Your Home Matters

Your Home Matters

  1. Love Where You Live: Why We Choose the Tri-State as Home

    Welcome back! We hope you all have enjoyed the beautiful weather this week and have been able to get out and enjoy these early summer days! We have tried to get out a bit, but the real estate market is BUSY and it's been all we can do to keep up with our buyers and sellers. It's been fantastic, and we love this time of year!

    Rivertown Trail Downtown Newburgh

    As we are out and about more with clients, especially those relocating to our area, we find that we often take on the role of tour guide in addition to Realtor. We believe it's part of our responsibility to show our clients around town and share information about our favorite restaurants, shopping areas, fitness options, and leisure activities. For those moving to another side of town or unfamiliar with the Tri-State, it can be a bit overwhelming to feel as if they're starting over, and we want to make the moving transition as easy as possible! We want you to love your home and your town.

    So, we thought we would share a few of the things we love most about living in the Tri-State, from Evansville to Newburgh, Henderson, to Jasper, Owensboro to Mt. Vernon and everywhere in between.

    Riverwalk Downtown Evansville
    1. Friendly, Hospitable Community -- It's amazing to see how people step up when help is needed in our community. We're not technically a "southern" city, but we certainly exude hospitality.

    2. Outstanding Medical Care -- We are fortunate to have top-notch hospitals in the Tri-State. We have options depending on where we live, and we have access to specialists and the newest technologies. Additionally, our medical community is constantly growing and can provide outstanding care and treatment for all who live here.

    3. Great Schools -- The Tri-State is home to some of the best schools in the state. Schools in both Warrick and Vanderburgh counties achieve the highest 4-Star "A" rankings each year, as do the schools in the Jasper Consolidated district, meaning our Tri-State kiddos graduate prepared to attend college, train for a skilled trade, or venture straight into the workforce. At the post-secondary level, the Tri-State is home to several Ivy Tech campuses, Brescia, University of Evansville, Vincennes University, and University of Southern Indiana.

    Quaint Shops in Downtown Newburgh
    4. Awesome Food -- Whether you're in the mood for your favorite meal from a reliable chain or want to try the newest local hot spot, you're in for a treat! Some of the eateries we love and continue to hear about the most are Sauced (Evansville), Azzip Pizza (Newburgh and Evansville), Schnitzelbank (Jasper), Commonwealth Kitchen + Bar (Henderson), R'z (Ft. Branch), Bonefish Grill (Evansville), Broadway House Bistro (Princeton), The Dapper Pig (Evansville), R'z (Fort Branch), The Miller House (Owensboro), Cafe Arazu (Evansville & Newburgh), and Pangea (Evansville). Goodness, we have no shortage of fabulous meal options in town!

    5. Fitness Options -- Are you a gym rat, or do you enjoy an outdoor workout? Either way, you're covered! Gyms like the YMCA, Tri-State Athletic Club, Bob's Gym, and Anytime Fitness are all over, as are more specific studios like Yoga 101, Sift Yoga, and Pure Barre. If you'd rather walk, run, or bike outside, just hit the paved trails throughout Newburgh or downtown Evansville, at the Vanderburgh County 4-H grounds, or the State Hospital grounds in Evansville. A couple other popular outdoor fitness destinations are the Riverwalk in Jasper and the fitness trails at Audubon State Park in Henderson. Enjoy walking or running on any of these trails to train for the half marathon that take place in Evansville or one of the dozens of other races (at varying distances, benefitting numerous causes) hosted by each community.

    John James Audubon State Park in Henderson

    6. Low Cost of Living -- If you have lived in other areas of the country, you already know that you get a lot more "bang for your buck" here. The quality of homes for the price we pay is outstanding compared to other communities across the US and internationally. We enjoy a steady, strong real estate market, low taxes, and lower costs on other amenities as well. This low cost of living allows us to save more and maybe even keep a bit more money for discretionary spending for fun things like vacations and home improvement projects.

    7. Rich History -- Drive around a few of our towns and search a bit on Google, and you'll discover the interesting events and notable residents of the Tri-State. If you want to know more about one of the most influential families that have ever lived here, just visit The Reitz Home Museum downtown Evansville.

