Ann Arbor, MI Real Estate News

By Kathy Toth, Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts - Kathy Toth Team
(Ann Arbor Market Center Keller Williams)
Plum market is where I buy organic soap with citrus, fresh sushi, lots of fresh produce, green machine naked juice and a bottle of wine or two.  For that, I depend on Rod Johnson, Wine and Beer Team Leader.  He knows his wines and can introduce you to the cold cellar where some special wines are housed.  He is a great resource. No detail is overlooked at Plum where Matt and Marc Jonna have set out to provide a grocery experience like no other.  Their product selections mix the best in natural, organic, specialty and local products.  Their produce department is a perfect example of their craft.  Freshness and quality are an absolute must and locally grown Michigan product are always highlighted.  As soon as something comes into season, you'll find the freshest and the best version at Plu...
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By Kathy Toth, Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts - Kathy Toth Team
(Ann Arbor Market Center Keller Williams)
  My daughter is an intern at Tufts and when we looked for an apartment in Boston we had to use many agents and coordinate appointments all over the place – walking everywhere.   In Ann Arbor you need to make one phone call and we can help you find your perfect lease situation or purchase. The Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts know about your hectic schedules and how important it is to feel that you have suitable housing arranged. We will tour you through your options when you come here to make the most of your time here in Ann Arbor (TreeTown). Maybe you or your friends want to look together, we will put you in the car and get you into some properties so you can see and feel your options. One address is all you need to search Ann Arbor real estate.   If you are looking at rentals, just us...
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By Kathy Toth, Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts - Kathy Toth Team
(Ann Arbor Market Center Keller Williams)
When buyers find a home on line, they take action according to the recent report from NAR. In the chart you can see that: 35 percent drove by the home 29 percent walked through the home 12 percent found a REALTOR® 11 percent requested more information 4 percent got pre-qualified for a mortgage 3 percent applied for a mortgage 2 percent found a mortgage lender On line buyers are taking action. NAR states that 87 percent of buyers are on line looking. Again, our marketing dollars at Kathy Toth and Team are focused to capturing on-line eyeballs. If you have ideas to improve our Ann Arbor Real Estate presence, I would LOVE to hear your thoughts. How can we make the on line Ann Arbor buyer experience better? If you are looking for the latest updates in the Ann Arbor real estate market, just...
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By Kathy Toth, Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts - Kathy Toth Team
(Ann Arbor Market Center Keller Williams)
At the most recent Ann Arbor city council meeting, administrators discussed more than just budgeting. On the agenda were also discussions about a proposed expansion to the Ann Arbor Transportation Authority's downtown transit center and timing for an the approved $42 million underground parking structure on fifth avenue. Expansion plans for the downtown transit center have touched on utilizing some of Fourth Avenue, North of Williams Street for the new bus center. Suggestions call for an altering of the street with some sort of covered structure, yet not a total abandonment of the street (perhaps keeping a single lane of traffic). The budget allows for $2.5 million to be used for the expansion project. Some existing real estate at the Blake Center could also be redeveloped for public or...
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By Kathy Toth, Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts - Kathy Toth Team
(Ann Arbor Market Center Keller Williams)
According to Moving services website Relocation.com Americans moved all over the US in 2008. Michigan and Ohio lost the most residents. For every 100 people moving to Michigan, 210 moved out. For every 100 relocating to Ohio, 150 left. North Carolina welcomed the most newcomers. For every 100 people leaving, 180 moved in. Michiganders are flying SouthCities with more than 1 million people that got the most newcomers were: 1. Las Vegas 2. Denver 3. Charlotte, N.C. 4. Phoenix/Mesa, Ariz. 5. Portland, Ore. 6. Seattle 7. Orlando, Fla. 8. Washington, D.C. 9. Atlanta 10. Tampa Bay/St. Petersburg, Fla. So Las Vegas is the winner! The West and the South are where people moved last year.Remember "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every diff...
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By Marian Gregor-Ann, Arbor area Real Estate
(Keller Williams)
  Have you slipped on the ice or worse yet, fallen? We have a wonderful resource in the Ann Arbor area. That is Dr. Mark Pinto Dr. Pinto has been practicing in the Ann Arbor/ Chelsea area for years since he attended Medical School at the U of M. His post graduate training was at Southern California Orthopedic Institute, Sports Medicine and the University of Michigan Hospitals and Health Centers, Orthopedic Surgery.He specializes in knee and shoulder repairs. Dr. Pinto is an avid sports fan. Besides playing hockey he has worked on many players for area sports teams. My little sister who lives in a different area has had 3 shoulder surgeries. She was merely tossing her purse onto the back seat of her car and she threw out her shoulder. She suffered in silence, tears streaming down her fac...
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By Marian Gregor-Ann, Arbor area Real Estate
(Keller Williams)
Seeing a significant need for further training, Keller Williams in Ann Arbor, MI recently hosted an advanced short sale class. Course facilitator, Barbara Horan brought the program from the foreclosure capitol of Temecula CA.  The course objective was to educate local Realtors on facilitating  successful short sales. Attendees were required to attend lectures, collaborate in problem solving scenarios and pass multiple exams (with score requirements above 90%) to be designated a Certified Short Sale Specialist.   A community outreach program has been implemented with the main goal of assisting homeowners to stay in their homes through loan modification programs. If that is not a feasible action the specialist offers additional assistance with a short sale program. This action is much pre...
