What Not to Do When Remodeling

It seems many people are thinking of remodeling or adding on to their homes rather than moving given the real estate market we’ve had these past several years. If you’re one of these homeowners, here’s information on the Top 10 Remodeling Don’ts. A remodeling project is very often stressful. These tips may help reduce your stress levels and keep you on budget!
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And if remodeling simply won’t meet your needs, give us a call. We’ll be happy to help you make your next move.

Ellen and Kate Walsh
612.220.3304
Coldwell Banker Burnet

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Magnolia Cottage: What’s in a Name?

Magnolia Cottage

I saw this sign on the front of a house during one of my travels. It was a charming house. A white brick exterior with black wood shutters, window boxes and front door. The shutters featured a black iron curlicue along the bottom, detailing that stood out against the white background.

Magnolia Cottage Window

A white picket fence wrapped around the house, and the gate opened onto a gently curving flagstone walking path that led to the front door.  A mix of green shrubbery sat along the foundation of the house. Everything was neat and tidy and appealing.

Magnolia Cottage Ext

Many of the homes on Captiva Island have names. I always take pleasure in reading what people have chosen to name their homes. Unfortunately, you rarely see a lot of the homes on Captiva due to the long driveways and tremendous tropical growth. The homes are well hidden from the road.

The signs are all on the road. Each one is individually created. I often wonder what the homes are like, and what the owners are like. Does the sign personality mirror the house and occupants?  Does the name say something about one occupant and the artwork about another? Who came up with the name? Do owners who buy these named homes keep the names or create a new one or pull the sign up out of the ground and go without? One thing I know. Of the homes that had been named and could be seen, all were well-kept and maintained. It makes me think there is something in a name: a sense of pride, a little more love, an embracing of home as part of the family.

Have you named your home? I’d love to hear the name and what it means to you. In the meantime, I’m going to think about a name for my own home. Stay tuned.

2012: A Very Good Year

Our Minneapolis Lakes Office soared in 2012!

Here’s a note we received today from Robin Peterson, president of Coldwell Banker Burnet:

Congratulations to Matt Baker and the Coldwell Banker Burnet Minneapolis Lakes Office. Today they were honored for achieving the Top Office in the United States for Total Units for Coldwell Banker. Outstanding!

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Ready to buy or sell a home? Call the sister team.
We’d love to help you move forward.

Ellen and Kate Walsh
Coldwell Banker Burnet
612.220.3304
emwalsh@cbburnet.com

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Real Estate Update

Housing Supply Overview
February 2013

HSO Art Large

Let’s review what’s transpired over the past 12 months. For the 12-month period spanning March 2012 through February 2013, Pending Sales in the Twin Cities region were up 14.8 percent overall. The price range with the largest gain in sales was the $350,001 to $500,000 range, where they increased 42.7 percent.

The overall Median Sales Price was up 13.3 percent to $170,000. The property type with the largest price gain was the Condo segment, where prices increased 13.8 percent to $108,000. The price range that tended to sell the quickest was the $190,001 to $250,000 range at 103 days; the price range that tended to sell the slowest was the $1,000,001 and Above range at 245 days.

Market-wide, inventory levels were down 31.6 percent. The property type that lost the least inventory was the Single-Family segment, where it decreased 28.9 percent. That amounts to 3.0 months supply for Single- Family Detached homes and 2.4 months supply for Townhomes and Twinhomes. See the PDF below for the full report.

HSO Feb 2013

As reported by the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors

Interested in buying or selling real estate? Contact the Walsh Sisters.
We’d love to help you make your next move.

Ellen and Kate Walsh
612-220-3304
emwalsh@cbburnet.com

Coldwell Banker Burnet

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Why Sell Now? Here’s Why.

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Ready to buy or sell a home?
Call the sister team. We’d love to help you move forward.

Ellen and Kate Walsh
Coldwell Banker Burnet
612.220.3304
emwalsh@cbburnet.com

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Real Estate Update

Weekly Real Estate Update
February 25, 2013

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Here’s an oldie but goodie: All Real Estate is Local. We’ve all heard it. This is why industry insiders don’t pay much attention to national housing statistics. The national housing market is just an agglomeration of local housing markets. You don’t grab an umbrella in Miami based on the weather forecast in Seattle. So why would someone in San Francisco base a home sale or purchase decision on market data from Boston? Here’s your data for your local housing market.

In the Twin Cities region, for the week ending February 16:

• New Listings decreased 4.9% to 1,196
• Pending Sales increased 7.9% to 916
• Inventory decreased 31.0% to 12,309

For the month of January:

• Median Sales Price increased 14.3% to $160,000
• Days on Market decreased 24.1% to 107
• Percent of Original List Price Received increased 2.5% to 93.5%
• Months Supply of Inventory decreased 40.0% to 3.0

As reported by the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors

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Ready to buy or sell a home? Call the sister team.
We’d love to help you move forward.

