February Newsletter 2023

What Can We Do Better?

Surveys. We are not big fans of the way most places handle them.

It seems like most companies shove them in our faces every time we engage in the most basic of commerce. Then we respond, give feedback, and nothing changes. That is precisely how companies lose their most valuable resource and the people that pay the bills. 

That would be our clients.

If you have been part of the Denver Concierge family for any time,  you know we do things differently. We are that rare company that prefers human contact. We also like to think that our clients are pretty good at keeping us on the straight and narrow by giving us feedback in real-time.

We are lucky to have you and by the looks of things, we feel like we are doing a pretty good job for you.

But we want to know more. Rather than invite you to click on some link or go to some third-party site, we prefer good old-fashioned communication.

So, we ask today, please let us know what we can do better. Our loyal and trusty Angela is standing by to ensure you are always 100% satisfied with what we do.

We know we aren’t the least expensive company in town. Our goal each and every day is to exceed your expectations to the point where you believe every penny you spend with us is a great value.

So please email us at [email protected] Or text us if that is easier, at 303-588-6847.  If you want to call directly, you can do so at 303-975-2808 as well. We promise a quick and positive resolution to whatever you might have going on.

Remember, in the absence of feedback, we will assume we are doing things perfectly. The only way for us to improve at what we do is when you tell us. 

Don’t be shy, we love getting better.

As always, thank you for being part of the unique company that is Denver Concierge. We will continue to earn your trust every day.

Senior Care Resources

The difficulty of caring for an aging loved one is a burden that one cannot relate to until you have gone through it.

We recently heard from the nice people at senioradvice.com about promoting their services and after doing some research we are happy to do so.

These folks have put together a wonderful resource for anyone looking for assistance with an aging loved one.

Their website not only includes a comprehensive list of providers but also other resources like the best cities for retirement, as well as advice, and much more.

From their representative, Julia Walker,  “Many aging adults are unaware of the available care options and programs that can help them maintain their independence and quality of life. So we created a free resource that provides comprehensive information on topics like financial support and in-home care options that are available in their area.”

We think that says it all, and we are grateful that they reached out to us for publication.

The complete website with all the wonderful resources can be found here.

What is Chat GPT? 

When we see interesting things, we love to share them with our readers. When we hear Elon Musk say that AI is the biggest threat to humanity, it really gets our attention.

So what exactly, is this ChatGPT that has been in the news lately?

From the CNBC article, “ChatGPT is an advanced form of AI powered by a large language model called GPT-3. It is programmed to understand human language and generate responses based on huge bodies of data.”

It first hit our radar when we saw college students using it to write papers. 

Musk founded OpenAI, which is the startup that created ChatGPT.

So why should we be concerned? Well, a recent article by Business Insider referenced ChatGPT “coming for our jobs” and 10 roles that AI could replace in the near future.

Those include tech jobs like coding, media jobs like ad creation and copy, and even legal industry jobs to name a few.

There is even a belief that ChatGPT could teach classes, replacing teachers entirely.

So while we may not have to worry about AI taking over the planet in the immediate term, job security could certainly become a real thing.

As long as AI cannot figure out how to clean houses, we feel pretty good, but we are watching you closely, AI, very closely…..

Dog Lovers Paradise 

The news in Colorado hasn’t been wonderful lately, as we rise up the rankings for car thefts, homelessness, and other categories we aren’t very proud of.

However, there is one nice category that we found that puts Colorado at the very top of the list.

Dog lovers. Yes, that is correct. Forbes recently did a survey and found that Colorado has the most devoted dog owners in the country.

Some fun facts about our love for furry friends:

  • Colorado dog owners were second most likely to move from an apartment to a house so their dogs would have a yard (19.5%).
  • 7% of Colorado dog owners left a job they liked because another company let them work from home or had a dog-friendly office (the third highest percentage, tied with Massachusetts and Ohio).
  • 11% stayed at a job they disliked because it allowed them to work remotely or had a dog-friendly office (the sixth highest percentage).
  • Colorado is also home to the fourth-highest percentage of dog owners who have lived on a tighter budget in order to afford their dogs’ expenses (43.5%), tied with Arkansas and Mississippi.

Finally, how much would you spend to save your pet? According to Forbes, 43.5% of Colorado dog owners would spend $4,000 or more out-of-pocket on life-saving medical care for their dogs.

Wow, that’s a big number but we get it. Pets are family. 

For the complete comprehensive study on dog friendly states you can also visit Forbes here.

Denver Restaurant Week

Since COVID, we have written a lot less about getting out and about. Now that it is mostly over and things are getting back to normal, it might be time again.

So, one of Denver’s traditions is back once more.

That would be Denver Restaurant Week, which has been going on here for 18 years, in some form or another.

This year, and from the Denver.org website, “Denver Restaurant Week will be held for 10 days March 3 – 12, 2023. The program will showcase the creative, exciting menus that diners have come to expect – with both to-go and in-person options.”

“Once again, Denver Restaurant Week will include three price points: $25, $35, and $45 for a three-course meal. The program will also focus on advocacy for the industry while keeping the health and safety of the community top of mind.”

Every step we take toward normalcy brings us comfort, and restaurant week is no exception.

The full list of all 221 restaurants participating, along with sortable categories including price point, location, and cuisine can be found here.

Happy dining Denver, hope to see you out there!

Monthly Award Winners

Our monthly award winners for January were Sandra Vidales, Maria Zapata, Haydee Espinoza, Maria Carmen Del Estrada, and Aurora Dominguez.

In the Team Leader ranks, it was Rosa Chavez and Natalia Olivas.

We are so proud of our winners, and of all the folks that are in and out of your homes each week.

We are also very appreciative to be a part of your lives and your homes. You provide the platform for our teams to perform, and for that we are grateful.

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for the month of January.

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela

Confusion in the house!?

Denver Concierge Team Leaders receive instructions every morning at dispatch, so each house is custom cleaned according to the client’s wishes for that specific visit.

As Client/Team Liaison, I am the translator of instructions. 

Clean this room and not that room; this level and not that one. It sounds simple enough. Sometimes it isn’t. So I have to ask.

Downstairs as in lower level? Or basement (finished room)? Or cellar (as in wine)?

First floor as in American style? Or European/South American style (one level up from ground level)?

Every client has a unique vocabulary when describing the rooms, furnishings, and levels of their homes, based on their personal preferences and history.

A powder room sounds more delicate than a commode. Den has fallen out of favor and been replaced with library or study.  Sunroom has myriad synonyms going back thousands of years in various cultures, 

Unfortunately, to date, there has been no such upgrade for the room that is  “a filter that snares the debris of the outside before it can migrate into the public areas of the house.” 

The inelegant yet aptly named mudroom. 

I like to think I know many of the houses well enough to quasi-intuit the instructions but if Confusion arises I hope you don’t mind me asking. 


January Newsletter 2023

Baby, It’s Cold Outside

Wow, it’s been a rough winter so far. We are in the middle of a very cold and snowy one, my friends. Sadly, we have had a couple of closures due to snow, and Monday we tied a 38-year-old record at -10 degrees.

We have been In Denver for many years and it’s hard to remember snow being on the ground this long. 

For those of you that have been watching your power bill, this has been a double dip this winter, as we have seen massive increases in our rates across the Front Range.

So what the heck can we do about it? Well, there are two aspects of our bitter winter that we have tried to tackle. 

First is the excessive heating bills we are seeing, as confirmed by this piece in Westword. 

For starters, if you have fireplaces, use them, as you likely won’t find a cheaper alternative than wood. Normally, it would also be wise to use your natural gas fireplace, but according to Xcel, natural gas prices have gone up faster than electricity costs.

The trend for natural gas in 2023 however, is positive, although they expect a lot of volatility going forward.

We found a good list of money-saving tips here, along with 17 ideas for lowering your heating bills here.

What about the psychological toll of a bitterly cold winter?  We have you covered there as well, with some great tips from Lifespan, and they can be found here. Of course, winter stress is exacerbated by high heating bills, so we are using every technique we know of in pursuit of a nice warm spring.

If things are really bleak (and we hope they aren’t), we found an interesting article on spoon theory, which we had never heard of.

Meanwhile, stay warm and safe Denver, and we will do our part to make sure you have a spotless home to be watching the snow from. 

Denver’s Best Areas to Live

Of course, we know that a headline is a very subjective thing.

Every year, 5280 Magazine publishes its list of Denver’s Best Neighborhoods.

They have adopted a specific formula for calculating this list.

From the article: “It includes four variables: home prices, crime data, school rankings, and an X factor score that accounts for things that can’t be easily quantified, such as access to open space, public transportation, and restaurants and shops.”

