New Year 2023

Believe in Better:

For the Record

From icy cold to inbound population growth to significant shifts in the housing market, 2022 is a year for the record books. Only two degrees off the lowest recorded temperature in Montana history, December 22nd’s minus 35 had us shivering in our boots, that is, if you headed outside into the arctic blast that blanketed the entire state. The clear blue skies and bright sunny day brought a strange mix of chill and cheer as some brave souls ventured out to shovel snow from their driveways and sidewalks. The cold didn’t seem to deter newcomers to the State although it could send a few experiencing their first Montana winter opting to head to places with more temperate climates. Migration to and from Montana as a whole included 73% inbound and 27% outbound increasing the overall population by 38,670 people since the last census in 2020. This week’s Independent Record article by Tom Kuglin put the numbers at 17,000 between July 2021 and July 2022. According to the article, housing prices appeared to peak in the second quarter of 2022, but demand remains high despite increasing interest rates. Interest rates on a 30-year mortgage rose from a historically low, pandemic-induced 3.22% in January to 6.51% this week. In the meantime, lumber prices went down but that savings may be offset by higher cost of skilled labor and continued supply shortages. The good news: Based on MLS numbers, there are more homes on the market in Montana at the end of 2022 than there were at the beginning.  Buyers are in a better position to find a home with those record bidding wars falling to the wayside. And for those who remember 1981 when mortgage interest rates hit a high of 18.45%, 6.51% doesn’t feel all that bad. A little like bright sunshine and calm winds on a cold Montana winter day. It’s way better.

Building a Better Community:

New Year's Resolution: Keep an Eye on Your Elderly Neighbors

Freezing temperatures in December and much needed snow created a difficult and possibly life-threatening situation for the elderly throughout the community. Getting to know your neighbors puts you in a position to look for signs of trouble. One of the simplest things you can do is “check in.” Be observant; give them a call, drop off a card or a favorite treat. Add a note with your contact information. Going for groceries? How about asking if there is something you can pick up for them while you’re out -- a loaf of bread, a gallon of milk or a prescription. When the temperature drops, offer to walk their dog. When it snows, clean off their car, shovel their driveway and sidewalk. It’s true these gestures of compassion can lead to other requests so don’t be surprised if you are asked to help with digital set up of that new device they got over Christmas. In 2023 add “Checking on Your Elderly Neighbor” to your New Year’s Resolutions. If you keep your resolution, you’ll form the foundation that builds a better community.

On Topic:

A History of Mortgage Rates

When it comes to mortgages, a rise in interest rates can knock an entire group of buyers out of the market. And a rise in rates can scare away buyers even when the rates fall well within historical averages.


During the pandemic, in order to stimulate the economy, the federal reserve set interest rates artificially low. In the housing market, this decrease translated into the lowest mortgage rates in the past 50 years. These low mortgage rates threw fire on an already hot low-inventory housing market. Low inventories coupled with increased labor costs, the collapse of supply chains and rising material costs resulted in a dramatic increase in home values which in turn contributed to inflation.

As the country began to emerge from the pandemic, the federal reserve stepped in once again to artificially adjust interest rates; this time to help cool the economy. However, when examining the history of mortgage rates in the U.S., the current 6.5% ranks below average. Using the Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Market Survey, the average U.S. mortgage rate in the final week of each year over the past 50 years was 7.85% with a high of 17.04% at the end of 1981 and a low of 2.67% on 12/31/20. The data is based on thousands of applications received from lenders across the country that are submitted to Freddie Mac when a borrower applies for a mortgage.


What will happen with rates going forward? Based on the 50-year history of 30-year fixed mortgage rates, very little so long as inflation comes under control and we avoid a recession. But it is best to draw your own conclusions by examining the numbers shown in the Survey. With mortgage rates in 30 out of the 50 years ranging from roughly 7% - 9%, today’s 6.51% may not be historically low, but it appears decidedly below average.

Benefits and Updates:

1. THANKS TO ALL WHO DECORATED! The big chill came just as you were putting away Halloween and thinking about Christmas. It put a damper on decorating this year so we would like to thank all of you who braved the cold to keep the holiday spirits bright throughout your neighborhoods.


