as aesthetics," explained Rebecca Ryland, Director of Design at Mountain View Meadows. Ryland has seen an increasing number of homeowners, when installing their landscaping, taking function into consideration. She sees residents using flowers and ornamental grasses to mask utility boxes in boulevards; trees, evergreens and upright junipers to provide backyard privacy without fencing; and using boulders and bushes to hide hot tubs. "We believe, whether it's a business or a private home, that finding ways to integrate nature with urban development creates a better environment for the people who live and work in the community," said Ryland, "and we hope others see the benefit as well."
Building a Better Community:
Earlier this week, Kathy Marks, Director of Operations at the Rocky Mountain Development Council, spoke at the Helena Association of Realtor's luncheon. She shared, not only the breadth of programs under the auspices of the RMDC but also about the upcoming Spirit of Service volunteer event June 5 at which HAR actively participates. The annual event brings together volunteers from various organizations and businesses to do some maintenance, minor repairs, paint, and yard clean-up at homes of seniors, people with disabilities and veterans in Helena, East Helena and the Helena Valley. Homes are selected from applications submitted between January 1 and April 15. A preliminary visit is made to each home to create a profile of what needs to be done and what supplies are required to complete the work. The homes are then "matched-up" with the various volunteer groups. This year, 520 volunteers from 32 business partners will meet at their assigned homes at 8:30 AM ready to roll up their sleeves for a full day of work. The event culminates with a picnic starting about 5:00 PM. The Rocky Mountain Development Council, Inc. was started in 1965 after the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964. It serves primarily Lewis & Clark, Broadwater and Jefferson counties. Programs in addition to Spirit of Service operating under the auspices of the RMDC include Affordable Housing, Area IV Agency on Aging, Energy Services, Head Start, Rocky Mountain Pre-School Center, Senior Corps Programs, (Foster Grandparent, RSVP, and Senior Companion), Senior Nutrition, Transportation, and Senior Centers. The programs combined serve approximately 13,000 people each year ranging from babies to the elderly. The businesses, organizations and volunteers who support programs like Spirit of Service show what can be done when people work together to build a better community.
On Topic
What might you expect for a ROI (Return on Investment) when setting your landscape budget? According to a November, 2018 article by Cam Merritt in Home Guides on sfgate.com, a well-landscaped home has a significant price advantage. This advantage ranges from 5.5% to 12.7% depending on the type of landscaping and the home's original value. That translates into an extra $16,500 to $38,100 in value on a $300,000 home.
Popular programs on HGTV make landscaping seem simple and straightforward but they distort the landscaping process. Landscaping is hard work and takes significantly more time than is shown on such heavily edited shows. So, if time, materials and labor is money, how much should you expect to spend?
"Determining a budget isn't easy," said Holly Welles, Home Improvement writer for The Estate Update, a real estate affiliated website. "Many of us don't really think about the costs landscaping can actually rack up. A good place to start, suggests Welles, is by calculating the overall value of your home and setting the landscape budget between 10% and 15% of the value.
Most everyone agrees that beautiful landscaping provides an immediate return in value to your lifestyle, peace of mind and sense of accomplishment. You can immediately look out on a finished yard and enjoy the grass, the flowers and your new trees. Or you might sit back with a glass of tea on your new rear patio and enjoy the birds splashing in the bird bath. But does it really provide a reasonable return on your investment?
