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Connie Erickson


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Quick Door County Real Estate Market Review

by Connie Erickson


Quick Market Comparison for Northern Door County for Jan 1, 2011 - June 8, 2011*

Liberty Grove, Sister Bay, Ephraim, Gibraltar, Baileys Harbor, Egg Harbor, Jacksonport, Sevastopol

Residential Waterfront 2010 2011  
Number of Home Sales 9 8    
Average Sales Price $544,389 $667,863    
Average Days on Market 352 332    
Number of Homes on Market 99 117    
Months of Inventory 55 Months 73 Months    


Residential Inland 2010 2011  
Number of Home Sales 22 29    
Average Sales Price $261,809 $260,503    
Average Days on Market 341 253    
Number of Homes on Market 265 279    
Months of Inventory 60 Months 48 Months    


Vacant Waterfront 2010 2011  
Number of Land Sales 1 1    
Average Sales Price $245,000 $35,000    
Average Days on Market 1658 235    
Number of Listings on Market 46 49    
Months of Inventory 230 Months 245 Months    


Vacant Inland 2010 2011  
Number of Land Sales 27 11    
Average Sales Price $79,826 $85,182    
Average Days on Market 401 639    
Number of Listings on Market 541 558    
Months of Inventory 100 Months 253 Months    


Commercial 2010 2011  
Number of Commercial Sales 5 7    
Average Sales Price $196,100 $294,500    
Average Days on Market 458 466    
Number of Listings on Market 75 70    
Months of Inventory 75 Months 50 Months    


Residential Condominium 2010 2011  
Number of Condo Sales 26 24    
Average Sales Price $289,188 $310,707    
Average Days on Market 533 537    
Number of Condos on Market 318 280    
Months of Inventory 61 Months 58 Months    


Hotel Condominium 2010 2011  
Number of Condo Sales 10 8    
Average Sales Price $82,120 $70,438    
Average Days on Market 363 3324    
Number of Condos on Market 167 136    
Months of Inventory 83 Months 85 Months    


*This represenation was prepared by Connie Erickson, Door County Realty, Inc. from the MLS statistics on 6/8/2011 and is based on data supplied by the Door County Board of REALTORS Multiple Listing Service. Neither the Board nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy. Data maintained by the Board or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market. All REALTOR member agencies report all their sales to the MLS unless directed otherwise by a seller. Therefore, there may be some sales not included in these statistics. Private sales (those with no REALTOR involvement) are not included in these statistics.

Happy Independence Day!

by Connie Erickson
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Don’t you just love summertime?  There is nothing like being in Door County during the summer!  It’s time to get that barbecue grill fired up, pull up the lawn chairs, invite the family over for a cookout, sip on some lemonade and watch the kids play in the sprinklers.  It just doesn’t get any better than that, does it?  With all the cookouts, hot summer weather, fireworks and water activities, we want to remind you to be safe and healthy this summer season!  Here are some “common-sense” safety tips to keep in mind that I received from my friend, Verl Workman:


  • Drink lots of water to stay hydrated (sorry folks, sodas don’t count!)
  • Remember to always use sunscreen, wear a hat and cover up or go inside during the hottest part of the day (11 am to 4 pm typically).
  • Keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold!  Items containing mayo, eggs, or dairy products can quickly go bad in the summer heat.  When in doubt, throw it out----A trip to the ER with food poisoning isn’t much fun.
  • Always fully cook all meats on the grill.
  • Use mosquito repellent to keep those pesky bugs at bay.
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  • If you drink alcoholic beverages—please drink responsibly and don’t drive.
  • And remember, alcohol will dehydrate you—so make sure to drink plenty of water as well.
  • If you must exercise outside—make sure you do so early in the morning or late in the evening—and carry plenty of water with you.
  • Heat stroke can be a deadly condition—make sure you know the symptoms:
  • Only use “legal” fireworks—and if you live in a restricted area for fireworks, follow your community regulations!  The fire department has enough to do without people setting off fireworks where banned.
  • A responsible adult should supervise all fireworks activities.
  • Never give fireworks to young children.
  • If you’re boating, please wear your flotation vests—even the best swimmer needs to!
  • Keep your pets safe and sound inside the house—fireworks are extremely loud to the sensitive ears of an animal.  During firework season, many animals left outside get frightened and run away—the Humane Society always reports an increase in lost animals this time of year.
  • Make sure your pet has plenty of fresh water at all times to help it cope with the heat—and never, ever leave a pet unattended in a vehicle—inside temperatures can top 120 degrees in about 30 minutes—even if you’re parked in the shade.
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I wish you and your family a wonderful 4th of July!  And if you have a friend or loved one serving this great country in one of the branches of the military, please remember to thank them for their courageous service – this country would not be what it is today without the efforts of so many brave men and women who serve for all of us.