“Each category is weighted: 30 percent for year-over-year percentage change in home values; 25 percent for safety; 15 percent for neighborhood school ratings; and 30 percent for the X factor.”

So….who is number one?

Wellshire. Followed by Belcaro, Wash Park, Platt Park, and City Park.

Interesting and quite probably polarizing, the complete ranking and methodology can be found here.

Congrats to the best neighborhoods!

Are you in the top 1%? 

We don’t spend much time worrying about this headline applying to us, but we know some of you out there might be curious.

Just how much money do you need to make to be in the top 1% of earners?

In Colorado, that number is $683,000 per year. That number is 10 times the state’s median income, and more than enough to purchase a median-priced home in the Denver area.

What state has the lowest bar for the top 1%? West Virginia at $375,000. That number is just slightly lower than Mississippi, New Mexico, and Arkansas.

The highest bar for this exclusive club? Connecticut, at $955,000, followed by Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and California.

What about net worth? In order to be in the top 1% nationally, you would need to be worth just over $10M, according to Forbes.

The comprehensive study of the “1% club” by Smart Wallet can be found here.

Finally, the tax rate on the top 1%? Colorado ranks in the top third at just over 25%.

So, if you are in this club, it would seem that you are paying your fair share of taxes to our fine state.

The Best Local Hospitals 

Just how good is our medical care here around the Front Range?

Our experience is that it is pretty good, but we love data so here we go.

Every year, Healthgrades does a complete list of hospitals, starting with America’s best 250.

The complete methodology is too much for this space, but it can be found here if you are curious.

They then go down to the 100 best, and finally the 50 best hospitals in America.

It is important to note that being a top 250 hospital puts that facility in the top 5% of hospitals nationwide, a very fine distinction.

Who made it in Colorado?

Poudre Valley in Fort Collins topped the list, making the top 50 in our state. Sky Ridge (pictured above) made the top 100.

Rose, Swedish, and St. Joseph’s, along with the Medical Center of Aurora were all top 250, and they are joined by Penrose Hospital in the Springs on this illustrious list.

Overall, a very good showing for Colorado health care.

Please join us in congratulating these fine facilities on this prestigious award.

The complete list of America’s Best Hospitals can be found here.

Downtown COVID Recovery

For those of you that spend time downtown, you can probably relate to the feeling that things have dramatically changed.

We aren’t sure about you, but that vibrant, bustling feeling that we used to feel just isn’t there anymore.

It is not our imagination.

School of Cities tracked the recovery of 62 North American cities and the results are very interesting.

From the article, “Among 62 cities in the U.S. and Canada, Denver’s recovery ranks 35th. It ranks 33rd out of 52 U.S. cities, and 19th among the 27 cities west of the Mississippi. Its recovery rate is similar to that of Tulsa, Austin, Houston, and Phoenix.”

We were surprised that four cities have actually exceeded their pre-COVID levels of activity, led by Salt Lake City which is nearly 140% of past levels.

Denver sits at 59% of activity, barely half of what it was in 2019.

The complete study, entitled “Death of Downtown” can be found here.

Here’s hoping our great city recovers in 2023 and beyond.

Monthly & Annual Award Winners

It is that time again when we recognize our top performers for the year.

First off, the monthly Cleaning Associate award winners for December were Haydee Espinosa, Sandra Vidales, Maria Zapata, Cecilia Reyes, and Nimia Espinosa.

In the Team Leader ranks, it was Juana Olivas and Mayra Soto.

Now the important part, our annual winners. In the Cleaning Associate category, the winner for 2022 is Guadalupe Coloco. Runner up was Maria Zapata.

For Team Leaders, our annual winner for 2022 is Mayra Soto. The runner-up goes to Rosa Chavez.

We like to think that all our people are deserving of awards and our hats are off to all of our wonderful staff.

For the winners, we thank you for setting the pace.

We are also very appreciative to be a part of your lives and your homes. You provide the platform for our teams to perform, and for that we are grateful.

We will be back next month with our January winners for 2023.

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela

Rugs present a challenge to housecleaning staff for the very reason that they are walked over not only by the humans in the house but also by the various pets. 

We take it for granted that the primary purpose of carpets is to cover floors and add beauty to a room, but in the 15th century, carpets were so highly prized that they were hung on walls as artwork and used as table coverings but seldom as floor coverings.  

Early paintings in the grand estate homes at times depicted the painter’s subjects standing on carpets as a way to signify their wealth and status. 

Doubtful that family members were allowed the same privilege, let alone the dogs and cats of the house. 

Many of the carpets we care for are antiques and need to be treated with a light hand. This means no beater bar to pull threads, and being given several passes with a vacuum if there is a pet in the house. 

We take very seriously our responsibility for maintaining the integrity of the furnishings in the houses we clean. 


December Newsletter 2022

Let’s Connect in 2023

Allow us to be among the first to wish you a Happy New Year.

We have kind of a fun announcement regarding our social media presence. Since we joined Twitter years ago, we were always @bestmaidsdenver. For those of you that follow us, you may have noticed that we are now @denverconcierge.

It seems the ownership change at Twitter benefitted us in that the owner of “our” handle was inactive and that enabled us to have it placed with its rightful owner, us!!

We don’t tweet much, but we do tweet about closures and our schedule, so if you are on Twitter and want to be in the know about what is going on at Denver Concierge, give us a follow.

As a reminder, we are also on Facebook, and you can find that page here.

We certainly aren’t social media mavens, but we try to use those tools in a beneficial way for you to know what is going on with your (hopefully) favorite cleaning company.

Beyond the social media announcement, we want to take the time to thank you. Thanks for being a part of our family. Thanks for reading our newsletter, and mostly thank you for supporting our local business.

We will always be grateful for your support, your feedback, and your ideas on how we can make things better.

We wish you a wonderful New Year’s Eve and an even better 365 days following it.

Read on for some tips on how to stay healthy and safe in 2023, and how to make ’23 your best year ever.

Happy New Year!!

Apple AirTag Safety Alert

Sometimes, great ideas can go wrong. Most of the time the repercussions aren’t terrible, but the latest one we ran across concerned us, and if you haven’t heard about it, we think you should.

Apple makes this cool product called an AirTag. Many of you may be using them, as they are super handy for keeping track of things you might lose.

Great for keys, briefcases, luggage, and the like, we even have one hidden in our car, just in case it ever ‘disappears’.

Your Apple device can then locate the item, pretty much anywhere via the Find My app on your device.

But what if someone plants an AirTag on or in your property without your knowledge? Your vehicle, for example?

This technology is perfect for people with bad intentions, as they can surreptitiously plant one and then track whatever, or whoever is traveling with the AirTag.

Obviously, this is concerning, especially for anyone that might have concerns about being stalked. Thieves are also using this technology to follow nice cars to their homes for future crimes.

So, what can we do to protect ourselves?

We found a comprehensive article on this and we think you should take a look, it’s here.

Apple themselves also released a comprehensive article on this issue, it can be found here.

The good news is if you have an Apple device and there is a foreign AirTag near you for over 2 days, your phone will alert you.

Beyond that, they will emit a beep which can be hard to hear, so if you hear a strange chirp, pay close attention.

We love our AirTags, but like any good concept, in the wrong hands, they can be used the wrong way by bad actors.

Read on in this month’s newsletter to see just how likely it is that someone steals your vehicle here in our wonderful state.

Make 2023 Your Best Year Ever 

How was 2022 for you?

Ours was pretty good, but it wasn’t without its challenges, which is normal.

COVID finally seems to have subsided for the most part. We hope things are starting to return to “normal”, but sometimes we don’t know what the new normal is.

With increasing crime, inflation, and interest rates, it’s easy to be down in the dumps about what 2023 might look like.

So, how do we make it an amazing year, despite these headwinds?

No, this is not about resolutions, as we all know those rarely work. But how about a process that includes goal setting, measurement, feedback, and celebration?

As we researched this, we found a number of articles that we really liked.

The first, on Medium, involves creating your personal blueprint and how to stick to it.

For those of you more business-minded, we found a very good piece by Tom Oliver and it is here.

Finally, from the folks at Craft, their take on how to do this.

The common themes?

1. Write it down/Record it somewhere

2. Follow up/be accountable/measure

3. Celebrate victories, no matter how small

We are ready for 2023 to be an amazing year, and we hope you are too.

Let’s skip the resolutions and get down to the practical details. In the words of Peter Drucker, “What gets measured gets improved”.

We agree wholeheartedly. Good luck in joining us on this wonderful journey that will be 2023.

Stay Healthy This Winter

Ah, winter. We missed you.

Snow, cold, and the spreading of germs to name only a few of your great traits.

