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Thursday, July 19, 2018

5 Reasons to Consider a Villa or Carefree Home


Five Reasons to Consider a Villa (Carefree Home)

Homebuyers often forget a superb option when looking for St. Louis or St. Charles County real estate – villas (sometimes referred to as carefree homes or low maintenance living). Villas are sometimes attached homes, but could also be freestanding homes, situated within a villa community. While some might think that villas are just for retirees, many of today’s villas are created for everyone. Here are five reasons to consider a villa for your next home purchase.


1. Low Maintenance


Villa communities are created with low-maintenance living in mind. Like many single-family home communities, villa communities have a homeowners association or HOA that oversees daily community operations. However villa community HOA’s usually offer a lot more with regards to maintaining your property including the exterior maintenance, lawn care, landscaping maintenance, and snow removal.  Some association fees even cover structural home insurance.


2. Amenities


Many of the amenities you get in a single-family home and community are offered at villa home communities. Villa homes are usually created to offer privacy by providing buffer zones between entrances to homes, have private decks and/or secluded patio areas. Shared walls are built with sound and fire proofing materials for additional privacy and security. Also, planned villa communities sometimes include community green spaces, a clubhouse, a pool and tennis courts. 

A lovely deck in Lake St. Louis at a villa community built by Bridgewater Communities.

3. Affordability


Villa owners often see money savings when comparing villa community HOA fees and what they include to the cost of hiring individual services for exterior maintenance, lawn care, landscaping and snow removal. Also, villas have proven to hold their value at resale as more and more homebuyers discover the advantages that a villa home provides. In fact, increased interest in villa homes has lead to the creation of many luxury villa communities for the villa buyer who craves more space and designer details. 

Spacious and open villa home kitchen in St. Peters built by Payne Family Homes.

4. Security


If you travel frequently or only occasionally but for an extended period of time, a villa home is an excellent option. With exterior maintenance done for you, the exterior of your villa home will be kept in tip-top shape while you are gone. This thwarts potential thieves looking to break into homes that appear unoccupied. A leaky roof or gas leak is less likely to go unnoticed in an attached villa home where neighbors share a wall or roof. 

An open floor plan at a villa/carefree home built by Bridgewater Communities.

5. Location


While single-family homes may be built in a secluded neighborhood removed from town, villas are often in areas near shopping, banks, hospitals, vibrant entertainment and dining options. You may find a perfect villa that is closer to your office, shortening your daily commute or making your commute doable by bike or by walking. The right villa could even negate the need to own a car. 

A beautiful villa/carefree home in St. Charles, MO, built by Fischer & Frichtel.
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The Boehmer Team helps homebuyers buy or build the perfect villa/carefree home and helps home sellers list and sell their villa when they are ready to move on. We are villa experts that are well versed in all types of homeowner association agreements and can assist in making sure you understand everything that is included with a particular villa community. If you are considering buying or selling a villa/carefree home in the St. Louis or St. Charles County are of Missouri, contact The Boehmer Team. We would be happy to answer any questions you may have about villas and would love the opportunity to serve you.








Tuesday, June 12, 2018

St. Louis St. Jude Dream Home 2018



Imagine winning a $423,000 dream home while helping St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital raise $1,500,000. Talk about a win-win! It could happen to you in 2018 with the St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway featuring a gorgeous, brand-new, four bedroom home in O’Fallon, Missouri built by Payne Family Homes.

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital helps find cures and treats catastrophic childhood illness regardless of a family’s ability to pay. The St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway started more than 24 years ago when someone donated a pre-fabricated home to Dr. Donald Mack, a doctor who referred patients to St. Jude. Mack raised ticket sales for the home and all of the money went to St. Jude. Now, beautiful homes are raffled in more than 30 cities across the U. S. each year to raise money for St. Jude. 

Trade partners helping build the Dream Home got to sign the sub-floor!

This year’s St. Jude Dream Home in St. Louis is once again being built by one of our builder partners, Payne Family Homes. With time donated by skilled local craftsmen and donations from many trade partners including The Boehmer Team, this home is being built at zero cost. This way all proceeds can go to St. Jude. The one-of-a-kind home is being built in the Legends Pointe subdivision in O’Fallon, Missouri. The 3,700 square foot home features four bedrooms, a second-floor eagle’s nest and a finished lower level.

