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Top Blog Real Estate Articles in 2018 - Jamey Kramer Group

by The Jamey Kramer Group

Top 20 Real Estate Articles 2018

Happy New Year from the Jamey Kramer Group! We hope you are having a great 2019 so far: staying warm and enjoying some of the warmer, sunnier days of this winter so far.

As we do every year around this time, we are enjoying the process of looking back at what made 2018 so special and what our valuable clients and readers have meant to us.

We are always so grateful to say that we serve the beautiful communities of Novi, Northville, and South Lyon in Oakland County, Michigan. It's a beautiful place to live and serve - and you all are what make it that way. We are honored to have your support and your trust.

Because we value this community so dearly, and also because we see what a fantastic job it does serving its citizens at every level, we always want to partner with these cities and promote all of their best aspects. One way we do this is through this blog, as we highlight community events and activities for each month.

This past year, 2018, has been another hopeful one of those of us in the real estate market. The economy and real estate trends have continued to stay strong, and we've been able to see many people buy and sell their dream homes.

We find it to be a unique privilege to be in the lives of the many singles, couples, and families as they are buying and selling, and 2018 was no exception. It's often one of the most exciting and momentous processes in anyone's life, and we get to walk alongside you! We are committed to doing our best to be there for you in this time of your life to make sure you're as supported as possible.

To that end, we try to offer the most helpful tips and information for the current real estate market in the current season. We make sure when we write that our information is up to date and that it's helpful for our readers as they make decisions about their homes.

As exciting as it can be to go on a new adventure - to buy or sell your home - we know that it's often stressful and exhausting. We want to be there to help you through it, either with the knowledge and expertise we've gained from our many years of working in this business, or with the simple, personal touch of having one of us by your side.

After all - we do this all the time! Hopefully, you will only have to do it once or twice in your life. And we're just a phone call away.

Every year we assess what you wanted to read by rounding up our top most popular articles from the year before using Google Analytics. We get to see what you liked most and found most helpful - both in our real estate section and in the community section of our blog.

At the beginning of the next year, we put them all in one place, so you have a handy recap. Without further adieu, here are the top most popular articles from 2018! Happy New Year and happy reading!

Top 10 Real Estate Articles in 2018

1. Is Novi, Michigan a Safe Place to Live?

2. Is Northville, Michigan a Good Place to Live?

3. Novi, Michigan - The Origin of Its Mysterious Name

4. 3 Manageable Strategies to De-clutter Your House Before Selling

5. Top Kitchen Fixes For Mass Appeal
 
6. Deep Cleaning Checklist to Sell Your Home Fast

7. What Matters When Applying for a Mortgage
   
8. Hottest Design Trends to Help Sell Your House Quickly

9. Cheap Fixes To Sell Your House Quickly

10. 4 Reasons Your House is Sitting on the Market     

    
Top 10 Northville, Novi, & South Lyon Community Event Articles 2018

1. Easter Brunches in Novi and Northville, MI

2. How Many Snow Days Are Michigan Schools Allowed

3. Easter Egg Hunts in Novi Northville and South Lyon, MI 2018

4. Restaurants Open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day in Northville and Novi, Michigan

5. Best Local Places to Eat Thanksgiving Dinner in Northville and Novi Michigan

6. Restaurants Open Christmas Eve and Day in Northville and Novi, Michigan

7. 4th of July Events for Novi and Northville, Michigan 2018

8. Easter Brunches in Northville and Novi, MI 2015

9. Christmas Events in Northville, Michigan - November 2018

10. Thanksgiving in Northville and Novi, Michigan

 

Takeaway

We appreciate your input and requests! Please feel free to let us know if there is any subject you would like us to cover. And please remember, we are here whenever you need us!

Local Events in Novi, Michigan: December Break - January 2019

by The Jamey Kramer Group

Novi, Michigan Events January 2019

Do you ever feel deflated after the holidays are over and the reality of a long winter is stretching out in front of you?

It always helps to know about all the cheery community events right around the corner to fill those long December break vacation and January days! And, Novi, Michigan has a great lineup of exciting events.

Kick off the New Year, Novi's best kids New Year's Eve celebration that is perfect for those little ones in your life who won't be up until midnight to ring in the New Year. Check out what else January holds for you and yours.

Novi New Year's Eve Bash

  • Sunday, December 30, 2018, 12:00 pm – 3:00 pm
  • Paradise Park
  • 45799 Grand River Ave., Novi, Michigan
  • www.paradiseparknovi.com
  • Admission cost: $13.95 each and $10.95 ten-years-old and younger.