From dry and itchy skin to arthritis pain, we have you covered.

Cleveland Clinic came up with ways to fight the winter, and it includes ideas for battling not only those things but weight gain and depression as well.

How about ways to avoid catching bugs or getting sick in general?

Also, did you know that studies show when temperatures drop, the rates of heart-related conditions increase?

Cold weather makes your heart work harder to keep your body warm.

We found some good resources on ways to take care of yourself.

SummaCare has its list of 7 Tips for Staying Healthy this Winter, for starters.

Healthgrades has its take as well and it can be found here.

And finally, from the naturopathic  AANMC, came up with 9 ways to stay healthy and it is here.

We love all these ideas, and now that the holiday parties are mostly over, it’s a great time to make sure we get through winter in a healthy way.

Here’s to wellness, and again, making 2023 our best year ever.

Our Worst Statistic

Colorado is ranked near the top of many lists when it comes to quality of life, activities, and overall best places to live.

We love those lists and share them here frequently, and we still love our state and our fine city.

But this is a list we don’t want to be on.

Are you aware that the new leader in vehicle theft happens to be the State of Colorado?

Sad, but true. We are now the leader in a very ignominious category, and it’s getting worse.

From the intensive report at the Common Sense Institute:

  • Since 2019, Colorado’s monthly motor vehicle theft rate has increased 120.6%. The auto theft rate ranked Colorado number one in the nation.
  • In the first six months of 2022 (January – June), the trend has continued, and the motor vehicle theft rate has increased by 17.3%.
    • Criminals stole 24,044 motor vehicles in the first six months, 3,463 more than the same period in 2021.
    • The monthly theft rate is now 68.56 vehicles per 100,000 persons.
    • The number of secondary offenses related to motor vehicle theft has increased more than six-fold since 2008.
    • Drug crimes involving motor vehicle theft have increased 1,110%, violent crimes involving motor vehicle theft 521%, and property crimes involving motor vehicle theft 583%.

And from the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association, this comprehensive report.

Wow. We share in this pain as we have had two vehicles stolen as well. Our conversations with the police are almost laughable, as most of these crimes won’t be prosecuted and there is very little incentive for them to “go after” these awful thieves.

9News did a piece on how to protect yourselves, it can be found here.

We are at a loss as to why this is happening here, and we hope that our leaders start to realize this is not the look we want for our wonderful state.

Maybe it’s time to look at how we are doing things and make some common sense changes.

Stay safe Denver and protect your cars.

Monthly Award Winners

Our monthly award winners for November were Josefina Quinonez, Mary Moreno, Patricia Rodriguez, Fidelia Bautista, and Yesica Censo.

In the Team Leader ranks, it was Natalia Olivas and Laura Varela.

We are so proud of our winners, and of all the folks that are in and out of your homes each week.

We are also very appreciative to be a part of your lives and your homes. You provide the platform for our teams to perform, and for that we are grateful.

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for the month of November.

Stay tuned for our annual winners which will be announced in next month’s newsletter!

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela

The first reference to Housekeeping in the Oxford English Dictionary was in 1538.

The term applied to the care and maintenance of stately manors and was the subject of thick instruction manuals covering every possible aspect of home maintenance.  There was an especially large section on safety in the home.

Housecleaning may not seem to be a hazardous occupation. Domestic household equipment and products are not usually associated with serious health risks.

However, records show a steady number of accidents involving housecleaning staff each year.  Admittedly, many are minor, but to quote from the 1538 manual,  “there is a moral duty of care owed by an employer to its staff”.

We take this seriously, which is why there are some tasks that we do not allow.

As much as our intention is to be a yes company when it comes to the safety of our employees we sometimes have to say no.

Our staff may not be “scratched by claw whilst trying to remove a peacock from a room”, but there are still potential risks in the homes, hopefully less dramatic, that require our vigilance.  We appreciate your understanding and your concern for our ladies.

May 2023 be a safe, healthy, and happy year for our employees, our clients, and all your furry companions.

Happy New Year!


November Newsletter 2022

Holiday Schedule & Fun Stuff

We hope you had a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving with family and friends.

In that spirit, we wanted to outline our schedule for December and early January, as well as kick off the holidays with some fun things to do in our great city.

For starters, we have an odd Christmas this year, falling on a Sunday. We will then be working on Friday the 23rd but will be closed on Monday the 26th in line with the national holiday celebration.

Regarding New Year’s Eve, it falls on a Saturday this year, and we will be working on both Friday the 30th, and Monday, January 2nd. Different timing this year for sure with both holidays falling on the weekend.

As far as fun stuff to do in our city and around the Front Range, we have ideas! We love all the lights during the holidays and there are lots of places to see them this season. From the Blossoms of Light festival to the Parade of Lights downtown, Denver has some amazing things to see.

The nice people at Denver.org pulled together a great list of Lights Extravaganzas and it can be found here.

If you want to see creativity at its finest, there are some great neighborhoods to drive through with extensive light displays. People are amazing, and we found a quick list of places to go visit, it can be found here.

Finally, the arts season is back in full swing, and Ellie Caulkins Opera House is currently showing the Nutcracker, an all-time classic, and A Christmas Carol is also showing at DCPA’s Wolf Theatre.

A comprehensive list of theater, music and dance events can be found at denver.org here, and the folks at Westword added their take on the holiday events in our town here.

We cannot believe how fast this holiday season came up, but we are certainly going to enjoy it!! We wish you the best for a safe and enjoyable holiday season with family and friends.

Thank you, as always, for supporting our small business.

Happy Holidays!!!!!

Colorado Recycling Changes

As a certified green company, we do our best to recycle. We are far from perfect, but we give it our best, as we are sure most of you do as well.

Due to a midterm ballot initiative, Measure 306, things on the recycling front are about to ramp up in Denver.

This new ordinance got us doing a bit of research and what we found wasn’t great in terms of our recycling habits.

From the article on CBS News,  “Colorado’s recycling rate is only between 15 to 16% — far below the national average of 32% — and it hasn’t improved over the last five years, according to reports from the Colorado Public Interest Research Group and Eco-Cycle.”

Passing with over 70% of the vote, Denver residents and businesses are now required to recycle and compost.

We were surprised to learn our recycling rate was so low. For all the details on this new ordinance and what is required it can be viewed here.

Finally the state is involved as well, with the passing of the Producer Responsibility for Recycling, which puts more pressure on the packaging and paper industries to help fund a recycling program.

I am sure we can all do better and hopefully these new programs will steer us up from where we currently sit.

Denver’s Decade of Growth

We love to watch our skyline. We also love when we find cool things to share with our readers (that’s you).

Denverite.com created the most interesting set of maps which outlines where our city has gotten taller, and denser over the past 10 years.

The different maps illustrate where we have grown, both in terms of neighborhood density and verticality, depicting the height of much of the building going on as well.

Some of the densification is a logical response to our housing problem. If you cannot spread out, go up, which is why we have seen such an increase in taller buildings.

From the article: “According to a 2021 report from Root Policy Research, Colorado as a whole needs to add about 41,000 homes per year between now and 2030 to keep up with demand but is so far projected to fall short. While we might be a big state, a lot of that burden will fall on the metro.”

As always, lots of big changes in our city. A link to the maps and article can be found here. 

Unemployed Colorado

We are as baffled by this as anyone.

As a small business, we are in touch with lots of other businesses and the common theme is that no one can find employees.

Yet here we are with unemployment higher than we are used to.

In February of 2020, just before COVID, we had the nation’s 10th lowest unemployment rate. We are now the nation’s 23rd highest.

Yes, you read that correctly, we have completely flipped our position and our rate is now one full point higher than its low of 2.8% pre-COVID.

For the past 10 years or so, Colorado typically ran about a point below the national average.

KDVR did a nice piece on this and it can be found here.

We don’t know the answer to this problem, but something is amiss when nearly all businesses need workers and unemployment is historically high.

We remain perplexed.

If you are interested in the data behind all of this, the BLS website provides that here.

Color of the Year 2023

Ok, maybe not the COLOR of the year, but how about colors?

As you know it is difficult to get anyone to agree on anything, but when we saw the headline “color of the year” over at Designer Premier we had to investigate.

The hard part is getting a consensus on what that color is. We had no idea that the different paint companies even published these color predictions, so we are learning right along with you on this one.

For example, from Sherwin Williams:

People have been drawn to nature-inspired and earthy tones the past couple of years, and this is something that will continue into 2023 and beyond,” says Sue Wadden, director of color marketing at Sherwin-Williams.

