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Say What? How Old is that Furnace? - 11/21/09 06:21 AM
Just had a home inspection on an 1850s farmhouse near Northfield, Vermont. The community is actually Brookfield, and is an idyllic little area. Just a handful of houses and a church. But that's not the point. That's just the setting. It's written right there on the furnace "Installed 1995". I mean, it's handwritten in Sharpie. That's got to be official right? Well, it's technically true. The furnace was installed in 1995. Oh, except that when you look at the manufacturer's information sticker, it turns out that the furnace was actually built in 1989. What was it doing for those six years? (4 comments)
Montpelier Multi Families with Motivated Sellers - 11/21/09 05:44 AM
There aren't too many decent multi-family properties for sale in Montpelier right now. Some of them are priced so that only owner-occupied situations make sense (i.e., the cash flow is too low for an invesor). Some of them are priced very competitively, but with 20% down, then closing costs, then any repairs or renovations, the cost of entry is prohibitive for many investors.
But there are a couple of recent exceptions. There's a duplex on Hubbard Street and a triplex on Barre Street that have each seen recent price drops. More than that, there's a very real chance that (1 comments)
Guess the High Sale in Barre, Vermont - 11/19/09 01:15 PM
Guess the High Sale in Barre, Vermont My wife's parents are from Southern California, and in so many ways, it's a different world from ours here in Montpelier and Barre. There's traffic, the ocean, gigantic malls, etc. But, as a realtor working my tail off for buyers and sellers in Montpelier and Barre, the funniest difference is in the cost of houses. Two years ago the median home price in their county was $600,000. Now, with the California Correction, it's down to $400,000. How the heck does the "median" person buy a "median" priced home in that county? In Barre, there (2 comments)
Slow Time? What Slow Time? - 11/19/09 12:51 PM
Stick Season In Montpelier and Barre I will admit, the phones aren't ringing as steadily, and I'm getting fewer email inquiries about our listings as I did throughout the spring, summer, and early fall...but it's not dead. Not by a long shot. Two weeks ago I had three offers come in (2 are accepted, one is a short sale, so you never know when that'll land). Last week I added another offer and a new listing. Today I'm headed out to see about a listing, and then this morning I had an email inquiry wanting to know about selling her house. (1 comments)
Weatherizing Your Home...On the Government Dime - 11/19/09 09:42 AM
We just had a very interesting experience with a multi-family property in Montpelier, VT. It gets pretty cold here in the winter, and, with this property there are two furnaces servicing the four units. Ideally, they'd be split off and have each unit with their own separate heat source, but that's just not happening. I called Montpelier Construction, and Malcolm Gray came right out to do the blower door test. Turns out the old building is leaking air like a sieve. That's bad for the environment, and it's costing money. I had Montpelier Construction spray foam the basement sill, seal all (3 comments)
First, Formula Ford in South Barre has merged with Walker Motors on the Barre Montpelier Road. Looks like they're going to move operations to the old Walker Motors location, which is great for the area because tha roundabout has so much exposure! Second, TJ Maxx appears to be coming to the old Ames department store near Price Chopper. Sounds like good news all around. It'll take up the empty retail space, provide local jobs, and, let's face it, it'll give Walmart a little competition. (2 comments)
Why I Love Maps - 11/18/09 10:23 AM
When I was in elementary school, the teachers always seemed to keep the big maps pulled down at the side of the chalkboard. I stared at those maps more than I should have. And let's not even get started on the maps in the social studies books. Westward expansion? Are you kidding me, I loved it!
Yesterday I pulled out all the sales in Barre and mapped them all out. I thought I might see some indicator as to which neighborhoods had the most sales. And I did. There are two or three areas that really had the most transactions. (0 comments)
Eleventh Hour Roadblock to Close - 11/18/09 08:54 AM
Two days before the close, and after not the easiest escrow period, we get another roadblock. The lender tells the buyer, "Oh, by the way, there's some peeling paint around the windowsill. That'll need to be fixed before the close." Two days before the close? Fortunately, our office is quick, and we had someone go out to take care of the paint to keep the deal on track. But seriously? Two days before the close? Lesson: On the buyer's side, be in regular contact with the lender asking if things are on track, and if not, what needs to happen. I (5 comments)
Motivated Seller Says, "Sell This House!" - 11/17/09 05:32 AM
Deal of the Month in Williamstown, Vermont I don't usually put my listings up on Active Rain, but this is one that gets an exception. 2 bedroom 1 bath saltbox on over an acre of level yard. The basement finishing has been begun, and it could be completed to give more living space, playroom, den, whatever you want. Sunroom that leads onto the oversized deck with distant mountain views.
