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Connie Erickson's Blog

Connie Erickson

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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.

PIER REGISTRATION DEADLINE APRIL 1, 2011

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)

and/or

(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.

DOOR COUNTY MARKET CONDITIONS UPDATE

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

RUSH HOUR IN DOOR COUNTY

by Connie Erickson

RUSH HOUR IN DOOR COUNTY...
NATURE'S CURE FOR STRESS!

This morning, Bob & I took a ride through Peninsula State Park.  There was 6 inches of freshly fallen snow and we were blessed to be the first tracks!

This why we love living and working in beautiful Door County!

It truly is...NATURE'S CURE FOR STRESS!

WELLS IN DOOR COUNTY

by Connie Erickson
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Municipal sewer and water are available in the Village of Sister Bay and in the City of Sturgeon Bay.  Private wells are required in the rural areas of Door County as well in the towns and villages that offer municipal sewer only.   I recently had the opportunity to ask one of Door County’s most reputable well drillers, Euclid Well Drilling, common questions on wells that I receive when selling real estate.

 

 

Q:  What does a well cost?

A:  On average, a complete new well and pressure system runs approximately $8,000.00.

Q:  How deep are wells in Door County? 

A:  The average depth is 240’.  However, each area can be different…from 100’ deep in Little Sturgeon to over 300’ deep in the Monument Point area.

Q:  Are there areas in Door County that require deeper wells than other areas?

A:  The Department of Natural Resources requires different amounts of casing in different areas.

Q:  How long does a well last? 

A:  Wells should last many, many years.  It is the pressure system that wears out.  The pumps last anywhere from 10 to 20 years.

Q:  What is “blue shale”?  How does it affect wells?  Where is it found?

A:  Blue shale is soft rock.  We normally put our casing below the blue shale since it is soft and will flake off and actually make the water cloudy.  It can collapse and fall in on the pump.  It is usually found near the shorelines.

 

Mark and Cindy Euclid of Euclid Well Drilling can be contacted by email at:  [email protected]

DOOR COUNTY SEPTIC SYSTEM LAW

by Connie Erickson
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When working with both my Buyer and my Seller clients, I do my very best to keep surprises from occurring after we’ve entered into a Contract for Sale.  One item I discuss is the Door County Private Waste Disposal System Ordinance.  This ordinance affects all of our rural properties.

Door County’s Private Waste Disposal System Ordinance requires existing private septic systems to be evaluated prior to the transfer of ownership.  It is the seller’s responsibility to have the system inspected and pays the costs associated with the inspection.  A licensed soil testing does the inspection and submits a written report to the Door County Sanitarian’s office.  The sanitarian will personally inspect the system and make a final determination of passing or failing.

According to Chris Olson of the Door County Sanitarian’s office, over the past 5 to 10 years, the ratio of passing to failing systems has been approximately 80:20.  Of the 20% of systems that failed, approximately 80% of them failed because they were installed prior to 1975 and were in unsuitable soil conditions.  Chris also pointed out that steel holding tanks over 20 years old are also likely to fail.

If after an inspection, a system is deemed failing, the property owner will be required to replace the system within one year of the inspection date.  When buying or selling Door County real estate, I can help you through this process and make sure that we properly deal with the inspection as well as the situation of a failing system in an Offer to Purchase.

Lender Rules Are A Revolving Door

by Connie Erickson
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According to Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for the National Association of REALTORS, real estate sales in the US in 2010 were equal to the number of sales in 2000, yet the US population dropped by 27,000,000 since 2000.  (2011, REALTOR magazine).  As I wrote in my January newsletter, the Door County MLS reported a 5% increase in the number of reported sales in 2010 over 2009, however both years maintained 26% of properties listed for sale actually sold.

After 27 years in the real estate business and selling 60 to 100 properties a year in Door County, I'd like to think that there is not too much the I haven't seen.  However, these last couple of years it has been hard to get a handle on lenders and their financing requirements.  This is a revolving door of rules and regulations.  If your credit score is 640 you might get a loan, but you are in a better position if your score is higher.  Now, more than ever, it is vital that you speak with a local lender before you move forward with looking at real estate, even if you have cash for a big down payment.  I recently had a well qualified buyer with cash to pay for a property he wanted to purchase.  However, he wanted to financing the purchase.  The offer was made, subject to financing (which we anticipated would happen fast due to his cash position), but on the last day, he was turned down!   Even if you're "golden", have cash, and good credit, I strongly recommend....see a local lender first.  When you're ready, call me first.  I work with local lenders daily and can help you through the process.

4 Factors Involved in Selling Your Property

by Connie Erickson
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Location

The saying, "Location, Location, Location" holds true in Door County as in other markets. We are blessed with a variety of beauty throughout Door County and a diversity of buyers...some wanting waterfront, others preferring secluded acreage, and still others wanting a Village setting. Buyers will generally pay more for properties that feature a great view.

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Price

The faster you sell your property, the better. And research has shown that the faster selling properties are those that are priced right from the start.
Properties that are priced above the market take longer to sell and, in the end, tend to sell for less than they should have sold for if priced at the market value in the first place.

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Condition

New properties have a marketing edge over resale properties because they are clean and in pristine condition. When we work together as a Seller and Agent Team, I will share my staging DVD with you and my talents to help you stage your property for success.

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Agent Marketing/Effort

The agent you choose can dramatically affect how fast your property sells and how much.

I have 27 years experience and pride myself with superior market knowledge. I have a great reputation with other agents, which means your property will get plenty of exposure. We, at the Erickson Team, are proactive in our marketing efforts, not reactive. We also have strong records of customer/client satisfaction in our market place.

Real Estate Markets Are Local

by Connie Erickson

Yesterday we attended our monthly Door County Board of REALTORS luncheon and Bill Malkasian, President of the Wisconsin REALTORS Association, spoke to us. I love listening to Bill as he is always so well informed. I wanted to share with you some of the information he shared with us.

Bill emphasized the fact that real estate is "local". Madison, WI market is not the same as the Door County, WI market. Unfortunately, the press does not always report it that way. It is an important concept to understand and now more than ever, it is very important to choose a REALTOR who is familiar with the market and can interpret it for you. I will talk more about that later, and exactly how you can choose that REALTOR.

Bill stated that there is a 13.5 month inventory average in the State; it is far different in Door County. The upper end second home market, he said, is the most challenged of all categories in the State (Door County had more of these sales in ’10 than ’09 and you can always see the whole picture all the way back to ’08 on www.ConnieErickson.com). Bill indicated 2011 will be a better year because of the certainty of the tax code as it relates to capital gains. In 2110, the average sales price for the State was $189,900. He explained Freddie and Fannie cease to exist, Bill said, "they will exist in 5 years and be replaced due to privatization."

While Bill and I know you’d like a better report – Bill said to expect flat line growth in ’11. There are 35 newspapers left in Wisconsin; 17 are owned by Gannett. Interest rates may go down again a bit later this Spring and this is a great time to buy. Finally, Bill shared that Wisconsin has a low unemployment rate of 7.8% compared to the 9.4% US rate.

Lastly, I want to share I am the proud recipient of the Betty Graf Scholarship Award for 2011 and will use that assistance to take the Certified Property Distressed Expert course in February so that I can better assist my clients who are upside down and close to or in foreclosure.

Market and Mortgage Rate Predictions for 2011

by Connie Erickson
 

On January 4, 2011, Laura Seefeldt of Johnson Bank spoke with me about financing and predictions for 2011 mortgage rates.

Displaying blog entries 811-820 of 839

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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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