Morgan County, GA Real Estate News

By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
Madison, Georgia is one of the finest small towns in the South. With a commitment to historic preservation, arts and culture, and an award-winning public charter school system - it's no surprise that Madison shows up regularly on "best of" lists.We just hosted 750+ visitors with the Georgia Trust Fall Ramble, a chance to see some of our finest private homes and enjoy chef-prepared dinners.But is it an affordable place to live?That depends on your perspective and your budget!I've recently been appointed to a new Housing Committee whose mission is to learn more about factors that are driving up local housing costs, and to recommend policy choices that can set the stage for our future.Since 2019, the median price of homes sold in Morgan County has risen from $282,500 to $468,000.  That's a...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
Sold above asking price, and closed in just a few weeks.279 Pine St is a gem - nearly 2500sf all on one level. Fenced backyard with a one car garage and parking pad adjoining.The new owner can work to work! Madison's vibrant downtown with a host of restaurants and shops is just a few blocks away.It was a please to assist my clients - they worked hard to prepare the home for market, and the effort paid off. They chose to keep the property on market for 5 days, to be sure we have maximum market exposure through the Labor Day weekend. I held an open hour on Saturday - before the #1 Georgia Football team opened their season with a rout just up the road in Athens Sanford Stadium.With multiple good offers to choose from, it was a delight from start to finish.As the closing concluded this morn...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
Soon after I found my Madison Georgia lakefront farm more than twenty years ago, I was surprised to hear that Madison had been named the #1 Small Town in America! It was news in the Chicago Tribune and Washington Post, after all, so it was indeed a very big deal.   Decades later, and Madison still shows up on "best of" lists.   So when you imagine living in the Madison Historic District - what comes to mind? Is it entertaining friends before a big event at the Cultural Center? Strolling to our vibrant downtown with a host of excellent restaurants? Having book club or garden club friends over?   The renovated C1900 Victorian cottage I've just listed may be the home you've been dreaming of - it's the perfect blend of old and new, and conveniently located just a few blocks from downtown. ...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
One of the benefits of longevity in the business is helping clients work though the stages of life.I met the sellers of this custom brick ranch home on 5 acres more than 10 years ago, when they were wrapping up a long time in the horse world - breeding, training, and showing horses. They were approaching retirement age, and it was time to sell the custom cape cod home on 17 acres with a beautiful 8 stall barn. Once I found the buyer for their last farm, I helped them buy this lovely ranch home - the 5 acres had just enough pasture space for their last retired mare to graze, and the unfinished basement had plenty of room for storage.They really loved this home - but health concerns led them to choose a local assisted living facility. So once again I was called in to help them find a new ...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
Its FARMeander season in Madison and Morgan County, Georgia!Georgia’s Piedmont is fast becoming the hub of the local food movement.  Here in Madison and Morgan County in the heart of the Piedmont, the Madison-Morgan Conservancy is supporting commodity farming as well as the production of local and organic meats, eggs, vegetables, and associated farm products.  Check out the 2017 version of FARMeander (Georgia's first farm trail), and plan to explore area farms, markets, festivals, and inns that celebrate the agrarian heritage of Madison and Morgan County!One of the newest featured farm businesses is The Boy and The Dog Beef Company, specializing in pasture-raised all natural Wagyu beef. Zach and Ellie are young farmers I met last year when they purchased a 200+/- acre Morgan County catt...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
Madison Georgia  has been called the #1 small town in America - with a postcard-like downtown, surrounded by bucolic countryside, and one of the largest protected Historic Districts in Georgia. Some of us were born here (along with generations of our family before) and some of us discovered Madison later in life - but we all agree that the quality of life here is something to be treasured. You would hardly imagine that a small rural Georgia town would have an international flair... Sure, I spent three decades travelling internationally for business - throughout Europe and Asia, especially India and China. But this week, I realized that my international connections are not done: Deal one: closing a land tract, with a seller in Bermuda and a buyer just getting home from a business trip to...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
Madison, GAChristmas Tour of Homes December 2 and 3 Day Tour 10-4Candlelight Tour 5-9 Tour Headquarters is Heritage Hall, South Main Street, Madison One of the best ways to get in the holiday spirit is the annual Christmas Tour of Homes in historic Madison, Georgia, where you'll find the largest collection of 19th century architecture in the state. While you're in town, don't miss the distinctive shops and restaurants - Madison's vibrant downtown will take you back to a time when Main Streets all across America were the heart of community life. More than a dozen private homes will be on tour this year, all decked out in their holiday best. Homes on tour include: Bonar Hall, circa 1832. Constructed in the four over four Georgia style, the structure has 20x20ft main rooms with 13ft ceilin...
