Toledo, OH Real Estate News

By Carol Smith
(Casmi Photography)
I think I know how Dorothy felt when that tornado hit her small Kansas town back in 1939.  I will never see the movie Wizard of Oz again without remembering today.                                                     Photo from usatoday.com The day went like this.....showing a young couple three homes that they wanted to see.  No problem.  House #1 - very nice, but needs a lot of updating.  House #2 - very roomy, lots to offer, but still stuck in the 60s.  House #3 - BINGO!  It has everything that they asked for and more.So this is good news.  And a couple hours later they ask to go back in and see it again.  Not a problem as the house is vacant.  I call the listing agent and let her know we are going back in - as a courtesy more than anything else.The young couple decides that they want...
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By Carol Smith
(Casmi Photography)
While I was sitting at the local coffee shop this morning it occurred to me that I have a satellite office - and I don't pay any rent!  Woooohoooo!You see, it's like this....Between 9:00 and 10:00 AM I wander in to the Java Mill and fix my morning fuel - JamaicanMeCrazy with a double dose of half and half.  Then I pick a table in the back and open up the laptop.  There's a bit of conversation going on, a sort of buzz in the air, and the sounds are almost like a tranquilizer.  Soothing, allowing me to focus and concentrate. Then there's the sound of the steamer frothing the cappuccino.  The sound, and smell, of fresh coffee beans being ground....yummmmmm.Oooops!  Time for a refill!  Gotta have it!  Hot, rich, delightfully relaxing - in spite of all the caffeine! So I sit for a while, per...
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By Mike Shields
(Vector Appraisal, LLC)
It's important in a declining market to have an accurate value of a home. Overpricing a home in a bad market just means longer time on market and no sale. Let Vector Appraisal conduct an accurate appraisal of your residential or commercial property. Call today.....419-637-2226.  
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By Carol Smith
(Casmi Photography)
Customer Service.  Well, it certainly seems like a seemingly innocent term, doesn't it?  I mean, after all, we do expect to be treated well when we are involved in a transaction (of any sort!) with someone that we believe has earned the benefit of out business.  It's just how things are supposed to be!Customer Service.  Hmmmm...that term just keeps popping up!  Good grief!  When will it end?  What more can they expect from me?  Well, the real answer is this ---- as much as they can get.  But that's why we're in this business, isn't it?  To help facilitate one of the most rewarding experiences one can experience, to help fulfill the American Dream.And so it is.  That's the root of it all.  That mysterious Customer Service phenomena.  And then there are those special clients.             ...
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By Carol Smith
(Casmi Photography)
OK - so that sounds like a dumb question.  Right?  Nope.  I have a friend in Louisiana that asked me that very question.  He did not believe that we have beaches, rivers, ponds, lakes, etc.  I don't know what he thought Ohio (and the Midwest in general) looked like, but it really cracked me up that he was seeing us as a barren wasteland!Being as I live in a 'boating community' I thought it would be fun to take some pictures of what happens on Lake Erie.  You know....that little pond that meets up with Michigan, Canada, New York...So I set out to see what I could use as verification that there IS water in Ohio.  I thought that perhaps this would provide a little proof...  or maybe this...  but I really liked this one...  and thought this one looked a little out of place among all the big...
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By Carol Smith
(Casmi Photography)
Most of us can remember the 'old days' when all the neighbors knew each other, everyone knew every kid, and the family pets were merry wanderers that visited all the neighbors.  You stopped and chatted without an ulterior motive.  And you welcomed newcomers to the neighborhood with a smile and an open mind.  But that was then. And it's sad that we have become such an autonomous society that we can live in a house for years and never know the person that lives next door or across the street.  It's kind of sad actually.  What's the cause?  Is it that we are too busy?  Are we so self absorbed that we don't care?  Have we become so panic-ridden that we won't step outside our own little world?  Makes one wonder what has happened to common courtesy, acceptance and open-mindedness.In my little...
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By Carol Smith
(Casmi Photography)
As my husband and I were walking our neighborhood with a local school board candidate we came across a young man walking down the street.  His step was purposeful, but his demeanor was that of defeat.  As he neared us I spoke up and said, "Hi, how are ya doing?"  You know - the good old socially acceptable acknowledgment of another person without any preconceived notion that they will respond.Well...he did respond.  After taking about 6 steps past us he turned around and walked back.  I have to admit at this point I was thinking 'ok, now what am I going to say?' and then the conversation started.You see, this young man (32 years old) was fresh from his fourth go-round with incarceration.  His arms are covered with jailhouse tattoos, he shuffles when he walks, and his posture is one of d...
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By Carol Smith
(Casmi Photography)
  Dear Homebuyer:I would like to take this opportunity to make your home search just a little easier.  The whole process is exciting, confusing, exasperating and sometimes just downright maddening.  But in the end it's one of the most satisfying experiences you will ever have.The preparatory phase of your search should be:Determine where you want to live (neighborhood, school system, highway access, etc)Determine what type of house you want (single story, two story, basement, no basement, etc)Research your market - learn current pricing trends and sale conditionsMake a time-line that you want to follow so that you don't wind up overwhelming yourself when you find your dream houseGather up your pay stubs, W2s, 2 years of tax returns and any other financial documentation you may have     ...
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By Carol Smith
(Casmi Photography)
Yes, Toledo, Ohio is in a downturn at the moment.  But this can be a positive for many as long as we keep our focus going in the right direction.  Unfortunately there are some powerful image mongers in this area that like to try to keep us down with their negative thinking.  I, personally, will not subscribe to their thinking.The housing stock in Toledo is plentiful and there are some of the best buys imaginable out there!  For the investment 'flipper' this has proved to be both a plus and a minus.  The properties are there, but sometimes the buyers aren't.  And the seasoning issues that some lenders have with the ownership paper trail can sometimes pose a problem. And for first-time buyers there are lots of options if they are willing to do a little fix-up work.  They might even be abl...
