Blog :: 2012

Welcome to our blog!

Below you will find information on real estate, our local area, and the community. Please feel free to comment on any posts, we would love to hear what you think! 

The Fair Deal and the "Steal of a Deal"

Prices have come down along with a slight decrease in our market inventory. This pricing change reflects a "meeting of the minds" between buyers and sellers. It seems that sellers are tired of waiting for a better deal and in some cases, so are buyers.

As a seller, it isn't easy to "cut your losses" and take the deal but carrying costs are a significant factor and need to be considered when looking at the big picture.  The question becomes; "How long will I carry this property if I do not take this deal?"  In this second home/ vacation market that question is answered one of two ways. The seller will decide to hold on to and even rent the property to recoup some carrying costs or they will calculate future expenses and decide to take less and close the deal.

Here at Okemo many owners do not "need" to sell.  This is a hard concept for some of our buyers who have been watching the market with diligence waiting for the right time to get a great deal. Many are disappointed when a seller will not let a property go.  A fair deal may not always be the bargain you hoped to get; but before walking away from a fair deal consider some important points.

How long will I own this property?

How often will I use the property?

Is this location going to make life easier for my family when we arrive on a Friday night after a hectic week?

What are you really saying "no" to when you walk away from negotiations?   If it isn't right, don't' try to make it work. However if it is the right property for you, finding a "steal of a deal" isn't more important than a fair deal.

Both on and off the mountain, short sales and foreclosures are few. The entire state of Vermont is 50th in the country with the least number of short sales and foreclosures; this has translated to a more stable market than in some of our other New England states. Although we know the market isn't going to fully recover back to 2005-2006 pricing any time soon, we do believe that we are seeing an upward turn.

Consider the fair deal. Even if you do not come across the "steal of a deal", now is the time to buy at Okemo.

Fundraiser to benefit local family

Join us on May 26th, 2012 at the 5th annual community tag sale fundraiser.  The event will be held on the Ludlow Green from 9 am to 3 pm. 100% of the proceeds will go to a local family who recently lost everything to a house fire. For more information please see our flyer. We hope to see you there!

5 Feng Shui Concepts to Help a Home Sell

1. Pay special attention to the front door, which is considered the "mouth of chi" (chi is the "life force" of all things) and one of the most powerful aspects of the entire property. Abundance, blessings, opportunities, and good fortune enter through the front door. It's also the first impression buyers have of how well the sellers have taken care of the rest of the property. Make sure the area around the front door is swept clean, free of cobwebs and clutter. Make sure all lighting is straight and properly hung. Better yet, light the path leading up to the front door to create an inviting atmosphere.

2. Chi energy can be flushed away wherever there are drains in the home. To keep the good forces of a home in, always keep the toilet seats down and close the doors to bathrooms.

3. The master bed should be in a place of honor, power, and protection, which is farthest from and facing toward the entryway of the room. It's even better if you can place the bed diagonally in the farthest corner. Paint the room in colors that promote serenity, relaxation, and romance, such as soft tones of green, blue, and lavender.

4. The dining room symbolizes the energy and power of family togetherness. Make sure the table is clear and uncluttered during showings. Use an attractive tablecloth to enhance the look of the table while also softening sharp corners.

5. The windows are considered to be the eyes of the home. Getting the windows professionally cleaned will make the home sparkle and ensure that the view will be optimally displayed.

Source: Sell Your Home Faster With Feng Shui by Holly Ziegler (Dragon Chi Publications, 2001)

Wait... What is that smell? Do you have pets?

Spring is a busy time for real estate sales. The market picks up dramatically this time of year but so does the competition. You've read the articles and took the advice. Likely you have improved your curb appeal, touched up the paint, de-cluttered your space and put out the Welcome mat. You are ready for potential buyers!

Wait...what is that smell? Do you have pets?

Don't let pet odors derail your home sale. You've worked hard to get your house ready to show; here are some tips to take care of that often overlooked problem-the dreaded pet odors!

Air out your house- Let the fresh air in, open all windows to circulate air and sweep out unpleasant odors. Spring is a great time for this.

Scrub thoroughly- Use vinegar to scrub bare floors and walls soiled by pets or try an odor-neutralizing product purchased at a pet supply store for $10 to $25. For bigger areas you may have to spend several hundred dollars to hire a service that specializes in hard-to-clean stains.

Paint, replace, or seal walls- When heavy-duty cleaners haven't taken the smell out of drywall, plaster, or woodwork, try adding a fresh coat of paint or stain. As a last resort replace the drywall or wood altogether.

Wash your drapes and upholstery- Pet odors hide in fabrics. Thoroughly clean all your fabric window coverings. You can clean upholstered furniture using a cleaner specially designed to remove pet hair or pay a pro.

Clean your carpets- This can be a do it yourself job but one that a pro will do relatively inexpensively, about $25 to $50 per room, depending on their size and condition of carpet. After the carpet dries, have a friend perform a sniff test, this will tell you if you need the extra deodorizing products. If carpeting cannot be sufficiently cleaned and deodorized it will need to go.

Place potpourri or scented candles in strategic locations- Put an exclamation point on your deep clean efforts with potpourri and scented candles. Don't go overboard, use a mild potpourri or candles in your entry to create a warm first impression, don't forget the kitchen and bathrooms.

Control ongoing urine smells- If your dog uses indoor pee pads, put down a new pad each time the dog goes. Be sure to dispose of them outside in a trash can with a tight lid. Don't forget to remove even clean pads from view before each showing.

Replace kitty litter daily and sweep up around the litter box. Don't forget to hide the litter box before each showing.

Relocate pets- Consider sending your pet on a temporary vacation with a really good friend or family member. If you cannot bear to be away from your pets, remove them from the house for showings and put away their dishes and toys.

These tips will allow potential buyers to see the best your home has to offer without distractions.

Spring is the time to buy

We are experiencing quite a bit of traffic as buyers look for value.  Timing is everything.  In my previous blog post, I mentioned the sharp price reductions and aggressive offers being made.  We believe the time is right and Okemo proved again this winter the value of a great mountain.  If you are in town, stop by and visit us. If not, our website makes it easy to start the search from wherever you may be. We are here to help, just give us a call. Happy hunting!

Summer in the Okemo Valley

As the snows melt and our back roads dry, almost nothing is anticipated more here at Okemo than lush green pastures, sweet scents and the fresh start to summer.  I dare say  no one appreciates the roar of the ocean, a salting air breeze or sand between my toes more than I do ... but... after living in Ludlow for 28 years I have come to be a most appreciative participant of summers in the Green Mountains!

Calling All Real Estate Shoppers!

If you are thinking of purchasing a ski home here at Okemo come shopping in the summer for a real eye opener.  You may just realize a ski home is great but a ski home with nearby lakes, bike trails and waterfalls promises so much more.

Come to Vermont Where We Do What We Want!

Skiing, biking, boating, hiking, shopping, zip lining, strolling, kayaking, tour wineries, be awed by the fall foliage and more