"After everything's said and done, attractive landscaping can add more than 100% of the money spent to your home's value," said Merritt. When it comes time to sell, curb appeal cannot be underestimated. "First impressions count, and when a buyer sees your home for the first time, curb appeal and the care of the landscaping are the first indicators of how well the home has been cared for. In fact," adds Merritt, "it [landscaping] is one of the few home improvements you can make that not only adds value immediately, but also increases in value as the years go by. While interior decor and design concepts regularly go out of style and mechanical systems wear down, plants grow fuller and more robust as the years go by."
According to both Welles and Merritt, the biggest landscaping mistake that homeowners make is not having a coherent plan. If you don't hire a landscape designer, they suggest sitting down with paper and pencil and drawing up your own master plan for your landscaping and sticking to it. Set a reasonable budget for your new landscaping but when you start getting estimates, expect it to be more than you anticipated. It's long, hard work and nothing like you see on HGTV.
"As your design begins to take shape, remember your investments will have an enormous impact when you decide to sell," said Merritt. "If you hesitate over costs, it's essential to keep that last statistic in mind."
Benefits and Updates:
1. MAKE AN EXTRA BUCK THIS SUMMER: We've already been contacted by residents for names of people interested in mowing and weeding at homes in Mountain View Meadows. If you're a teen, it could be an opportunity to earn some cash during summer break. Interested individuals can leave their contact information at the office. Although it is against our policy to make recommendations, we can provide information to homeowners. Be sure to include if you have your own equipment.
2. YOGA IN THE PARK: Mountain View Meadows resident, Christie Cox will be offering Yoga at the park Tuesdays late afternoon and Fridays in the morning on May 21 and 31 and June 4, 18, 21, 25 and 28. For specific times and information go to www.upagainsttheropes.com or The Ropes Facebook Page. The website provides pricing and special offers.
3. DOG OWNER ETIQUETTE: Just a reminder that dogs running unattended are subject to covenant violations and city of Helena ordinances and may be picked up by Animal Control. Be kind to your neighbor and maintain control of your dogs at all times. Barking and noise nuisances are also against city ordinances. And when your dog does its business, clean it up. It's the right thing to do.
4. CONDO HOA FOLLOW-UP: We will soon send out a questionnaire to condo homeowners as a follow-up to discussions at the annual meeting. We ask that you look for the letter that will be sent to your address and respond no later than June 1.
New Homes F or Sale: 
A choice of new homes to meet your lifestyle and budget are ready for move-in at Mountain View Meadows with more under construction. MVM now has a number of home sites that are eligible for 0% down loans. Visit our Information & Sales Office at 431 S. Alice Street to tour our right-now homes, view plans to build and check out lot maps. Realtors are always welcome . Have your own plan? Give us a call at 406-449-0800 to arrange a meeting. The availability of new homes and lots is subject to change so check back often. Below is a listing of some of the new homes ready for move-in or currently under construction. 
Craftsman Village at Mountain View Meadows
2868 Alexis Avenue: "THE TOWN HALL". A classic design that never goes out of style, this 4-square craftsman home features 3BD/2.5BA, a gas fireplace, granite countertops, soft-close cabinets, a downstairs office, an upstairs TV room, an attached 2-car garage, a concrete patio and a beautiful front porch. With 1914 S.F. and lots of storage, you'll have all the room you need for personal space or for a growing family. "The Town Hall" is located just one block from Mountain View Park and priced at only $299,900. For additional information please call 406-449-0800. 

