Archive for the 'Montgomery' Category

Montgomery, AL Property : For Sale By Owner Tips

February 10th, 2010 categories: Montgomery, Pike Road, Prattville, Seller's Tips

Montgomery, AL, like any real estate market, will always have its share of people selling their property themselves – aka For Sale By Owner or FSBO (pr FIZZ-bo).  And that’s fine with me.  I am not one of those realtors that looks down on FSBOs.  I think it is up to me as a real estate agent to prove to the FSBO prospect that I will save them time and make them money if I list and help sell their River Region home or lot.

That being said, there will always be a segment of people that choose to sell their real estate themselves, without the help of an agent.  So I figure I might as well be helpful in case the FSBO experiment doesn’t go well, maybe they’ll call me.  They often do.

I read a great article for advice to FSBOs in the Wall Street JournalClick here to read it.  It had a lot of helpful sales strategies for FSBOs.

I would add to the article these suggestions to anyone selling their Montgomery property themselves:

3RiversRecon’s Tips to any Montgomery For Sale By Owner:

have a website1.    Get Your Own Website – Go to a domain seller like and buy your own website address.  If your home’s address is 123 Montgomery Street – buy or whatever is available.  The shorter the better.  I do this for all of my listings.  Use this on your flyers and advertisements.  If you advertise your home on something like, its website will be something incoherent like – no buyer can remember that, especially one who has been driving around looking at homes for hours.  Once you have bought your site through godaddy, go to the control panel and choose “domain forwarding” to point the site to the long one at fsbo dot com.  That way anyone who types in their browser will be taken automatically to the fsbo site.

2.  Buy Custom Signs – Those “For Sale By Owner” signs you buy for $3 at WalMart might be appropriate for your used go-cart that you put out on Highway 231, but do you really think it conveys the right image to someone you are asking to spend $200,000 for a  home ?   Make them double sided for greater visibility.  I would go ahead and buy 2 so that you can switch them out to avoid being faded or dirty.  Also be sure to get an “info tube” thing at WalMart or Home Depot so you can put some flyers with your sign.

3.  Make Effective Flyers – You start by taking great pictures of your home or lot.  Then spend the money and have them printed by a high quality color LASER printer.  Go to Kinko’s if you have no color laser printer of your own.  Get them to go ahead and run 150 copies while they’re at it.  The big cost here is the setup for a new print job, each additional copy is not as expensive, so you might as well print them all at one stop.  If you’re putting the flyers in the info tubes in the signs, don’t waste a lot of space by pictures of the outside.  They know what the outside looks like.  Just use one or two so that they can easily remember which one is yours (odds are that yours is the 10th flyer they have pulled that day).  If you are putting the flyer elsewhere then include more pictures.  Most Montgomery buyers are concerned about the school zones, so highlight that.

lake martin FSBO waterfront property homes4.  Be Available At An Instant To Talk Or Show The Home – Put your cell phone number on all advertisements.  Don’t confuse buyers by giving your home phone, your office phone, your fax, etc.  Just one will do.  Then KEEP THE CELL PHONE ON YOU at all times.  When it rings, answer it.  If you don’t answer the phone, the majority of buyers will move along and not leave a message.  If they want to see it now, show it now.

5. Call Or Email Me With Questions – Every property on the Montgomery MLS is unique, with its own special selling points to promote and challenges to overcome to a potential buyer.  If you’re stumped, give me a shout.  I am glad to help you think of an answer, even if you plan to continue to sell it yourself.

Do you have another helpful FSBO tip for the rest of the River Region?  Leave a comment below and help us all out!

Kids Consignments in Montgomery: Kids Carousel

February 8th, 2010 categories: Activities, Montgomery, Prattville

One of my favorite things about having kids in Montgomery, AL, is the presence of kid’s clothing/toys/gear consignment sales like Kids Carousel. These sales are usually twice a year (spring/summer and fall/winter) and are HUGE: think hundreds of consignors and locations like Garrett Coliseum.


So what’s the deal?  Do people really buy other people’s used stuff? YES!  Do consignors really make money at these sales? YES!!

For those of you who have never been to one of these events, here’s how it works:

1) You can simply come and shop during public shopping days.

Kids Carousel item2) You can consign items and shop early.  There is usually a minimum number of items you must consign (15) in order to be a consignor.  Log onto the website, enter your gently used items, and print out tags.  Bring your tagged items during the “check in” days before the sale and get a priority shopping pass.  You are now part of a select group that gets to shop early AND make money from items you sell!

3) You can volunteer to work a few shifts during the sale and shop even earlier.  Workers must be consignors, and receive “payment” for their time by getting to shop before the consignors.  Volunteer requirements are varied, so check each sale’s website for specifics.

kids carousel item 2Again – these sales are huge (hundreds of consignors at each, with a minimum of 15 items to consign), and they don’t take junk.  You’d be hard pressed to find better deals on all sizes of kids’ clothing, baby gear, toys, shoes, furniture, etc, so check one out.