    Riverwalk Trail in Jasper

    8. Weekend Destinations -- While we do love living here, it's nice to get away sometimes. Did you know we are within 3 hours of several large cities that are great for getaways? We can take off after work on Friday and have the whole weekend to enjoy in Indianapolis, Louisville, Lexington, Nashville, or St. Louis.

    9. Access to Culture -- Contrary to what some people say, the Tri-State has quite a few amenities to enjoy culture. The Evansville Philharmonic puts together an entire season of concerts, and we have the Evansville Museum of Arts, History, and Science with an impressive planetarium. We have access to fantastic stage productions at both universities, the Evansville Civic Theatre, and The New Harmony Theatre. There are also numerous smaller, community-focused museums throughout the entire Tri-State. For kids, the Children's Museum of Evansville (cMoe) and Mesker Park Zoo are wonderful destinations for learning. They are definitely worth checking out!

    10. Opportunity for Growth -- This is such an exciting time for the Tri-State. All of our communities are growing and changing, and we have many citizens who have a clear vision of what we can achieve together. In Evansville alone, just look at all the attention surrounding the construction of the IU Medical School, the DoubleTree hotel, and the impact of the land-based Casino Aztar. There are plans in place to change the entire landscape of downtown Evansville, which would be an exciting and welcome development, much like our neighbors in Owensboro have enjoyed. We also have groups working hard to continuously improve popular events like our farmers markets, music festivals, wine and art festivals, and much more.

    Historic Bosse Field in Evansville

    What are some of your favorite things about living in the Tri-State? Tell us which town you live in and what you love about it!
  2. The 67th annual SIBA Parade of Homes starts this Saturday!

    Welcome back! We hope you all had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend filled with cookouts, swimming and quality time with family and friends. Since we have officially kicked off the summer season with a busy local market and bustling community calendar, we wanted to take a few minutes to share the details about our favorite event each summer -- the Southwestern Indiana Builders Association Parade of Homes, which starts this Saturday!

    As Realtors and community members, we love the Parade of Homes each year for many reasons. We are treated to FREE tours of 30-40 new homes, each displaying the latest in floor plan layouts, building materials, room finishes, interior design, and even landscaping. The Parade of Homes is also a wonderful way for both agents and buyers to meet with builders and ask questions about custom building, remodeling a home, or even picking their expert brains about what type of roof or wood flooring is best (builders are awesome resources for home improvement ideas!).

    This year is the 67th annual Parade of Homes and will feature show-stopping homes in Vanderburgh, Posey, Gibson, and Warrick counties. There are 39 homes this year, and from what we've seen so far, it will be extremely difficult to choose a favorite. There are home of all sizes, styles, and price ranges. Homes are priced from about $183,00 up to over a million and anywhere in between. Some homes are already sold, but many will be for sale if you're in the market, and the builder or agent representing the home would be happy to tell you anything you want to know.

    If you go to the SIBA Parade of Homes website, you can view all the homes that will be on tour in advance, and even create a customized tour based on which ones you want to be sure to see. After Tuesday during Parade week, you will be able to check out which homes won awards at the prestigious banquet, such as "Best Bath", "Best Kitchen", "Best Interior", "Home of the Year", etc. These awards are such a source of pride for builders because their hard work and beautiful craftsmanship are recognized among their colleagues, and they can showcase their awards the rest of the week for guests touring the homes.

    Mark your calendars for June 2 - 10! The Parade starts this weekend, so be sure to save some time to get out and enjoy the tour. We promise you will not be disappointed, and we also predict you'll be impressed and you have the opportunity see the incredible building community we have available to our local market.

    Saturday and Sunday hours are 1:00 - 6:00 p.m. and weeknight hours are 5:00 - 8:00 p.m. The only night the Parade is closed is Tuesday for the award banquet mentioned earlier.

    Which house are you most excited to see this year? Check out the homes on the SIBA site to make your list of must-see sites. 