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215 Bella View: "THE BARRISTER". This popular 4BD/3BA 2-story floorplan located across from Mountain View Park, features all the upscale finishes you've come to expect in a Sierra Custom Home. Granite countertops, soft-close cabinets and tiled master shower will bathe you in comfort. For additional information call Dawn Purvis, 406-439-6380, or visit the Mountain View Meadows Info and Sales Center at 431 S. Alice St. $309,900.

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2847 Jeannette Rankin: "THE TRADER". This affordable 3BD/2.5BA two-story featuring nearly 1500 S.F. of living space may be just the right fit for both your lifestyle and budget. Located down the street from what we believe is the best neighborhood park in Helena, you'll enjoy mountain views from your front porch where you'll have a prime seat for next year's fireworks display. This desirable craftsman home with granite countertops, laminate floors, soft-close cabinets, kitchen appliances, front yard landscaping and an attached two-car garage is scheduled for completion mid-August just in time for you to move in before school starts. Stop by the office at 431 S. Alice St. to stake your claim on this new home priced at just $269,900.

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2853 Jeannette Rankin: "THE SETTLER". Be the first on your street to own this home plan! The master suite on this 1580 S.F. 3BD/2BA craftsman bungalow features a double vanity, separate shower and tub and a big walk-in closet. The walk-though kitchen allows easy access to both the dining room to the rear and the family room to the front with extra space perfect for a pocket office. Priced at $284,900, this Weatherall home includes solid-surface countertops, laminate floors, soft-close cabinets, kitchen appliances, front yard landscaping and an attached two-car garage. For additional information call 431-7680.

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2896 Stacia: "THE PRIMROSE". A brand new 3BD/2BA Garden Home with main floor ensuite. This 1526 S.F. two-story home features granite countertops, soft-close cabinets, laminate flooring, kitchen appliances and an attached 2-car heated garage. Side yard fence included plus free front yard and rear carriage lane landscaping! Easy walking distance to Mountain View Park. RD financing available. For additional information, please stop by the MVM Information & Sales Center at 431 S. Alice St. or call Dawn Purvis, Century 21,  at 406-439-6380. MLS# 21814840. $269,500.

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2852 Runkle Parkway: NEW CONDO with amazing mountain views! 1660 S.F. single-story condo features 2 or 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, tray ceilings, great room, separate dining, attached 2-car garage, front porch and rear, private, outdoor living space. Stop by now to take a look and claim this beautiful contemporary condo before its gone! Priced at $294,900.

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2845 & 2847 Twilight Avenue: New 1219 S.F. duplex condos well underway -- Absolutely perfect for the "downsizer" or the "first time" home buyer! Condo features 2 bedrooms and 2 baths, a pocket desk, an attached 2-car garage and a covered outdoor living space. Design amenities include granite countertops, soft-close cabinets, water-resistant laminate flooring, tiled laundry and entry, and carpeted bedrooms. Electric range, refrigerator, microwave, dishwasher and garbage disposal included! Monthly condo fee is currently $120 and pays for sidewalk snow removal, mowing and landscaping care as well as exterior building insurance and maintenance. Priced at just $239,900. Call now! 406-449-0800.

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The Uplands at Mountain View Meadows
340 Elouise Cobell: "THE TARGHEE". This new 3BD/2BA home is well underway! With 1769 S.F., this Sierra Custom Home  includes laminate flooring, granite countertops, soft-close cabinets, gas range and fireplace, gorgeous master suite, and a mud room leading to an attached 2-car garage. For more information, contact Dawn Purvis at 406-439-6380. $319,900. MLS# 21814522.

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366 Elouise Cobell: "THE WHITEFISH".  Beautiful new home nearly finished is in easy walking distance to the Blue Cross Blue Shield Headquarters. Impressive front entry and large covered rear patio for outdoor living set this home apart. Built by family owned Grewett Construction, known for their rustic wood finishes and exceptional craftsmanship, this new 3BD/3BA floorplan includes an open vaulted great room with gas fireplace, vaulted master ensuite, study, huge walk-in pantry and spacious laundry room/owner's entry off an oversized 2-car garage. Better keep a close eye on this one or you'll miss a great opportunity to own this awesome 1975 S.F. executive-style home! MLS# 21903732. $349,000.

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347 Elouise Cobell: This 3BD/2BA 1860 S.F. Sierra Homes single level design and spacious appeal makes it one of The Uplands most popular new floor plans. The kitchen is a chef's dream with ample counter space, plenty of cabinet storage, large walk in pantry, stainless steel appliances and a breakfast bar on the island. The expansive living room, with Coffered ceilings and a gas fireplace, adjoins the dining area completing the eating and entertainment space. The private master suite boasts large expansive windows and dual vanity bathroom. The other two sizable bedrooms, one of which can be converted to a den or office, share the second bathroom and round out this well-planned home. For more information on this property, call or text Dawn Purvis, 406-439-6380. MLS# 303019.  $339,900.