Yes, You Can Finance Vacant Land!

by Connie Erickson
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There are lenders who prefer not to finance vacant land, however, Robin Sodd at North Shore Bank in Sister Bay will!  Their current lot loan program requires a minimum of 20% down.  The loan is a 3 year adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) at 3.50%.  The loan can be amortized up to 15 years if under $100,000.  The interest rate of 3.50% can adjust a maximum of 2% per year after the 3rd year and has a lifetime cap of 6%, so the interest rate will not exceed 9.50%.  (Note: These terms are as of May 11, 2011 and are subject to change.  See lender for APR.)

A letter from the Village, Town, or County Zoning Department (whichever applies) indicating the property is "buildable" is required.  In addition, a soil test confirming the type of septic system the property will support is also required.  If you do not plan to build right away, Robin said the soil test could possibly be waived.   A current survey of the property may be required.

For questions pertaining to vacant land loans, contact Robin Sodd at:  [email protected]

Big Zoning Changes Affect Shoreland Owners!

by Connie Erickson
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There are new rules coming that will affect shorefront land owners!

All properties that fall within shoreland zoning jurisdiction will be subject to the new rules. The new NR115 is in effect now, however counties have until February of 2012 to have an ordinance in place. The new ordinance could be in place anywhere from November 2011 to that February 2012. There may possibly be an extension from the State to that deadline. 

The following is my understanding of of the new rule after listening to a presentation given by Kay Miller of the Door County Zoning Department:

1.  There will be no clear cutting on a shorefront parcel, nor is there currently.  The rules will allow tree cutting/trimming of 30% of the lot or 200' whichever is less for viewing/access corridor. No additional cutting is allowed.


2. The height restriction will be 35’ above grade. The Door County Zoning Ordinance (DCZO) already has a 35' height restriction and a 28’ height restriction on lots less than 90' wide.

3. The biggest eye opener for me is the impervious restrictions which currently equals not more than 45% for most of the shoreland zoning districts under the DCZO.  Impervious means anything that is not green, so the current rules say that you can use 45% of the property to build, put in driveways, patios, etc., the remainder must remain "green."  The new rule says that you can only have 15% of the lot in impervious area.  "Green" means anything that is green:  vegetation, garden, trees, grass.  One can go as high as 30% of impervious area with mitigation, and the new rules will never allow any more than 30%.  This would apply to any proposed projects.  If you are over the allowable "Impervious Surface Ratio" you may keep what you have until some proposed change triggers action. Mitigation will require an agreement to be recorded on the deed.

4. There will be new rules regarding set back averaging.  The building set back requirement is 75' from the Ordinary High Water Mark (OHWM).   Under current rules, this 75' set back can be lessened should there be an existing dwelling on either side of you, but within 100' of your building site, that is located less than 75' from the OHWM.  This means you could have a home on one side and a vacant lot on the other side.   The new averaging procedure requires that there be dwellings on both sides and within 100' of your building site, in order to use the averaging procedure.

If you are considering...
-purchasing waterfront land and building, you may want to ACT NOW as the new rules may limit what you have in mind! 
-adding on to your existing waterfront home/cottage/structure, you may want to ACT NOW!
-making any type of changes whatsoever, you may want to ACT NOW!

As always, speak to the Zoning Department and a builder to see how these changes will affect you now or in the future.

To find out more about this, I encourage you to go to:  view the Door County Zoning Ordinance or call the Door County Zoning Department at 920.746.2323 and ask for Kay Miller or the appropriate zoning administrator for the town you are requesting information.

If you have a family member or friend who is planning on building on a shorefront/lakefront lot or expanding their current home or cottage, send this to them...they'll be glad you did!

Home Inspection - What will it Cost?

by Connie Erickson
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When purchasing a home, having a home inspection is a good way to insure there are not major defects with the property and it's a good way to learn about the property you are purchasing and how things work. Below, Gene Sunstrom of Second Opinion Home Inspections, answers common questions that I receive from Buyers.



1) What is the cost associated with home inspection?

The inspection fee for a typical single-family house varies as does the cost of housing. Similarly, within a given area, the inspection fee may vary depending on a number of factors such as the size of the house, its age and possible optional services such as radon testing or thermal imaging. The cost of a home inspection for an average home of approximately 2,000 square feet would be $300.00.

While finding out the cost of a professional inspection service is a great idea, a far better idea would be for customers who call to ask "What are the qualifications of the home inspector who will be inspecting my home?" because the answer to that question can determine how much a home inspection can save you both short and long term.

2) How long does it take?