Bring your kids for a New Year's Eve celebration in style! This event is everything your family could ask for - in the middle of the day. The party begins with a pizza buffet served from 12:00 pm to 1:30 pm. The admissions price includes laser tag, crafts, a countdown, and balloon drop, prizes and much more.

Reservations and payment are required. Call 248-735-1050 to make reservations or for more information.

Novi Travel Camp

  • Dates: December 26-28 and January 2-4
  • Time: Wednesday - Friday, 7:30 am - 5:30 pm
  • Age: 6-13
  • Price: Residents $40 / Non-Residents $48 per day
  • Location: Civic Center, 45175 10 Mile Rd., Novi, Michigan

The City of Novi Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services Department puts on an excellent day camp, perfect for kids on winter break. Every day is a new location with new activities to keep them active and engaged, just like summer camp. Regular daily activities will include kickball, soccer, relay races, arts, and crafts.

For more information, please visit Novi Now.

Reindeer Camp

  • Dates: December 26 - 28, January 2 – 4
  • Time: Wednesday - Friday, 9:00 am – 3:00 pm
  • Ages: 4-12
  • Price: Residents $150 / Non-Residents $180
  • Location: Carousel Acres

If your kids are into nature and farming and they love making nature crafts, Reindeer Camp may be just the place for them on winter break! Winter animals like reindeer, arctic foxes, and other farm animals will feature as a big part of this experience. Crafts made with antlers, wood and animal fiber take the fun to the next level.

For more information and availability, please call 248-347-0400.

Nerf Wars

  • Date: Friday, January 11
  • Time: 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
  • Ages: 8-12
  • Price: Residents $15 / Non-Residents $17 per person
  • Location: Novi Civic Center, 5175 W 10 Mile Rd, Novi, MI
  • Registration Ends: Jan 6

Are your kids already tearing down the house with their extra energy now that cold weather has hit? Get them to Nerf Wars! Bring your own Nerf guns and be ready to battle it out with other kids ages 8-12. Capture the flag, target practice and freeze tag are only part of the fun. Darts are supplied, so don't worry about losing yours! Pizza and a drink are included.

Register online on the City of Novi’s website.

Chili Chilly Softball Showdown

  • Date: Saturday, January 19
  • Time: 9:00 am
  • Age: 18+
  • Price: $250 per team
  • Location: Ella Mae Power Park, 45175 W 10 Mile Rd, Novi, MI
  • Registration Ends: Jan 9

If you are native to Michigan, you know that cold weather doesn't stop us from getting outdoors and having some fun. This adults-only game is co-ed, features one pitch per at-bat, lunch from Kerby's Koney Island and prizes for everyone involved.

Each team will be part of this double-elimination tournament, and games last six innings. Wooden bats are provided, and the nearby Novi Civic Center will be open for those whose hands need thawing!

To register your team, go to www.cityofnovi.org or call 248.347.0400 to be put on a free agent list.

PLEASE NOTE: If fields are not playable due to unseasonably warm weather, the makeup date will be Saturday, February 9.

The Extraordinary Genius of Michigan's David Barr

  • Date: Thursday, January 31
  • Time: 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
  • Villa Barr books will be available for purchase ($20)
  • Registration Required at novilibrary.org or 248-349-0720

This Premier Event highlights international artist, sculptor, author, and teacher David Barr. Come to see his work and hear him speak!

Takeaway

There are plenty of events to keep you warm and busy during the end of December and January in Novi. It's a great time to turn over a new leaf and try something new!

 

 

 

 

3 Manageable Strategies to Declutter Your House Before Selling

by The Jamey Kramer Group

Are you contemplating selling your house? Do you need to get your home sold quickly? Do you look around at the clutter that inevitably finds its way into your house and have no idea how you're going to fit selling into an already-packed lifestyle?

For most people, save those who are exceptionally disciplined, clutter is the unfortunate by-product of life. Things make their way into your house, and you deal with it as best as you can within the time you have.

Many of the organizational magazine articles and books require an entire overhaul of your life. While that may sound good, who has the time to make that a reality? You have a full-time job, and a family to take care of. Who has time to gaze at each possession, trying to decide whether it sparks joy in one's heart?

Don't get me wrong - if you want to make the time for that, more power to you.

However, if you need a strategy that will work right now to beat the clutter in manageable chunks of time, read on!

Minimalism Doesn't Work For Everyone

While the basic ideas behind minimalism can be helpful for just about anyone, remember that you're not going for no possessions at all. For most people, it simply isn't practical to get rid of almost all of their stuff.