Kids Carousel has a spring/summer sale coming up next month at the old Sam’s Club building across from Best Buy on the Eastern Blvd. “Take-In” days are Feb.13-22, and the sale runs from Feb. 27 – March 6.  To consign, click here for the Kids Carousel website or call Stacie at (334) 286-4689.

When you get that check after the sale, you’ll be ready to start tagging for the next one!

Reminder: Montgomery Magnet School Applications Due Soon

January 25th, 2010 categories: Montgomery, Schools

Just a quick reminder:

If you’re considering a Montgomery Public School magnet program for your child next year (2010-2011 academic year), get your applications in by January 29, 2010.

Need an applicationclick heremagent school applications due

Want to know more about magnet schools in Montgomery?  click here

Have any words of wisdom for families applying for a magnet program?  Leave your thoughts in the “comments” box below. We’d love to have your feedback.

Neighborhood Spotlight: Wyndridge in Montgomery, AL

January 19th, 2010 categories: Montgomery, Neighborhoods

Tucked beside the large Wylnakes neighborhood in East Montgomery, AL is a little enclave called Wyndridge. It is a Lowder development, but does not feel like a contrived neighborhood.  While there is a mixture of large, medium, and smaller lots/homes, there are also custom homes, trees, and a feeling that Wyndridge has developed over time, rather than over night.

I took the pictures above on a quick drive-through yesterday afternoon to give you a feel for the homes in the neighborhood. The homes in Wyndridge are on the pricier end of East Montgomery real estate.  Today (January 19, 2010) there are 14 homes listed for sale in Wyndridge ranging from $299,900 (2148 sq. ft.) to $689,900 (4885 sq. ft.). Neighborhood amenities include tennis courts, ponds and sidewalks, and landscaped common areas.

Wyndridge is accessed off of Halcyon Boulevard, making it VERY close to the Shoppes at Eastchase, Peppertree shopping center, the Sturbridge neighborhood and I-85.

Something unique to Wyndridge is the live children’s nativity during the Christmas holidays.  Children from the neighborhood take part in recreating the nativity scene, and are joined by live animals brought in for the occasion.

To see any of the homes for sale in Wyndridge, or any homes in the Montgomery area MLS, give us a call.  We’d love to help you with your house hunt!

Neighborhood Spotlight: StoneyBrooke Plantation in East Montgomery, AL

January 15th, 2010 categories: Montgomery, Neighborhoods

StoneyBrooke Plantation is a planned community in East Montgomery, AL.  I recently visited a friend’s home in StoneyBrooke and realized I hadn’t blogged it yet.  So here we go . . .

It’s a Lowder Development (think Deer Creek and Woodland Creek neighborhoods on Vaughn Road), so if it seems very familiar, you’re right. It’s most unique feature is its proximity to I-85 – just off the I-85/Mitylene exit.   On the google map below, StoneyBrooke is red marker “A” (Deer Creek is “B” and Woodland Creek is “H”).

google map

There is a large common area with a pond and picnic pavilion, plus a large playground.  The neighborhood is divided into pods according to lot size (50′, 60′, and 70′ lots), and has sidewalks and landscaped “greenscapes” throughout.  There is no pool or neighborhood clubhouse.

StoneyBrooke has existing homes for sale plus lots for building new homes.  As of today (Jan. 7, 2010) asking prices for the 6 homes available on the Montgomery Area MLS range from $192,000 (1655 sq. ft.) – $269,900 (2,433 sq. ft.).

If you like new construction and a walkable neighborhood with amenities,  plus you want to be super-close to I-85, StoneyBrooke might be a good fit.  Give us a call – we can help buyers with any listing in the Montgomery Area MLS (and it costs buyers nothing more to have a Realtor working for them).

Frozen On Sturbridge Pond

January 9th, 2010 categories: Montgomery, Neighborhoods

Sturbridge, a popular neighborhood in east Montgomery, has two big ponds at its Vaughn Road entrance.  I was shocked to see that one of them is nearly completely frozen over in about half inch thick ice.


Buyers relocating from up north might say, “what’s the big deal?” But let me tell you, for central Alabama, a frozen pond is a rare occurrence.  This recent cold snap is breaking records.


I was running errands with my kids yesterday in the Vaughn Road area and was surprised to see some bigger kids playing at the edge of the pond.  They were breaking off big hunks of ice and throwing them back on the iced surface.  We paused to take some pictures and the below video.  For Alabamians, this is surreal.

Hey readers – does anyone else have some good cold weather photos and videos, in Sturbridge or the rest of Montgomery? Leave a comment or reply below and let the rest of us see!