Ellen and Kate Walsh
Coldwell Banker Burnet
612.220.3304
emwalsh@cbburnet.com

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Real Estate Update

Real Estate Update
December 17, 2012

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The chase to 2013 is on, and we are pleased by the prospects ahead. Given the upward progress of the 2012 housing market, many homeowners may find that their properties will be worth more next year. That’s a nice change of pace for potential sellers, and for residential real estate as a whole, and is a direct result of widespread improvements in the marketplace. Most of the positive trends we have seen in 2012 should persist into the new year. Let’s take a peek at what’s happening locally today. All comparisons are to 2011.

In the Twin Cities region, for the week ending December 8:
• New Listings increased 3.0% to 942
• Pending Sales increased 12.6% to 788
• Inventory decreased 28.8% to 13,832

For the month of November:
• Median Sales Price increased 16.2% to $172,000
• Days on Market decreased 26.2% to 103
• Percent of Original List Price Received increased 3.6% to 94.2%
• Months Supply of Inventory decreased 40.0% to 3.4

As reported by the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtor

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Ready to buy or sell a home? Call the sister team.
We’d love to help you move forward.

Ellen and Kate Walsh
Coldwell Banker Burnet
612.220.3304
emwalsh@cbburnet.com

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Real Estate Update

Real Estate Update
December 2, 2012

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Home buyers entered more contracts and homeowners listed more properties than during the same week of 2011. As a whole, 2012 is shaping up to be quite the pivotal year for housing. With 2013 right around the corner, the smart money is monitoring seller concessions, market times, absorption rates and, of course, home prices. The genius money is watching foreclosure listing and sales volumes, delinquency rates and showing activity.

In the Twin Cities region, for the week ending November 24:

• New Listings increased 0.7% to 607
• Pending Sales increased 12.8% to 608
• Inventory decreased 28.8% to 14,546

For the month of October:

• Median Sales Price increased 14.8% to $175,000
• Days on Market decreased 25.2% to 103
• Percent of Original List Price Received increased 3.5% to 94.5%
• Months Supply of Inventory decreased 39.6% to 3.8

As reported by the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors

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Ready to buy or sell a home? Call the sister team.
We’d love to help you move forward.

Ellen and Kate Walsh
Coldwell Banker Burnet
612.220.3304
emwalsh@cbburnet.com

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Real Estate Update

Weekly Real Estate Update
November 12, 2012


1.3 million. That’s how many Americans were reportedly lifted out of underwater mortgage situations this year from rising home prices, according to the Obama administration’s October Housing Scorecard. There’s more going on than meets the eye here. Rising prices also help restore tax base, decreasing the likelihood of tax increases later. National GDP even benefits. When real estate is chugging along, things are good. And now, arguably more so than ever in the past four or five years, real estate is starting to chug again. It’s not at full speed yet, but the open track ahead beckons.

In the Twin Cities region, for the week ending November 3:
• New Listings decreased 1.0% to 1,125
• Pending Sales increased 25.3% to 930
• Inventory decreased 27.7% to 15,434

For the month of October:
• Median Sales Price increased 14.8% to $174,995
• Days on Market decreased 25.0% to 103
• Percent of Original List Price Received increased 3.5% to 94.4%
• Months Supply of Inventory decreased 41.0% to 3.7

As reported by the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors

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.Ready to buy or sell a home? Call the sister team.
We’d love to help you move forward.

Ellen and Kate Walsh
Coldwell Banker Burnet
612.220.3304
emwalsh@cbburnet.com

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Real Estate Update

Weekly Real Estate Update
November 5, 2012

Over the course of the year, we’ve cleverly devised new tactics each week to communicate just how far the market has come. This week is no exception. Most level-headed housing advocates agree that lower residential vacancy rates are a good thing. Well, chalk one up for level-headed housing advocates, because Reuters just reported that the U.S. residential vacancy rate fell to 1.9 percent in the third quarter. That’s the lowest level in seven years. It’s just the latest installment of overwhelming bullish housing news.

In the Twin Cities region, for the week ending October 27:

• New Listings decreased 3.0% to 1,037
• Pending Sales increased 11.1% to 914
• Inventory decreased 28.8% to 15,700

For the month of September:

• Median Sales Price increased 12.7% to $174,625
• Days on Market decreased 28.5% to 101
• Percent of Original List Price Received increased 4.1% to 94.8%
• Months Supply of Inventory decreased 38.8% to 4.1

As reported by the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors

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Ready to buy or sell a home? Call the sister team.
We’d love to help you move forward.

