Preparing Your Lawn for the Winter

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Copyright 2012 NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®

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Back to School

Back to school sales are all around us. Soon the sounds of locust and lawn mowers will be replaced by school buses and rustling leaves. For those still hoping to make a move there is still time. Here are some useful links for the parents of school bound kids:

  • NJ Child Care Resources
  • Great Schools
  • New Jersey Monthly – Top High Schools
  • Top NJ Colleges
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    Spring is on the way…

    Are you ready?  Its time to clean up your landscaping and add some curb appeal to prepare for spring buyers season.   Here’s a few tips and links to local nurseries…

    1. Cleanup – Pickup dead and fallen branches, rake any remaining leaves and prune any overgrown shrubs that respond well to late winter trimming.
    2. Fertilize your lawn.  The first round of lawn fertilizers can be put down before April.   Be ready and you’re lawn will “pop” when the warmer weather arrives.
    3. Update your shrubs.  Ornamental grasses and deer-resistant shrubs are popular choices, and you may not realize that a 30 year old yew may make your home look dated.  Spring is a good time to plant.

    Visit your local Garden Centers (some links below in alphabetical order) for some ideas.

     

     

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    Most house for the least $$ in Robbinsville

    Here’s a fantastic home in Robbinsville.   Huge, five bedroom home in the Windswept neighborhood with a sizable lot (1+ acre), a very private yard, mature trees, a built-in pool, spa and much more.   Formal living room, dining room, family room and sun porch… plus another two levels with the bedrooms.  This house even has a basement (uncommon in splits) and a two car garage.   It’s a fantastic deal at $374,900.  Call me today for a tour at (609) 529-8434.

    2-Windmere

    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-001.jpg]Great family home in an excellent neighborhood
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-002.jpg]Huge backyard with mature trees
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-003.jpg]Built-in Pool, great for entertaining
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-004.jpg]There's a spa near the pool
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-005.jpg]Hardwood floors & stone fireplace
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-006.jpg]Updated kitchen
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-007.jpg]
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-008.jpg]Family room with half bath open to patio
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-009.jpg]
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-010.jpg]Formal dining room looking out through the sun porch
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-011.jpg]Sun porch overlooks pool area
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-012.jpg]Many bedrooms, with lots of storage
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-013.jpg]
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-014.jpg]
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-015.jpg]View to the back of the yard from the house
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-016.jpg]View to side of the yard, from the deck
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-017.jpg]Butterfly bush ion the backyard
    [img src=http://dawnharrison.com/wordpress1/wp-content/flagallery/2-windmere/thumbs/thumbs_windmere-018.jpg]Want to see more? call today!
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    Home staging – Do it!

    Staging your home means putting it in the best possible light for potential buyers.  Here are a few links of interest for smart sellers who are looking to effectively stage their home for sale:

    HGTV Top 10 “Do’s” when staging your home (www.hgtv.com/real-estate/top-10-home-staging-dos/index.html)

    HGTV Top 10 “Don’t s” when staging your home
    (www.hgtv.com/real-estate/top-10-home-staging-donts/index.html)

    HGTV Top 10 “Rules” when staging
    (www.hgtv.com/real-estate/top-10-rules-of-staging-from-the-stagers/index.html)

    HGTV Designed to Sell
    (www.hgtv.com/designed-to-sell/show/index.html)

    The benefits of staging are backed by hard facts:

    • An agent’s job is to please their clients, and they will direct their buyers to the homes they think they will buy.
    • Agents talk to other agents who are also directing their buyers to the best homes on the market. An attractive listing will be shown more often, meaning more market exposure—critical for a quick and profitable house sale.
    • Staging is non-negotiable in many parts of the country. Staging a listing for sale in an area where the concept hasn’t caught on can give you an advantage, particularly if there are many unsold listings similar to yours on the market. Buyers gravitate to listings that look good and are in move-in condition.
    • Buyers are looking for value. When prices are flat or on the decline, buyers need to perceive that the house is worth the price.

     

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    This Month in Real Estate (US) January 2012

    Sales were up 4% from December (due mainly to seasonality) but the good news is sales are up 12% from last year.   There are good reasons to list now before the spring season kicks into full gear.   Here’s a link to the latest market update:

    www.youtube.com/watch?v=LCVYR009Rpw&feature=youtu.be

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    Why a short sale?

    From the Keller Williams website, here are a few reasons why a short sale may be an appropriate option for a seller:

    • Avoid the foreclosure stigma – Homeowners will always have to disclose that they had a foreclosure on any mortgage application and (many job applications) that they submit in the future. This can have an adverse affect on their future mortgage rates. Foreclosure is asked about specifically in credit inquiries. There is no seven-year time limit on this item.
    • Protect credit score – Credit scores will be lowered by 300-plus points (per loan) by foreclosure. The impact of a short sale—about half that much.
    • Improve eligibility for a government insured loan – The homeowner will be ineligible for a government insured loan for 5-7 years (only two years in a short sale). A foreclosure is the one credit report item that is almost impossible to have repaired.
    • Avoid a deficiency judgment – Lenders can seek a deficiency judgment against the homeowner and collect any amount they do not recover at sale.
    • Protect employment prospects – Many employers run credit checks on prospective employees. Foreclosure is one of the top items that will put a potential new hire, or even current employment, in jeopardy.

    These are the top reasons, but there are more. An expert short sale specialist agent can give a full picture of the options.  Making the decision to initiate a short sale is a challenging one, and I can discuss options and also encourage sellers to seek the advice of their accountant and attorney as well.  Call me for more information at 609-529-8434.

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    Home buyer profiles

    Here’s an interesting write-up on the demographics of today’s home buyers.  Knowing your target market can help guide decisions about home improvements you may want to make prior to selling.   Here’s a link to the “eBook”, feel free to call me with any questions!

    http://images.kw.com/shared/myfirsthome/YFH_eBook_Skinny.pdf

     

     

     

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    Welcome

    Welcome to my real estate website/blog.   I’ll highlight local trends, listings and market changes for the Mercer, Burlington and southern Hunterdon regions.   If you are considering buying or selling a home in these areas, please see my “About Me” and “Testimonials” pages and then call to see how I can help you through this challenging market.  Call me at (609) 529-8434 with your real estate questions.

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