Neighborhood Spotlight: Cawfield in East Montgomery, AL

January 7th, 2010 categories: Montgomery, Neighborhoods

The dirt was moving in Cawfield this morning.  Yep – tractors were out pushing the red soil around in this east Montgomery neighborhood right off of Pike Road.

Today (January 7, 2010) the Montgomery Area MLS shows there are 25 lots for sale in Cawfield for $59,900. There is currently one house built in the subdivision.  According to the MLS, all lots are at least 85′ wide and there is a 2000 sqaure foot minimum for new homes. Cawfield is zoned for Halcyon Elementary, Georgia Washington Jr. High, and Jeff Davis High School

Cawfield is next to the Lochshire neighborhood on the portion of Pike Road  between Vaughn Road and Hwy 80.  It’s also close to Bridle Brook, Woodland Creek, and Merry Station, and right across Pike Road from Grace Episcopal Church.  It’s about a 5 minute drive to the Shoppes at East Chase, the Chantilly Wal-Mart, Home Depot, and I-85.

The subdivision was sold to a new developer in September 2009.  It should be noted that lots in Cawfield have a Montgomery street address and claim City of Montgomery sewer service on the MLS.  In this section of East Montgomery, neighborhoods/lots can be zoned for the City of Montgomery, Montgomery County, or the Town of Pike Road. It’s kind of a patchwork, so if you have a preference, be sure to ask when looking for real estate in this area.

If you’re interested in building a new home in Cawfield, we’re not the listing agent, but we can help buyers with any property in the Montgomery area.  Give us a call and let us help you make an informed real estate decision.

In Montgomery, Even Anonymous Notes Put On Your Car Are Nice

December 22nd, 2009 categories: Dining, Montgomery

Today I took my kids to eat at one of our favorite lunch spots: Chappy’s Deli in Peppertree Shopping Center. We had a great lunch and it was fun to be “off” of work. However, I guess I ruined someone else’s fun today, because when I got back to my truck, I found this note tucked under the wiper:


I guess I should be thankful there was no cursing. Actually it was pretty polite (see “please”). It is way too nice to submit to a site like

Here is my parking job, the shadow hurts the shot but you can see the offending entry on the white line:


Here’s a shot from directly in back. Snoopy is right, I broke the barrier:


The irony is not lost on me that normally this time of year, Snoopy’s in a great mood. He’s on TV a lot, doing Christmas specials, etc. But here he is back to his dejected position on the dog house, looking straight up at what the person had to write. Clearly, I have disappointed him.

I would like to say to this person: I was wrong. I did a bad job parking there. Please know I will pay more attention in the future.

Maybe the moral to this story is that Montgomery is such a nice town, even the “nasty” notes people put on your car are pretty polite.

Oh by the way….. Merry Christmas Charlie Brown!!

Montgomery Magnet School Gets Top Honors AGAIN!

December 11th, 2009 categories: Montgomery, Schools

LAMP does it again

It’s that time of year – time to apply for magnet and private schools for the 2010-2011 school year.

If you’re wondering what public magnet schools in Montgomery have to offer, consider the honors recently bestowed upon Loveless Academic Magnet Program High School (LAMP):

20th best high school in the NATION


4th best magnet school in the NATION.

That’s pretty strong.

“U.S. News and World Report” considered data from over 21,000 public high schools to come up with this ranking.  And it’s not the first time LAMP and other Montgomery magnet schools have received such awards (see last year’s ranking here).  Booker T Washington and Brewbaker Technology Magnet High Schools were also ranked nationally.

Click here to read the entire Montgomery Advertiser article about these awards.

FYI – Montgomery has public magnet schools for grades K-12.  For more information check out the MPS website. Applications are usually available on their website in mid-January and must be returned in early February.

Related article:

Head’s Up! School Registration in Montgomery is Around the Corner

Holiday Open House at Deer Creek – Tuesday, Dec. 8

December 7th, 2009 categories: Activities, Montgomery, Neighborhoods

deer creek gatheringSanta is making a stop this Tuesday from 5:30-7:30 pm at the Deer Creek Clubhouse!   There will be cookies and face time with St. Nick, plus, the Deer Creek Women’s Association will be collecting unwrapped gifts for The Family Sunshine Center.

One catch:  it’s for residents of this east Montgomery, AL neighborhood only.  Since it’s a pretty big neighborhood, there are two “shifts.”  Check the homeowner’s website to see if your family goes at 5:30 or 6:30pm.

Hanston Snowman 2As a former Deer Creek resident, I can say that the homeowner’s association does a great job of  providing fun, family- friendly holiday entertainment – year round (Easter, Halloween, 4th of July).  So if you live in Deer Creek, take a minute and drop by.

If you’re looking for a home in the Deer Creek area, let us help you!  It costs buyers nothing to have a Realtor do the legwork for you!

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