Instead, one essential question to ask yourself as you work through the rest of the steps below is: "If having this item is stressing me out, why do I still have it?"

This essential question can set your priorities straight. Are you ever going to fix that chair, those boots, that broken monitor? If not, why keep it? Looking at it makes you think about another project you don't have time to do.

Instead of minimalism or perfectionism, let realism be your goal.

If you're cleaning up to sell and move, be realistic about what you want to unpack on the other side. And if you find yourself unable to make a decision, let your boxes decide for you.

Pack away whatever you can't decide about and label it. If, on the other side, you find that you don't miss anything in those boxes, just donate them.

Better yet: the prospect of having to cart all that stuff around might just inspire you to donate now!

Make Cleaning a Game

Okay, it might not be the most fun game, but if you can find a way to set a goal that is manageable but still gets results, you've beaten the system.

One way to "gamify" cleaning is by giving yourself a time limit. Clean for 20 minutes and then take a break for 10. Or set a timer for 45 minutes and try to get one thing completely done in that time: that junk drawer you've wanted to tackle forever, or all the dusting you've been putting off. Then pack up and save the next part for the next day.

What you want to avoid with this strategy is twofold: avoid allowing the clutter and dirt to build up in your house until it feels unlivable and you have to spend a whole weekend trying to get on top of it. It's a vicious cycle. The other thing you want to avoid is trying to tackle a big organizational project all at once.

Remember those organizational TV shows, where professionals make homeowners dump all their possessions on the lawn and sort them all? What people don't realize is that it takes a whole team of people to achieve that process.

If you start this on your own, you will quickly be overwhelmed and left with a bigger mess than when you started - that will work against you!

Before and After Photos Are Their Own Reward

In the age of social media, why not put it to your advantage? If you're brave enough, post a before photo of the room or dresser you're about to tackle.

Getting to that after photo, and all the encouragement you will receive from friends and family will spur you on toward the finish. Just make sure it's a doable project!

Your "after" photos of your home ready to put on the market will just be the icing on the cake when you've tackled your house in manageable chunks.

Bringing it Home

Any real estate agent will tell you how important it is to have a clean and organized house when you want to sell. The good news is that if you master this, it makes your move that much easier! Happy cleaning!

Real Estate Marketing: Top Pros and Cons of an Open House

by The Jamey Kramer Group

House for sale with open house sign

Are you trying to sell your house? Are you thinking about how to manage showings during the busy holiday season? Does your realtor believe you should hold an open house?

The practice of holding an open house may appeal to you as a seller, or you may think it doesn't make any sense to hold one in the digital age. Even in 2018, there are benefits to an open house. And yes, there are drawbacks as well.

The following list should give you a good starting point as you think through the idea. Be sure to talk through it with your realtor as well. He or she may have some good points to add either for or against the idea.

Feel free to question the realtor who wants to push an open house on you when you would rather not. It can be an excellent opportunity for a realtor to hand out business cards and meet potential clients.

However, any good agent knows that has to be secondary to your needs as the homeowner. Here is what your realtor should already be doing for you:

  • Lending his or her local competitive presence to the sale of your home.
  • Providing excellent photography and a vivid description of your home, and being willing to go above and beyond with other advertising measures.
  • Showing willingness to communicate with you quickly and consistently.
  • Exhibiting honesty and trustworthiness and, above all, treating you the same way every other client is treated.

Drawbacks of Holding an Open House

Open Houses Don't Sell Homes

One of the main drawbacks you will hear about is that it isn't necessary to hold an open house to sell your home. This is true in the sense that interested buyers will schedule a private viewing to see your house.

They won't rely on an open house to view your home. Some studies indicate that only 7% of sales come from open houses. It's no longer the most popular way to spread the word.

Open Houses Mostly Attract Looky-Loos

Another potential criticism from a seller's perspective is that only nosy neighbors and unqualified buyers will be coming to walk through your home and see how you live.

The majority of lookers won't be there to consider buying your house seriously.

Seller Competition

Open houses, by their nature, give anyone the opportunity to see what you are doing. So you may get neighbors stopping by with other ideas in mind: namely trying to see what they are up against if they decide to sell their home too.

While this shouldn't be a big problem for your agent, it can be unnerving to know this might happen.

Potential for Theft

Yes, one of the nasty surprises that can come from an open house is someone walking away with a valuable item. If your realtor knows what he or she is doing, they are going to recommend you have insurance. In addition, he or she will recommend that you put any valuables you might have into storage before you even list the house.

However, if your open house gets slammed, your realtor won't have a chance to keep an eye on every couple or family all at once.

