Fairbanks, AK Real Estate News

By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
There is no finer investment for any community than putting milk into babies. -- Sir Winston Churchill My family and I are blessed. We have a roof over our heads, we have our health and we don't have to worry about where our next meal is coming from. At %*#@ pounds, heaven knows that I could certainly do with a few less trips to the kitchen. Like many, our cupboards and pantry are full. Open the doors at any given moment and you'll find a snack or meal sure to satisfy darn near any craving. Sadly, many are not that fortunate. According to the US Department of Agriculture, more than 38 million Americans (15 million children) live in homes where there isn't enough to eat. Regardless of how they got to that point, it breaks my heart to think of anyone, but certainly a child, going hungry b...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Sometimes you just have to wonder what people are thinking... if they're thinking or if they've just planted their heads firmly up their considerable.... well, you get the idea. It was reported this morning that a historic local business lost their eminent domain fight with the State of Alaska. It seems as though the city planners, with the help of our elected officials, are content to destroy yet another piece of Fairbanks past in the name of progress. In 1901, Felix Pedro (ne Felice Pedroni) and his partner Tom Gilmore, stopped to rest while on a 165-mile hike to Circle City to purchase supplies. While resting on the hill above Farmers Loop, Pedro noticed a smoke plume rising in the distance. A days hike later the duo discovered that the smoke was from the steamboat, the Lavelle Young...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Well, it's that time of year again. Time to get dressed up as nuns and go bar hopping. ha. Just kidding. It's time to let the kids and grandkids go from door to door in an organized panhandling troupe in hops of scoring lots of sweet treats. Thanks to a grant from the Alaska Highway Safety Office, officers from the Fairbanks Police Department, the University of Alaska Fairbanks Police Department and Volunteers in Policing will be patrolling city neighborhoods between 5:30 - 9:00PM giving out glow sticks to trick or treaters. These glow sticks will help Fairbanks trick or treaters be more visible as they wander from house to house in the dark. Halloween Howl, 10:30 a.m., wear your costume and get set to howl at a special Halloween storytime for ages 3-6. Noel Wien Library Berry Room, 12...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Surviving a Fairbanks Winter By: Fairbanks Real Estate Broker Jesse Clifton This morning the thermometer outside my kitchen window said it was a balmy -12. Yep. That's twelve degrees BELOW zero. Brrr. If this is your first foray into the arctic you might be feeling as though you've been dropped off in an icy abyss. Take heart, this will feel warm at -60, I promise. First things first though; winter survival. Take it seriously, as old man winter can be an unforgiving old coot. Alaska is an outdoor enthusiasts paradise. With millions of acres of unspoiled wilderness right out our back door, there's something for everyone. Watching the temps drop doesn't curb our desire to be out and enjoying the beauty of nature, it just changes how we dress for it. What is there to do when hell freezes o...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
By: Fairbanks Ak Real Estate Broker Jesse Clifton Belonging to a family in which cancer has taken a hearty toll I can think of nothing else I would so love to see wiped from the face of the earth. Perhaps brussel sprouts, but first things first. As evidenced by the little pink ribbons popping up everywhere, most folks know that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. In many ways Alaska still lives up to its Last Frontier moniker. We are most definitely not an urbane metropolitan area... and frankly most folks like it that way. It's only been a few years since WalMart invaded our sleepy little arctic enclave. Imagine then, what the health care landscape looked like in Fairbanks in the 70's. In 1976, the opening of the Breast Cancer Detection Center of Alaska in Fairbanks certainly cha...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
By: Fairbanks AK Real Estate Broker Jesse Clifton In this case it is easy being green. Alaska Green Star is holding a fall recycling event this Saturday and Monday from 10:00AM - 4:00PM in the back parking lot of the Westmark Hotel on 8th and Noble (Google Maps Link). Green Star collected 12 tons from the recycling drive in April - a number they're hoping to match or exceed. According to the National Safety Council approximately 41 million computers became outdated in 2004 and 63 million in 2005. That number was expected to reach upwards of 500 million in 2007. Research shows that 75% of outdated, unused computers are stored and awaiting disposal. Electronic equipment contains a myriad of hazardous materials. A typical desktop computer contains between 2-4 pounds of lead, mercury, cadmi...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
By: Fairbanks AK Real Estate Broker Jesse Clifton With energy costs in Alaska still some of the highest in the nation, it's no surprise that the cost of heating fuel has been a major topic of discussion in Fairbanks lately. While my crystal ball is on the fritz it's a fairly safe bet that heating costs will be significantly higher this winter than last. However, there are some things you can do to ease the pain of seeing the fuel invoice hanging on your door. Shopping for the best price goes without saying, but don't forget to see what programs are available to help with the cost, such as; * Cash Discounts: Ask if your fuel company offers a discount for cash payments and/or immediate payments. * Employer Plan: Ask if the fuel company offers a discount plan to employees of your company? ...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
