Looking to Sell Your Home….Don’t Miss These 2 Tips

February 12th, 2014 categories: Uncategorized

Short Checklist to Help Your Home Sell

Of course you could make a really long checklist of things to do to sell your home.  Most of those things have some level of importance, but let’s focus on the majors. Recently, I was talking with John Coley of Lake Martin Voice Realty and he emphasized the three areas to focus on when selling a home.  Taking care of these 3 areas is no guarantee to selling you home, but it certainly will improve your chances of selling your home quickly.  Let's take a look at the first two areas to consider when selling a home. DSC_0443 1)  Pricing-  It is hard to argue with price.  I like the local Ford dealership’s motto which states "Price sells cars".  I agree.  Price sells houses as well.  There are different strategies on pricing a home.  Some people stick to the theory that people are going to negotiate my price down, so I need to start high to give room to negotiate.  That is a valid point.  The problem with that reasoning is that pricing a home too high can scare away people from even looking at a home so you do not get as many offers. In my opinion, there is a better strategy.  While it is true that negotiating is part of selling a home, I believe you are better to leave just a little negotiating room.  By pricing your home at a fair market value, you are more likely to get offers.  Buyers know when a home is a good price and they are more likely to give you an offer.  Wouldn’t you rather have offers coming in that you can accept or counter, than to have you home sitting waiting on the perfect offer?  I am not suggesting pricing your home below market value.  I am simply suggesting that a fair price that will attract buyers without letting your home sit on the market.   2) Staging-  You fill in the blank.  "You never get a second chance to make a __________  _____________".   First impressions are very important when meeting people and also in the world of real estate.  For example, if you home is on the market and a potential buyer walks in and is immediately hit with a whiff of pet odor, it immediately creates a hurdle to overcome.  Staging is so important that now there is an industry of professional stagers to help homes sell.  Even without a professional staging company, a little bit of effort can help your home make a good first impressions. Here are few things to keep in mind when staging your home. Odors-  As mentioned, stinky homes are harder to sell.  If you home smells from smoke or animals, then carpet cleaning and air freshener are simple steps that can help. Paint colors-  Painting is a little more work than spraying air freshener, but it your home has some unusual colors tones throughout, it would be a good idea to make the switch to more neutral colors.  Remember, it is time to think of what is going through the buyer’s mind. Clutter-  Make sure you rooms are not filled with too much furniture which can make rooms look smaller. Family photos-  It is not necessary to remove all photos, but it you home is loaded with them or other personal artwork, removing them make help the buyer see the house as a future home for them and not just someone else’s home I am viewing. Fan memorabilia-  John Coley of Lake Martin Voice Realty helped me realize the importance of this one, especially in the state of Alabama.  If your home is painted orange and blue with Auburn logos all over the house, you probably have made a bad first impression on half of the state.  The same is true if you have Nick Saban statue in the front yard.  Football rivalries are fun, but let’s not lose a potential buyer over them. If you are looking to buy a home, whether it is our first home or last home, Pike Road is a great choice.  Pike Road was recently name one of the top 12 zip codes in Alabama .  If you are looking to buy…or for that matter sell a home in Pike Road or East Montgomery, call 256-853-0357 or email [email protected].  To take a video tour of neighborhoods in Pike Road, visit the Neighborhoods page. 

Will the Pike Road School System affect Home Values?