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By Rick Turner, Puts People In Their Places!!
(Key Realty)
Hey folks, Toledo, Ohio is recycling!  On Friday March 30th , Toledo City Council adopted a 2007 city budget that included a $5.50 trash pickup fee for all homeowners.  The good news is that you can save $2.50 per month by signing up to recycle!  This new law is retro active to April 2nd when Mayor Carty Finkbeiner signed it into effect. In order to qualify for the discount citizens must sign up to recycle.  I’d recommend the online method which takes less than a minute, (providing you have water bill handy). Otherwise you can pick up a Recycling starter kit which includes: A sign up cardStickers for your recycling container.The calendar of pickup days.The list of Do’s and Don’ts of Recycling.According to the Division of Solid Waste, these startup kits are now available at:  All Public...
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By Rick Turner, Puts People In Their Places!!
(Key Realty)
Looking for a beautiful urban neighborbood, within walking distance to a major university, close to the downtown area, museums, shopping, and more?  Well check out Westmoreland!  In this well established West Toledo neighborhood you'll find homes that have sold between $100,000 to $275,000.  In March of 1986 Westmoreland, located about one half mile from the University of Toledo, was designated a historical district by the United States Department of Interior.  This national designation has helped the neighborhood preserve its unique character.  The vision of real estate developers William B. Welles and Badger C. Bowen, the neighborhood was named because of its rolling hills that reminded them of the east Virginia county that  George Washington was born in.  Appropriately, the streets w...
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By Rick Turner, Puts People In Their Places!!
(Key Realty)
Are you looking for a destination for some great family activities that is fun and inexpensive?  Well consider a trip to Toledo, Ohio to see the pride and joy of Northwest Ohio, the Toledo Mud Hens!   The Mud Hens are the AAA affiliate of The Detroit Tigers and are the 2006 and 2007 back-to-back Governors' Cups champions of the International League.  The Mud Hens play at Fifth Third Field, which is the crown jewel of a revitalized downtown Toledo.In fact, the stadium, built in 2002 was named the best minor league ballpark in America.  It is located at the corner of Washington & Monroe Streets in the same place the original professional ballpark was built in 1883.If baseball is not your cup of tea, there are plenty of other attractions in the immediate area surrounding the park.  There a...
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By Patrick Brady
(The Danberry Co., Realtors)
  There is a great article in the Toledo Blade today about the first gated community in Toledo.  It certainly is interesting to hear about a community that was once very prestigious.  You can follow this link to read the whole article.   http://www.toledoblade.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070311/BUSINESS05/703100338&SearchID=73274686197585 This kind of article make you think what could or will happen to other neighborhoods as they change and grow.  I have always had an interest in history and the history behind homes.  This is certainly a unique part of our local area that is sometimes overlooked compared to other areas in the local area.  As time goes on, we are going to loose part of this history as some of these homes fall into dis-repair.  The article points out one such home ri...
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By Lonn Dugan
It's beginning to look a lot like winter here in NW Ohio and SE Michigan.  We finally have some snow on the ground.  And the temperatures have plunged to the sub zero level (overnight anyway). So what is most amazing about this is the way the real estate business is warming up!I am suddenly in the middle of 5 deals after a fairly slow January!   That's three sellers selling, and two different buyers buying two different homes.  Your house could be next whether I have it listed or not!Now, just to clarify, I should say that January was not slow, but the lookers were not writing offers.  I had more calls and online visitors to my web sites this January than ever before.  The market activity has been very good in this regard, and is far higher than at thist time last year.   Good buyers se...
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Real Estate is Local - So Get A Local Expert  All Real Estate is LOCAL.  So Get a Local Expert!The web is global.  It helps you search EVERYTHING.  Global is good when you are RESEARCHING.  There is a HUGE place for the web in the average house hunt.  I am all for using the WEB in Real Estate searches.     BUT...  the web can only take you so far.  For example, most online home value report web sites are wrong by as much as 30% which means, they could be 100% wrong for your house or the house you want to buy.  Take "VALUE" for instance.  Value is a subjective thing.  Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. You could pay 30% too much for a house, thinking you got an average price.  Would that be OK with you?     Sure, you can get school reports, crime reports, maps, photos, economic profil...
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Why The Holiday Season is a GREAT TIME TO BUY! The next few weeks are GREAT times to buy a house!  Why?  Bob Bruss, at Inman News, wrote such a great article that I cannot improve on it.  Here it is, below. Lonn Dugan, Realtor#############################Holiday season is the greatest gift for home shopping Friday, November 17, 2006By Robert J. Bruss Inman News During the slow home sales holiday season between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day, even extending through Super Bowl Sunday in many communities, few people think of buying a house or condominium. However, if you want to purchase a home and can drag yourself away from holiday festivities, this is the absolute best time of the entire year to be a home buyer.Why is that, you ask? The answer has two parts: (a) only serious motivated ...
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By Lonn Dugan
What Do Realtors Do ??? Few people understand the work of a Realtor.  Most of my family, friends, and clients have no real idea. This is for you!Oh, sure...  Clients know what I do for them, in the event they buy or sell a house.  Many are very appreciative of the extra mile, the long days, the miracles I pull off when we solve a huge problem or accomplish the seemingly impossible purchase or sale...  Those are good days!  I get to be a HERO for a day.  Lots of fun!    And sure....  Friends and family may know what Real Estate requires of me in the form of time.  I give 60+ hours a week to this noble profession during most weeks. But few people really know WHAT I REALLY DO....  It is hard to imagine any other profession working like this.    AN EXAMPLE FROM ANOTHER PROFESSIONPicture a h...
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