Benefits of Open Houses

There are still benefits to holding an open house. If your realtor thinks it's a good idea to hold one, hear them out. You might get more benefit from it than you think.

Open Houses Are Free

You can't go wrong with free advertising. And even though many Americans look at homes from the comfort of their couches first, many of them do still take the time to go to open houses.

It's also an opportunity for you to get many people in the door with a clean house. Private viewings are great, but you have to clean every time.

Social Networking Opportunities

Your savvy realtor will know that just because you're attracting looky-loos doesn't mean that's worthless. If your house is clean and appealing, the people who visit it are going to be talking about it to their friends and social networks.

You never know who will recommend your house to someone else. Free, word-of-mouth advertising is priceless.

Your Realtor is Working for You All Day

Real estate agents are usually very busy. However, when they are at an open house, they are focused on the sale of your home for that day. If you stay for your own open house, you get even more of his time and attention to ask questions and clarify your strategy with him.

Bringing it Home

Ultimately, you decide to hold an open house. Don't get bowled over by a pushy realtor, but don't discount what he or she says, either. Seeing a home in person is always the best way to see it, and real social networks do sell houses.

If you are interested in putting your house on the market, please give us a call. We will be happy to help!

248-348-7200

 

4 Top House Marketing Mistakes You Need to Avoid

by The Jamey Kramer Group

House marketing mistakes - caution

It happens eventually: the housing market takes a downturn. When the market slows, it becomes more difficult to sell your home. And the market downturn has hit Southeast Michigan.

It can be baffling for some sellers. Why is your house not selling when it seems like plenty of other homes like yours are selling quickly?

We see this scenario over and over again. The problem has very little to do with the house itself and everything to do with the marketing efforts you are making.

If you are trying to sell your home and are having no luck, take a look at the following list to see if you are making these mistakes.

Mistake #1: Poor Photographs and/or No Virtual Tour

Selling a house is a highly visual endeavor! Sellers often get wrapped up in the other aspects of selling their home without first taking into account that they must entice sellers to look at it.

If you have uploaded bad pictures or too few pictures and you have no other way for potential buyers to browse online from the comfort of their couches, you are losing the bulk of your business.

Most buyers only choose from homes whose pictures are top notch. A preference for quality photos is especially relevant in a housing market where inventory is high.

Do you have to spend thousands to have your home professionally photographed?

It would help, but no. You will be doing better to avoid these common pitfalls:

  • Dark photos.
  • Photos of cluttered rooms, or with pets.
  • Unflattering or uncropped photos - showing either not enough of the room or unnecessary elements.
  • Photos uploaded turned sideways or not scaled to be viewed on the internet.

A virtual tour is also a great way to entice buyers to make an appointment to see your home. If you can market your house in both of these ways, you will be much closer to getting your house sold.

In addition, make sure you have worked out any technical kinks. Providing potential buyers the ability to share photos of your home with friends and family is crucial. However, not having good images is a one-way ticket to having your home ignored.

Mistake #2: Restricting Showings

Showing your home at all hours of the day is a hassle, and we know it. However, if you're trying to sell your home, you have to get used to the idea: you are going to have to show it!

The more showings you have, the more potential for good competition and multiple offers. If you restrict showings, buyers and agents aren't likely to keep trying. They will move on to a more readily-available listing.

Here is what you need to do to make sure you are staying competitive with other sellers:

  • Make sure your home has a lockbox.
  • Don't restrict the hours available for showings! You might want to cuddle up in your pajamas after 7 pm, but many potential buyers may only be available for showings after 7.
  • Don't require 24 hours notice. Commit to keeping your house ready to show at a moment's notice and make a plan for where you will go. Agents and buyers will appreciate your willingness to go the extra mile!
  • Allow showings without an appointment. When buyers take time out of their busy schedules to look at homes, they often want to see as many as possible. You will gain a leg up on the competition if your home is available at a moment's notice.

Mistake #3: Offering Less Commission

Like it or not, real estate agents get houses sold, and they expect to get paid for their hard work.

Think about the last time you used the services of your agent. He or she did their best to be available to you at all hours, right? It will work against you if you are trying to save money by offering lower commission - especially in a cooler market.

It doesn't mean agents are motivated by greed. It's actually illegal for them to avoid showing homes offering lower commissions.

However, what your buyer's agent will see - whether it's true or not - is that you aren't very motivated to sell or that you aren't willing to negotiate.

If buyers and agents have a choice, they are going to work with sellers who are generous and willing to negotiate.

Mistake #4: Not Providing Buyer Incentives

Likewise, when you offer buyer incentives, you are acknowledging market conditions. Providing a buyer incentive doesn't have to cost you any money.