February 4th, 2014 categories: Pike Road, Schools
There are homes for sale in Pike Road right now that will be zoned for the new Pike Road School System.  What does that have to do with real estate?" What sort of response do you suppose you would get if you asked parents of school aged children how important the school their children would attend is to them?  I would imagine that to most parents, schooling of their children is one of the most important things in their life.  That being said, would schooling options have an impact on which house a person buys?   Let’s make this a little more specific to our situation here in Montgomery County by looking at the schooling options. There are several ways for parents to educate their children.  Some methods such as homeschooling and private schools do not require a specific location.  For those using public schools, obviously school zoning is very important when buying a home. Let’s fast forward a little.  2015 is the opening of the Pike Road School System. Do you think that will increase demand for homes in Pike Road?  I do. Do you think increased demand for Pike Road homes will also increase price?  I do.  Of course, we can’t predict the future, but just like looking at stock prices, you need to have a little bit of foresight to keep from paying top dollar.  Buying stock in Netflix today may still be a good idea.  I don’t know.  But it sure would have been a great idea 3 years ago.  I can’t say for sure if buying a home in Pike Road is a good idea, but in an unpredictable world, I would give it a much better than 50/50 odds, just based on the new Pike Road School System. Dr. Ed Richardson stated in this video that he thought a new school system would do wonders for Pike Road area home values. To summarize, a 2013 article from realtor.com addresses this topic in an article called “The Right School District:  How Much Do Schools Affect Real Estate Prices?”   Read the last paragraph of the article. Clearly, though, consumer demand is large enough that we can conclude that good schools do increase home values in some measure. Half of the home-buying population is willing to pay more than their intended budget to get into the right school district, and more than half would give up other amenities. Making a decision on buying a home should definitely include an analysis of the school district, even for buyers who don’t intend to send children to those schools. Good schools provide stability for a community, and that’s good for the property values of everyone who lives nearby. You can read the full realtor.com article here. In conclusion, part of the campaigning for a new Pike Road School was increased property values in the town of Pike Road.  That has not really come to fruition yet, but in a country full of procrastinators, I would image that the 6 months prior to the school opening in 2015 will be a wave of action trying to buy homes zoned for the Pike Road School System. You may want to beat the rush and buy a Pike Road home before, as the Realtor.com article finds, prices are affected. If you are looking to buy a home, whether it is our first home or last home, Pike Road is a great choice.  Pike Road was recently named one of the top 12 zip codes in Alabama . If you are looking to buy…or for that matter sell a home in Pike Road or East Montgomery, call 256-853-0357 or email [email protected] To take a video tour of neighborhoods in Pike Road, visit the Neighborhoods page.     

First Time Home Buyer in Pike Road, AL

January 14th, 2014 categories: Uncategorized

Why I bought my first house in Pike Road

Let me reminisce a little.  Close to 5 years ago, I decided to purchase my first house.  I was getting married and looking to start a family.  We were on a tight budget so price was a factor.  Location was also very important, as was resell value.  We closed on a house in Bridle Brook Farms in the 140k range with a big yard and country living feel.  Let’s take a closer look at the 3 decision factors for buying a home in Pike Road and see how they apply today. Price-  Pike Road has a wide range of prices for homes.  If you are on a smaller budget, then you may decide on a home like we did in Bridle Brook Farms.  Bridle Brook homes can be found from the 130k range up to around 200k. Moving on up the scale, If your budget is in the lower 200k range, then neighborhoods like Woodland Creek and Stone Park have options for you.  The Waters has smaller homes in this price range as well. If you are looking for a larger home with a budget over 300k then there are many options in Pike Road.  Bon Terre, Providence, The Waters, and Woodland Creek all have large homes, many sitting on large lots.  Bon Terre and Providence have some of the lowest square footage price in the area for newly constructed homes. Location- Pike Road is convenient and looks to be becoming more convenient by the day.  Many neighborhoods in Pike Road are less than 10 minutes from Chantilly and Eastchase.  With the continuing developments along Chantilly, more and more businesses look to be moving closer to Pike Road. Resell Value- While predicting resell value can obviously not be guaranteed, it is a great sign to see the advancements the Town of Pike Road is making.  The first and foremost of those advancements is the coming of the Pike Road School set to open in August 2015.  The opening of the new school will most likely increase the demand for houses in Pike Road, as parents look to enroll their children in the new school.  While this is no guarantee for home prices to increase, Pike Road's continued development is certainly a good sign. If you are looking to buy a home, whether it is our first home or last home, Pike Road is a great choice.  Pike Road was recently name one of the top 12 zip codes in Alabama .  If you are looking to buy...or for that matter sell a home in Pike Road or East Montgomery, call 256-853-0357 or email [email protected].  To take a video tour of neighborhoods in Pike Road, visit the Neighborhoods page.   

