Real Estate Information

Fresh From the Blog

Beth Nordaune

Blog

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 238

Brrrrrr. Damn the Ice Dams

by Noelle Tripolino Roberts

I've heard less about ice dams this year than last.  The winter really has been less harsh this year - how easily we forget.  How easily we begrudgingly bear the cold weather and harsh wind. But, last year really was much worse.

In any event, it's a good reminder as we move out of the last arctic blast and into temperatures that utter the word "melting" this weekend to talk about ice dams.

Ice dams are created from a heavy snowfall and multiple days of freezing temperatures.  Air from inside your home warms the roof causing snow to melt underneath the snow where it freezes along the overhang where it can cause roof damage and water spots on the interior of your home


 

(1a. Don't be this guy ^ hitting your roof with a hammer)

1. don't get up on your roof (this can be dangerous when ice is involved)

2. seal air leaks (hire someone.  Why? see #1)

3. add additional insulation to attic (don't block attic ventilation) 

4. add more attic ventilation (I just went on a roofing inspection this week and was amazed at what I learned.  Click here to see how much ventilation you should have based on your attic sq footage. 


http://www.gaf.com/Roofing/Residential/Products/Roof_Vents/Ventilation_Calculator

5. next year, clean out your gutters. This is the worst, in my opinion. My husband and I prefer solid ground over heights.  Every year, we talk about cleaning those gutters.  We have yet to do it... do what I say, not what I do. 

These things should help and if in doubt, Google it. 

 

 

 

 

The Silent Killer - CO2

by Noelle Tripolino Roberts

CO2 poisoning is hitting closer and closer to home with 18 deaths just las year from carbon monoxide in Minnesota alone.  

An appliance leak at an elementary school in St. Louis sent 3 people to the hospital and a father and daughter were both lost to CO2 poisonings last week in Duluth, MN

MN Department of Public safety put out a press release last week as a reminder to check those CO2 detectors every month. Put it on your calendar.  Don't have one?  Purchase one online here. It's a small price to pay to avoid a tragedy.  

We work with Melissa closely to prepare our homes for sale.  She shared why it's so important to her in that press release found here: 

Customer Service for Everyone!

by Noelle Tripolino Roberts

I came across an article discussing how social media is playing a large roll in customer service.  

Just 3 years ago, 45% of all customer inquiries... were handled by a traditional call center. Now, almost 90% are resolved through social or self-service channels 

Just recently I was at Best Buy in Rochester (long before the black Friday bustle) and the store was​pretty calm.  I was purchasing a new computer - a substantial investment in my mind.  We waited for a ridiculous amount of time to be ignored by the usually very attentive sales associates. 

I admit, my first instinct was to vent that I was going to leave a poor review online.  Consumers today have more venues than ever to get on a soap box for or against customer service. 

 But alas, after using an in-store computer to tweet to best buy customer service, I received a pretty quick response asking for my location in the store so they could send someone to us.  Pretty crazy!

Twitter for customer service requests doubled to 22% between 2009 to 2012. 

What seemed in my mind to be an experiment has clearly been thought through and as we strive to create the best possible experience for our real estate clients, being attentive and hearing their concerns through every avenue (be it social media, phone calls, or face-to-face) is an important part of today's client's needs.

I just offered this week to Facetime a live showing with a client from out of town and we frequently use Google hangout to communicate from across the continent in this crazy buys world we live in.  

I have learned to absolutely love and enjoy what technology has to offer real estate and customer service in general.  We're finding amazing ways to interact and communicate despite travel, busy schedules, and the desire for instant gratification. 

http://fortune.com/2014/12/01/social-media-customer-service/

Threats of Mold

by David Glenn

How To End the Lurking Threat of Mold

Unlike most household threats, mold has to be dealt with fast and eliminated with urgency. A rusty pipe or a cracked windowpane can wait a few weeks until the homeowner finds a decent contractor with affordable services, but mold has a direct effect on health, meaning that any delay is a hazard to the well­being of anyone living in the home.