I knew it was coming.... it's as regular as Uncle Herb and his fiber pills, but I'm still not ready. This afternoon around1:15 snow started to fall in Fairbanks and the Tanana Valley. What started as a few flakes has turned into a downright flurry. As always happens folks seem to forget how to drive when the snow shows up. REMEMBER, the brakes are NOT your friend. Slow down, take your time, give yourself a few extra minutes to get where you're going. It's not worth an accident. Wow. What a difference 24 hours makes. September 29, 2008 September 30, 2008
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Military Spouse of the Year Award - Now Accepting Nominations Although praise is deservedly lavished on military service members serving this country, we sometimes overlook their support system at home; their military spouses. Long deployments to far away lands are no easy task. Military service members are in harms way and away from the family they love for extended periods of time. The wives and husbands left at home have an equally daunting task in that they're charged with keeping the home fires burning. In recognition of their countless contributions and sacrifices, Military Spouse Magazine is accepting nominations for the 2009 Military Spouse of the Year. Folks are encouraged to submit a nomination for either themselves or an eligible nominee of their choice. To submit a nominati...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
This will undoubtedly go down as one of the most bizarre days I've had in real estate since... well, ever. I spent the morning with a very nice couple from Offutt, AFB looking to move back to Alaska next spring when they retire. After meeting them for coffee this morning to go over our list of homes to see and review the information packages we set off to see if we could find their dream home. Prospect #1 - Advertised as a "stunning charmer" by an obviously far sighted listing agent. It was anything but. I swear I saw bigfoot under the pile of whatever-that-was in the corner. I had to check the address twice to make sure I didn't accidentally drive us to the city landfill. Mr. Seller, your collection of empty capless two-liter dime store cola bottles doesn’t exactly add to the appeal of...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Fairbanks Alaska Real Estate Month in Review - August 2008 What a crazy month. We bid adieu to Lehman, then watched as Bank of America swallowed Merrill Lynch and now the Fed has nationalized AIG. Rumors of a similar fate surround the few other giants left standing. The real estate and finance landscape is changing daily and at a record pace. To say we’re living in interesting times would be an understatement. The good news is that the Fairbanks real estate market continues to move forward despite near catastrophic news from the financial powerhouses on Wall Street. Average Sales Price Homes Sold Days on Market Discount from List Price Locally, home sales picked up somewhat in August over July and with 106 homes sold. August earns the distinction of being the busiest month of 2008, thus...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Folks have been speculating on the number for weeks. How much will it be? Today the wondering ended with an announcement by Lt. Governor Sean Parnell this morning that the 2008 Permanent Fund Dividend amount would be $2,069 plus an additional one time resource rebate of $1,200 to all eligible Alaskans. The total payout for 2008 for each eligible man, woman and child is $3,269. The one time resource rebate payout was approved by Governor Palin and approved by the legislature last month. “The royalty dollars that flow through the state are the people’s wealth,” said Parnell. “The $1,200 resource rebate goes to that philosophy.” Direct deposit of the dividends is scheduled earlier than usual this year, Sept. 12, for more than 493,000 people. Paper checks for recipients who want them will b...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
With spiraling fuel costs putting many Interior Alaska families in the unenviable position of having to choose between food or heat, the Governor and Legislature have decided to take action. While it can't be described as a perfect solution... I'm not even sure one exists… the Governor and Legislature have made a step in the right direction. With fuel costs among the highest in the nation and winter fast approaching, participating Alaskan's can expect to see an additional $1,200 "resource rebate" included with their Alaska Permanent Fund Dividend this year. This one-time energy relief payout from the state treasury is the product of an energy relief package the Legislature passed two weeks ago. While the amount of the 2008 PFD hasn't been announced yet, it's widely expected to be in th...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Alright, we put up with the frigid winter temps, the slick icy roads and the diminished daylight for the majority of the year so we can have warm, dry arctic desert summers. I don't know where our summer went this year but it certainly won't be described as warm and dry. First came the incessent rain followed, of course by flooding and now the national weather service is telling us to prepare for the first frost of the season. Truly? Sorry to disappoint you egghead weather folks, but we've already crossed that disgusting weather bridge. The photo below was taken two weeks ago at about 7:30AM. That white stuff you see across what was my green lawn... yep, you guessed it. Frost on the pumpkin. One report tonight suggested we could see temps drop as low as the mid 20's. Break out the elect...