2.  MINUS 35? It literally doesn’t get much colder than what we saw in Helena on December 22. The lowest recorded temperature was -38 on December 17, 1964. The arctic blast didn’t stop some of you from shoveling snow off sidewalks to help your neighbors and the delivery persons dropping off last minute gifts. Most of you, however, waited for the temps to rise above freezing before grabbing a shovel. Thanks to all of you who were patient, considerate and understanding of those who waited. 

3.  CALLING ALL SNOW SHOVELERS! Willing to shovel snow? The Mountain View Meadows office continues to get requests for contact info for people willing to shovel sidewalks and driveways. Add your name to the list. We’ll do our best to get you connected.

4.  LOST AND FOUND: Are you missing any of the following items? A Nike black-hooded sweatshirt with white “Nike” written all over it; a size 12/14 “All in Motion” long-sleeve athletic crew-neck pull-over, greenish/yellow in color; a Nike size L black long-sleeve athletic pull-over with a neck zipper; a hand-held black security device (warning sound/light) with a digital read-out; a blue doggy-bone “doggy-bag” holder attached to a key chain with keys along with an attached small stuffed bunny. If any of these sound familiar, stop by the office and claim your lost item. Anything not claimed by January 1 will find a new home at Good Samaritan Thrift Store (except the keys!). 

New Homes For Sale:
Plans to Build and Build to Suit

Pricing for new single-family homes and condos at Mountain View Meadows if not shown may be available upon request. Not all available homes and condos are included below. To learn more about your favorite home or for a complete list of plans under construction call the Mountain View Meadows Sales and Information Center at 406-449-0800 for an appointment or stop by our office anytime during regular business hours. And remember, realtors are always welcome!

Homes at Mountain View Meadows

2816 Alyson Rain: “The Getaway”. With nearly 2500 finished SF, this 4BD/3.5 Bath home with unobstructed mountain views and breathtaking views of Helena and the north valley is ready for move-in! The Getaway comes with upscale finishes throughout and special features from a covered balcony off the main floor and a patio off the fully-finished walk-out basement to vaulted ceilings and a fireplace in the great room. In the kitchen you’ll find a raised breakfast bar, stainless steel appliances and walk-in pantry. You’ll love all the closet and storage space and find plenty of room for your tools in the oversized 2-car garage. With this much square footage, amazing views and upscale finishes, The Getaway will win you over on your first tour. Call Anna Havranek at 406-438-1141 for more details. $599,900. MLS# 2214854.

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2806 Jeannette Rankin: "The Miner". One of the most beautiful house plans in the Craftsman Village neighborhood could be yours! Featuring a wrap around porch and architectural dormers, this 1800 SF 3BD/2BA home located directly across the street from Mountain View Park will wow you with its upscale details and finishes. The 300 SF bonus room above the spacious 2-car garage provides a special private area for your office, home hobby, or TV room for the kids. Pricing is available by calling Dawn Purvis at 406-439-6380.  

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2824 Alyson Rain: "The Banker". Surround yourself with comfort, class and style! With 1939 SF, this beautiful open floorplan provides all the room you need to spread your wings. But you won’t want to spend all your time inside when you could be sitting on your covered rear patio gazing at the unobstructed mountain views. With so many upgrades, from a fireplace to a tiled walk-in shower, to trey ceilings and an office flex room, you’ll want first in line for this new Sierra Custom Home priced in the mid 550’s. For more details call Dawn Purvis at 406-439-6380.

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2812 Jeannette Rankin: "The Merchant". At 1801 SF, this 3BD/2BA home may be the perfect size for you! Expect the best when you purchase a Sierra Custom Home from their upscale finishes to their detailed craftsmanship. If you’re thinking about buying, check out the location of this new plan being built across from Mountain View Park by contacting Rebecca at 406-431-7680 or Danielle at 406-461-9748.

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2834 Jeannette Rankin: "The Marshall". Come see the site of this brand-new 1858 SF home plan underway across from Mountain View Park. Choose this for your new home and you’ll find yourself relaxing on your front porch, grilling on your rear patio or hanging out next to your fireplace in the gathering room just off the front entry. Pricing is not yet available but now is the time to explore the possibilities so you can get your name at the top of the list of interested buyers for this 3BD/2BA home complete with all the bells and whistles that come with a Sierra Custom Home. For additional information contact Dawn at 406-439-6380.