We wanted the 2023 Color of the Year to reflect what we’ve been seeing in terms of neutrals warming up. Homeowners opt for warmer whites, beiges, pinks, and browns. Redend Point SW 9081 is an earthy color, and its subtle pink undertones exude a feeling of warmth and exploration—something people want to feel in their homes. It also leans into the macro trends around empathy and care culture. While self-care is vital, care is also about looking out for each other and our communities.”

From the folks at Behr: “As we look to 2023, we understand that comfort will still be a driving force behind design decisions and style statements,” said Erika Woelfel, vice president of Color and Creative Services at Behr Paint Company, in the press release.

Lots of options and kind of a fun thing to ponder.

Meanwhile, if you need help with colors or interior design, please reach out to our friend Marina Dagenais, who can pair you with the right designer for your needs.

The link to her newsletter and this interesting article on 2023 colors of the year can be found here.

Monthly Award Winners

Our monthly award winners for October were Mary Moreno, Guadalupe Caloca, Aurora Dominguez, Josefina Quinonez, and Cecilia Reyes.

In the Team Leader ranks, it was Isela Mendoza and Rosa Chavez.

We are so proud of our winners, and of all the folks that are in and out of your homes each week.

We are also very appreciative to be a part of your lives and your homes. You provide the platform for our teams to perform, and for that we are grateful.

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for the month of October.

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela

Denver has been losing residents to other states for a few years now; reasons include traffic, bad drivers, cost of living, politics, crime, weather, or all the above.

But where to go that satisfies so many diverse tastes?  Denver has such a wide array of options for really any lifestyle, especially for those with varied interests.

We may not be in Paris but we have exhibits from the Louvre pass through town as well as authentic French restaurants.

It’s not New York but Broadway shows come here. Not Nashville either, but we have great country acts at Red Rocks and other venues.

Want solitude? Head to the mountains.  City vibes? Open a window.

It’s all here. Flamenco, German beer fests, Cinco de Mayo, Gay Pride, Italian and Greek festivals. Opera and sports, The Ritz Bar and dive bars, Cherry Creek and Colfax.  Cuisine from every nationality.

My Ode to Paris!

Queen Bee

Happy Holidays!

October Newsletter 2022

Happy Halloween

We can thank the Celtics for this annual tradition. No, not the Boston Celtics, but the original Irish ones, dating back to 500BC.

Back then, New Year’s Day was on Nov. 1, which they called Samhain. The belief was that prior to the new year, the door between the worlds of the living and the dead swung open.

The trapped souls of the recently dead were then free to pass to the underworld. Since they thought spirits came out after dark, this supernatural activity reached its peak the night before, on Oct. 31.

Rituals were created for protection to fool the spirits. These included costumes and disguises. They lit bonfires and stuck candles inside carved turnips – the first jack-o’-lanterns – to scare away any spirits looking for mischief. If all else failed, they carried a pocketful of treats to pay off wayward spirits and send them back on their way to the underworld.

So, we can thank the Irish, who brought Halloween to our country in the 1800s. While the origins of Halloween had many religious undertones, the current version is most definitely an American one.

The history of Halloween is fascinating and the folks at the History Channel can give you all the cool facts if you are curious.

More locally, what is going on around Denver this weekend to celebrate this spooky holiday? Well, there is the Trick or Treat Trail at the Denver Zoo, for starters. How about Trick or Treat Street at McGregor Square?

We also found this nice list of events around the Front Range, including corn mazes and haunted houses to visit.

For the exact time and date of door-to-door trick or treating, you should consult with your local folks, as those vary quite a bit, even by neighborhood. The generally accepted window is from 3:30-7 or so on Monday the 31st, but some cities have their own rules on that one.

We did find a fun list of “candy hot spots” from last year, courtesy of 5280 Magazine and it can be found here. 

Meanwhile, we hope you have a fun and safe Halloween!!!!

Big Tax Changes

We are going through a rough time economically here in the U.S.

Experts vary in their opinion on whether or not we are in a full-blown recession, but it feels like it to us.

The good news is that the IRS has made some sweeping changes to ease the pain a bit going forward.

Due to inflation, the bracket thresholds will be going up about 7% in 2023, which should increase our take-home pay.

Also, the standard deductions and exemptions changed and will rise by $900 for single/separate filers, $1,800 for joint returns, and for heads of households, it will rise by $1,400.

This marks the largest adjustment to the standard deduction since core features of the tax system were first indexed to inflation in 1985.

The folks at SHRM did a great job recapping this and the full tables can be found here.

To read it directly from the IRS, the entire list of changes can be found on their website here as well.

We welcome any financial relief during these strange post-COVID times, and we hope this helps all of us going forward.

How Safe is Denver?

For many years, we have always felt that Denver was a generally safe city.

Over the past few years, that feeling of safety has certainly diminished and the most recent statistics back those feelings up.

Of course, safety comes in many forms. Whether physical, financial, or safety from natural disasters, we all want to feel good about our situation.

Wallethub did a comprehensive study on safety and analyzed 182 cities across the U.S. for a complete look with the following methodology.

They ranked crime rates, concentrations of first responders, homelessness, traffic deaths, and drug overdose rates. Natural disaster risk accounted for the likelihood of floods, earthquakes, wildfires, hail, hurricanes, and tornados. Financial safety considered a city’s unemployment and foreclosure rates, household financial metrics such as job security and savings levels, and other economic indicators.

The bad news? Denver ranked 164 out of 182. We were sandwiched between Little Rock and New Orleans in terms of overall safety, which is also quite concerning given New Orleans’ reputation for crime.

The safest city in the U.S.? Columbia, Maryland. The least safe? St. Louis, Missouri.

A very interesting read and the full report courtesy of Wallethub can be found here.

We aren’t sure how to fix this situation, but we have the overwhelming feeling that our fine city can do better.

Is Your Phone Spying on You?

Last month we talked about your boss spying on you, this month we tackle your phone.

For years people have surmised that your phone hears what you are saying and then makes recommendations that are tied to what it hears.

While it’s complicated, the short answer is yes, it is.

In many cases, we enable this with voice assistants such as Siri, Alexa, and Google. With those enabled, we have certainly given permission for our information to be shared.

What about normal conversations?

Without getting too far into the weeds, we would recommend reading this piece we found which covers this in a comprehensive manner.

It includes a test by a user of mentioning things around his phone for a few days to see if ads show up. (spoiler alert, yes, they do).

Finally, there are cases where malware infects your phone, and this goes well beyond marketing, which is the root of most of our concerns.

If your phone battery is draining quickly, overheating, or randomly rebooting, you may have a phone virus or malware that needs to be cleaned up.

The folks at Consumer Affairs did a good job of outlining what to watch for regarding malware and those 10 things to look for (in two parts) can be found here and here.

Norton also put out an article on why your phone is listening and how to stop it.

The bottom line? We should probably all be more vigilant about what we put out there around our phones, and what level of access they truly have to our lives.

The global marketing machine is indeed listening to us and learning more about us every day.

Is Exercise Killing You?

Every now and then we catch a headline that grabs us.

Common wisdom about exercise is that anything helps, but vigorous, frequent exercise is the key to longevity.

But is it really? Much like the food pyramid of the 70s, we are finding that many of our long-held beliefs about things were plain wrong.

Recent data indicates this may be the case with exercise.

Fortunately, we have the Mayo Clinic to fully examine this phenomenon and turn common wisdom on its head.

From the article on Medium: “While higher volumes of weekly sports training (cardio exercise, but also ball sports, weight-lifting, and anything that makes you sweaty or short of breath) initially led to a big drop in mortality risk, those benefits began to regress among people who trained hard for more than 4.5 hours per week.”

“Their mortality risks were still much lower than those of non-exercisers, but they didn’t fare quite as well as the people who took a more measured approach to physical activity.”

A similar study was done in 2015 and corroborates the “U-shaped” risk curve among runners and high-impact training.

The big takeaway?

If you’re aiming for optimal lifespan extension, the best heart and mortality outcomes are associated with roughly 150 minutes of weekly vigorous exercise, and no more than 60 minutes of weekly weight training.

Anything more can be dangerous and have lasting effects on our cardiovascular systems.

The nuts and bolts data can be found here, courtesy of the Mayo Clinic and Science Direct.

Leave it to us to finally prove that less exercise might be better for us!!!

Monthly Award Winners

Our monthly award winners for September were Maria Zapata, Mary Moreno, Maria Concepcion Reyes, Josefina Quinonez, and Juana Luna.

In the Team Leader ranks, it was Laura Varela and Rosa Chavez.

We are so proud of our winners, and of all the folks that are in and out of your homes each week.

We are also very appreciative to be a part of your lives and your homes. You provide the platform for our teams to perform, and for that we are grateful.

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for the month of September.

