RochMN Real Estate Blog 

"Good to know" stuff on buying or selling your Rochester Minnesota area home (with enough generic stuff to make it worth anyone's time)

July 24, 2018

4 Best Home Staging Secrets

If you want potential buyers to choose your house instead of your competition, home staging — the art of making a home look visually appealing — can make you stand out from the crowd.

The goal of staging is to make a home appealing to the broadest pool of buyers which often results in more buyers and more competition for your home. More competition helps your home sell faster and for more money. Staging strategies  focus on improving a property's appeal for the target home buyer and making it as attractive as possible. Many real estate agents, such as RochMNHomes.net offer free home staging consultations for their clients. We use a variety of items such as paintings, accessories, plants, pillows, bedding and more to help your home appeal to the most buyers.


Listing Agent Mantra

Any good listing agent knows there are three basics when preparing a home for sale:

1. Declutter

If you're not using it in the next 6 months, pack it up and store it elsewhere.

2. Deep Clean

Make it sparkle. Start from the ceiling and work your way down to the floor. Wash it, wipe it, dust it, polish it, shine it until it is shining clean.

3. Fix It

If it's broken, fix it. If it's beyond repair, replace it. If you can't afford to do that, disclose it on your property disclosure.

Did that? Now what? The experts at RochMNHomes.net can tell you those two things may not be enough!

Beyond Cleaning - Staging

It's tidy, cleaned and looking good. Take things to the next level with home staging. But how?  Many real estate agents, such as the  RochMNHomes.net team, offer free staging when you list with them. I have an attic full of staging items to lend my clients for the staging process: pillows, curtains, bed cover sets, art work and knick-knacks. You can also search online for "Home Stagers" to hire a local professional.

But it's not that hard! You may be able to do this on your own! Just follow a few simple guidelines.

1. Light it Up!

Most home buyers don't even know it but they respond positively to both natural light and unnatural light. Go through the house and make sure you are using the highest wattage bulb that each light fixture can manage. Add lamps in dark corners. Bounce light off the ceilings in especially dark rooms. Open curtains and blinds during the daylight hours. Do what you can to make the lighting inviting.

 

2. The 1/3 rule

Bookcases and shelves should be, at most, 1/3 full. Anything more looks cluttered. 

 

3. First Impressions Count

What do home buyers do while the real estate agent is fumbling around trying to get the key out of the lockbox and open the door? They look around your front door area and make their first impression! And since you usually come in through a side door or garage door you may have no idea what your front entrance looks like. Make sure this area is clean, free of dog poop (yes, I said it cuz it had to be said) and spider webs then add some pretty things such as flowers.

 

4. Pick a color

Pick a contemporary color for your decorating theme. We're not talking wall and carpet colors because those should be neutral. We're talking bedding, pillows, curtains, accessories, etc. What's the current "in" color? Just visit your local Pier One Imports, Pottery Barn, Ikea or Hobby Lobby store and you'll see one or two colors that dominate the home decor sections. Shades of blue have been very popular the last few years while shades of yellow and red have been considered out-of-style. Find out the latest design color of choice (nothing outlandish) and splash it around the house with vases, art work, couch pillows and more. Stick to one main color and one accent color and you should be good!

 

July 18, 2018

Where Is It Wednesday, July 18th, 2018

Do you know where this rock lion is located in Rochester, MN?

This lion has been around for quite some time and was placed there to guard the home of two very famous brothers. This particular lion has a twin right across the road to help him guard this special home. 

Where am I?

If you know where I am, share with a friend so they can play too!

 

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July 16, 2018

Minnesota July Home Owner Maintenance List

Zoom! That was summer zipping by at lightning speed! Don't worry though. There is still time to get your Minnesota summer home chores done. 

1. Clean the gutters.

Unclog those babies before they cause you lots of problems. Clogged gutters lead to water in your basement. Yuck. Don't go there. It's way less expensive to clean your gutters and downspouts than to replace your basement carpet and belongings.