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Former Fairbanksan and UAF multiple national champion, Matt Emmons, has won the Silver in the 50 meter prone rifle event in Beijing. Emmons won the Gold for the same event at the 2004 Summer Olympics. Together with his wife, Olympic sport shooting champion Kateřina Kůrková of the Czech Republic, they now hold five Olympic medals. Congratulations Matt & Katerina on a job very well done! Thinking about buying or selling real estate in Fairbanks or Interior Alaska? We know Fairbanks real estate – Jesse and Kathy are your local Fairbanks real estate experts. Search Fairbanks homes for sale, sign up for free new listing notifications, view Fairbanks market statistics or browse our virtual relocation package. Have questions? Contact us online or call us at (907) 699-6024. We would love to he...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
This morning I open up the 'net and start reading the news (my how times have changed I tell you) and the first article I come across is from Bloomberg; One third of new owners owe more than house is worth. "Almost one-third of U.S. homeowners who bought in the last five years now owe more on their mortgages than their properties are worth... Ok, so that's not exactly new news, is it? Can anyone say 'declining market area?' :) Aside from the "negative equity and declining prices are making it difficult for homeowners to sell property for a profit" (duh) comment, what I found most interesting (aka comical) about this article is that Zillow is the source of information for home prices. Now, don't get me wrong. I'm all for folks coming up with new and inventive ways to make a buck, even if...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Yukon Quest organizers appoint John Schandelmeier as trail coordinator. In response to critics who argued the Quest trail was poorly maintained, the Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race appointed Quest veteran John Schandelmeier for a newly created trail coordinator position. Schandelmeier has completed 16 Yukon Quest Races and won two; once in 1992 and again i 1996. John went on to found the Taiga 300 race and worked on improving the Gin Gin 200 ad Copper Basin 300 trails. The Yukon Quest is an annual 1,000 mile sled dog race from Whitehorse, Yukon Territory to Fairbanks, Alaska. Much like the Iditarod, the Yukon Quest is a grueling test of endurance. Racers and their hearty four legged friends must survive the bitter cold of Alaska and the Yukon Territory as well as traverse some o...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Since when does a new house mean new furniture? If you ask Kathy it's in the fine print on page 43 of the marriage contract. I don't know where my reading glasses are so I'll have to take her word for it. We've built several homes over the years and it seems that with each new house comes a new slate of furniture. Sure, the antique pieces and family heirlooms get moved under the watchful eye of my better half. But it's inevitable that certain rooms in the house seem to undergo a transformation with each change of address. We have several furniture stores here in Fairbanks that offer solid, if uninspiring (can furniture be inspiring?) furniture. You know, the one's with the it-all-looks-every-other-store furniture. Then, there are the few special places where you find truly spectacular ...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Chena River Flood Declaration - Fairbanks Alaska Houston, we've got a problem. It's official. We're a disaster area. The Fairbanks North Star Borough issued a disaster deceleration this morning. Citing damage to more than 500 homes, the Borough Assembly has requested emergency assistance from Governor Palin. The last time the Tanana River was this high was during the disastrous 1967 flood that devastated Fairbanks. The resolution says "substantial damage is occurring due to high water and river current on the Tanana River, the Salcha River and the Chena River, resulting in damage to over 500 private residences with an estimated 1,000 inhabitants and to the road networks" maintained by the borough and the state. They ain't just whistling Dixie folks. The creek is still rising. There are ...
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By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Hi, Folks. It looks like the Fairbanks real estate market is still somewhat in flux. Existing home sales continue to dominate the market. New construction homes are still relatively soft despite a current Energy Efficiency rebate offering from Alaska Housing. Lets get the bad news out of the way first. This week 12 homes were sold in Fairbanks; the third week of declining home sales and the lowest sold since the first of June. The average days on the market, while on a decline in June, has increased to 175 for the week ending July 26th. This is a 33% increase in marketing time since June 1st and an 8% increase since July 1st. With all that doom and gloom you would think there might not be any good news, but take heart, because there is. The good news is that the average price is still c...
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