    It's a great idea to ask to take pictures for inspiration and definitely talk to the builders and agents in the homes on tour! Again, they are all happy to answer questions and discuss the building process. We can't wait to see you out and about! Stop by & see us because many of our agents will be working at Parade houses!
  3. Beat the Heat: Tips to Stay Cool this Summer

    Welcome back! We hope you've had a great week and are staying cool in this suddenly HOT weather. Goodness gracious, it seems like our spring/summer transition in the Tri-State has happened too quickly, and it doesn't look like it will cool off much over the next week or so. Summer, slow down! We'd like to enjoy a bit of spring before we ring in summer this Memorial Day weekend.

    We know it is difficult to get outdoor chores and projects done, and even more difficult to enjoy recreational activities like biking and jogging outside when it's hot. However, some people simply have to be outdoors for one reason or another -- especially those who work outside. On that note, we'd like to take the opportunity in this week's blog to share some heat safety advice. We want to be sure all of our clients, friends, & family are safe as we gear up for a fabulous summer filled with golf, walks, play time, pool days, and ball games.

    When you're out and about this summer season, please keep the following information in mind:

     Be aware of the heat throughout the day. It is warming up early and staying hot later! Pay attention to how you feel while outdoors and modify your activities appropriately.
     Pay attention to your hydration status and be sure to drink plenty of fluids. Water and sports drinks are best for staying hydrated. Avoid sugary sodas, as they actually make your body more thirsty.
     Try to stay in relatively cool areas, even when outside. Find a shade tree or awning to sit under while outside. Cater your family activities to be indoors. Visit our local museums, Sky Zone, or take a painting class instead of planning outdoor adventures.
     Avoid hot, enclosed places, such as cars. Never leave children or pets unattended in a car parked in the sun. 

     Use a fan, if available. The fans with water misters are wonderful to stay cool! Anyone else use those constantly at the ball field? 
     Stay on the lowest floor of your home or building. Heat rises, so our upstairs rooms are often hotter this time of year.
     Eat well-balanced, light and regular meals. Fruit, vegetables and protein are great meal options. The heat is the perfect excuse to avoid using the stove and oven in favor of a cold meal.
     Wear loose-fitting, lightweight and light-colored clothing.
     Cover windows that receive a significant amount of sun with curtains and close blinds to help keep your house cool. This really does make a difference! 

     Weather stripping and proper insulation will keep cool air inside your home, plus it will help keep your Vectren bill as low as possible.
     If you are outside WEAR SUNSCREEN and drink your water early and often. Take plenty of breaks during activities. Get into this habit now so you're accustomed to it on days when we're experiencing 90+ degree heat.

    We also want to share a few signs of heat overexposure. If you see someone exhibiting any of these, get them out of the heat and to a doctor as quickly as possible:
     Heavy sweating. However, if heat stroke sets in, the body can no longer compensate and stops sweating.
     Pale skin.
     Muscle cramps.
     Feeling tired and weak.
     Confusion, disorientation, altered mental state of any kind.
     Passing out or seeming semi-conscious.
     Nausea or vomiting.

    For some other general summer safety tips, please check out this page from the CDC website. Stay safe & as cool as possible! And of course, have a wonderful holiday weekend!

    Special thanks and sincere gratitude to our brave men and women in uniform who protect and defend our freedoms. We thank you for your service today and every day.
  4. Declutter, Organize, Tidy Up. Our tips and tasks!

    Welcome back! This week we are talking about the important topic of home organization. Now that the school year is ending and kiddos of all ages will likely be home a bit more, enlist their help and make organizing projects a source of pride for the whole family. People either love organizing tasks or hate them, and organizing a home is often a source of stress. It doesn't have to be though!

    We have often talked about how crucial a decluttered, organized home is when selling, but what about when you're just living day-to-day in your house? Once you've moved and unpacked, how do you keep things tidy?

    There are some easy strategies to work on every day that will help you and your family enjoy a tidier, more organized space. It will help you relax, be more efficient with chores and daily tasks, and it might even make the kids excited to tackle their own messes.