But this video may not be the best way to clean your gutters, oh my.  That leaf blower may  fall on your head.

Try this instead:

 

2. Clean windows

I get the best clean using a vinegar and water solution with newspaper. I've tried all kinds of other products and they are fine but the best thing has been simple vinegar. 

We splurged this year and hired Squeegee Squad to clean all of our windows, inside and out, plus our screens. The cost was around $250.00. I thought that was a bargain considering how many windows and screens we have on our home. It's Squeegee Squad from now on for me! And no, I wasn't paid for making this comment :)

3. Clean the dryer vent.

A clogged up dryer vent comes up fairly regularly on home inspections. Summer is the right time to take a looksie at the dryer vent to the exterior of your home and give it a quick clean. Clogged dyer vents cause hundreds of house fires a year so consider this task a safety precaution. 

4. Clean the fridge coils.

While you're in cleaning mode, take a minute to vacuum your fridge coils. It will help your fridge to run more efficiently in these hot summer months. The coil usually located at the bottom of the fridge by the kickplate or on the back of the refrigerator. 

5. Switch the direction of your ceiling fans

Is there a more controversial home maintenance topic? Probably, but not in my house. Most directions say to run the ceiling fan in a counter clockwise direction during the summer month as this will blow air down on you, hitting your sweaty body and causing a cooling effect when the breeze hits your moist skin. They also say to run your ceiling fan in the clockwise direction during the winter months. The idea is that cooler air will be drawn up from the floor, toward the ceiling pushing the warm air congested at the ceiling out of the way and back down to you as you lounge about.

Posh to that. I run my ceiling fan clockwise in the summer. Cold air naturally falls. My air conditioned air is sitting on the floor or in my basement. I use a ceiling fan running clockwise to pull the cold air up from the basement or floor and distribute the cooler air about my living area. This has worked wonders for us getting the cooler air out of our basement and to our upper levels. 

I then switch the ceiling fan to run in a counter clockwise direction in the winter months. Hot air naturally rises. All of my heated air is sitting at the top of my vaulted ceiling in the winter. I use the ceiling fan in the counter clockwise direction to push the warm air down into my living area.  This really helps our naturally cooler basement to get some heat during the winter months. 

TIP: To see which way your fan is moving air just turn it on a higher speed and spray a mist of water under it. Watch which way the mist moves to tell if air is being pushed down or pulled up.

6. Speaking of ceiling fans, clean ceiling fan blades.

Nothing collects dust better than a fan blade. Place a towel or sheet under the fan to collect any dust bunnies that fall from your dust rag. There are quite a few dusting tools you can use for fans but my fav is the simple Swiffer Dusters with an extension rod.

7. Replace hose washers.

Stop your garden hose spigot leak with a quick replacement of the washer. You can usually get a pack of 6 or more for under $2.00. You only need one or two. If you're like me you'll likely misplace the rest so put the extra washers in a zip lock bag and staple them to your garage wall. Works for me. 

8. Check the grading around the exterior of your home.

Water flows downhill so make sure you have a positive grade away from your home. You should have about an inch per foot for about 8-10 feet. 

 

9. Turn your furnace humidifier to the Summer setting.

Oops. I always forget this one.

10. A/C service

I'm on an annual service with Rochester, MN K & S Heating and Cooling. They come every spring and service my air conditioner and check the furnace in the fall. The annual service program is offered at a discount and they will check the A/C.

11. Caulk the exterior of your home.

Check the caulk around windows, roof vents, dryer vents, plumbing lines, water spigots, doors, skylights and more. This is a great time to fill cracks and gaps in sidewalks and driveways as well.

 

July 11, 2018

Where is it Wednesday, July 11th, 2018

Do you know where this floral electrical box is located in Rochester, Minnesota?

The electrical boxes have been transformed into unique art pieces all throughout Rochester, Minnesota. There are many located through downtown Rochester! Do you know where this particular box is located?

Where am I?

If you know where I am, share with a friend so they can play too! Take a day trip and go find it for yourself!