Pike Road School Groundbreaking Video

January 10th, 2014 categories: Buyer Tips, Neighborhoods, Pike Road, Schools
If you weren't able to make the Pike Road School groundbreaking ceremony at The Waters this morning, here's a quick video so you can see what you missed. Because I have been to quite a few of these Town of Pike Road events, I expected a well-executed, inspirational, informative ceremony.  I got exactly that.  See if you don't agree that Pike Road, Alabama, is an exciting place to live these days. If you'd like to learn about homes for sale in Pike Road because of the new school, or if you're just interested in Pike Road real estate because it's an great place to live, give us a call (256) 853-0357 or contact us here.  We'd love to talk with you about the possibilities. The Town of Pike Road had a nice tent set up on The Avenue of the Waters, where the school will be located in east Montgomery County. For those of you familiar with The Waters neighborhood, you go in the main entrance off of Marler Road, go over the first little bridge, climb the hill, and it's on your right before you get to the tennis courts.  It was a cold, misty day today so everyone was glad to have some shelter! As you can see from the video above, a little line of dirt was set up in the background with ten or twelve fancy shovels at ready. Mayor Gordon Stone welcomed everyone. You could tell that the Mayor was bursting with pride today. It was understandable, because he and many others have been working for about sixteen years to get to this point. In fact, the Mayor went out of his way to thank any and everyone involved, most by name. He even recognized former Town councilmen, which I thought was a nice touch. Then he introduced Ms. Linda Ware, Vice President of the Pike Road School Board. She led the invocation and did a really nice job. After the pledge of Allegiance, Mayor Stone read a proclamation and then introduced some various speakers.  Wayne Rabren spoke first. Mr. Rabren was the first mayor of the Town of Pike Road. He gave a different angle on the history, pointing out that the first Pike Road School was formed in like 1919 and educated area children until the late 1960s. Next, Chris Dunn spoke. Chris is the current Chairman of the Pike Road Town Council and Mayor Pro Tempore. Chris is a great speaker and always delivers. Next up was Ray Hawthorne. I have never met Ray, and was curious about what he would say as he is the President of the Pike Road School Board. He did a good job as well.  Mr. Hawthorne spoke mainly about keeping true to the original vision of excellence by keeping standards high and working hard. Before the Mayor wrapped up, Dr. Ed Richardson spoke. Dr. Richardson is the former State of Alabama Superintendent of Education, and is widely regarded as a visionary, effective leader in the education field. Dr. Richardson was a key cog in the Pike Road School process - he served as the Executive Director of the Pike Road Leadership Council. I knew that they would be OK when it was announced he would head the effort to negotiate with the Montgomery public school system for the asset split. At the groundbreaking, Dr. Richardson also talked about the need of high standards, and urged residents to stick to them, even if it means there are some rough patches! After that, everyone shifted over to the shovels for the official groundbreaking. It was a really fun time when the town councilmen, school board folks, parents, and even kids got in the act. The weather was cold in rainy, as you can see in the above video. But it's clear that the Town of Pike Road is burning with optimism about its school and the community's future!

Pike Road School Groundbreaking is January 10, 2014!

January 4th, 2014 categories: Pike Road, Schools
The Town of Pike Road is breaking ground for the Pike Road School on Friday, January 10, 2014 at 10:00 am.  The public is invited to this historic event at The Waters, near the site of the new school.  See the flyer below or call the town hall at (334) 272-9883 for more information.

Pike Road School Groundbreaking January 10 2014For those of you who are current Pike Road residents, these are exciting times!  For those of you who have been waiting to see if this school is really going to happen - well it is!  Give me a call and let's talk about getting your family settled in a Pike Road home in time for the 2015 school year.  I'm a realtor and a Pike Road resident, and I'd love to hook you up with the right people to make it happen.  Call me at (256)853-0357, or click here to contact me.

This video below of the November 5, 2013 Pike Road school meeting Q&A has excellent information about the nuts and bolts of a new school project.  If you want to be inspired and encouraged about the new school, spend just a few minutes watching it.  I attended this meeting, and as always, am blown away by the  caliber of the people involved, the vision of the team, and the intricate level of detail they cover.