Tickets are on sale now for the 2018 St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway in St. Louis. For only $100 you can enter to win this lovely brand new home.  Click here to purchase tickets. 


Later this summer you can see this home for yourself in person. It will be open to the public on weekends from July 21 through September 2. Visiting times between these dates are Saturdays 9am-5pm and Sundays noon-5pm.

The Boehmer Team would like to thank Payne Family Homes, the craftsmen, trade partners and all who purchase a St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway ticket to help St. Jude. If you’re thinking of buying a newly constructed home but don’t want to wait to see the results of the St. Jude Dream Home giveaway, check out our Buy New & Now page. This page features newly built homes that are ready and waiting for you. Or contact TheBoehmer Team for help building your next home. We are new construction experts and have helped many families purchase their dream home.



Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Effects of Rising Interest Rates on Real Estate


Effects of Rising Interest Rates on Real Estate

An improved economy, strong job growth, wage growth and rising home values have contributed to a rising interest rate environment. This means home loans, car loans, credit cards and anything else in the U.S. that is has an interest rate attached to it will be affected. As an experienced real estate team with over 70+ years of combined experience, we’d like to discuss what impact rising interest rates have on St. Louis and St. Charles County, Missouri real estate.


Effects of Rising Interest Rates on Home Buyers

Rising Interest Rate Effects on Homebuyers

For most homebuyers rising interest rates won’t change their decision to purchase a home. However it may cause a sense of urgency to find a home before rates rise again. It can also affect the amount of home homebuyers can purchase within a set budget.

Realtor.com® offers this example:
On a $300,000 house with a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage and 20 percent down payment, the difference between a 4 percent and 5 percent mortgage rate is $142 a month. 
  

Homebuyers concerned with rising rates may want to lock in a rate with a lender. This will guarantee the current rate for a set period of time. Also, homebuyers can help keep their personal rates lower by attending to their credit score. Be sure to pay bills on time and not overburden yourself with additional debt when considering buying a home.

Buyers can also try different mortgage products like new 40-year loans instead of traditional 30-year loans. While it allows you to buy more home, the longer term means you will be paying more for the home over the length of the mortgage. So it would be wise to refinance with a shorter-term mortgage when able to do so.

Effects of Rising Interest Rates on Home Sellers

Rising Interest Rate Effects on Home Sellers

For home sellers, rising interest rates means the pool of buyers for your home could shrink. For example, if all other economic factors remain the same, an interest rate rise of 1 percent could decrease the purchasing power of homebuyers by up to 11 percent. However the current demand for homes by homebuyers in a real estate environment that is low on inventory means that buyers are finding creative ways to procure the home they want to buy despite interest rates.

Effects of Rising Interest Rates on Homeowners

Rising Interest Rate Effects on Homeowners

If you’re a homeowner who has been thinking of refinancing, you still have time. Interest rates are expected to climb gradually, so refinance or borrow sooner to avoid higher rates later on down the road. Also, borrowing costs are still relatively low. So it is a good time to get out of variable-rate debt and lock in fixed rates to insulate from further rate increases.

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Ultimately, consumers don’t appear to be flinching much at rising interest rates. The U.S. economy has so much going for it that higher incomes and job availability could cover rising rates. Regardless of your current situation, if you are considering buying or selling a home in the current rising rate environment, speak with a member of The Boehmer Team. We have helped many homebuyers and sellers in all types of situations. Also, we can recommend mortgage loan experts in the St. Louis area that will help you get the best rate available for your needs.  

 

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Great Deals on New Luxury Villas



Villa homes in the St. Louis area are known for their convenience, low maintenance, and well-kept communities. They are a place where one can enjoy life without as much time and work put into home maintenance and upkeep. While many villa homes are attached homes designed to best maintain privacy and security, some are beautiful stand-alone models. Currently in Wentzville, Missouri, you can find great deals on new luxury villas at The Villas At Renaissance Crossing being built by local homebuilder Bridgewater Communities, Your Villa Experts.


THE VILLAS AT RENAISSANCE CROSSING


A new luxury villa community now underway in Wentzville called The Villas at Renaissance Crossing offers deals on newly constructed villa homes that are worth checking out. This small community of twenty home sites offers the opportunity to build brand new 1,600-3,000 square-foot attached and freestanding luxury villa homes on two cul-de-sac streets. The community has quick access to highways I-64, 61 and I-70, is minutes from The Meadows (upscale shopping and dinning) and just 15 minutes from Chesterfield Valley. 