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela

How do you choose the right cleaner for your needs?

There are various categories of cleaning,  Residential Cleaning, Commercial Cleaning, Disaster Cleaning, and Restoration.

Residential cleaning falls generally into two categories; an individual or a company.

Who to choose should be guided by the client’s personality. Do you want a company that will come in with 3 or 4 trained cleaners, who bring their own products and equipment and clean your house while you walk the dog or go shopping?

Or would you prefer to be in a hands-on supervisory position while an individual cleans your home?  You choose and supply the equipment and products and train an individual in the way you like things done, and therefore want to be home during the cleaning.

When I speak with a prospective client, I outline the pros and cons of company vs individual and there have absolutely been times when we both leave the conversation agreeing that an individual would better fit the need.

Determining your personal style before hiring will greatly improve your chances of having a happy cleaning experience versus a frustrating one.


September Newsletter 2022

2023 Wage Changes & FAMLI

Things are changing in both Denver and Colorado on January 1st.

For starters, the minimum wage in Denver will go up to $17.29/hour. This will apply only to businesses based in the city of Denver, as well as all city employees. Currently, the minimum wage in Denver is $15.87, so this represents nearly a 9% increase, which is tied to the consumer price index for the Denver metro area. That number came in at 8.94%.

The state minimum wage will also go up from its current rate of $12.56/hour to $13.65/hour, an increase of 8.68%. 

Also, Colorado employers will have to begin paying into a fund for FAMLI, or Colorado’s new Family and Medical Leave Insurance Program.  This was voted in by Proposition 118 in November of 2020 and it provides up to twelve weeks of paid leave for employees, with an additional four weeks under certain circumstances.

While employers will start paying into the fund in January, employees will not be eligible for the paid leave until January 1, 2024.  Employees will also have deductions for their share of this program taken from their paychecks beginning on January 1, 2023.

The rate is 0.45% for both employee and employer, so if you see an odd-looking deduction on your checks in January, this will explain it.

Of course, both news items will affect all businesses, some more than others. As always, we will do our best to maintain our pricing, but raising wages and charging businesses for paid leave puts pressure on already thin profit margins for many in this post-COVID economy.

We have always tried to take great care of our associates here at Denver Concierge. We were the first cleaning company to offer vacations and have always paid our people well.

We will continue to do these things to the best of our ability but wanted to make you aware of the big changes coming to our city and state.

As always, we appreciate your loyalty and support of our small business.

Aggressive Driving

Road rage. We have all seen it, and hopefully none of us have experienced anything violent.

Unfortunately, we live in a state that is notorious for aggressive driving.

Forbes recently published a piece on aggressive driving by state, and sadly Colorado ranked third.

Surprisingly, the seemingly nice folks from Utah rated first in this category, followed by Missouri. Don’t ask us to explain that one.

From the article, “Centennial State drivers were the third most likely in the nation to say they were followed by another driver who proceeded to exit their vehicle to yell at or fight with them (14%).”

“Drivers in this state tie with Alabama, Connecticut and Washington as the fourth most likely to report being insulted or threatened by other drivers (46%). And more than half of survey respondents (52%) reported witnessing other drivers making rude or offensive gestures.”

The scariest part? 25% of us report they know of someone who sustained injuries after a road rage incident.

The full article and report can be found here. 

Be kind to one another folks, this isn’t a list we should be proud of.

E-470 Widening

Good news on our tollway. Following the most recent widening of E-470 back in 2021 which expanded the tollway from Quincy Avenue to I-70, there is a new one underway.

This project will add a third lane in each direction between I-70 and 104th Avenue.

It also includes a four-mile expansion of the High Plains Trail from 26th to 64th Avenues to continue the bike trail network in the east metro area.

Construction began four days ago on the 26th, and fortunately, most of the work will be done at low-traffic times.

There will be new interchanges at both 38th and 48th Avenue as well, along with a widening of the bridge near the Gaylord Rockies resort.

The full project webpage can be found here, and if you have any questions you can reach the folks in charge at [email protected].

The project will be complete in 2025.

Spying Bosses

Boy did COVID change the way we work. Back in the old days, your boss would just swing by your office to see if you were there.

Today, not as easy to do.

We believe most folks are good and do the work they are supposed to do. That said, there are some bosses and companies that want to make sure.

One of the new terms in employment is “quiet quitting”, where an employee doesn’t officially quit, but the notion of doing anything beyond the minimum is rejected.

As you might expect, this has some employers worried, and many have taken steps to make sure you are still working while physically away from the office.

How do they do this? Well, primarily through your computer. According to a new study by VMWare, 70% of employers are utilizing monitoring software to make sure remote employees are working.

Yes, you read that right. 70%. From simple tracking software to monitoring your webcam (that’s creepy) there is more of this going on than we realized.

The full article from Mic.com can be found here. Scary stuff, as it seems some of the trust between employer and employee has been broken.

VMWare did a great job covering this as well and that piece can be found here.

Maybe Orwell was right….Big Brother is watching.

Are Earbuds Dangerous?

We sure do love our earbuds. We have some cool ones from Apple, another pair from Bose, and the ones that Samsung makes are pretty cool too.

Beware, however, as it seems many medical experts are concerned about the effect they may be having on humans.

For years there have been concerns about holding a phone next to our heads with lots of invisible waves floating about.

Wireless technology seems to have mitigated some of that, and the good news is that earbuds give off 10 to 400 times less radiation than smartphones.

The problem is that this technology hasn’t been around long enough to really measure the impact on our brains and bodies.

From The Healthy: “There is some scientific evidence that there may be a link between exposure to radiofrequency radiation (RFR) in the range used by wireless earbuds and cancer. A 2020 rodent study by the National Toxicology Program found evidence of an association with malignant heart tumors, and some evidence of an association with malignant tumors in the brain and adrenal glands, among rats that had been exposed to RFR.”


On top of this, a few years back, EMF (electromagnetic field) scientists highlighted their concerns with an international appeal to take a look at the electromagnetic fields given off by these devices.

We aren’t smart enough to give advice on what is or isn’t going to happen regarding wireless technology and health. Life is full of risks and each of us needs to make our own decisions.

That said, it is probably worth some research and study going forward.

Monthly Award Winners

Our monthly award winners for August were Guadalupe Caloca, Nimia Espinoza, Josefina Quinonez, Maria Concepcion Reyes, and Maria Zapata.

In the Team Leader ranks, it was Isela Mendoza and Rosa Chavez.

We are so proud of our winners, and of all the folks that are in and out of your homes each week.

We are also very appreciative to be a part of your lives and your homes. You provide the platform for our teams to perform, and for that we are grateful.

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for the month of August.

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela

Over the past few years, longtime Denver residents have mourned the demise of iconic Denver businesses; bolted doors and boarded windows offer a nostalgic reminder of the past.

However, several Colfax landmarks have emerged from their slumber to new incarnations. Tom’s Diner, sitting dormant for several years, has emerged as Tom’s Starlight, a Palm Springs era 1970’s cocktail venue. Major renovation plus a large outdoor seating area, brings a new vibe to the old building.

Further west on Colfax, Casa Bonita, another grande dame of the 60’s/70’s is under new ownership.  The owners have some creative ideas that will retain the building’s history while ushering it gracefully into the present day.

It’s heartening to see the effort at saving the past.  There is so much of it in Denver but plans for one condo with retail space can demolish a block of old brick buildings from one day to the next.

We can’t stop progress, but perhaps we can manipulate it to our advantage.


August Newsletter 2022

Happy Labor Day  

The unofficial end of summer. At least that is what Labor Day is known for. Since it feels like summer just started, we aren’t sure we love that moniker.

Although we are pretty much over 95-degree days, so there’s that.

In the spirit of Labor Day, we thought we would provide some fun facts you probably don’t know.

We can thank labor unrest in the American Midwest for the creation of Labor Day. Way back in the 1880s, thousands of workers in Chicago took to the streets to protest poor labor conditions and to demand an 8-hour workday.

The first holiday created due to labor unrest was actually May Day. Now called, International Worker’s Day, it happens on the first of May. Here in the United States, we celebrate our version on the first Monday in September every year. While there have been efforts to move our holiday to May 1, they have been unsuccessful to date.

So, in 1894, Labor Day was created in our country. It is remarkable to note that while Labor Day was considered a conciliatory gesture to organized labor, it wasn’t until 1938 that the Fair Labor Standards Act limited child labor, set a minimum wage, and mandated a shorter workweek, with overtime pay for longer shifts. By the 1940s, the average workweek had fallen to five eight-hour days, which is our current standard.

In short, the history of Labor Day is deeper than barbecues and gatherings, it was born as the first volley from overworked laborers to industry, and it stands today as a tribute to treating workers fairly.