In addition, it can be an excellent way to say "I know you could look at five other homes. Let me show you why this is worth your time."

Your agent can give you great ideas for buyer incentives, but here are a few:

  • A certain amount toward the buyer's closing costs
  • A buy-down mortgage interest rate
  • Pre-pay their first year of homeowner's association fees
  • Offer a home protection plan

Bringing it Home

The reality is that the housing market is changing and it's not likely to snap back to the highs of the last several years. A softer market doesn't mean your house won't sell! With the right attitude and marketing tools on your side, your home will sell in no time.

If you are interested in selling your house, please give us a call. We would be honored to help!

248-348-7200

 

 

 

 

 

Upcoming Holiday Events for Northville, Novi, and South Lyon - 2018

by The Jamey Kramer Group

Holiday Events Northville, Novi, and South Lyon, MI

It's the most wonderful time of the year! Christmas songs have been playing on the radio for weeks by now. Michigan has had more than one widespread snowfall, and Thanksgiving is right around the corner.

It's time to deck the halls, make your Christmas treats and plans, and revel in the bright magic of the season. Thankfully, you don't have to sustain all your holiday traditions on your own.

Northville, Novi, and South Lyon, Michigan have plenty of events for all ages in December. So, find one that calls to you, gather your loved ones, and start the celebration in your community!

Northville Christmas Events December 2018

Handcrafters Tinsel & Treasures

  • Friday, December 7, 9:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, December 8, 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, December 9, 11:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
  • Location: Northville Community Center
  • Address: 303 W Main St, Northville, MI 48167
  • Cost: $4/ person admission, Children 12 and under FREE

This year marks 39 years Northville has made this craft show a tradition. Whether you're looking for holiday gift ideas, stocking stuffers, and Christmas decorations or you like to browse and get into the holiday mood; this is the place to see some of Michigan's finest handmade goods and works of art. Parking is free!

For more information, please see Tinsel & Treasures.

Santa Visits & Open House at Maybury Farm

  • Saturday & Sunday, December 8 & 9
  • Saturday & Sunday, December 15 & 16
  • Time: 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. daily
  • Location: Maybury Farm
  • Address: 50165 Eight Mile Rd, Northville, MI 48167
  • Free Admission, Reservations are now available

Northville's own Maybury Farm, a non-profit community organization committed to connecting the next generation to agriculture, is one of the best places to take the family for a Christmas outing!

The farm is getting so popular that families have to make reservations to see Santa this year, instead of walking in. But don't worry! Maybury's open house and Santa visits are completely free.

Maybury Farm does accept donations, and relies on them to keep this community treasure alive.

Although closed for the season, Maybury Farm is open on weekends in December. You can come to walk around the farm, peruse the general store and get a picture with Santa.

Bring your little ones to see Santa in this rustic habitat, complete with a bonfire and warm cocoa and cider in the general store! Santa's sleigh will be parked in the 100-year-old barn, so dress warmly for your visit because the barn isn't fully heated!

Warm your hands by the bonfire, pet the animals, and see their winter coats growing. Stock up on local honey, preserves, and crafts to take home for Christmas gifts.

There is no professional photographer, so make sure you have those phones or cameras handy to snap some cute pictures with Santa!

For more information and to make reservations, please visit Maybury Farm’s website.

Novi Christmas Events 2018

Light Up The Night

  • Friday, November 30
  • Time: 6:00 p.m. - 9 p.m.
  • Location: Novi Civic Center
  • Address: 45175 West Ten Mile, Novi, Michigan
  • Free Event

Welcome to Novi's annual holiday festival and tree lighting celebration! This one-night festival features a variety of indoor and outdoor activities for the whole family including:

  • Children’s activities
  • Craft show
  • Kid’s crafts
  • Reindeer
  • Ice sculptures
  • Fireworks
  • Food for purchase
  • A visit from Santa Claus (photos at additional, minimal cost)

For more information, please city the City of Novi’s website.

South Lyon Christmas Events 2018

Cool Yule Festival & Flashlight Candy Cane Hunt at McHattie Park

  • Saturday, December 1, 2018
  • Time; 10:00 a.m.
  • Location: Downtown South Lyon

South Lyon's Christmas festival packs in a full day of free and low-cost events for the whole family throughout downtown South Lyon and the wider community.

The last event is a lighted parade through Downtown South Lyon, and a flashlight Candy Cane Hunt for kids at McHattie Park at 7:15 p.m. Bring your kids ages 3-10 for an age-separated candy cane hunt. Make sure they have their bags! Find as many candy canes as you can, and multi-colored candy canes win your child prizes.