While these villa homes will be built with luxury features, amenities and style, they are currently being offered at prices that are such a great deal we had to write a blog about it. These villa homes are priced aggressively compared to most other villa homes being built in the area. The cost per square foot even rivals existing villas homes in the area. They are sure to produce tremendous value for homeowners who purchase at this community. Those who get in early at this community will enjoy the best pricing of all. Click here for more information about villa home prices at The Villas At Renaissance Crossing. 


Interior features included with these homes are: professionally designed gourmet kitchens, Aristokraft wood cabinets, built-in kitchen pantry, whirlpool appliance suite, first-floor laundry, spacious master bathroom with built-in linen closet, Moen chrome single handle faucets, walk-in closet, second bedroom/bathroom suite on first-floor, solid hardwood foyer with choice of colors, fiberglass entry door with dual sidelights, R-38 attic insulation,  low-e windows (except for window well windows), and 32" wide interior doorways.


Exterior features at The Villas At Renaissance Crossing include: natural stone and brick elevations, attractive roof pitches, architectural shingles, covered front porch with coach light, low maintenance vinyl siding and aluminum facia, iron address plaque, wrought iron mailboxes, fully sodded lawn with landscape package and shade tree, and a lawn sprinkler system on community water.

ABOUT THE BUILDER

Since 2003, St. Louis-based developer Bridgewater Communities has been designing and developing beautiful villa homes and communities in our area. Their work has earned them several Homer awards from the St. Louis Home Builders Association – the equivalent of an “Oscar” for the residential building industry. Click here to learn more about Bridgewater Communities and all of the homes they are constructing in our area. 


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Is moving on your mind? The members of The Boehmer Team are new construction experts that represent buyers in new home purchases. We understand the construction process, paperwork and other details that make building the home of your dreams easier.  If you have questions about homebuilders, new home communities in the St. Louis or St. Charles County, Missouri area, new homes that are completed and for sale, or building a new home, contact us or visit www.TheBoehmerTeam.com.



Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Open House Etiquette For Homebuyers


Open House Etiquette for Buyers

When visiting an open house, homebuyers can expect to tour the inside and outside of the home for sale. But what do home sellers expect from homebuyers visiting the open house? If you plan on touring a St. Louis or St. Charles County, Missouri open house you’ll want to learn these ground rules to be a great guest and an astute homebuyer.

1. Inspect and Respect the Neighbors  
When arriving at the open house inspect the neighborhood and the neighbors, as these could one day be your neighbors. Take note of the condition of the neighbors’ homes and if they maintain their property. When parking, be respectful. Don’t block a neighbor’s driveway or cut through their yard to get to the front door of the open house.

2. Show Up Early
Showing up early at an open house will help you avoid any crowds. This will also give you more time to speak with the agent or seller holding the open house and ask pertinent questions. But don’t monopolize the agent’s time if there are multiple people viewing the home.

Remove shoes at open houses


3. Remove Shoes
Many home sellers will ask open house attendees to remove their shoes. This is often because the sellers have had their floors cleaned, waxed or shampooed to make their home look its best. Some home sellers may provide cloth booties to put over your shoes. Other home sellers won’t mind if you remove shoes or not. Knowing this will help you decide if you want to wear slip-on or other easy-to-remove shoes to open houses.

4. Sign In
The home seller or real estate agent hosting the open house will likely ask you to sign in and if you currently have an agent. The information you will be asked to provide when signing in is usually name, phone number and email address. Use your real information. This gives the seller or agent the opportunity to follow up with you if the home is reduced in price or other changes are made. If you’re working with an agent, let them know. If not, this is a good opportunity to interview the agent.

5. Special Instructions
There may be special instructions for those visiting the open house. A family pet could be crated or enclosed in a specific area that you should be aware of so you aren’t startled. Or there may be construction being performed on an area of the house that could be dangerous for children or those not paying attention. So check if the agent or home seller has special instructions you should be aware of. You may even learn something about the home that you would not know otherwise.

opening cabinets at an open house


6. To Open or Not to Open
When touring a home for sale home sellers usually expect that homebuyers will open and look in cabinets and closets to inspect for size and space but it is a good rule of thumb to ask if you can do so. Do not open furniture that is not attached to the home such as dressers, side tables, armoires, jewelry boxes or other furniture where the sellers keep personal items.