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By Tammy Lankford,, Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville
(Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668)
The "real" Buckhead.  It's nearly 30 years old, but you can't tell that at all.  The owner has recently replaced siding with concrete hardboard, replaced living space and bedroom floors with hardwood and the kitchen and bath with great ceramic tile in a stylish gray. Home features a porch and  a carport and attached storage room.  There is also a storage building on the nearly one acre lot.  You'll just love the neighbors across the street and the quiet area just 5 minutes from Lake Oconee. Has three bedrooms and one bath. Call for an Jennie for a showing appointment at 706-347-0212 
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
just received the following update from Chris McCauley, director of the Madison-Morgan Conservancy:Today is a GREAT DAY for Conservation!In a strong bipartisan action, the Senate voted 65-33 today to pass the bill that will make the tax incentive for conservation easement donations permanent. This follows yesterday’s 318-109 vote in the House. This legislation has been a priority for the Land Trust Alliance and the conservation community for a decade, and it represents a huge win for conservation, for landowners and for land trusts. Once signed into law, the incentive will be applied retroactively to start Jan. 1, 2015.Over 2,500 acres in Morgan County are permanently protected by voluntary, donated conservation easements.  Landowners who donate a conservation easement can claim a feder...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
Today's home buyers are spending MORE time looking at properties online, and visiting FEWER homes before deciding which home to buy.How do you get on the SHORT LIST of must-see homes? Great photos can make the difference!Which of these kitchens speaks to you?OR         Which of these bathrooms makes you say "Its beautiful!"?OR         To hear more about the role great photography plays in todays market, follow the link:  If you'd like to hear more about how my services can give you a real edge in selling property in the Madison and Lake Oconee area - contact me today!  
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
Are you ready for rural life? HGTV recently debuted a new series called Farmhouse Life, and in the very first episode we watched a family exchange suburban Atlanta living for a bucolic farm in Madison Georgia – offering their daughters an opportunity to live with their horses.  I’ve been helping families choose farms in Madison Georgia and surrounding area for a decade now, and one thing I’ve learned is that families choosing rural life have one big decision to make: Is it better to Buy a farm or Build a farm? When you build a farm, you may start out with bare land, or with a home on some acreage but not much else. Building a farm begins with a lower initial purchase price, and then you add the improvements you want: home, outbuildings, fencing, perhaps a pool, raised beds, fruit or flo...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
 Finding a bargain lakefront home on Georgia’s Lake Oconee is not easy. With the average sales price this year for a private lakefront home close to $625,000, and the average sales price of an undeveloped lakefront lot nearly $450,000 – what can you buy for under $350,000?  The first thing a Lake Oconee bargain hunter needs to think about is what matters most – the quality and location of the lot, or the quality and size of the home. You may be surprised, but for many lakefront properties, most of the value is in the lot!  Lot quality is hard to improve over time, and location does not change – homes can be remodeled and expanded. When you’re choosing a bargain lake house on Lake Oconee, you have to pick your compromises.  Some questions to ask yourself:  what kind of boating do you hav...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
  Are you dreaming of living in the heart of Lake Oconee, with a budget under $150,000?    If your dream includes:   Privacy, with no restrictive covenants   Room to garden   Access to a lake with great fishing   And a well maintained home     All at a price that won’t break the budget – look no further       This updated ranch home sits on a private 2 acre lot in an established Lake Oconee community with boat ramp. The home lives large, with an open floor plan, formal living and dining rooms, and a split bedroom plan that offers you the privacy you are seeking.  The vaulted ceilings and custom windows add to the spacious feel.       Are you tired of looking at fixer-uppers in your price range?  This well-maintained home features a new roof, new well pump and bladder, and updated light ...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
  You and your better half are looking for a new home, and it’s looking like an episode of House Hunters on HGTV.     One of you is focused on the house. It can’t be too old, and it must have updates like a jetted tub, and hard surface counters, and oiled bronze finishes.        Wood floors, except in the bedrooms.   And separate closets and vanities in the master – because one of you is less organized than the other.   One of you is focused on the land – the more the better. And private, with interesting trees, and room to walk the dog.        Your ideal property would have a workshop, or at least room to build one.   If there are covenants, they had better be simple. And under no circumstances do you want to belong to an HOA!   You do agree on some things, the location should be conve...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