Ellen and Kate Walsh
Coldwell Banker Burnet
612.220.3304
emwalsh@cbburnet.com

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Real Estate Update

Weekly Real Estate Update
October 23, 2012


Housing pessimism is as out of fashion nowadays as bell bottoms and shoulder pads. Those who are still fishing for that elusive “market bottom” have likely missed it in most areas. The major story continues to be tightened inventory and high buyer turnout. Homes should be selling faster and for closer to list price – or even above in the hottest neighborhoods. Continue to monitor key differences between the foreclosure and traditional segments as well as variability between the single-family and condo markets.

In the Twin Cities region, for the week ending October 13:
• New Listings increased 7.3% to 1,252
• Pending Sales increased 26.7% to 954
• Inventory decreased 28.8% to 16,017

For the month of September:
• Median Sales Price increased 12.6% to $174,500
• Days on Market decreased 28.4% to 101
• Percent of Original List Price Received increased 4.0% to 94.8%
• Months Supply of Inventory decreased 39.6% to 4.1

As reported by the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors

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Ready to buy or sell a home? Call the sister team.
We’d love to help you move forward.

Ellen and Kate Walsh
Coldwell Banker Burnet
612.220.3304
emwalsh@cbburnet.com

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Real Estate Update

Weekly Real Estate Update
October 9, 2012

Some say that housing and the economy are woven together into a single garment of destiny. Let’s review recent national economic data: a good September non-farm payroll report marking 31 consecutive months of private job growth, the unemployment rate falling to 7.8 percent (a 44-month low), a widely positive S&P/Case-Shiller home price report, and mortgage rates averaging close to 3.4 percent. When you combine the above trends with less housing supply and strong home sales numbers, you can start to see just what’s driving this recovery. Here’s what transpired locally.

In the Twin Cities region, for the week ending September 29:
• New Listings increased 6.2% to 1,314
• Pending Sales increased 15.5% to 1,000
• Inventory decreased 29.6% to 16,261

For the month of September:
• Median Sales Price increased 12.3% to $174,000
• Days on Market decreased 28.7% to 101
• Percent of Original List Price Received increased 4.1% to 94.8%
• Months Supply of Inventory decreased 40.9% to 4.0

As reported by the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors

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Ready to buy or sell a home? Call the sister team.
We’d love to help you move forward.

Ellen and Kate Walsh
Coldwell Banker Burnet
612.220.3304
emwalsh@cbburnet.com

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Real Estate Update

Weekly Real Estate Update
October 1, 2012


With October here, 2012 has certainly flown by. The things to be watching for this fall are the same things you’ve likely been watching all year. Changes in sales levels, active listings, market times, seller concessions and, of course, home prices have taken center stage. To showcase just one, home prices may moderate on a month-to-month basis but should continue to demonstrate resiliency in a year-over-year sense. While the economy has been sending some mixed signals lately, one aspect of this recovery remains convincing: housing will be a net contributor.

In the Twin Cities region, for the week ending September 22:
• New Listings decreased 1.1% to 1,295
• Pending Sales increased 22.8% to 1,078
• Inventory decreased 29.4% to 16,428

For the month of August:
• Median Sales Price increased 14.8% to $178,000
• Days on Market decreased 23.9% to 107
• Percent of Original List Price Received increased 4.2% to 95.1%
• Months Supply of Inventory decreased 41.1% to 4.2

As reported by the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors

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Ready to buy or sell a home? Call the sister team.
We’d love to help you move forward.

Ellen and Kate Walsh
Coldwell Banker Burnet
612.220.3304
emwalsh@cbburnet.com

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They Fell in Love…

And Then They Bought It

My sister and I were working with a lovely newly wedded couple to find them a home. We looked at homes in Saint Paul. We looked in Minneapolis. We looked along the river front. And then this home came on the market. Initially, the only photo on the MLS was of the front exterior. I told them it was either ugly and dated inside or the listing agents were planning professional photos to be taken.  It turned out they were having professional photos taken of the interiors.

We went to see it right away. The couple knew they had found something special that first time through. My sister and I have worked with many buyers who have walked into homes and known immediately it was the home for them.

The home had been owned by the sellers for over forty years. The prior owners had also lived in this home for decades. Both of the previous owners had been newly wedded couples when they first moved in to this home. This is what I call great predecessor history. It bodes well for this couple’s future happiness.

The next day we went back with an architect to get some ideas and cost information for remodeling the kitchen. The architect confirmed they had great space to work with.

They made their offer, and after some pretty painless negotiation, the contract was signed and delivered. They secured an amazing 2.75% mortgage rate. The closing took place at the end of July. They love their new home.

I can’t wait to see their new kitchen!