7. What to Look For
When visiting an open house get a closer look at the home’s major systems and appliances to see the condition. Use the opportunity to check for foundation cracks or old plumbing or wiring. Also check for dampness in the basement or if the land around the home is graded to keep water out of the home.



8. Ask Questions
If questions arise as you tour an open house, ask the home seller or agent holding the open house. Since the listing description that appears on websites and the multiple listing service won’t be able to tell you every single detail about a home, this is a great chance to get more information. Asking about the neighbors, neighborhood, the age of the roof and major systems like the furnace and air conditioner, and if the appliances stay with the home are all good questions. Keep in mind that agents holding an open house are not allowed to say if a home seller is willing to take less for a home.

9. Use a Buyer’s Agent
A listing agent holding an open house represents the seller’s best interest. Keep in mind that working with a separate buyer’s agent means that you have an agent on your side that represents your best interests as the homebuyer in the transaction. A buyer’s agent doesn’t have to go to open houses with you, but having one means you’ll have an expert on hand to represent and negotiate for your best interests as well as follow up on what you saw at the open house.


Is moving on your mind? The Boehmer Team has experienced buyer’s agents to help you navigate and procure the home you want in a competitive real estate market. If you are thinking of buying a home in the St. Louis, Missouri metropolitan area, be sure to interview TheBoehmer Team. You can learn more about The Boehmer Team and search for open houses in the area and price range of your choice at www.TheBoehmerTeam.com. If you’re selling a home and would like to know what is expected from home sellers for an open house, check out our article Open House Etiquette for Sellers



Thursday, April 12, 2018

Open House Etiquette For Sellers


Open House Etiquette For Home Sellers

Part of the process of selling a home is making it available to show to those who are considering purchasing it. An open house is one of the best ways to make it available to lots of potential homebuyers at once. For home sellers looking to sell a St. Louis or St. Charles County, Missouri area home, these ten open house etiquette rules are great guidelines to follow to make the most of your open house.

1. Clean and Declutter
Since the condition of your home is a place that your participation has the most effect, you’ll want to make your home look its very best by cleaning and decluttering. This includes: paint touch ups, organizing, making room in the closets and cabinets to make them look spacious, removing extra furniture and collectibles to make the rooms feel larger, and other projects. For a complete list of projects to prepare your home to sell, read our blog Preparing a Home to Sell.

2. Stage  
Staging a home to sell goes beyond cleaning and decluttering, it is looking at the home through the eyes of potential buyers and setting up the home to most appeal to them. This may mean repainting dark-colored walls to neutral colors, moving furniture placements, and removing personal items and photos that keep potential buyers from envisioning themselves living in the home.  Although in most cases staging is extremely advantageous, selling a vacant home is not always a problem.  Often times the design, finishes and architecture are sufficient to demonstrate the home in its best light. For more advice on staging check out the article Advice From Award Winning Home Stagers or bring in an experienced real estate agent to give you advice on what buyers are looking for.

Open House Curb Appeal

3. Get the First Impression Right
Don’t forget to clean and declutter the outside of your home and landscaping as well. Cut the grass, trim the shrubs, touch up any paint and put away any toys or yard maintenance items. This will create nice curb appeal and give potential homebuyers a good first impression of your home.

4. Use Light
Brighten up your home with lots of light. Replace any burned-out light bulbs, clean the windows and open the curtains and blinds. Light makes the home appear larger and lighter. Read Enhance Your Home With Lighting for more extensive tips on lighting a home.

5. Smell Test
One of the first things potential buyers will notice is if a home has a smell. Check your home for any lingering odors. This can be difficult because we often become nose-blind to the scents in our home. We recommend having a trusted friend come over and tell you if they notice any smells. For more great info on home smells and how to get rid of them, check out our blog How to Remove Home Smells.

Get Rid of Home Smells

6. Temporarily Remove or Crate Pets
We understand that pets are part of the family. However not all homebuyers are pet owners, and some may even have a fear of certain pets. Show potential homebuyers that you respect their desire to inspect your home without pet interruptions. If you do leave pets in the home, crate them, and consider leaving a sign to alert open house attendees that a pet is crated in a particular area.