 

Pike Road’s New Butcher Block & A Catered Affair

January 2nd, 2014 categories: Dining, Pike Road
It's gotten even more fun to live in Pike Road.  We now have a gem of an addition to the Pike Road Station shopping center:  No more trudging across town to buy good beer and wine.  The Pike Road Butcher Block is a new store along the lines of Derk's Filet and Vine, but a whole lot closer.  It's smaller, for sure, but if you're looking for craft beer, a nice wine selection, gourmet gifts, steaks, and a place to eat lunch or dinner, you are going to love this. The Butcher Block is owned in conjunction with A Catered Affair, so catering is their gig, too.  I'll be honest - I've been there a good bit this holiday season.  The food is awesome, the beer selection is great.  Everyone I've talked to has agreed - these folks know what they're doing. Here's a look at the Fried Green Tomato BLT and the meatloaf we ordered at lunch recently:

Butcher Block Fried Green TomButcher Block Sandwich Pike Road, ALButcher Block meatloaf Pike Road, ALThey also have good beer on tap (Mama's Little Yella Pils and Back Forty's Truck Stop Honey, for example), but they are not a bar.  They're open Monday-Saturday, from 9:00am to 7:00 pm.

Butcher Block Beers on Tap Pike RoadIf you haven't been yet, you're in for a treat.  It's another great example of the good stuff going on in The Town of Pike Road.

If you're interested in buying a home or lot in Pike Road, give me a call:  (256)853-0357.   I'm a realtor and a Pike Road resident, and I'd love to share my knowledge of the area with you.  You can also click here to contact me. 

Step Back in Time: Town of Pike Road’s Christmas Tree Lighting

December 5th, 2013 categories: Activities, Neighborhoods, Pike Road
Attending the Christmas Tree Lighting at the Pike Road Town Hall is like taking a step back in time.  It's a small crowd, it's a simple ceremony.  They light the tree, sing Christmas carols, and pause for reflection.  And the holiday season begins!

Pike Road Christmas Tree Lighting 2013Pike Road's Town Hall, located on Vaughn Road,  is the hub of the community activities.  Throughout the year meeting and events are held here, and the people of Pike Road can gather and get to know one another better.  I'm always surprised by the familiar face of a friend whom I didn't realize also lives here.  The Christmas tree lighting is usually around the first Sunday evening of December, so check it out next season if you missed it this year.

If this small town atmosphere sounds appealing to you, let us show you around.  Check out our Neighborhood pages and search the River Region MLS through this site.  Give us a call and let us help you get to know Pike Road, and hopefully make it your home, too!

2013 Pike Road Arts and Crafts Fair a HUGE Success!!!

November 15th, 2013 categories: Activities, Pike Road

Pike Road Arts and Crafts Fair

If I told you thousands of people are gathering for an huge event in November in the state of Alabama, you would think Alabama or Auburn football.   But if it was the first Saturday in November, in the Town of Pike Road, then the place was the Pike Road Arts and Crafts Fair.  Did I mention the 47th annual Pike Road Arts and Crafts Fair.   And it was huge this year…. (if you don’t believe me see the picture with unbelievable amount of cars).

Pike Road Arts and Crafts Fair

With 47 years of experience to get the formula right, it had every appearance of a roaring success with a sold out list of over 250 vendors. So did you not make it to the event this year?  Here is what you missed - tents galore from vendors near and far sold everything from the popular live turtle in a cage, the coolest birdhouses around (I bought 3 from Bill Perry’s birdhouses), impressive artwork from the Old Town of Pike Road, homemade tire swings, deer antler lamps, goat’s milk soap, Alabama/Auburn décor, and a laundry list of other crafty things that you would expect to see.

IMG_20131102_103858 (1)

IMG_20131102_104221Events like the Pike Road Arts and Crafts Fair are what make Pike Road, AL a special town.  With the upcoming attractions like the movie theater on Chantilly Parkway and the new Pike Road School System, growth is on its way.  But for a town like Pike Road, the past is not to be forgotten.  Events like the Arts and Crafts Fair serve as a great reminder as to the history of Pike Road and the families who have lived there for generations.  Pike Road truly is a great town to live. If you're interested in homes for sale that will be zoned for the upcoming Pike Road school, you need to know that the Town of Pike Road will always be the authority on school zoning.  If you would like to know about homes for sale in Pike Road neighborhoods, CLICK HERE for our Neighborhood pages.  Here you'll find pictures, neighborhood video tours, and most importantly, a current live feed of homes for sale in each neighborhood from the MLS.   Check out neighborhoods like The Waters, Lochshire, and others on these Neighborhood pages. We love to talk Pike Road real estate.  Give us a call at (334) 221-5862, or CLICK HERE to contact us, and get connected with Realtors who specialize in the Pike Road area.