For a great timeline of this interesting holiday, check out this history.com article, good stuff for sure.

More locally, we do our best to take great care of our workforce and are so lucky to have our dedicated team of professionals in your homes each week.

This year, Labor Day occurs on September 5th. We hope you have an opportunity to recharge and spend time with family and friends. We will be closed, reopening on Tuesday the 6th.

Happy Labor Day!

Unclaimed Property

Do you have unclaimed property or funds with the state?

We hadn’t really thought about it until we received a note from the state telling us we might indeed.

We investigated, and sure enough, we had $20 coming from Microsoft. Can’t really tell you why, but we reclaimed it.

From the state website: “The Great Colorado Payback is responsible for reuniting Coloradans with their lost or forgotten assets.”

“Even businesses lose track of property and payments, occasionally resulting in unclaimed property which can be claimed. Corporations, schools, hospitals, and small businesses are also listed among the many individuals whose assets are in the possession of the State.”

“Money or property turned over to the State Treasury for safekeeping always belongs to the owner or heir of the account and there are no time limits for filing your claim. The Colorado State Treasurer currently maintains a list of over 1.7 million names of individuals as well as businesses for whom property is available.”

The good news is it’s free to check and see if there is anything out there with your name on it.

To see if you might have missing property or funds, you can get started here.

Happy hunting everyone!

Knowing vs. Doing

Most of us know the right thing to do. Why don’t we always do it?

This question has been raised many times by academics, business leaders, and self-help gurus.

Quite simply, the knowing-doing “gap” is the difference between knowledge and action.

For example, we read a book, and gather lots of information in doing so, but then fail to implement anything we just read.

Or we go to a cool training class, walk away with a ton of ideas, then go right back to where we were before.

It’s real and it’s hard to overcome. We all know that exercise is good for us, but we don’t always do it. Same with diet.

Also the same in business, where organizations can fall into the same traps.

One of our favorite books on this topic is “The Knowing-Doing Gap” by some really smart folks at Stanford Graduate School of Business.

So now that we know there is a gap, what in the world do we do to bridge it? How do we start to take meaningful action when we get new information?

We found a wonderful piece on Medium that gives some good advice on how to do this. (hint, start small)

As Picasso once said, “Action is the foundational key to all success.”

Finally, we found a very illustrative piece on LinkedIn that further demonstrates this phenomenon, and it can be found here.

Here’s to taking more action with the knowledge we have.

“Brushing” Scam 

Has anyone heard of “brushing”?

Not your hair or your pet, but a new scam that clever thieves are using to steal your information and use your name for fake online reviews.

From the Whatis.com website: “A brushing scam is an exploit by a vendor used to bolster product ratings and increase visibility online by shipping an inexpensive product to an unwitting receiver and then submitting positive reviews on the receiver’s behalf under the guise of a verified owner.”

“Vendors on Amazon and other websites use the scam to increase visibility for their stores and drive further sales.”

Who doesn’t like free stuff? While it certainly seems harmless, it isn’t.

From the United States Postal Inspection Service website: “While it may appear to be a victimless crime—you did after all get some free stuff—the reality is that your personal information may be compromised.”

“Often scammers obtain personal information through nefarious means and with ill-intentions, and use it for a number of scams and other illicit activities in the future.”

“In other instances, bad actors are using a person’s address and account information to receive merchandise then steal it from the home before the resident is able to intercept it.”

Not good. For ways to combat this scam and make sure you don’t fall victim to it, visit the USPIS website here.

Denver Air Quality

Air quality alerts. We have been getting them for some time now.

It’s one thing to see smog in Denver, but entirely another when we found out that this issue could lead to increased gas prices.

It seems that our state has not been able to cut down emissions fast enough to meet the 2008 federal ozone standards.

Ok, you say, “what does that mean for me”?

Depending on which expert you believe, the pending crackdown on emissions could add $.20-.50 per gallon to our already very high gasoline prices.

In fact, the EPA is planning to redesignate our area and ozone status this fall. In doing so, Colorado will be expected to change to something called “reformulated fuel” which is less volatile than current gas.

The problem is that the current refineries serving Colorado don’t make reformulated gas, and that is made worse by the fact only 40% of our gas is produced here.

Denver Business Journal did a nice job of outlining this problem and the complete piece can be found here.

Unfortunately, there probably isn’t much we can do about this one, but we wanted to make sure you knew about it.

Monthly Award Winners

Our monthly award winners for July were Sandra Vidales, Guadalupe Caloca, Haydee Espinoza, Nimia Espinoza, and Aurora Dominguez.

In the Team Leader ranks, it was Rosa Chavez and Laura Varela.

We are so proud of our winners, and of all the folks that are in and out of your homes each week.

We are also very appreciative to be a part of your lives and your homes. You provide the platform for our teams to perform, and for that we are grateful.

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for the month of July.

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela

When I receive an inquiry regarding our housecleaning availability and it happens that our schedules are full to bursting, I have been asked why we don’t just bring on more staff.

Logical question from a layperson.

Firstly, the labor force in Denver is insufficient to carry the businesses needing employees.

Secondly, the problem is compounded by our determination to hire employees who actually want to clean houses, who basically see dirty and feel the need to just step in and clean.

These people do not grow on trees.

However, because over the years we have hired only these people, we have gained the respect and trust of our clients, a satisfied workforce, and a reputation that attracts potential clients.

It really doesn’t get any better than that.


May Newsletter 2022

Memorial Day

For most of us, this means a day off from work, grilling with family and friends, traveling, or just plain relaxing. It also signifies the beginning of summer for some.

For others, it is a solemn day to remember those in our lives that have been lost defending our great nation and freedoms.

Here at Denver Concierge, we are very grateful for the sacrifices that have been made so that we can run a business, send out a newsletter, and exist in our own peaceful way.

For those reasons and many others, we annually take this time to express our gratitude and humility as we know without those sacrifices things might not be the way they are today in our land.

So, in that spirit, we want to share some interesting facts about this special day. Some facts you may have seen in past newsletters, as well as a couple of new tidbits we ran across.

For starters, Memorial Day used to be called Decoration Day. Originally conceived to honor the over 600,000 people that died in the Civil War, by the 1900’s it became a day to celebrate all Americans that have died in service around the world. It was renamed in 1967 and became a federal holiday in 1971.

This year it falls on Monday the 3oth, and of course, Denver Concierge will be closed.

Did you know that at 3 PM on Memorial Day every American is to stop what they are doing to remember and honor those who have died in action? Also, the flag is supposed to be flown at half-mast until noon, then raised to full mast until sunset on Memorial Day.

Many of us wonder why the end of May was chosen. Was it a significant battle, anniversary, or date? Way simpler than that, the date was chosen because flowers would be blooming all around America. So the blooms would be abundantly available for decorating soldiers’ graves.

Also, while no one is quite sure where this tradition originated, many locations claim to be the first to recognize this day. Some records indicate that one of the first such spring rituals took place in Charleston, South Carolina less than a month after the Civil War ended.

Columbus, Mississippi is also cited as an early location of celebrations when a group of women visited a cemetery to decorate graves in 1866. Overall, more than two dozen locations in both the north and the south all claim to have hosted the first Memorial Day traditions.

But in 1966, the federal government headed by Lyndon Johnson proclaimed Waterloo, New York as the holiday’s official birthplace. It was there, a century earlier, that a celebration to honor Civil War vets first took place and went on to become an annual tradition.

Finally, even in this time of relative peace in America, 25 people per day are buried at Arlington Cemetery.

Please join us in honoring the fallen this Memorial Day. We wish you the best for a safe and relaxing holiday weekend.

Best Places to Live 2022

How things change.

For years we have promoted our fine state and cities here as they rose through the ranks of U.S. News and World Report’s annual “Best Places to Live” rankings.

As you might expect based on many factors, our place in the rankings has dropped.

There was, however, a change in methodology this year, as they added air quality to the rankings.

We aren’t sure how much this affected our ranks, but all of our cities except one dropped in stature.

Starting with Boulder, which was ranked #1 in 2020 and 2021 which fell to #4.

Colorado Springs was the only Colorado city on the list to receive a better ranking this year and they came in at No. 2, improving upon a No. 6 rating in 2021.

Fort Collins sank to No. 54 from last year’s No. 17, and Denver plummeted the furthest, hitting No. 55 after being ranked No. 14 in 2021 and No. 2 in 2020.

The top spot? Huntsville, Alabama, with Green Bay, Wisconsin coming in third. Evidently, the weather doesn’t factor in, as any Packer fan will tell you about winter in Wisconsin, but we digress.