There will also be photos with Santa opportunities, so bring your phone or camera! For more information, please visit South Lyon Cool Yule.

Takeaway

There are so many amazing opportunities to celebrate in Northville, Novi, and South Lyon, Michigan. Plan to take your kids for an unforgettable holiday season. Bundle up and enjoy the ramp up to Christmas!

 

Real Estate Marketing News: Home Sales Cool in Southeast Michigan

by The Jamey Kramer Group

House for sale depicting home sales cooling

Here's a piece of good news: if you are still reeling from the scorching market and subsequent bidding wars of the last couple of years and you came out of it without a new house, now is probably your moment.

The housing market in the entire country is slowing down, and it has started to affect Southeast Michigan.

As a seller, it may be somewhat of a surprise - and an unwelcome surprise at that - to find that your starter home won't garner three deals on the same day it goes on the market.

However, don't get too discouraged! There is overall good news in this for everyone.

For one thing, most experts say it's not a temporary downturn but part of a more significant slowdown. So, as you are seeing home prices inch downward now, you can probably expect to see them continue to inch down toward next spring.

A market slowdown is highly preferable for buyers and sellers than a housing bubble leading to a recession.

The Trend in Southeast Michigan

The number of homes sold in this area was down 5.7% in September, according to data collected by RealComp, which is based out of Farmington Hills. New home sales were down as well in September, which follows the trend for existing homes.

Part of the reason for the slowdown is that interest rates have begun to go up. While you may have gotten an interest rate below 4% a year ago, the rates hit an average of 4.9% for a 30-year mortgage this fall with every indication that they may continue to go up.

Experts are predicting that rates may be as high as 5.55% by this time next year. These kinds of rates may seem high to you but bear in mind that in the early 2000's, the rates were closer to 7 or 8 percent.

How a Cooldown Affects Buyers and Sellers

Sellers

As you may have reason to expect, market conditions are slowly returning to more normal conditions for sellers. Houses will typically sit on the market for slightly longer than they would have before the hot market began.

Gone are the days of multiple bidding wars and cash offers on the same house, and prices will not continue to rise. If you were planning to sell your house for an above-asking price on the same day you list it, you might need to adjust your expectations.

This market change doesn't mean you won't sell your home! Rising borrowing costs coupled with rising material costs mean that inventory is still low. Also, many buyers who were discouraged by the too-hot market of the last several years may be shopping again.

Buyers

First-time buyers are, unfortunately, still going to be in a tight position. Although the mortgage interest rates aren't nearly as high as they have been in the past, it is discouraging to see how much they've climbed.

Additionally, inventory may still be tighter than in years past as rising costs and lowering sales keep new homes from being built. The primary advantage you have on your side now is time, and lower asking prices.

In the last two years, it may have been all but impossible for the average first-time buyer to snag a single-family home. Now, you have the luxury of shopping around without the fear of losing your chance.

It's a good bet that now you can make a realistic offer on a house and get it accepted. The sooner you decide to enter the market, the lower interest rate you will be able to secure, as rates will continue to rise through next year.

Takeaway

Because the rest of the economy is strong and incomes are still rising, experts don't predict that this housing cool-down is predictive of a recession.

Although the market is definitely cooling, and will probably continue to cool down throughout this fall and into next year, it will create opportunities for some without jeopardizing sellers' chances.

If you are ready to buy or sell, please give us a call. We would be happy to help!

248-348-7200

Christmas Events in Northville, Michigan - November 2018

by The Jamey Kramer Group

Christmas Events in Northville, MI

The weather has turned crisp, the leaves are almost all changed, Halloween is behind us, and everyone has eaten their fill of fresh donuts at Michigan's beautiful orchards and cider mills. You know what that means.

Christmas time is here!

Do you look forward to the holiday season every year: the lights, the shows, the music, the warmth, and generosity? Do you have Christmas traditions in your family or in your town that inspire you?

Northville During The Holidays

The City of Northville is at one of its best times of year during the Christmas season. Not only are there lights and decorations abundant which show off the beautiful, antique architecture, but Northville boasts several unique holiday experiences you shouldn't miss if you want to capture your holiday spirit fully.

The following events are happening in November. Make sure to get your calendar out so that you won’t miss a thing!

Holiday Home Tour

  • Date: Friday and Saturday, November 16 & 17
  • Time: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
  • Location: Downtown Northville
  • Ticket cost: $25 advance, $30 day of the event

Do you drive around quaint downtown areas and wish you could see inside some of the homes you see every day?