7. Secure Valuables and Medications
Though a real estate agent is present to show potential homebuyers your home during an open house, it is not always possible to keep track of multiple people viewing the home at once. A good rule of thumb is to secure valuables and medications in a safe place or off the property during open houses and home showings. 


8. Park Somewhere Else
When hosting an open house for potential homebuyers, park your car somewhere other than the driveway. This will accommodate visitors and allow them to use the driveway, just as they would if they one day owned the home. It’s a great way to set the stage to make them feel at home.

9. Let the Agent Host
Potential homebuyers will be more open about their thoughts on a home they’re viewing if they are viewing with an impartial third party. By letting your agent host the open house you can get valuable feedback that divulges the true thoughts and feelings of those viewing the home. Then you can use that information to make any improvements to create a more positive impression for future homebuyers viewing the home.

10. Be Patient Waiting for Feedback
Your real estate agent may need up to 48 hours to gather all notes and feedback from the open house. Why so long? The agent hosting the open house may have follow-up to do with homebuyers who saw the home, particularly if homebuyers had specific questions the agent couldn’t answer at the time of the open house. The agent will then get back to the homebuyers with the answers and may be able to get even more information from those potential buyers. So be patient. Your agent is working hard to make sure they can give you a full report.
 
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Is moving on your mind? If you are thinking of selling a home in the St. Louis, Missouri metropolitan area, be sure to interview The Boehmer Team. We would be honored to prove our experience and expertise in person. Or you can learn more about The Boehmer Team at www.TheBoehmerTeam.com



Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Paint Colors That Sell


Paint Colors That Sell Homes

Did you know that paint color makes a difference in the way prospective buyers see a home and the price it brings when sold? While paint color doesn’t matter to every homebuyer, the right paint colors will get your home more attention and can help bring more value to the sale. If you are considering selling a St. Louis or St. Charles County area home, it will pay to learn which paint colors to choose.

While we occasionally question the results of Zillow’s “zestimates”, they’ve done some great research on over 32,000 photos of homes sold around the nation. They looked at how certain paint colors impacted price on average when compared with similar white-painted homes. The results were intriguing. So before you hit the local paint store, here are the paint colors that statistics show help sell homes and bring more value for the sale. 

Bedroom Paint Colors That Sell Homes


Home Interior Paint Colors With High Value

Light and medium shades of muted blue have been found to be especially valuable throughout most of the home. In the kitchen soft gray-blue netted an additional $1,809. For bedrooms, homes with medium muted blues saw a premium of $1,856. Even in the dining room shades of slate blue and pale gray-blue netted on average more than $1,926 when compared to white-painted dining rooms. The biggest paint color value found was $5,440 more for the average sale price in homes that had light blue or soft periwinkle bathrooms.


In the living room the colors that brought the most value were shades of light brown. Homes with pale taupe, light beige or oatmeal-colored living rooms sold for $1,926 more than similar homes with white living rooms. 

Living Room Paint Colors That Sell Homes




Exterior Home Paint Colors with High Value

You are probably wondering, what about gray? We are seeing gray everywhere these days as it is growing in popularity and value. So here it is: homes with an exterior painted in light gray and beige sold for about $3,496 more than other popular colors like medium brown and tan.  

Exterior Paint Colors That Sell Homes


Front door color affects curb appeal and has value too. Once again, blue and gray colors lead the way. Homes with navy or slate gray front doors netted on average $1,514 more for the home sale.


Paint Colors That May Deter Homebuyers

Now that you know what colors statistically brought more value from a home sale, let’s discuss colors to avoid when selling a home. More specifically, lack of color was detrimental. It was shown that homes with white bathrooms sold for an average of $4,035 less than other similar homes. So while white-washing an entire home to make it appear clean and bright may seem like the right thing to do, one is better off using light, muted colors as opposed to no color at all. But don’t go crazy, homes with dark colors sold for an average of $2,031 less than expected.

Paint Colors To Avoid When Selling A Home


What To Do

If you are thinking of putting a home on the market, consult with experienced local real estate agents like those on The Boehmer Team. We work with home stagers and photographers to make homes look their best and can help you evaluate the current condition of your home through the eyes of the home buyers we work with every day. By consulting an agent you may find that you don’t have to do as much work as you thought to get your home ready for sale.  And if you do need work done, an experienced real estate team will have a list of reputable home repair and painting contractors to help get the work done right.

Is moving on your mind? Contact TheBoehmer Team.