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Aspen Park at Mountain View Meadows
Currently all homes under construction in Aspen Park have been sold. Stop by the office at 431 S. Alice Street to discuss your plan for a new home at Aspen Park. We'll help you choose the perfect lot and connect you with the best builder to make your dream home a reality. 
2930 Big Timber Loop: "THE OPEN RANGE". Contract with contingency fell out on this NEW UPSCALE CONTEMPORARY CRAFTSMAN HOME with 2748 totally finished S.F. Fortunately, their loss opens the door to you! Experience the new year in comfort, warmth and exceptional style. This home features a vaulted living room, corner fireplace, raised breakfast bar, walk-in pantry, den/office, wood floors, doors and trim, granite countertops, knotty-alder soft-close cabinets, "subway" tile backsplash, separate dining, and a gorgeous master suite with double vanity, tiled shower and soaker tub. The home includes an owner's entry with bench and cubby hole shelves and central air with three separate zones. An over sized garage, stone and timber exterior features, a concrete tile roof with a 75 year warranty, HardiePlank siding, a beautiful front porch entry and a huge covered outdoor living space are among the many amenities that set this home apart. Drop by the Information & Sales Center at 431 S. Alice Street to check out the new construction on this 3 or 4BD/ 2.5BA home -- an unbeatable value! MLS# 1303180. Contact Anna Havranek at KellerWilliams at 406-438-1141 for a private showing.   

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Antelope Trace at Mountain View Meadows
At this time, all available lots in the Antelope Trace neighborhood have been sold. Be sure to check out the new homes and building lots in The Uplands and Craftsman Village neighborhoods. 
2789 Favor Loop: "THE WISE". Until you see it, you won't believe the upscale feel of this 2414 S.F. 3 or 4 bedroom/2.5 bath home. It has it all--- front door sidelites, open 2-story floor to ceiling entryway with chandelier, main floor master suite, luxury bath, air conditioning, fireplace, granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, soft-close cabinets, separate dining room and front and rear covered porches. Just two blocks from Mountain View Park, this brand new home is completely landscaped and ready for move-in! Call 406-431-7680 for a private tour any day of the week. $339,900. MLS# 1303182. 

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Mountain View Meadows | 406-449-0800 | Info@MVMeadows.com  | http://www.MVMeadows.com
431 S. Alice Street
Helena, MT 59601
In This Issue
The Best in Our
May 7 was the Condo owners' night to gather for the annual HOA meeting, rub shoulders with neighbors and share ideas and express both gratitude and concerns. We're not sure if the drawings for two $25 gift cards to Bert & Ernie's helped or if we just have a great group of homeowners, but nearly 100% of condo owners attended. Kudos to our condo owners for their sincere interest in their neighborhood. And, of course, congratulations to the winners of the drawings!
Gift Card Winners: Left, Shani Rich; Right, Norm and Ellen Hanpa.
Welcome to the
Jack & Carolyn Troyer
Have moved into their gorgeous contemporary craftsman home in Aspen Park by Weatherall Builders.

Joe & Lisa Ferkovich
Are settling into their lovely single-level condo by Weatherall Builders.

Steve Quesenberry
Just moved into his beautiful upscale 2-story home in the heart of Mountain View Meadows.

Tracie Kenyon & Eddie Black
Just closed on their magnificent craftsman condo. Enjoy the wonderful mountain views!

Karl Rosston
Is about to move into his brand new single-level condo across from the open park space.