I have been using Madison Tire and Auto for many years now - its a low key place. No flashy web presence, not on the fashionable side of town. Just good service - they have put tires on many of my vehicles, and even a horse trailer or two. A few years ago, Scott joined the team. He brought with him a passion for keeping older import vehicles chugging along - important to me, because until then, there was no one in Madison equipped to diagnose and repair things on my older volvos. This week, Scott proved he's worth his weight in gold. On my way to my golf groups annual Christmas party, I heard a terrible grinding sound coming from beneath my car. It got worse, and in the interest of not making a bad situation worse, I headed back home immediately. Next morning, I cautiously headed into M...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
What a deal!  Seller has just reduced Lots 8 and 9 in Waterstone Farms on Lake Oconee to an eye-popping $59,500.  These lots have 100ft of private shoreline on the quiet north shore of Lake Oconee, and meet the Georgia Power qualifications for a max dock. Water depth is good - more than 5ft - and the deeper channel is just off shore. The lots are fairly level, making them suitable for a ranch style home. Find our more about Waterstone Farms on Lake Oconee here:     There has been only one private lakefront lot sold in the past year on Lake Oconee below $60,000 - and that lot had very shallow water and severe dock limitations. The average price this year for a private lakefront lot on Lake Oconee is over $400,000. If you'd like to enjoy lakefront living on Lake Oconee without breaking th...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
Are you thinking of relocating to Madison, Georgia? Looking for a ranch home that will make it easy to  age in place? Prefer a move-in ready home, less than 10 years old? There are some excellent choices right now, and your search will lead you to just 3 communities: Whispering Lakes - a greenspace community about 10 minutes east of downtown, and minutes from the Blue Springs Marina on Lake Oconee. Buckhead Manor - Madison's most popular subdivision just 5 minutes from downtown and close to the school campuses, aquatic center and library, and Heritage Park. Madison Lakes/Creekwood section - Madison's only gated community, about 10 minutes south of downtown and convenient to shopping and I-20. Whispering Lakes has the most to choose from currently, with 7 homes on that market ranging in ...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
Another Madison Georgia farm for sale is now SOLD! Its one of my favorite kinds of days - Closing Day, when buyers and sellers meet at crossroads in both their lives. This Madison Georgia farm is really unique - completely renovated historic cottage on 15 acres set up for horses. The property includes nearly a dozen old pecan trees - and best of all the home site is just 3 miles from downtown Madison and tucked privately behind the CSX railroad line that runs right through our acclaimed historic district.   The buyers are a young local couple, the son and daughter in law of a friend, who operates a very successful farm-hospitality business. The sellers are repeat clients and friends - I sold them the farm originally and they renovated it for one of their children who later moved out of ...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
The Madison and Morgan County Georgia market is influenced by a number of factors: The successful local charter school system makes it a top choice for families with school age children. The vibrant downtown in Historic Madison appeals to empty nesters looking to get away from the surbaban crowds, yet still be in reach of arts and culture (and a hot cappucino!) The comitment to sustainable agriculture appeals to ruralists. Its all within easy reach of the Atlanta international airport! Each of these factors means that prices for comparable homes are historically higher in Morgan County than in surrounding rural counties. Latest market statistics show that the market tips from a sellers market to a buyers market as prices go up:   Homes under $150,000 Available: 14 Sold last 6 months: 23...
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By Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA
(Coldwell Banker Lake Country)
Ever considered the benefits of becoming a landlord? I invested in rental properties beginning in my 20's - in fact, the first 3 properties I purchased had rental income - and that decision became the cornerstone of wealth creation for me. Your dream home may include a private backyard and beautiful curb appeal - nothing wrong with that.  But take a moment and try on a different dream - one where you have tenants to pay most of your mortage and property taxes, while you benefit from the tax advantages and appreciation like any other property owner. This duplex in Rutledge, Georgia has a pair of 1200sf+ units, each with 2 bedrooms and one full bath, eat-in kitchen, plus living room and den. With a shortage of affordable rental housing in desirable Morgan County, you can understand why th...
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