Looking for homes in the Rochester, MN? Click the link below to search for homes in the area.

RochMNHomes.net

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July 4, 2018

Where is it Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Happy Independence Day Rochester! Do you know where this huge American Flag is located in town?

The American flag is a representation of the United States of America, the struggles our country has endured and the people that have fought to protect this country. The flag has 13 stripes, one to represent each of the original colonies. The colors have meaning too. Red represents valor, white represents purity while blue represents perserverence and justice. Find out more about the USA flag at: Old Glory: History of the Flag of the United States of America

There are many USA flags flying in Rochester but few are this large!

Hint: This flag is posted on the side of a building which reminds us of one of our most sacred freedoms, the freedom of speech. 

Where am I? 

If you know where I am, Share this with your friends so that others can play too!

Looking for homes in Rochester, MN? Click the link below to search for homes in the area. RochMNHomeSearch

 


Where Is It Wednesday Reveal

Did you know where this ginoromous USA flag is located in Rochester Minnesota? Good for you!

This huge Old Glory is located on the north side of the Post Bulletin at the intersection of 3rd St Avenue SE and Center St SE in Rochester, MN. The Rochester Post-Bulletin was created when The Post and Record and The Rochester Daily Bulletin merged in 1925 with Glenn Whithers as owner and Clarence Blakely as business manager. The Withers family ran the paper from 1925 until Bill Boyne took over in 1979. That's a looooonnnnnnggggg time!

If you look closely in the photo above you can see a bit of the recently remodeled Mayo Civic Center. That same building hosts the Rochester Civic Theater and the Rochester Art Center. Just one block away is the Rochester Public Library. All those make this a great place for a super huge USA Flag!

June 27, 2018

Where is it Wednesday, June 27th, 2018

Have you visited or seen the People’s Food Co-op in Rochester, MN?

The People’s Food Co-op is a community owned, neighborhood grocery store. Their goal is to build community and be the best fresh food market in the country.

Where am I?

If you know where I am, share with a friend so they can play too. Take a day and go check it out for yourself!

 

Looking for homes in Rochester, MN? Click the link below to search homes in the area. http://www.rochmnhomesearch.net

 

June 18, 2018

Where is it Wednesday, June 20th, 2018

June 20, 2018

Where am I?

If you know where I am, share this blog with a friend so they can play to!

Do you know where this mini-library is located? You can find many of our Rochester are Little Free Libraries on the Rochester Public Library map ( HERE) but not all of them, including this obscure little house.

This particular library is in a Rochester surrounding community known at one time for the gold found along the river banks.

 

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June 13, 2018

Where is It Wednesday, June 13th, 2018

Can you remember where this Barn Quilt is located? Here is a hint, it is located somewhere on the Southwest side of Rochester, MN and is somewhere you would go to learn more about the past.

 

Where am I?  

If you know where I am share with a friend so they can play to!

 

Looking for homes in Rochester, MN? Click the link below to search homes in the area. http://www.rochmnhomesearch.net

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June 14, 2018

Where is It Wednesday Reveal

Congratulations to all the RochMN fans who knew this one! This Barn Quilt is on Ralph Stoppel Farmstead, part of the Olmsted County History Center. The grounds are open to the public and a great way to spend a few hours of your time.

Learn More!

History of Barn Quilts

History of Olmsted County

History of Ralph Stoppel Farmstead

 

Find more modern day homes for sale in Southwest Rochester here:

http://www.rochmnhomesearch.net/SW-ROCHMN/

June 6, 2018

Where Is It Wednesday, June 6th, 2018

Do you remember where this little goose is located in Rochester, MN?

This local art piece was designed by a local SEMVA artist.

Where am I?

If you know where I am, share this with a friend and see if they know too!

 

Looking for homes for sale in Rochester, MN? Click the link below to search homes in the area.

RE/MAX Results Rochester MN Homes

Check back tomorrow for the answer!

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June 6, 2018

5 Tick Safeguards for Your Yard