The home has a great screened porch!

And a private, double lot with mature trees and perennial gardens.

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Ready to buy or sell a home? Call the sister team.
We’d love to help you move forward.

Ellen and Kate Walsh
Coldwell Banker Burnet
612.220.3304
emwalsh@cbburnet.com

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Real Estate Update

Weekly Real Estate Update
September 17, 2012


You fill the pot with the water and you turn the stove top on and you wait. You watch it and you want something to happen and it seems to take an exceptionally longtime. All you want to do is add the pasta or the brown rice or the frozen peas. And you wait. Because it’s important to wait until the water is roiling along in what is seemingly chaotic motion but is really the perfect environment for what is meant to be within it. This is our current housing market. It’s been an undeniably good spring and summer, and now we wait to see if the fall showcase is just as good if we mix in the right amount of inventory, sales and days on market.

In the Twin Cities region, for the week ending September 8:
• New Listings increased 2.2% to 1,273
• Pending Sales increased 24.2% to 940
• Inventory decreased 29.6% to 16,458

For the month of August:
• Median Sales Price increased 15.2% to $178,600
• Days on Market decreased 24.0% to 107
• Percent of Original List Price Received increased 4.2% to 95.1%
• Months Supply of Inventory decreased 42.0% to 4.1

As reported by the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors

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Ready to buy or sell a home? Call the sister team.
We’d love to help you move forward.

Ellen and Kate Walsh
Coldwell Banker Burnet
612.220.3304
emwalsh@cbburnet.com

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Fall 2012 Parade of Homes

Parade of Homes (New Homes)
September 8-30

Remodelers Showcase
September 28-30

Homes open Thursday through Sunday, noon to 6pm

There are very few new homes on the Parade this year compared with other years. There are far more remodels. This is not surprising given the real estate marketplace of late.

We’re featuring these two St. Paul remodels because we recently had clients close on their new home in St. Paul and they plan to do some remodeling. They are seeking to make the new space blend and match the original period of the house. This is always a good way to approach a remodel and addition; big differences in the feel of spaces will hurt sellers when it comes time to sell.

839 Osceola Avenue, St. Paul

Here is a description of this project from the Parade of Homes website: “This kitchen and bath remodel in a historically significant house in Saint Paul’s Summit Hill neighborhood illustrates how to remodel the heart of a house without losing its soul. Next Level Renovation, with designer David Heide, replaced the 1980’s kitchen in this 1890 residence with a space that features period sensibilities and the latest amenities. The original house was designed by Cass Gilbert, the turn-of-the-twentieth-century architect, notable for his classic homes and other buildings, including the State Capitol in Saint Paul.”

683 Portland Avenue, St. Paul

From the description on the Parade of Homes website: “Come and see how the convenience of a modern kitchen blends seamlessly with a stately home in the historic Summit Avenue neighborhood of St. Paul. The three-story addition also provides an art studio, main-floor laundry/mud room, and a cozy wine cellar with tasting room. In collaboration with architect David Herreid, McDonald Remodeling proves again that you can have it all: character, style, and convenience in your existing home!”

Contact us for more information if you are considering a remodel or an addition and would like to discuss keeping your home and design as salable as possible. Visiting the Remodelers Showcase homes is a good way to meet remodelers and see their work in person.

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Kate and Ellen Walsh
Coldwell Banker Burnet
612.220.3304
emwalsh@cbburnet.com

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Real Estate Update

Weekly Real Estate Update
August 21, 2012


Do you hear that? It’s the sound of carts shifting through the back-to-school aisles, filling quickly with notebooks and pencils and glue. It’s the sound of teenagers shuffling through dorms and down storied lanes on their first college orientation. It’s the sound of young professionals readying themselves for their first big job, freshly tailored. It’s the sound of a family preparing for the leap from the overcrowded apartment to the “starter” home that will see their first child into high school. There’s a lot of activity taking place as we move towards the fall season. The housing market continues to be active as well.

In the Twin Cities region, for the week ending August 11:
• New Listings increased 2.0% to 1,387
• Pending Sales increased 31.2% to 1,149
• Inventory decreased 29.6% to 16,982

For the month of July:
• Median Sales Price increased 13.7% to $179,000
• Days on Market decreased 27.8% to 106
• Percent of Original List Price Received increased 3.6% to 95.0%
• Months Supply of Inventory decreased 42.8% to 4.3

Statistics provided by the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors

For additional market information, contact us:

Ellen Walsh
612.220.3304
emwalsh@cbburnet.com

Kate Walsh
612.220.3309
info@designhouse9.com

Coldwell Banker Burnet
Minneapolis Lakes Office–On the shore of Lake Calhoun
Minneapolis MN 55416

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