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395 Elouise Cobell: "The Bannock XL". Work from home in your dedicated main floor office! Got big toys you need to store? You’ll find all the room you need in your spacious 3-bay garage. Like big bedrooms and a family-size laundry room? How about an 8’ x 20’ covered outdoor living space for BBQ nights and private gatherings with friends? Then check out the upscaled Bannock XL. With its great upstairs views, awesome location and 1873 SF of comfort and convenience you’ll fall in love at first sight. Pricing available by calling Rebecca at 406-431-7680. 

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2887 Alpine View Loop: Custom at its best in upscale Aspen Park. Every home built by Sierra Custom Homes is built for quality and comfort. Aspen Park homes take it one step further with their concrete tile roofs, natural timber features and stone accents. Need a dedicated office? This home has it. Want a bigger garage? Will a tandem 3-bay garage work for you? What about a covered rear porch in back with a huge patio? I bet a fireplace in the great room would be awesome, too. Talk to Dawn today and she will tell you how you can capture this nearly 2200 SF custom home for yourself. 406-439-6380.

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2836 Travis Ave: "The Outlaw". This 1445 SF 3BD/2BA home feels just right! Spacious without wasting space, efficient while maximizing comfort, don’t be surprised if you fall in love at first sight. This new Weatherall floorplan features an inviting front porch, large kitchen island, a walk-in tiled shower, sliding glass doors that open onto a covered rear deck and an attached 2-car garage. It’s early so pricing will have to wait, but not you! Call 406-431-7680 now for more information or to add your name to a growing list of interested buyers.

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2685 Adam Run: “Generation 2 Pioneer”. Our popular “Pioneer” is now available with a larger owners’ suite in a 2-bedroom layout. Just shy of 1300 SF, the new floorplan is designed for those of you needing less square footage but wanting personal comfort. The Generation 2 Pioneer offers affordable upscale living featuring granite countertops, soft-close cabinets, walk-in tiled shower, full-scale laundry room and an attached 2-car garage. For additional information, stop by the Mountain View Meadows office at 431 S. Alice St. or call 406-431-7680.  

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2830 Travis Ave: The “Arrow Prairie”. Introducing McCall Homes 2-story Arrow Prairie with a huge first floor living space and 17’ x 14’6” upstairs family room. This 3BD/2.5 BA 2,116 SF home provides all the room you need to spread out and do your own thing. At less than $227 per SF, you’ll love the lifestyle affordability with close proximity to Mountain View Park and the paved Fun & Fitness Trail along with all the conveniences of City of Helena services. Stop by the Mountain View Meadows office at 431 S. Alice St. for a tour or check out MLS# 2215296 for additional information. $479,900.

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Condos at Mountain View Meadows

2940 Aspen View Loop: 1334 SF Single-level Condo. $399,900. New plan and only two available this year…and one is sold! Guess that makes now the right time to buy. Available unit is designed in grays and quartz countertops with an inviting front porch and a rear deck with unobstructed mountain views. Stop by the office at 431 S. Alice St. for a private tour of this charming condo across the street from the upscale Aspen Park neighborhood or call Danielle at 406-461-9748.

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2925 & 2927 Aspen View Loop: Another building with our exceptionally popular 1464 SF Condo plan is well underway across the street from an open space lot. This 3BD/2BA or 2BD/2BA with office/flex room fits the needs of many buyers and it just might be right for you, too. Check out the upscale finishes and choose the condo with a color scheme that best fits your style. Color and material finishes available in the Mountain View Meadows Sales & Information center. Call Danielle at 406-461-9748 for more details. Each unit priced at $415,000.

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2922 Aspen View Loop: 1687 SF Single-level Condo Priced at $469,900. This beautifully designed 3BD/2BA floorplan offers the feel of a single-family home with the convenience of a condo lifestyle. But don’t take our word for it -- Call Anna Havranek at 406-438-1141 for a tour today! Along with all the fine finishes you expect from a Weatherall built condo, this home comes with stunning mountain views easily enjoyed from inside the home or from the covered rear deck. 

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2932 Aspen View Loop: 1845 SF Single-level Condo. Yeah, it’s that big and so are the views! This luxury 3BD/2BA condo features vaulted ceilings, granite countertops, beautiful laminate flooring, tiled baths and laundry, walk-in tiled shower, walk-in pantry, soft-close cabinets, stainless steel appliances, a dedicated dining space and an attached 2-car garage -- Everything you need to enjoy a comfortable, convenient lifestyle! Stop by the office at 431 S. Alice Street or call Anna Havranek at 406-438-1141 for a tour today.