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By Kathy Toth, Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts - Kathy Toth Team
(Ann Arbor Market Center Keller Williams)
With the "changing of the guard" welcoming the Obama Administration, talk about the housing crisis has hit the forefront. Democrats are promoting a plan to allow bankruptcy judges to modify home loans as government loan programs don't seem to be working. The question becomes, what's a better plan - personal bankruptcy or foreclosure? According to FICO scoring entities (the makers of your credit score), neither are great options. While foreclosure is a better way to go than personal bankruptcy, it still delivers a major blow to your credit score. Bankruptcy is worse because it affects more than just your home loan account, it affects everything. Many out there are speculating that the crisis will become much larger as prime borrowers continue to lose equity in their homes and assets turn...
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By Kathy Toth, Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts - Kathy Toth Team
(Ann Arbor Market Center Keller Williams)
The University of Michigan is by far the largest property owner in the City of Ann Arbor. With its tax-exempt status, and the recent purchase of the 177 acre Pfizer complex, some are beginning to wonder whether the U contributes enough to the city's bottom line. Without the Pfizer complex (a $108 million deal planned to close Summer 2009), the University owns approximately 15% of the property in Ann Arbor. Although the university is mindful of this affect on city tax coffers, the fact remains there is an affect. They have made an effort to sell unneeded properties in the last few years to put them back on the tax rolls, these dealings amounted to about a $2 million increase in taxes for local government since 1990. U of M properties are used for varying reasons and are located all over ...
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By Kathy Toth, Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts - Kathy Toth Team
(Ann Arbor Market Center Keller Williams)
Google's co-founder, Larry Page, plans to visit our bustling city this spring to deliver the University of Michigan's commencement address. Although he already has a degree from the U, he will be receiving yet another honorary degree as well. This is really Page's first big appearance since the inception of the Ann Arbor AdWords headquarters downtown, and has many wondering if he brings any news for future plans. Last week Google announced they'd be cutting about 100 recruiters and consolidating some engineering offices. So negative economic forces even affect the big guys on some levels. Many are curious about Google's future plans for Ann Arbor. Their original plan was to bring at least 1,000 sales employees into the city in the first five years. A goal they are on pace to fall short ...
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By Kathy Toth, Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts - Kathy Toth Team
(Ann Arbor Market Center Keller Williams)
Although 2008 has shaped up to be the toughest year for Ann Arbor real estate in the last ten, the area has suffered less than others in Washtenaw County according to year-end Michigan real estate statistics. In Ann Arbor the average sales price fell 15.5% down to $211,342 which is the lowest average price since 1999. The number of sales however remained flat rising by 20 units from 07 to 08. When compared by school district, the Ann Arbor stats look tame. For instance in the Ypsilanti and Lincoln consolidated districts, sales prices declined 47.7% and 32.1% respectively from 07 to 08. The Ann Arbor district only reports a 7.9% decrease overall. Some believe this is due to the protective net of the University of Michigan on the City of Ann Arbor. While 2009 will probably be a short sale...
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By Missy Caulk, Savvy Realtor - Ann Arbor Real Estate
(Missy Caulk TEAM)
Argyle Advisors is a new company in Ann Arbor. It is owned by Rob Guilloz, who is the former IT Director at the Ann Arbor Board of Realtors. Rob was the Mover and Shaker at the Ann Arbor Area Board of Realtors that kept all the 1000's of Realtors up and running with the MLS and technology problems.I can testify personally that Rob is good and very responsive to calls when you need help. Some of the service Argyle Advisors provides are: Technology Consultation Search Engine Optimization and Marketing Website Service Computer Training PC Set up Computer Optimization Software Install For Realtors in the Ann Arbor Area, Argyle Advisors is also available for: Custom Listing Reports and Flyers Custom CMA Presentations Video Walkthrough Tours Listing Photos MLXchange Customization and Optimiza...
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By Kathy Toth, Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts - Kathy Toth Team
(Ann Arbor Market Center Keller Williams)
Capturing the perfect local nuances of a place and communicating them can be difficult, but this video does a perfect job of what living in Downtown Ann Arbor, Michigan is like.  Yes, there are a couple places I would like to live, for example, living in an Ann Arbor Liberty Loft, or the prime Ann Arbor location of Loft 322 would be great.  What about an apartment that brings you to a huge selection of parks, eateries, clubs, educational arenas, and here, to a career at Google, all within walking distance. Try the walking score index for your area.  Use it to find a new walkable neighborhood.   If you are coming to Ann Arbor, we will welcome you with open arms.  If you are local or relocating, and searching for some real estate guidance, consider us your Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts. ...