Mold is Everywhere

Fungal growths known collectively as mold flourish everywhere in nature. Tens of thousands of varieties grow on trees, on forest floors, and under rocks, spreading quickly when supported by a warm and wet environment. Of course, modern homes carry their own sources of moisture. Pipes are the sealed conduits for household water supplies, and there's a network of drainage outlets and air conditioning ducts threading between walls and under floors. It only takes a tiny leak in one of these systems and a dark, warm space for mold to gain a foothold in a property. Air conditioning ducts become dirty and trap damp air and walls spaces become covered in condensation due to extreme levels of humidity. The conditions that allow mold to prosper are there, behind the walls and under the floorboards in every home.

The Health Impact

Although next to harmless when found under a shady tree or beneath a rock, mold in a home can trigger​countless allergic reactions responses and respiratory problems. The spores released by mold are a part of their biological reproduction cycle, a fundamental stage in fungal spread, but those airborne spores are the core of the health hazard. They float through air conditioning vents and become trapped in poorly ventilated rooms. The result is shortness of breath and skin irritation, but sensitive individuals exposed to contact with these spores could suffer from more dramatic and chronic illnesses, with most targeting the lungs. Asthma sufferers in particular run the risk of ending up in hospital due to a respiratory attack.

Tracking Down Mold

If a family member is suffering from a disturbing allergic reaction, even when all of the windows are closed, then there may be mold in the building. Even a runny nose and an itchy throat could be a sign of airborne spores floating through the house. Home protection begins by finding the area of infiltration and determining whether or not mold is the cause. If it's visible, the signs can easily be spotted as a spreading discoloration. It could be black or white, or a more colorful tone seen spreading down a wall or along a ceiling in a bathroom or kitchen. The signs are often less obvious, hidden beneath a sink or even behind a wall space. Any tiny patch could be the tip of a substantially larger colony, spreading and generating spores.

Tips on Decreasing and Eliminating the Spread

Once discovered, it's time to stop the mold growth in its tracks. Cut off the source of the spread by ventilating the room in question and sealing the leak. Stop the dampness and lower the humidity level. Consider calling a qualified air conditioning contractor if necessary to install a dehumidifier, and permanently end the humidity entering the home. These actions will be especially effective if the home is drawing air inside from a humid locale. Check the basement for any build­up of water. Homes located on wet land are prone to flooding and vulnerable to water seepage entering the basement during wet seasons. The solution here is to consider installing a sump pump in the basement, or to give a local building contractor a call to evaluate the property for cracks in the foundation.

Mold is a serious health risk and one that has to be addressed in order to protect household members from breathing difficulties, but there are solutions available. Find the growth, root it out and starve the mold of warmth and moisture.

Something I never thought I would do...

by Noelle Tripolino Roberts

Well last night was a first for me (and hopefully a last).  I have NO IDEA what I was thinking.  I went to do the dishes and I've found a brand of natural soaps that I really like.  I poured some of this new dish liquid into the dishwasher dispenser.  It's been sitting under the cupboard for months while I used up another brand.  

I started a load of dishes and sat down to eat dinner with my husband.  After our meal I walked into the kitchen and stepped into a puddle.  My mind immediately went to our home warranty which expires this month.  Quick - we need to call them so it's still on this home warranty.  My mind always jumps to, it must be someone else's responsibility.  Low and behold, a faux pas on my part, I had put dish liquid instead of dishwasher liquid in the dispenser.  I opened it to find an avalanche of suds appropriately surrounding my lucky ducky plate (we are adults, really)

    

Realizing I was at fault, I called my mom, took some photos and had a good laugh, then, like any good Gen-Y-er, I turned to the internet.  As embarrassing as it was that I somehow read wrong and didn't think twice when the liquid was a little thinner than usual (that's typical of natural products, right?) I was comforted to know that there are articles galore out there to help out when you, like many others, make this mistake. I thought I'd let you know what I learned: 

http://www.wikihow.com/Remove-Dish-Soap-from-a-Dishwasher

Number one on this link is helpful, but does not bode well for my patience.  It is hard to scoop foam with a bowl, cup, or towel (I tried all).  I then opted to try the 1/2 c of olive oil because it was recommended by manufacturers.  I poured it in the bottom, set it on a rinse cycle, and all is well.  I suppose this dishwasher from the 70s isn't quite ready to go yet.  Still works like a charm.