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Aspen Park at Mountain View Meadows
ASPEN PARK: Now is the time to take a drive through beautiful Aspen Park at Mountain View Meadows to see for yourself if this upscale neighborhood is right for you. Homes in Aspen Park typically range from 2,000 SF to 5,000 SF with custom details inside and out. Stop by the office at 431 S. Alice Street to discuss the lots and your ideas. We're here to assist you in whatever way possible to ensure a smooth and rewarding experience. Contact Mark at 406-449-0800 or email [email protected] for additional information.

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The Best in Our


Holiday Decorating

Grand Prize Winner

Last week anonymous judges drove around your neighborhoods checking out your holiday lights and decorations. Judges submitted their top three choices for their assigned neighborhood. Whichever home they selected as first won Best in The Neighborhood along with a $100 cash award. The awards encourage friendly competition during the holiday decorating season and provide a little thanks to the homeowners for making a special effort to spread delight and good cheer throughout the community. From the neighborhood winners, the best among the best is selected as the Grand Prize Winner and receives an additional $100 for a total of $200! And that winner is…a little drummer boy drum roll, please…2747 Favor Ave! Congratulations to homeowners Brian Wacker and Jessica Barnett. You put on quite a display! For additional winners and honorable mentions see photos at the bottom of this newsletter. Thanks once again to everyone who decorated, whether a single wreath on the door or a million-lights display. You make for the best holidays in all our neighborhoods!

Welcome to the Neighborhood

Dean & Emilie Thompson

Are thrilled with their brand new single level home in Craftsman North.

Richard & Peggy Taylor

Are enjoying the fantastic views from their Sierra Elk Park home.

Jacqueline Demmy

Is delighted with her lovely single-story home in Craftsman Village.

Andrew Koopman

Is excited to finally be able to make his dream home a reality. 

Alan & Bernice Rader

Are joyful that they found their single level condo with gorgeous mountain views.

Rebecca Lester

Has recently closed on her stylish and spacious 1464 SF condo and is now getting settled in.

James Higgins

Is enjoying the delightful mountain views from his beautifully laid-out condo.

Matthew & Sejla Zeltwanger

Have moved into their absolutely beautiful Sierra Custom Home with outstanding views of the whole valley.

Peggy Scuderi

Is getting settled into her lovely condo by Weatherall Builders.

Kenneth & Barbara Yahvah

Are loving the breathtaking views that they get to admire from the large windows of their fantastic home.

Rose Marie Robertson

& Mary Anne Aafedt

Can't wait to pick up the keys to their marvelous one-of-a-kind home in Aspen Park.

Congratulations! And Welcome
to the Neighborhood!

Fun & Fitness

Holiday Fitness Wrap-Up

From Halloween to New Year’s, decorating and preparing for festivities disrupts our daily routines. For some, the busy holiday season makes it hard to maintain a positive mental state, an exercise regimen or even normal eating habits. But with all the extra tasks did you know that you were getting a decent physical workout? And that all that decorating and preparing for the holidays helped to relieve stress?

According to Dr. Georgia Halls, a clinical psychologist interviewed for a ‘Good Housekeeping’ article about the psychological benefits of decorating for the holidays, decorating helps many people become reminiscent of “good times, community and connection”. Marsha Chinichian, a clinical psychotherapist, also states “studies show that decorating for the holidays improves mood and ignites positive memories.” It also helps release dopamine in the brain; the hormone responsible for making you feel good.

And if that’s not reason enough to feel better, according to the article ‘10 Unusual Ways to Burn Christmas Calories’ on, you may have burned a lot of calories over the holidays with all that preparation for festivities without even knowing it! Here’s what that article had to say:

·       CLEANING: Dusting for 30 minutes can burn about 80 calories, mopping for 15 minutes 70 calories and vacuuming for 30 minutes 120 calories.

·       DECORATING: Getting in storage, heaving heavy boxes around, and bringing in your tree burns about 350 calories/hour. (Not on the list: TAKING IT ALL DOWN! Bound to burn twice the calories!)

·       PREP WORK: Shopping for gifts and food for a feast burns over 100 calories each half hour. On top of that, you can burn about 120 calories/hour by wrapping those gifts. You’ll burn another 70 calories every 30 minutes on your feet preparing your feast and 15 minutes washing dishes can burn about 40 calories.