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By Kathy Toth, Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts - Kathy Toth Team
(Ann Arbor Market Center Keller Williams)
How to Make Money Investing in Real Estate Investing in Ann Arbor real estate can either produce a negative or positive result. To increase your odds of making a successful investment in Washtenaw County, you need to educate yourself and arm yourself with facts.  Currently, real estate is a hot market and now is the time to give some serious thought to making that investment. To get you started in the right direction, there are some specific guidelines to consider. Become an Expert The best way to become really good at something is to focus your attention on one particular aspect. For example, in real estate, there are many options for investment to include foreclosures, fixer-uppers, properties requiring low down payment, houses geared for first-time home-buyers, and specific types of...
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By Kathy Toth, Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts - Kathy Toth Team
(Ann Arbor Market Center Keller Williams)
Although 2008 has shaped up to be the toughest year for Ann Arbor real estate in the last ten, the area has suffered less than others in Washtenaw County according to year-end Michigan real estate statistics. In Ann Arbor the average sales price fell 15.5% down to $211,342 which is the lowest average price since 1999. The number of sales however remained flat rising by 20 units from 07 to 08. When compared by school district, the Ann Arbor stats look tame. For instance in the Ypsilanti and Lincoln consolidated districts, sales prices declined 47.7% and 32.1% respectively from 07 to 08. The Ann Arbor district only reports a 7.9% decrease overall. Some believe this is due to the protective net of the University of Michigan on the City of Ann Arbor.While 2009 will probably be a short sale ...
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By Marian Gregor-Ann, Arbor area Real Estate
(Keller Williams)
  Looking for an Ice Place to Visit? Just 15 min. from Ann Arbor, check out the Plymouth International Ice Sculpture Spectacular!Plymouth, Michigan, hosts the oldest and largest ice festival.  This year's event, the 27th annual, will have over 100  statues  carved from single blocks of ice, plus lots that are carved from 5 to even 100 blocks!  This is a real competition with professional artists from around the world. Participating as well are teams from  many schools. The pictures here are from a previous festival in Plymouth.   The sculptures can be viewed 24 hours a day in the downtown area, mostly at Kellog Park in the very center of downtown, but also in the parking deck  and the "Gathering" area across the streets and in front of most of the shops.   Plymouth itself is a delightfu...
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From Lived In, To Vacant, To Staged!      RE:STYLE staged this house to appeal to the target--a young professional couple or perhaps a single man or woman. Because winters are long and gray in Michigan, we used bright colors to liven up the look and create a very happy atmosphere! We also made the bay window serve as a functional window seat for more appeal.       We carried the color scheme throughout the house, including the kitchen and breakfast nook. Doesn't it look cheerful?                  We even kept the warm colors going in the bath! And now, here are a few more "after" photos of this great house! It's just $199,000, by the way!       If you are selling a house in the Ann Arbor, Michigan area, contact RE:STYLE Home Staging and Redesign for a consultation or hands-on staging of...
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By Missy Caulk, Savvy Realtor - Ann Arbor Real Estate
(Missy Caulk TEAM)
  We recently installed the newly elected and returning Board of Directors for the Ann Arbor Area Board of Realtors.   This will be my third and final term, I actually ran again because we were in the middle of two projects I wanted to see completed. One was interviewing MLS Vendors as our contract with mlxchange was up and one was extending our contract with Supra-E-Key.       Our main speaker was Charles Scrase from Google. Charles graduated from University of Michigan and recently moved back here to work in the Ad-Words division of Google. In his talk he went over many of the apps that we already know about, Google Analytic's, IGoogle, Cloud Computing etc...   One cool thing I learned on Google Maps was that now after you search a Google Map, there is a link under it for Public Trans...
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By Kathy Toth, Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts - Kathy Toth Team
(Ann Arbor Market Center Keller Williams)
Savvy Michigan homeowners are battling all-time-high energy costs by incorporating building techniques to make their homes more energy efficient. As more people begin to struggle to meet rising utility costs, these practices are expected to grow in popularity. Just as current Ann Arbor homeowners are renovating with energy savings in mind, new home builders are seeing increased demand for green buildings and energy-efficient homes. Here are some ideas for how you can reduce your energy consumption – and costs – this winter by selecting building materials and appliances that promise to improve your home’s energy efficiency. Use Highly Rated Energy-Star Appliances:This is not a new idea, but as costs rise, Ann Arbor real estate buyers are looking at the yellow energy-consumption tags on n...
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By Kathy Toth, Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts - Kathy Toth Team
(Ann Arbor Market Center Keller Williams)
Are YOU Protected with Insurance Policies Regarding Ann Arbor Real Estate? Many people don't have enough coverage to protect them from risks they face. Finds Zogby International during a survey of 1,203 renters and home owners. So, when you buy a house through us, we make sure we connect you with an agent we trust to give you a clue report on that property immediately. I am including the downloadable Clue Report article from the latest REALTOR magazine. This will tell you if any claims have been filed on that property. Our expert Ann Arbor buyer agents can get this started for you BEFORE you write an offer on a house. You can then start to ask questions to find the best value. Then as soon as your home passes inspections, we suggest you read a policy with your agent. This will bring out...
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