Congrat ulations! 
And Welcome to the Neighborhood!
Fun & Fitness: 
FUN FACT:  A 160-200-pound adult can burn about 250-350 calories playing pickleball for 30 minutes of casual play. During a more aggressive, competitive game, the same player could burn 350 to 475 calories.
In 2016 we featured "Pickleball" in our newsletter. With spring sprung and pickleballers taking to the tennis court, now seems like a great time to revisit this enormously fun, exceptionally healthy sport that nearly anyone can play.
The US Pickleball Association (USAPA.org) describes pickleball as "highly contagious, progressive and an incurable disease." It is estimated that between 40-50,000 people worldwide are currently infected. "While rarely fatal, the disease has enormous positive impact on the lives of infected individuals and on society as a whole," says Byron Alsobrook in Pickleball News  (Worldpickleball.com).
Pickleball is a mix of table tennis, paddle tennis, badminton and tennis. It is a great fit for seniors because it is very easy to learn, doesn't require the mobility of tennis, and uses an underhand serve. Most pickleball courts are drawn inside a regular-size tennis court. The smaller court creates a social atmosphere, and playing doubles and/or mixed doubles is promoted.
Pickleball was introduced in 1965 on Bainbridge Island near Seattle at the home of Joan and Joel Pritchard. Supposedly Pritchard and her guests planned to play badminton but no one could find the shuttlecock. The result was an improvised backyard family game using wooden paddles to volley a wiffle ball over a 34-inch net on a badminton sized court (44' X 20').
Some sources claim "Pickleball" was named after the Bainbridge's dog, "Pickles". Other say it was derived from the term "pickle boat", referring to the last boat to return with its catch. Joan Pritchard confers saying, "the name came after I said it reminded me of the Pickle Boat where oarsmen were chosen from the leftovers of other boats." Her dog, Pickles, she claims, was named after the game.
Thanks to the encouragement of then Helena Parks & Recreation director, Amy Teegarden, Developer Mark Runkle and Director of Design Rebecca Ryland added Pickleball lines to the original design of the tennis court at Mountain View Park. They have seen increasing pickleball activity at the park each year. In fact, as soon as the weather broke last week, pickleballers took to the court and the customary "Thwack" of the ball was recorded in a video posted on the Mountain View Meadows Facebook page.
If you've never played the game, now is a good time to start. You need only two pieces of basic equipment: paddles and pickleball balls. Pickleball paddles are smaller than a tennis racquet but larger than a table-tennis paddle. Today's paddles are made from several materials including wood, graphite and aluminum. Pickleballs are a perforated polymer ball similar to a wiffle Ball . A starter set for you and your friends, including four paddles and four pickleballs, can be purchased for as little as $24.95 on Amazon.
When playing, the ball is served diagonally (starting with the right-hand service-square), and points can only be scored by the side that serves. Players on each side must let the ball bounce once before volleys are allowed, and there is a seven-foot no-volley zone on each side of the net, to prevent " spiking." For more information on playing the game, see  Pickleball Rules of the Game.
  Mark &  Rebecca
Back in 2008, Mark and I took a tour of condos in Inspirada outside of Las Vegas. We were impressed with the layout of these two-story homes and thought a similar design would work well at Mountain View Meadows. All 75 condo units originally planned in the Craftsman Village neighborhood were 2-stories. During the economic downturn, sales of condos slowed to a snail's pace. However, when the economy rebounded, there came a sudden surge in interest...but not for 2-stories. The demand, we found, was for single-story condos so we set out to design two single-story plans that have proven exceptionally popular. Looking ahead, we knew that we would run out of room sometime next year to build condos in Craftsman Village. Preliminary plans for the next phase in the Uplands neighborhood included condos. The condo lots, however were deeper so new floorplans needed to be developed. For about 10 days in late April and the first of May, I drew and erased, drew and erased and drew and erased again. The end result, we hope, are four new floorplans that will hit a sweet spot with the next wave of condo buyers. Ranging from about 1235 S.F. to slightly over 2000 S.F., these four plans each include a covered outdoor patio and a front porch for enjoying the distant mountain views. Of course, we still need to design the exterior of the buildings which will each house two units. But if all goes as planned, we'll start building the new condos in The Uplands neighborhood late fall--that is, after all the dirt is moved, the pipes laid, the curb and gutter in and the streets paved. Guess I got the best deal when it comes to the amount of time and work it takes to get ready to build the new condo plans. It's a lot easier sitting at a desk with a pencil and an architectural scale then running a bulldozer or excavator!
Pencils vs. Pipes! Pipes waiting for their turn in the trench in preparation for 60 new single family and condo lots under development in The Uplands Phase II at Mountain View Meadows.