The length of time that a home inspection takes varies with the size, age, additional testing, etc. A 2,000 square foot home normally takes from 1 ½ - 2 hours on site and an additional 1 hour to complete the written report.

3) Should Buyer be there?

We encourage the buyer to attend the inspection if possible; this provides an opportunity for the inspector to explain first hand issues discovered or possible suggestions to reduce maintenance on the home in the future.

It is often not practical for the buyer to attend; most home inspectors now have reports that are computer generated with digital images to accurately display problem areas or recommended improvements outside of the structural integrity of the building. These reports can be generated within hours of the onsite inspection and delivered by email to buyer and the buyer’s agent.

For answers to specific questions, you can contact Gene Sunstrom at:

[email protected] or visit his web site:

Home Sale Statistics

by Connie Erickson
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The Nation Association of REALTORS, in their April monthly Wisconsin Housing Report, reported sales of existing homes fell 18.5% in March compared to the same time last year. One has to be cautious when looking at these statistics because the stats are being compared with the same time last year when the home buyer tax credit was offered. This really is not an apples to apples comparison.

Existing home prices in the Northeast dropped 11.2%. It is important to remember that real estate markets are local.

The unemployment figures in Door County for the month of March improved slightly, but will improve largely as the summer approaches with the seasonal activity of the vacation market. Those who are buying recognize the opportunity to capitalize on the excellent interest rates and the fact that our market sale prices have decreased approximately 5 to 10%.

My personal activity is greater than the years’ before, and I anticipate a much better year in 2011 than 2010. While I remain cautiously optimistic, if one is priced correctly and teamed with a REALTOR with an aggressive marketing program, those combinations will obtain the Contract for Sale. The next and final step is getting it closed. So when you are looking for a REALTOR to select, ask the REALTOR how many Contracts (accepted Offers) they have had this year AND how many of those contracts closed. My contract to contract closed ratio, year to date is 100%.

Rush Hour in Fish Creek



5:37 AM - Tues., April 19, 2011
In front of the Door Community Auditorium


Remodeling Cost vs. Value

by Connie Erickson
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According to a recent article in "The Residential Specialist", the top home improvement projects that gave the highest return on investment in 2010 were: entry door replacement, garage door replacement, siding, wood deck addition, minor kitchen remodel, window replacement, attic bedroom remodel, and basement remodel. (March/April 2011) Eight of these ten items were exterior replacement projects, which "generally perform better because they are among the least expensive projects to complete and are nondiscretionary improvements that contribute to curb appeal, a strong subjective factor among homebuyers" the article explained. Two home improvements projects that recouped the least were home office remodels and sunroom additions.


by Connie Erickson
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Pier Registration Deadline Is April 1, 2011

Waterfront property owners with larger piers must register their piers with the DNR by April 1, 2011 to ensure their piers will be "grandfathered" from new size limits adopted by the State of Wisconsin in 2004.

Generally, a pier will need to be registered if it:

(a) is wider than 6 ft, but less than 8 ft in width

(b) has a platform at the end of the pier that has a surface area of less than 300 ft (w/ a max. width of 10 feet)


(c) more than 2 boat slips for the first 50 feet of shoreline frontage and 1 boat slip for each additional 50 feet of shoreline frontage.

To register a pier, a waterfront property owner must complete and mail a registration form to the DNR. To obtain a copy of the registration form and to find out more information about which piers need to be registered, please visit the DNR's website at: 

Waterway & Wetland Permits: Piers, Docks and Wharves.


by Connie Erickson
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So far this year, Door County’s Northern Door real estate market is showing a slight decline compared to last year.  As I look at the sales statistics for the period of January 1 through March 17, there were 38 closed sales reported to the Door County Multiple Listing Service in 2010 and 28 closed sales reported this year.  On a whole, the number of reported sales is less than last year, however, inland home sales are nearly double; 7 in 2011 vs. 13 reported this year.  The stats also indicate the list price to sale price ratio is up slightly for inland homes.  Last year, during these first three months, the sales reported were at 89.96% of list price.  This year, the ratio is up to 91.73%.  This does not mean the values are up, it merely indicates that the listing prices are closer to what Buyers are willing to pay.

I will be updating my market stats after the first quarter stats are in.  Watch early April for the updated report on my web site.

As you know, I LOVE TALKING REAL ESTATE…So if you ever have questions about Door County’s real estate market, do not hesitate to call me.Smile

Displaying blog entries 771-780 of 806




Contact Information

Photo of Connie Erickson Real Estate
Connie Erickson
Door County Realty, Inc.
Po Box 340 - 4027 Main Street
Fish Creek WI 54212
Office: 920-868-2075
Toll Free: 888-678-3949
Fax: 920-868-2425

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