 

An Example of the Decesions Made During Building a Home

by Beth Nordaune

I am currently in the process of making selections for 3 new Penz Custom Home models.  Every once in awhile I like to go through the whole process and really assess current trends and what buyers in Rochester are wanting in new homes today.  Building a model home has challenges when it comes to picking out the details.  Will a buyer really want this feature?  Are they going to be willing to pay more for it?  Most buyers do not understand why it would be a big deal when it may only cost a few hundred more dollars but a few hundred here and a few hundred there turn into thousands.  Then, maybe if they are not aware of the differences and what they cost, they may choose another model home that is "cheaper."  I am inclined to believe that today's buyer IS interested and willing to pay for those upgrades and features.  It doesn't seem to be all about the square footage anymore.  What do you think?

I read this article on choosing the right kitchen sink today and it reminded me of all of the details that go into building a new home.  I would love to know what appeals to you!

 

Know when to fold 'em

by Noelle Tripolino Roberts

About 2 weeks ago I planted sun and shade grass seed under our tree.  Out of sheer stubbornness

I will get grass to grow this year!

 

I bought a bow rake, loosened the dirt and leveled it before putting down the seed.  I marked off the perimeter with the hopes of keeping the dog out (which was pretty successful for a few days)

We finished putting down the very last of the seed as sprinkles began to fall and it rained for the next several days.  I've  waited and watched for the past two weeks and have not seen a single shoot of grass.  At what point do I add grass seed or rake it up and start over?

 

Found a fascinating article on ways to check the pH of our soil and hope this might give some insight. More details to come - in the mean time check out the link!

http://www.wikihow.com/Test-Soil-pH

Hardest Job EVER!

by Noelle Tripolino Roberts

 

A friend had a hand in this advertisement which I think so pointedly picks out the truth and hardship in being a mom (not that I know from experience) but it sure makes you appreciate this weekend as we celebrate Mother's Day.  Check this out as mother's day weekend approaches. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I Hate Sales People.

by Carrie Klassen, Realtor, Buyers Agent
Yes, you heard me. I don't like to be "sold" anything. I know my own needs better than anyone else does and if I need something, I'll go looking for it.  I do not like being "greeted" by a clerk before I get inside a store.  I am the type of shopper that likes to be left alone to look. I like to self navigate. Many times, I don't know what I'm looking for and I don't want to take time to explain what I want, only to be guided right to an item that may or may not be what I want.  
 
 
 
I can read the sign that says, "buy one get one half off" I don't need to be told about it.  I'd venture to say the general public feels the same way, especially home shoppers. You don't need to point to a kitchen and say, "there's the kitchen."  All a home shopper needs from a Realtor is for the store to be open, and with technology, it is a 24-7 business, right from your living room.
 
Buying a home usually starts online and ends on closing day with a moving van.  The stuff in the middle is where Real Estate agents and brokerages provide more value to the home buyer.  I'll show you how much participation a Realtor is usually needed for each phase, because buying a home is not like buying a bath and body Eucalyptus spearmint hand soap. It becomes about as complex as a purchase can get.  There are over 20 decisions a new home buyer will make when writing an offer, many of those decisions can't be made well without an understanding of each of them, the process as a whole, and the consequence of each decision.
 
 
 
Here are the steps and how we can be helpful to a home buyer in each:  
 
1. Looking online at homes.  I help you by simply giving you the tools to get set up with a home search that allows you to see homes as soon as they come on to the market, not days later, so you can browse at your leisure and in your comfort by yourself.  There's a difference between looking on public websites at homes and being on an agent portal.  On the agent portal a complete list of homes listed for sale by all companies becomes visible, not just a percentage of them.  It's a free service that we provide.  We will talk about what information you'd like to have and how often.
 
What you won't get from me: a call every day asking if you are ready to buy.
 
2. Making an appointment with a loan officer to see how much home you can buy.  I help you by recommending loan officers that will communicate with you and make the process go smoothly without surprises and without being left in the dark. At that time you will not only learn how much money you can spend on a home comfortably but also what type of home qualifies for the type of loan you are getting. 
 
3. Setting up an appointment : Once you're pre-approved, I will show you a handful of homes to gauge what you like, and what you don't. Once you have seen a few homes and you've decided whether or not I've been helpful, you will determine how much assistance you want from me, and we will decide then if I'm going to be your Realtor.  
 