You're not alone!

It's always fun to see how other people live and decorate, particularly during the holidays. That's why Northville works hard to offer five new and gorgeous homes for you to peek into during this weekend.

Every year is something different. Bring a couple of friends, wear shoes you can easily remove, and get into the holiday spirit by visiting some homes you may never have seen before!

Tickets can be purchased in advance in a variety of ways, or on the day of the showings. Visit the holiday home tour web page for more information.

Holiday Lighted Parade

  • Date: Friday, November 16, 2018
  • Time: 6:30 p.m.
  • Location: Downtown Northville

Northville's official kickoff to the holidays begins with the Holiday Lighted Parade. Plan to bundle up and watch the parade with the whole family.

For more information, visit Downtown Northville’s website.

Christmas in the Village

  • Date: Sunday, November 18
  • Time: 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
  • Location: Mill Race Village, 215 Griswold Street, Northville, MI 48167

If you have never toured historic Mill Race Village, or if you try to make a stop every year, come to the Mill Race open house to experience Christmas preparation the old fashioned way!

Soak up the beautiful decor and watch Guild members busily crafting away: weaving, knitting, spinning and making lace! Hear the student string orchestra and carolers, and mandolin performances.

Then visit the JM Mead store and the Cady Inn for Christmas gifts and delicious cream tea.

Entrance is free! Bring the whole family and enjoy.

Victorian Christmas Cream Tea

  • Date: Sunday, November 18, 2018
  • Time: 12:30 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
  • Location: Mill Race Village

If you are looking for something special to welcome the Christmas season, Mill Race Village's Victorian Christmas Cream Tea is a great way to do it.

Tickets will be available at the door and cannot be pre-purchased.

For more information, please visit Mill Race Village Northville.

Holiday Greens Market

  • Saturday November 17, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
  • Sunday, November 18, 11 a.m. - 4 p.m.
  • Town Square, Northville, Michigan

Are you ready to deck your house with fresh evergreen? Come to downtown Northville's Holiday Greens Market for roping, wreaths, outdoor arrangements for your porch, table centerpieces and everything else you could want.

The best part is that when you buy from Holiday Greens Market, you are buying local from Michigan merchants!

For more information, please visit Northville Square.

Santa Claus is Coming to Town Square!

  • Date: Saturday, November 24, 2018
  • Time: 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  • Location: Northville Town Square

Yes, the big guy is coming to town! Plan to bring your little ones to Northville Town Square on Saturday afternoon, November 24, from 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm.

Takeaway

If you are looking for fun events to help you get into the spirit of Christmas, come to Northville in November! From a Holiday Home Tour and Lighted Parade to taking your children to see Santa Claus, there is something for all ages in Northville.

Halloween Hours & Events in Northville, Novi, and South Lyon - 2018

by The Jamey Kramer Group

Halloween Hours & Events in Northville, Novi, and South Lyon - 2018

Halloween is the time of year when your whole neighborhood turns out to meet each other and opens their doors for the cute kids in their bright costumes.

It is a magical time and like no other day of the year for this reason. This fun tradition gives us all the chance to step outside our doors and see our neighbors face to face, or to walk through our cities and towns, knocking on doors for no other reason than to share in the fun.

If you don't have children to take trick-or-treating, consider buying a few bags of candy and turning on your porch light this Wednesday. The great thing about kids is that they don't care whether you have a single pumpkin on your porch. If you have free candy, you are automatically their hero!

One of the best things about Halloween, from our perspective, is that it gives you, as a family, a perspective on your wonderful community that we get to see all the time! You might not know it yet, but you have wonderful, interesting and kind neighbors all around you. That is truly the thing which gives homes their value.

You may have already participated in Halloween and harvest festivities in a variety of ways through churches or schools. However, luckily, these local communities are all safe places where you can take your kids and be assured of friendly neighbors with a light on and a bucket of scrumptious candy. Don't miss the opportunity to participate in trick-or-treating on Halloween night!

Halloween Events

Northville, Michigan Trick-or-Treat Hours & Events:

Not only does the City of Northville have active participation from neighbors in Halloween festivities, but Northville also pulls out all the stops to decorate for the occasion.

In Downtown Northville, you can see the annual skeleton display of a lifetime. Set against a backdrop of historic homes, this spooky decor is sure to delight kids and adults alike as you make your trek in search of booty.

There are 116 skeletons scattered all over downtown Northville this year. As an extra frightful treat, you can also see the spiders take over town square!