A Not-So-Extreme Pike Road Home Makeover

April 5th, 2013 categories: Buyer Tips, Neighborhoods, Pike Road
Location, location, location. When the owners of this home were house hunting, they knew 2 things:  1) They wanted to buy a home in Pike Road, AL, and 2) they wanted to buy in a specific neighborhood within Pike Road.  So when they found this Pike Road house for sale in their target neighborhood, they scooped it up. Pike Road Home Makeover Before The home was built in 1998 and had a great floor plan, but the exterior was not all they had hoped for.  Since they planned to stick around for a while, they enlisted the help of Jones Pierce Architects in Atlanta to rethink the exterior and make it pretty. To keep costs down, the owners sent pictures and measurements to the architect, and the architect returned a drawing with suggestions. (Note to homeowners from a real estate agent: When planning a home renovation project, spend a little extra money on an architect and get the details right.  The results are WELL worth it, and it is often far more affordable than you think.  It usually helps with resale as well;  while buyers cannot often verbalize this, the remodel done by an architect just looks like it's done right.) Here's the architect's marketing for this service, using the Pike Road house as one example:

Screen Shot 2013-04-02 at 11.14.30 AM

Contractor Doug Fuhrman of Southern Traditions Construction (a Pike Road resident) was hired to manage the makeover which included a new front portico, new windows,  a new landing with brick pavers, and new paint colors for the entire exterior.

Here's a sneak peek at the almost finished facade -  a refreshed, updated exterior.

Pike Road Redo After Advice from these homeowners?  They would tell you that the location has pleased them more than they could have imagined, so slowly updating the home's appearance has been a pleasure.  As a realtor, I remind buyers that they can't change the location of a home, but they can change the home itself.  Make sure you are sold on a home's location before you buy.

If you, too, are looking for homes for sale in the Pike Road area,  give us a call (John (334) 221-5862), or CLICK HERE to contact us via email. We'll connect you with an experienced Realtor who knows Pike Road and Montgomery well, and can help you find exactly what you're looking for.

And if your River Region home needs a little facelift, consider these fine professionals below:

Jones Pierce Architects

Southern Traditions Construction - Doug Fuhrman (334) 531-3914 or [email protected]

Kocher Building Materials - windows, doors, trim, etc.

Pike Road’s ENHANCE Open House Tonight!

February 21st, 2013 categories: Activities, Neighborhoods, Pike Road

Pike Road ENHANCE Open House

The Pike Road ENHANCE Initiative is "a plan by the future of the Town of Pike Road will be shaped."

Head to the Town Hall tonight from 5:30-7:00 pm, and see displays and representatives from each of the nine ENHANCE programs, and learn how you can plug in and shape the future of the Pike Road community.

Quite a few "Quality of Life" programs already exist, and are open to everyone in Pike Road:   Agriculture and Stewardship Club, The Neighborhood Leaders, The Recreation Service Corps, The Patriot Club, The Pike Road Arts Council, The Pike Road Business Association, The PRAYER Team, The Education Service Committee, and the PRICE Foundation.

For more info on ENHANCE, check out the video below:

[vimeo]http://vimeo.com/44901340[/vimeo]

For more information on this event,  contact Mary Catherine at [email protected], or CLICK HERE to  visit the Town of Pike Road website.

If you're interested in homes for sale that will be zoned for the upcoming Pike Road school, you need to know that the Town of Pike Road will always be the authority on school zoning.  If you would like to know about homes for sale in Pike Road neighborhoods, CLICK HERE for our Neighborhood pages.  Here you'll find pictures, neighborhood video tours, and most importantly, a current live feed of homes for sale in each neighborhood from the MLS.   Check out neighborhoods like The Waters, Lochshire, and others on these Neighborhood pages.

We love to talk Pike Road real estate.  Give us a call at (334) 221-5862, or CLICK HERE to contact us, and get connected with Realtors who specialize in the Pike Road area.

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