The full and always interesting rankings direct from U.S. News and World Report can be found here.

Property Tax Relief

For those of you that own a home in Colorado, there is good news and bad news.

One check of Zillow will probably make you feel very good about your real estate investment.

Then, the property tax bill comes due.

Nearly all of us who own homes will feel this burden, as home values have skyrocketed and the government will be happy to collect more from us in taxes.

Thankfully there is a bit of relief on the horizon.

In early May, a bill was approved to ease the rising tax burden that comes with rocketing property values. It caps the amount of value that properties are taxed for the 2023 and 2024 tax years.

From the Denver Post article, “In its unveiling, Gov. Jared Polis said it would save the owner of a $500,000 home an average of $274 a year. It will cost the state an estimated $700 million over two years, funded via one-time money, as tax refunds required under the Tax Payer Bill of Rights or simply chalked up as lost revenue.”

“The measure was designed to head off proposed ballot initiatives, including one from state Rep. Colin Larson, R-Littleton, to cap property tax increase at 3%. But those backers, including others backed by liberal and conservative groups, put down their metaphorical arms, right down to signing affidavits as political peace treaties.”

Along with the tax refund we are all receiving (see last month’s newsletter if you missed it), this provides a bit of relief for a problem nearly all of us share in.

A full recap of the bill, as well as assessment rates for 2023 and 2024 can be found here, courtesy of Coloradonewsline.com.

Lastly, we ran across an article on ways to reduce your property tax and it can be found here.

Is Your Home at Risk?

The tragic Marshall Fire over the holidays last year was a stark reminder about how quickly the things we have can be gone.

We know a number of people that were displaced and our hearts go out to them.

Sadly, many stories have come out regarding underinsured homeowners, problems with replacement values, etc.

In fact, the problem was so rampant that many insurance agents weren’t even taking calls about it immediately after the disaster.

We ran across an informative piece by insurance.com that goes through the ins and outs of underinsurance and what you can do to protect yourself. It can be found here.

From the article, “Most homes are underinsured. Nationwide estimates that about two-thirds of American homes are underinsured. Some homes are underinsured by at least 60 percent and the average is about 22 percent. CoreLogic estimates that three out of five American homes are underinsured by an average of 20 percent.”

The bottom line? Talk to your agent and make sure you have coverage that includes new (and higher) building costs and that you are fully covered for any disaster.

The only thing worse than losing your home is realizing you are not able to rebuild it without a significant financial penalty, sometimes in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Finally, we found a website that will actually calculate your risk of fire or flood based on your address and it can be found here.

Let’s hope that we never encounter these problems, but in the event we do, let’s make sure our insurance is in order.

Airport Expansion & New Gates

We have used this space frequently in the past to shed light on the debacle that has been the DIA expansion project.

It is only fair that we call out any progress that is being made and we have some news to report.

If you haven’t flown for a bit, you may be surprised to see that there are 16 additional gates developing on the C Concourse.

From the DBJ article. “Southwest Airlines will soon have 16 more gates available to travelers at Denver International Airport, bringing the airport another step closer to its goal of having the capacity to handle 100 million annual visitors in eight to 10 years.”

In fact, the new space is the largest physical expansion by DIA since the Westin hotel was built in 2015.

The ultimate goal is for DIA to handle up to 100 million passengers per year in 8-10 years.

Lots of new things to do out there as well, including eight new shopping and dining options by 2023 including Black Canyon Market and Goods, Longs Peak Market and Goods, Aviano Coffee, Mister Oso, Bar Dough, Cholon Modern Asia, Marczyk Fine Foods and Teatulia Tea and Coffee Bar.

Exciting times at DIA, and nice to see some progress on this long and drawn-out project.

The complete piece from the DBJ can be found here, and for those of you with a Denver Post subscription, their take on things can be found here.

Happy travels Denver!

Monthly Award Winners

Our monthly award winners for April were Gabriela Caloca, Maria Zapata, Gabriela Barrancas, Ivette Amaro, and Haydee Espinosa.

In the Team Leader ranks, it was Mayra Soto and Laura Varela

We are so proud of our winners, and of all the folks that are in and out of your homes each week.

We continue to be grateful to you for allowing us into your lives during these challenging times.

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for the month of April.

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela

Handling client cancelations is one of the toughest challenges in the service industry. To reach a balance that recognizes and accepts the client’s need to cancel while minimizing disruption to the schedule is no small feat.

Our daily schedules are made well in advance and the workload is distributed equally among the teams.  If a client cancels it leaves a gap in one of the team’s schedules.

Cancelations requested in advance allow the scheduler a chance to fill the space from a short waiting list, and the team does not lose work hours.

In the case of last-minute cancelations, it is less likely that the space can be filled on such short notice, and in all probability, the three ladies on the team will lose work hours that day.

Emergencies are part of life and are unexpected and unavoidable. We understand and graciously accept this fact of life.

However, we hope the above clarification will raise awareness of the importance of canceling in advance whenever possible.

Just a small request.


April Newsletter 2022

National Small Business Week

The first week of May is indeed National Small Business Week.

Way back in 1963, President John F. Kennedy issued a proclamation announcing National Small Business Week, which recognizes the critical contributions of America’s entrepreneurs and small business owners.

So, what defines a “small business”?

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), a small business has no more than 1,500 employees and less than $38.5 million in average annual revenue, depending on your industry.

We think $30 million is a pretty large business! If you look at the government definition based on the Affordable Care Act, they would characterize any business under fifty employees as small.

As a point of reference, 90% of businesses have fewer than twenty employees.

Supporting local businesses keeps tax revenue in the state and city as well as providing jobs and support for the overall economy. While we love Amazon too, buying locally has tremendous benefits for the community you live in.

We found a nice piece published by Verizon that gives 10 great ways to support small businesses and it can be found here.

We also know that COVID sadly put the hurt on so many small businesses and we know they need our help, which is another great reason to shop local. Colorado is also doing their part to support small businesses, and they have a great toolkit for promotion and it can be found here.

As a small business, we are so grateful to be part of your lives. As always, we will continue to earn your trust every day.

Thank you!

Universal State Tax Refunds 

Looks like we all have a refund coming and who doesn’t like free money?

It was recently announced that each individual in Colorado that files their 2021 taxes by May 31, 2022, will receive $400. Joint filers will receive $800.

The amount is fixed and will not be modified based on income or any information on your 2021 tax return.

From the article on the Denver Channel:

“Under the Colorado Taxpayer Bill of Rights, when there’s a TABOR surplus, it gets refunded to taxpayers. What would normally come to taxpayers in April 2023 is being given in an advanced payment, due to the proposal, to address the rising costs of inflation, officials said.”

It seems that the coffers of Colorado are overflowing with money, and we are happy to see the state giving it back to the residents.

The complete article from the Denver Channel can be found here.

Denver’s Exodus

For years it seems we have been talking about the massive inflow of people into our city.

That trend is over.

For the first time since the early 2000’s, the population in Denver declined.

In fact, the population declined by just about 1%, with a dip of just over 6,000 residents.

Statewide, however, our population did indeed grow, but only by 28,000 residents. This is only about one-half of one percent over the previous year, which is well below our recent run rate.

It seems we are not immune to the migration pattern that seems to show folks leaving big cities for the country, or for cheaper locales.

New York City, for example, lost 328,000 residents, and metro Los Angeles gave up 176,000.

We aren’t smart enough to know what this all means. Part of it could be COVID, part of it could be rising costs in the city or our increasing crime rate.

At the risk of piling on, Denver was recently listed among the top 5 least affordable metro areas to live in. The only cities worse than Denver were San Francisco, San Diego, Los Angeles, and Miami.

Those of you that have been wishing for people to stay wherever they are and not move to Denver may have finally gotten your wish.

Here is hoping this trend reverses and our city transforms into one we can all be proud of, and that more people want to live in.

What’s in a (baby) Name?

We are always fascinated by the trends in baby names.

The days of Beverly, Doris, Chester, Clarence, etc. may be winding down except for the most traditional of parents.

There was a book written a while back called Freakonomics and they devoted an entire chapter to the evolution of baby names

The authors keep this concept going and their latest ideas can be found here.

Of course, there are many societal aspects to naming your baby. The most interesting tidbit we ran across was from the co-author of Freakonomics, Steven Levitt, who said:

I think it really is about the parents. As I’ve studied naming, what I’ve come to believe is that the primary purpose, when a parent gives a name, is to impress their friends that they are whatever kind of person that they want to be”

Very interesting statement, don’t you think?

Ok, so enough about the evolution of baby names. What are the top baby names for 2022?