Northville trick-or-treat hours are 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. and the streets in Northville's Historic District will be closed 5:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

Novi, Michigan Trick-or-Treat Hours & Events:

As a recommendation, Novi's hours are from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. per Novi City Hall.

Senior Citizens Halloween Luncheon "Spiders, Bars and Cats, Oh My!"

  • Wednesday, October 31 from 12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
  • Ages 55+
  • Location: Meadowbrook Activity Center
  • Ticket prices: Resident: $7.50 and Non-Resident: $9:00

You're never too old to participate in this fun community holiday. Novi has something for those aged 55 years young and up! Enjoy a Halloween-themed holiday luncheon, complete with spooky decorations and entertainment provided by Balancing Earth. The program is sponsored by Right at Home. For ticket availability and more information, please call 248-347-0414.

South Lyon, Michigan Trick-or-Treat Hours:

South Lyon’s trick-or-treat hours are from 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Bringing it Home

Even if you haven't done much for Halloween yet, you can get in on the fun by visiting Northville's skeleton and spider display, attending a senior's lunch in Novi, or just opening your doors to the bunches of cute kids who are about to flood the streets in their costumes.

We hope you make some new connections and strengthen old ones with your neighbors. Have a wonderful Halloween!

What to Do Before You Move into Your New Home

by The Jamey Kramer Group

Tasks before moving into your new home

Did you recently purchase your new home? If you did, or if you are about to make this big purchase, congratulations!

It's an exciting time as well as a potentially stressful time. You can eliminate potential stressors right away by doing a few things you might not have thought of before you move in.

Many of the following tips are great things for any homeowner to do no matter how long you've lived in your house!

Have Your New Home Professionally Inspected

It pays to do your homework for a professional inspector you can trust. Your real estate agent may have recommended an inspector to you. More than likely, that inspector will be able to catch any big problems before your move.

However, home inspectors can't always detect pests or issues that were hidden by the previous owner's furniture. It may be worth it to get a second inspection for your benefit before unpacking your belongings.

Clean Your Gutters and Chimneys

You should already have a good idea of the state of your gutters and chimneys, but that doesn't automatically mean they're clean and in working order!

Roof and gutter cleaning is #1 for maintaining the integrity of your roof and house. In addition, if you want to use your new fireplace and chimney, make sure it's in working order.

Have Your HVAC System Cleaned

This task often gets overlooked, but pet hair and dust can clog your HVAC system and contribute to allergies in a new home. It's not very expensive to have your ducts cleaned, have the filter on your furnace change, and make sure everything in your HVAC system is in working order.

Have Your Floors Professionally Cleaned

Nothing is more annoying than moving all your furniture into your new bedrooms and then realizing you needed to have the carpets steam-cleaned. The previous owners probably didn't do this. You want the carpet cleaned of other people's dirt before you move in.

Check Your Water Quality

You might never have thought of this one but bad water can contribute to a host of illnesses. You can purchase a kit to test for bacteria, lead, pesticides, nitrates, chlorine, hardness, and PH.

If you find out your water needs to be filtered, consider having a reverse osmosis water filter installed.

Update Your Detectors

Replacing those old smoke detectors with smart detectors that can sense smoke, radon, and carbon monoxide is probably a good idea. As a bonus, many new detectors also connect to your smartphone to give you updates and tell you a bunch of other pertinent information while you're away!

Take Pictures of Everything

As horrible as the idea is, your new house may get damaged by floods, fires, tornadoes, storm damage, etc.

The sad reality is that your insurance company is going to want to pay the least possible amount on any insurance claim you make in the event of a catastrophe. It pays to have documentation of how your house looked when you moved in.

Set Up Your Utilities

If the previous owners didn't leave you with all of this information, don't worry! Your neighbors have the same services you do (mostly). What better way to get to know them?

Paint

Avoid the fumes, the headache of moving and covering everything and paint your new house before your move in. If you have a newer build, you're in luck.

However, older houses will probably need every surface to be painted - ceilings, trim, walls, etc.

Make Emergency Plans and an Evacuation Kit

One of the first things you should do when you move in, particularly when you have kids, is to sit down and make an evacuation plan together.

How will you get out? Where will you meet? Make sure everyone knows how to make the right emergency calls. You also need to have the right tools necessary for a potential survival situation. Consider having on hand:

  • An emergency fire ladder
  • A water filter
  • An emergency radio
  • A survival kit that includes emergency rations and first aid products - enough for every person in your family.

Hopefully, you won't need any of these things. But if you do, they are better to have on hand.

Bring it Home

We hope you have a great time moving into your new house! Use these tips to make it your own and avoid some of the stressors of living in a new place.

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