·       FESTIVITIES: Eating your meal can burn 50 calories, but an after-meal walk for an hour burns another 280! Throw in 30 minutes of holiday dancing and you just lost another 195 calories.

·       REST: It seems counter intuitive, but your body does a lot of work while you are resting and it is important for your mental health too. An average night of 8 hours can burn about 400 calories just by sleeping! emphasized that, “how many calories an individual burns depends on their height, weight, and how vigorously they complete each task”. Therefore, you could have burned more calories if you got into the swing of things with a vigorous holiday spirit!

With the winter holidays mostly behind us, if you somehow dodged all the work that goes into decorating and festivities, you still have time to get in some fun winter exercise to help burn off calories from all those cookies and candies you ate over Christmas. Some good cold weather activities that burn those extra calories, as noted by Mercy Health, are:

·Shoveling: 200 calories/hour

·Sledding: 400 calories/hour

·Ice-skating: 500 calories/hour

·Cross-Country Skiing: 400-800 calories/hour + a full body workout

·Snowshoeing: 400-600 calories/hour

·Downhill Skiing: 250-500 calories/hour.


Mark & Rebecca

End of an Era

Like most of you, 2022 was filled with good times and a few times now and then that we could have done without. But overall, the year brought more joy than tears and a sense of accomplishment which helps us manage the overwhelming amount of energy that goes into building a community. On a personal note, Mark lost his mother, Donna, just before Thanksgiving. She was 95. That’s a long life, but every child knows, no matter how old their mother, it’s still a loss. My mother passed away in 2005 and my father in 2011. Mark’s father died in 1997. Donna was the last of the greatest generation in our family. The end of an era. Donna was sharp as a tack till the end, living alone in her home with help from Mark’s brother and sister-in-law who lived just down the road and a caretaker who visited 3 times a week. As her time came closer, she wanted little to do with personal routines. We laughed when she said she had no interest in showering and would just have to die stinky…which she didn’t…but it was just so funny. When Mark posted the obituary on his Facebook page he said that now there was no one who thinks he’s perfect. And she did! As we close out 2022 we send our thoughts out to anyone who lost someone close this past year. We wish you strength and good will and the best in the new year to come. The start of a new era.

And now a gallery of photos taken on the coldest day I’ve ever experienced along with photos of some of the best-dressed homes of the holiday season here at Mountain View Meadows. Enjoy! And Happy New Year to All!

December 22, 2022. 

The Coldest Day of the Year!

Off to the Office at Negative 30

A Good Day to Stay Inside!

A Snow Blower over a Shovel Any Day!

A Fall Landscape Project Stopped in its Tracks

All I Need for Christmas is My Family to Warm My Hearth

Caught Red Handled

Front Side Cleared

Garage Side Cleared.

Double the Work!

Mark Playing Hooky

from His Desk

Peace Park Buried in Snow

Ready to Thaw Frozen Ground

Scooping Poop at Minus 30

She's Got the Power!

Sure Beats a Shovel!

Teamwork with a

Positive Attitude!

That's a Lot of Snow for

One Person to Tackle!

The City at Work 

Two Homesites on Upland Ave Waiting for Spring Break

Waiting Its Turn

for the Snow Plow

Weatherall Builders

Condo Foundation Nestled Under a Warm Blanket 

Where are the Kids

When You Need Them?

And Now the Winners!

2747 Favor Ave

Antelope Trace

Best in the Neighborhood

2880 Big Timber Loop

Aspen Park

Best in the Neighborhood

2866 Twilight Ave

Craftsman Village

Best in the Neighborhood

340 Elouise Cobell

The Uplands

Best in the Neighborhood

366 Elouise Cobell

2nd Overall

2865 Jeannette Rankin

3rd Overall

2910 Alpine View Loop

4th Overall

561 S. Alice Street


Best in the Neighborhood

2768 Favor Loop

Antelope Trace

Honorable Mention

2946 Big Timber Loop

Aspen Park

Honorable Mention

2878 Twilight Ave

Craftsman Village

Honorable Mention

384 Elouise Cobell

The Uplands

Honorable Mention

2874 Runkle Pkwy

Condo Honorable Mention

2691 Jeannette Rankin

Condo Honorable Mention

Congratulations to All the Winners!

Wishing You Our Best for A Happy New Year