4. Finding your home : You will get my time, my ten years of experience, and a friend with you who's bought and sold over a hundred homes and knows the market inside and out.  You won't hear me say how many homes you should see before making a decision on which one to buy.  There is no magic number of homes you should look at. I will let you know when moving quickly is your best option in certain circumstances, but the amount of homes you view, is up to you. For some people it's 5 homes, for others it's 50. You will take the time you need, and I will be honest and communicate with you about the market conditions, so that you are completely informed. The time I invest with a buyer is time well spent, and I am careful not to promise something I can't deliver.  
 
5. Putting an offer on a home :  I help by structuring the offer to benefit you and make sure your needs are taken care of.
 
6. Getting from the offer to keys : I help by managing the timing, terms, and appointments by negotiating and coordinating with the loan officer, inspector, appraiser, and title company.
 
8. Moving van :  Friends, family, neighbors all disappear knowing you'll be asking them to help you move. Tip: Buy food, and more of them will show up.
 
 
When I ask you to tell me what stage you are in, it is so I can assist you to the level that you WANT HELP.

Vacation? Prepare your home :

by Noelle Tripolino Roberts

Trying to get out of the cold?  Maybe hit the beach?  Don't forget to prepare your home for your vacation too!  The last thing you want to return to is damage or stolen items.  Here are a few points to think about before you head south.

Don’t tell the world you’re going away.
Posting your family’s travel plans and dates on facebook or twitter is never a good idea. You never know who may read it and target your home while you’re away. Keep your vacation information off of the web and away from strangers.  This is hard with iPhones making sharing your vacation photos just a click away.  

Don’t close the drapes.
Keeping your curtains fully closed for a week or two is bound to tip people off that no one is home. So keep your curtains in their usual position to avoid drawing attention to your house. Just be sure to remove any expensive electronics or jewelry from plain sight.

Hold your mail.
Don’t let a week or two’s worth of mail spill out of your mailbox or pile up on your stoop. Play it safe by asking a close friend or neighbor to collect it for you. If that’s not an option, put in a “stop” order at your post office or online at their official web site. That way, you won’t have a big stack of bills waiting for you the moment you get home.

Use programmable light switches.
Leaving the lights either on or off the whole time you’re away is a dead giveaway that no one is home. Purchase a few programmable light switches that will turn lights on and off at set times. This will help create the illusion that the house is being used and help decrease the chance of break-ins.  You can find timers on sale after Christmas too, so now is a great time! 

Unplug major appliances.
You never know when a lightning storm could hit and cause a power surge that fries your flat‑screen TV or home computer. Even when your appliances are off, they still use electricity when they’re plugged in. So always unplug your appliances before you leave for trips to keep them safe and to keep your electric bill down.

Have a friend or neighbor help.
Leave him or her a key to water the plants and make sure the water heater isn't leaking. You can always bring back a souvenir or return the favor on your friend's next vacation.

http://www.ahs.com/home-care-advice/pages/feature.jsp?featureId=m2070111&utm_campaign=cust_nl_jan2014_mobile&utm_medium=email&utm_source=ahsemail&utm_content=homesafe_mostpop&full=true#sthash.kRdbNpco.dpbs

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 238

Syndication

Categories

Archives

Contact Information

Photo of Beth Nordaune  Real Estate
Beth Nordaune
RE/MAX Results
4600 18th Ave. NW
Rochester MN 55901
Direct:: 507-287-7755
Admin: 507-287-7714
Fax: 507-288-9022

            Beth Nordaune on Zillow 

 

 

Rochester MN Homes and Real Estate!

Beth Nordaune of  RE/MAX Results and her team would like nothing more than to be your guide to the Rochester Minnesota real estate market, one of the most stable markets in America. If you are looking forward to purchasing homes in the Rochester area then this site is for you! This site contains listings for majority of homes in the Rochester MN MLS area. We are ready to assist you with whatever needs you might have, whether it's scouring Rochester for your dream home, or selling your condo or townhome quickly and efficiently. Our Rochester Realtors have a wide variety of experiences and a vast base of knowledge, enabling us to provide our customers with the utmost level of customer service.  Thinking of selling your home in Rochester MN?  We employee a powerful marketing plan that your home will be sold quickly and efficiently.  Our services include 2-3 initial consults, professional staging services, a full HD video tour of your home, lots of still and panoramic photos and unparalleled internet exposure just to name a few.  To get started on your real estate journey please send us an email or give us a call.  We are waiting to hear from you.