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The Young Professionals Network (YPN) of Boulder Area REALTOR® Association (BARA) is working with high schools to better prepare students for the ‘real world’ of finances through their $mart Money, $mart Moves lectures. A long time running, the program is picking up speed once again in Boulder County.

RE/MAX of Boulder’s Todd Gullette is part of a team of YPN volunteers including Sara Garden of Rocky Mountain Home Staging, Leanne Goff of Wright-Kingdom, Drew Smith of RE/MAX Alliance-Louisville and Jessie Thompson of Premier Mortgage Group that lead lectures designed to teach high school seniors about the importance of credit as well as how to navigate their first year living on their own in a rental property.

The course covers topics such as working with a landlord, what you agree to when signing a lease, and how to prepare for that dreaded time each August when renters must come up with first and last months’ rent plus enough cash for the security deposit. Each session ends with students breaking into groups where they are assigned a budget, location, and other specifications. The students must then hunt for real houses for lease that fit within their restrictions.

It is the hope of BARA and the YPN that the program will help young adults create positive renting experiences, lead to a good credit score, and help students get approved for a mortgage loan when the time comes.

Centaurus and Fairview High Schools are among participants so far this year the YPN team expects more schools to ask for the guest speakers in the coming years to meet the BVSD Money Management Requirement necessary for graduation.

“The YPN team have been presenting to my Living on Your Own class for the past 3 years” says Brenda Theil, Centaurus High School educator. “I have found it incredibly beneficial having them present about housing options because they are able to keep the information current and relevant by adding their expertise. The students are actively engaged because of the upbeat energy of the presentation and the interactivity. I plan to have them come back for future classes!”

The $mart Money, $mart Moves program is completely volunteer-run and is held at no cost to the school. For more information or to schedule a $mart Money, $mart Moves class at your school, contact The Boulder Area REALTOR® Association at 303-442-3585 or via email at

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