May 31, 2017

Getting Your Home Ready for Summer

Goodby winter! Hello Summer!

After a not-too-bad winter and a beautiful spring, summer has finally arrived. The long cold winter months can take a toll on the interior and exterior of your home. Now that the weather is more cooperative it is time to make sure your home is ready for another great summer.

The Interior

To get the inside of your home ready for summer shouldn’t be too hard if you started this past spring with a nice deep cleaning. But if you didn’t get around to it before now, you can still get your home deep cleaned before the rest of the summer passes you by.

Besides the general scrubbing down of your home interior, I like to recommend decluttering and organizing. Do NOT be afraid to get rid of some of those things that do nothing but sit around and collect dust! Think about donating your stuff to one of many nonprofit organization or if they are beyond redemption, throw them in the trash. Be strong and make the tough decisions!

If you have not used an item in six months to a year it is highly unlikely that you will ever use that it again. You can’t believe how refreshed you will feel after decluttering and organizing your home! The less stuff you have to worry about on the inside of your home collecting dust and tripping over during the better. Don’t fret and fume this summer because of junk, get rid of it and enjoy the sun!

The Exterior

Once you have the inside of your home ready for summer, it’s time to move the fun outside and work on that exterior! Summer is the best time to up the curb appeal of your home a notch or two. You want the exterior of your home to be just as comfortable and inviting as the interior. This summer you deserve a space that’s perfect for family and friends to gathering, barbeque, and just relax.

So create it!

    • Clean Up – You want to start with a clean slate, so step one and the best way to achieve this is clean everything. If you don’t own one it’s time to borrow a pressure-washer and get started. Spray down your driveway, walkways, and gently clean and spray down your siding, decks, and patios. Just do a general scrub down of the exterior of your home (windows included).
    • Do Touch-Ups – Now is a good time to do a little maintenance on your home. This could include doing simple paint touch-ups, replacing siding or windows. Use this opportunity to get stuff done to your home that will make next winter more bearable, such as resealing windows and doors.
    • Discover Your Green Thumb – If you are not already a gardener, now is the time to learn! Nothing warms up an outside space like a garden. You can do something as simple as planting a small flower garden, or you can “branch out” and try your hand at growing some veggies as well. Whatever you decide to do, make it your own. Embrace your inner gardener and have fun! Along similar lines is yard maintenance. Dethatch your grass of any debris that may have piled up over the winter months, and then keep up on weekly (if not daily) yard work like watering, fertilizing, adding needed topsoil and of course everyone’s favorite, mowing!
    • Create a Place to Relax – Last but not least is decorating and furnishing! I truly believe if a space doesn’t offer you the opportunity to sit down and relax then you will avoid that space. During the sunny and warmer months embrace the outdoors; get some sun and fresh air because winter is coming back soon enough. To encourage you and your family to get outside, create an inviting and relaxing space they want to enjoy. Your outdoor space does not have to be extravagant to be comfortable and inviting. Just having a place to sit down with a fun throw pillow is better than having nothing at all. Make your outdoor “relaxing space” your own. You can have so much fun decorating and putting pieces together to fit your unique style.

Team Roberts whishes your family a safe and fun-filled summer. If you feel like you don’t have the outdoor or indoor space of your dreams, then maybe, just maybe it is time start looking for one. Especially if you have children, having an outdoor space where they can play is crucial. Contact us today if you want to sell your home, we can take care of the selling portion and help you in finding the true home of your dreams!

If you want someone who can make the selling experience a good one then please contact Team Roberts for any of your home buying or selling needs! Allow us the honor to serve you and get the “Service You Deserve, People You Trust!”

Posted in Home Improvement
April 30, 2017

3 Reasons to Live in the Greater Des Moines Area

3 Reasons to Live in the Greater Des Moines Area

The Greater Des Moines Area is... GREAT!

This post if for you whether you are visiting from out of state, or if you have lived in Iowa your entire life. To say it simply, we love Iowa! More specifically though, we love the Des Moines metro area! There are many great reasons to live in or visit this wonderful area in our beautiful state.