It's incredibly conveniently located, too. I mean, it's only about four minutes to I-89, but it's quiet. From I-89 you're a quick commute to Barre, Montpelier, Northfield, Waterbury,and Randolph. Do you (0 comments)
Perfect Time to Buy...or Sell - 11/17/09 05:16 AM
The Perfect Time to Buy or Sell a House in Montpelier or Barre Is... There's no one perfect time to buy or sell a house in Montpelier or Barre. Sorry to disappoint. It only really matters when it's a good time for you and your family. In the summer, there are lots more new listings than the fall or winter. So...lots more competition. In June, there may be 20 new listings in a day, and yours can get lost in the shuffle. On the other hand, there are more buyers looking as well. Yin and Yang. Postive and Negative. In (0 comments)
Home Inspections and Negotiation - 11/16/09 12:47 PM
Once the offer has been made and accepted, and the house is under contract, the usual next step is to have a qualified home inspector take a look at the property. Why? What is he or she looking for? What does the buyer DO with that information? Inspectors--and I'm not an inspector,I've just been through a bazillion inspections--give their expert opinions on the various systems and components of the house. These include: Electric Roof Exterior Plumbing Foundation The idea is that having an inspection helps remove some of the surprises of owning a house. Remember this: In the Barre and Montpelier (2 comments)
Short Sales and Foreclosures in Montpelier and Barre - 11/16/09 05:45 AM
Short Sales in Montpelier and Barre Lots of people are interested in short sales and foreclosures in Montpelier and Barre. This post focuses on short sales: What they are, and what a buyer and seller can expect from them. What is a Short Sale? A short sale is any sale in which the seller's going to take less than they owe on the house. Say they owe $150,000 but the Montpelier and Barre markets -which ultimately tell how much the house is worth-only support a price of $125,000. It won't sell for $150,000. But if the owner NEEDS to sell (moving (1 comments)
Adventures in Septic Tanks - 11/14/09 08:31 PM
Adventures in Septic Tanks Buyer loves the house. Buyer and Seller quickly reach agreement on price and terms. Things are moving forward swimmingly...foreshadowing... Wrench! The buyers are using FHA financing, and, as such, the appraiser needs to know exactly where the septic tank is. No problem, right? I mean, the sellers know that, right? Wrench! The sellers DON'T know where the tank is. They're pretty sure, but never had it pumped. No problem. I'll just go back and find the previous owners and check with all the local septic pumping companies and see who did it, and where the tank (3 comments)
What Does it Cost to Heat Your Home? - 11/10/09 05:38 AM
What's It Cost to Heat Your Home in Montpelier, Barre, and Central Vermont? I like little tidbits of information. Factoids. Trivia. Although there was a factoid in USA Today a couple months ago about what type of bread Americans prefer. That was an eye roller. But here's something I found interesting from the Champlain Business Journal. It's a breakdown of price per BTU for different heating sources. Now, I have a couple of questions about the findings, but you know, it's a factoid. The study apparently made some assumptions about cost per gallon/cord/ton/kilowatt hour. Costs are the estimates for one million (3 comments)
Spreading Gossip About Barre Street in Montpelier - 11/07/09 05:46 AM
Spreading Gossip about Barre Street in Montpelier I learned in 2nd grade that it's not good to spread gossip. When I was a teacher (and yes, I taught 2nd grade), I tried to get the kids to understand the same concept. Nonetheless... Word on the street in Montpelier--and I've heard this from more than one person--is that Barre Street, long the gritty, shuffling along cousin to The Meadow, College Street, and Liberty Street, is the new cool Bohemian place to live. Think of it as the Jamaica Plans of Montpelier. Now I'm not saying that Barre Street is without flaw. But, if (1 comments)
The Ultimate Tax Sale - 11/02/09 08:14 PM
I just read an interesting real estate oriented piece of history in Smithsonian magazine. Turns out that the land on which Arlington National Cemetery sits was once the property of Robert E. Lee. Lots of people probably knew that. Actually, it belonged to his wife, but hey, he married well. Not long after the war began, Lincoln (spurred by a fellow named Meigs) had the idea that any property abandoned by people siding with the Confederacy would be assessed a special tax. Oh, and the tax could only be paid in person. Oh, and the person could only be the owner. (1 comments)
Vermont's a small state. Central Vermont (Montpelier, Barre, Northfield, U-32) really is a lively and transparent community. We all know someone in common, and I wanted to expand this transparency to a professional real estate oriented community website.
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.