For starters, the national trends are trending towards playful (Buddy, Sonny, Coco), earthy (Bali, Sequoia, Forest), and regency (Benedict, Simon, Genevieve). Also, for societal reasons we are seeing more gender-neutral names as well, such as Blair, Shiloh, and Wren.

Without further ado, here are the top three baby names in Colorado in 2022:

Girls-Olivia, Charlotte, Emma

Boys-Liam, Oliver, Noah

As you know, we are pretty old school over here, so we were happy to see William come up 7th and James 8th. No such luck on the girls as Sophia was the most traditional name we found.

The full piece on Colorado baby names can be found here.

Finally, Parade magazine listed the top 350 baby names of 2022, and their comprehensive list can be found here.

Oh, and folks….be careful giving your baby a hard to pronounce name. We don’t have an opinion on this, but studies indicate it may make life difficult for your future adult.

How Wise are You?

What is the difference between being intelligent and being wise?

Well, the photo we chose this month says it all. As we thought about this, however, it brought up many questions about wisdom and the difference between that and intelligence.

We know a few very, very smart people (intelligence) that may not function in society very well. Conversely, we know some people with high school educations that we go to with all of our problems because they are wise (wisdom).

Yes, you can be smart and not wise, or vice-versa. Intelligence is typically measured with innate ability and/or IQ. Wisdom is about experience, knowledge, and overall good judgment.

So, how do we cultivate wisdom?

As our loyal readers know, we love Medium and we found a lovely piece there about the 3 stages of becoming wise.

What did we learn? Becoming wise is a process, and fully cultivated it becomes a guide for your life.

Finally, an extensive piece on this was located at Upjourney, and it features a lot of depth on the matter. 

Here’s to being wise….and smart.

Monthly Award Winners

Our monthly award winners for March were Gabriela Barrancas, Josefina Quinonez, Maria Zapata, Katherine Crespin, and Reyna Galvez.

In the Team Leader ranks, it was Juana Olivas and Mayra Soto.

We are so proud of our winners, and of all the folks that are in and out of your homes each week.

We continue to be grateful to you for allowing us into your lives during these challenging times.

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for the month of March.

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela

I have a referral I would like to share.

Absolute Electrical Heating and Air is a company that by pure chance I used for an ongoing heating issue I had been plagued with for years. They diagnosed and fixed the problem and restored my faith in the American work ethic. All in the space of an hour.

Imagine if you can a company whose technicians are thoroughly trained and knowledgeable, equipped for the job at hand, who show up on time, polite and respectful but not chatty.

Their customer service folks answer promptly and listen to you. I’d even say I’ve met my match in that arena.

The list of their capabilities is long. Basically most anything that can happen in the lifetime of your home is under their care. What a soothing thought!

Forgive my over-enthusiasm but I think we can all agree that the service industry is sorely lacking on many levels. An exception deserves public applause, recognition, and gratitude. I offer all three.

You can find Absolute on their website, linked above, or at 720-381-1767.

March Newsletter 2022

Another 20 Year Employee

How lucky are we?

Over the past couple of years, we have celebrated 20-year anniversaries for two of our wonderful staff, Angela and Maria.

This month, we celebrate our 3rd 20-year employee, our Office Manager, Blanca Garcia. Blanca started out with us cleaning houses and was quickly elevated to Team Leader. If there is a “jack of all trades” in our office, it is her for sure.

That’s her on the left, next to our leader and General Manager, Maria Herrera.

She is Maria’s backup on payroll and office matters, she makes sure our ladies get to your houses on time and follow the work orders. She is our backup driver as well, helping us manage our fleet of vehicles and get them to the right place as needed.

Not to mention she knows a lot about how to clean a home and assists Maria in making sure our quality is always top-notch.

In her spare time, Blanca loves to cook and has a wonderful family that appreciates her almost as much as we do. 😊

Please join me in congratulating Blanca on her 20 years with the company. We love you Blanca!

Denver Car Thefts

Cars are a hot commodity these days. If you have tried to buy one lately, you won’t be haggling and you will probably have to wait 3 months to get it.

Unless you steal one.

That seems to be the prevailing problem in Denver, with nearly 40,000 vehicles stolen in 2021 alone, an average of over 100 per day.

According to the latest statistics from the Colorado Auto Theft Prevention Authority, there has been an 88% percent increase in motor vehicle thefts since 2017.

So which cars are being targeted? The most stolen vehicle in 2021? The Chevrolet Silverado. This vehicle was involved in 1500 thefts in ’21, beating out the Kia Optima by nearly 600 thefts.

The full list of most-stolen makes and models can be found here.

The Colorado Auto Theft Prevention Authority has a great site on this topic with tips for prevention, etc.

Finally, much like the password article in this month’s newsletter, a lot of problems can be solved upfront.

The typical stolen vehicle has the keys in it or is running. Makes it pretty easy for the thieves.

Finally, if you do have your car stolen, there are groups out there using technology to help you find it.

More information on “ethical hacking” can be found here, meanwhile, let’s hope you never have to use it.

There is also a Facebook page for stolen cars in Colorado.

Lock your cars, Denver!

Password Security 

What do you think the most common password is?

If you guessed “password”, you were close, it came in fourth.

The most common password?


We have no words for this, but if you want to be entertained, here is the list of the most common passwords leaked on the Dark Web.

Moving on, and from Lookout, which makes cloud security apps for mobile devices, noted in a December blog post that, on average, 80% of consumers have had their emails leaked onto the dark web. You could easily be among that majority without even knowing it.

Much like leaving your keys in the running car, having a simple password opens you up to all sorts of security issues.

On to the next question….how many of you use your browser’s “autofill” function for passwords to the various websites you visit?

We do, and boy were we surprised at what a bad idea it is.  It seems this common practice exposes all your passwords, and in many cases could include credit card information.

So what is the bottom line? Identity theft costs consumers $56 billion in 2021 alone.

The moral of the story is as follows:

1. Use complex passwords

2. Change them often

3. Enable 2-factor authentication

4. Don’t use autofill in your browser

Simple stuff, but we all get too busy and don’t do it until sometimes it’s too late.

For those of you looking for a great password manager, we love Keeper. They have a family plan and everything is 100% encrypted.

A full list of the best password managers can be found here.

Best Bars in Denver

There are days when we just need a drink.

The fine folks at 5280 Magazine published the best 26 bars in and around Denver, and we were intrigued.

From old standbys like Green Russell to new speakeasies like B&GC in Cherry Creek, (most mysterious) they did a wonderful job of outlining some great watering holes in Denver.

Everything from dive bars to the best romantic bars are listed, and we wanted to try them all (well most of them anyway).

For those of you that prefer a nice glass of wine, they published a list of the top wine bars in Denver and it can be found here.

We still love CRU, but they didn’t even make the list. Old school.

Now that COVID seems to be winding down, let’s hope we can all let our hair down a bit and enjoy a fresh libation!

Bottoms up!

2022 Interior Design Trends

Things change quickly in the world of interior design.

So, when we need a refresher we reach out to our friend Marina Dagenais at Designer Premier.

They were recently quoted in a Redfin article on 2022 design trends, so congratulations are in order.

Our interior design skills can always use an update, and we found some things that were super interesting.

For example, who knew what Scandifornian was? Well, it’s just what it sounds like, it blends California modern with Scandinavian. Here we come Ikea!!

We also learned about biophilic design which is a concept used within the building industry to increase occupant connectivity to the natural environment using direct nature, indirect nature, and space and place conditions.

Fascinating stuff for sure.

The complete Redfin article on “13 Trending Interior Design Styles You’ll See in 2022” can be found here.

As always, if you need a pro, reach out to Marina for first-rate service.

Monthly Award Winners

Our monthly award winners for February were Maria Zapata, Gabriela Barrancas, Josefina Quinonez, Aurora Dominguez, and Ivette Amaro.

In the Team Leader ranks, it was Natalia Olivas and Paz Jimenez.

We are so proud of our winners, and of all the folks that are in and out of your homes each week.

We continue to be grateful to you for allowing us into your lives during these challenging times.

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for the month of February.

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela

Congratulations to my co-worker Blanca on her 20-year anniversary with Denver Concierge. Bravo!

The three women who together run the offices of Denver Concierge have now all been with the company for over 20 years.

Our General Manager Maria completed her 20 years two years ago, and I completed mine last year. That means 63 years of combined experience at your service!

In spite of, or possibly because of, the diverse skills and backgrounds each of us brought to the job, we formed a strong bond that became the engine that has driven Denver Concierge for the past 20 plus years.

Our all-for-one and one-for-all attitude has allowed us to weather the challenges that have come our way through the years, and still maintain a unified front for our employees and our clients.

I’m so proud.  Well done, us!