    So, here are a few of our favorite tips for getting (and keeping!) your home organized.

    • Make the beds each day. It is amazing what a difference a neat bed makes in a room. It's easy, quick, and provides instant neatness in a bedroom. Plus, this is an easy task for the kids to do each morning before school.
    • Invest in laundry baskets. These are so necessary for collecting dirty clothes and unloading cleaning clothes that need to be folded & put away. In our experience, if there is no basket, most people will simply toss clothes on the floor, so make these catch-alls easy to access.
    • Edit your closet. Tossing out unused a couple times each year is a great way to keep your closet as neat as possible. Invest in plenty of hangers so you can see everything, and arrange your clothes by color, season or purpose. This should help prevent rummaging through clothes each morning before work or school.
    • Containers are your friend. Everything should have its place, even if it is just in a plastic bin. If you don't have anywhere to put toys, craft items, seasonal goods, etc., they will end up on the floor or in a junk drawer. There are many ways to outline how you want your family's items stored (labels?  categories?), but just make sure you have places to store them. Check out Target or The Container Store for affordable options. Try making a game out of clean-up time with your kids!
    • File your papers. This is a big problem for a lot of people. Does anyone else seem to have a build-up of paper even in this age of paperless everything? Many households abide by the rule of keeping documents and bills for 5 years "just in case", but that really adds bulk to your kitchen or office. Invest in a filing cabinet or binders and store those papers by year. It does take some extra time to file them away, but your counters and drawers will thank you!
    • Do a little each day. For many, it is difficult to find time and energy to tackle these tasks each day. We promise it will get easier and as you work on organizing the rooms in your home, you'll find that it becomes a habit to keep things neat, and your home will start to remain that way.

    What other strategies do you use to keep your house organized? Share with us! 
  5. Show Ready Homes From the Inside Out

    We often write and talk about what you can do outside your home to improve curb appeal and make your house stand out among all the rest. Curb appeal is important, especially this time of year as we spend more time outside, but what about inside the home? What will buyers notice in your home as they walk through? While the exterior of your home is important to potential buyers, it's what is inside that will really determine whether they could make your house their new home. The interior -- it's overall layout, cleanliness, and condition -- can make or break a potential offer.

    We want to help! The Tri-State real estate market is entering into its busy season, so now is the time to make sure your home is show-ready and sell-ready.

    That's why this week's post is all about working on the interior of your home so buyers will say "Wow!" when they walk in for their showing. We are sharing our tips for cleaning and preparing your home so it simply shines.

    Here are some suggested "chores" for getting your house show ready:

    Clean, scrub, and polish: Keep your stove, oven, refrigerator, microwave, and other appliances
    clean inside and out. (Potential buyers will open them to check them out!)

    Clean and spot-treat: Clean all carpeting. Polish wood floors and vinyl flooring. Clean walls, doors, and woodwork, including baseboards, cabinetry, fans, and windowsills. It's amazing how much fresher your home will appear after this task.

    Eliminate odors: Buyers will notice strong smells as soon as they walk through your front door. Treat smoke, mildew, and pet odors. (Regularly “Febreezing” does great for everyday odors.)

    Fix drippy faucets and running toilets: If any of your sinks or bathtubs drain slowly, unclog them.

    Remove clutter:  Clear off kitchen and bathroom counters. Think light and airy—only the essentials.

    Clean out all closets and cabinet drawers: Potential buyers will definitely look in
    closets for storage and nosy ones will open drawers! Make sure all valuables, medicines, and private paperwork are removed from storage areas just in case. Better to be safe than sorry.

    Test your doors: Make sure hinges and knobs are tightened and doors close properly.

    Do a few of these or all of these for major impact before listing. If you're short on time, (busy job and equally busy family schedule!) it might be a good time to have your home professionally cleaned. Bonus if you can get them done before your listing appointment with your ERA agent! Then you can simply focus on staging and get your house on the market much quicker!

    Buyers, what do you want to see in a potential new home? Let's help sellers create spaces that you want to move into.

    Have a great week and a very Happy Mother's Day weekend!

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