You could say Des Moines is a very well-rounded city because it has everything from great local businesses to family-friendly activities and events. The greater Des Moines area has something for everyone. Let’s take a closer look at why we love the greater Des Moines area so much.

1. Small Town-Booming City

First, even though many people across the country believe Iowa to only be a small farming state known for corn and hogs, there is much, much more. Iowa also has a growing economy and booming with new businesses.

Forbes ranked Des Moines as a Top 10 Best Place for Business and Careers in 2016 and noted that it is one of the fastest-growing metros in the U.S. with an 18% lower cost of doing business. When compared to other Midwest states, Des Moines is among the highest in growth of products and employment.

There are a number of large corporations represented in the downtown Des Moines district as well in some of the other areas of the metro. You can find many high paying jobs with great benefits and at the same time escaping to your peaceful home in the outlying areas without all the hustle and bustle a larger city might have.

2. Real Estate Market on the Rise

The Des Moines metro real estate market has continued to rise over the last 10 years. Houses are selling in record time, some being on the market for only 24 hours before being sold! With interest rates lower compared to what they have been in the past, now is the time to buy and sell homes in the greater Des Moines metro. Not only is the buying and selling market on the rise, but according to the Des Moines Register:

“Residential property values have increased 8.3 percent on average over the past two years, according to preliminary valuations from the Polk County assessor. That would be the biggest jump since 2005 and roughly double the increase seen in 2015.”

So basically, if you purchase your home in the Des Moines metro area, you are almost guaranteed an increase in the value of your home.

3. Festivals & Events

As mentioned previously, the Des Moines metro has a great offering of activities and events for all types of people. You will never be bored living in Central Iowa! There are activities and events offered year-round… Iowans never let the weather get the best of them! Here are a few of our favorite activities and events the Des Moines area has to offer:

These are just a handful of events Des Moines has to offer. You can find the latest Des Moines events at Catch Des Moines

We haven’t even mentioned the many wonderful restaurants Des Moines has to offer. There are many restaurants using only locally grown produce and meat to showcase the many tasty products Iowa’s farmer produce. There is also a great selection of local brewing companies and more are on the way. The options are almost endless when it comes time to decide where you want to eat!

We love Iowa and are hoping this little glimpse into the greater Des Moines metro has peaked your interest at least a little. Maybe you would like to know more about moving to or visiting our area. We would love to have you! If you are interested in moving to the area, contact us today and we can help you find the home of your dreams! If you currently live in the Des Moines area and are looking to sell or purchase a new home, fell free to contact us as well!

If you want someone who can make the selling experience a good one then please contact Team Roberts for any of your home buying or selling needs! Allow us the honor to serve you and get the “Service You Deserve, People You Trust!”

Posted in Des Moines Metro
March 31, 2017

6 Steps To Get Your Home Ready To Sell

Are you selling your home?

The decision is made, you want to sell your home. More often than not it is hard to make the decision to put your home on the market and no one wants to drag out the selling process. We offer these 6 steps to get your home ready to sell and to sell it quickly.

1. Declutter

Declutter, declutter, declutter! We cannot say enough about decluttering your home because it will do wonders for speeding up the selling process. When looking through your items to determine what goes, ask yourself this questions: Have I used this item the last year, or even in the last month? Most often the answer will be no. If you haven’t used those items in the last year or last few months, then you probably never will so it’s time to either donate or toss those items out. Here are a few more decluttering options to consider:

  • Pack away books
  • Clear your bathroom and kitchen counter tops
  • Clean and declutter all cupboards and closets

Take the time to look over your home as a potential buyer and examine every part of the house with a critical eye towards what looks cluttered.

2. De-Personalize

If your goal is to sell then you want any potential buyer walking through to be able to envision their own future in that home! To help potential buyers see their family making a future in your home, you can aid the process by packing away all your family photos and heirlooms. This can be a double positive because you are getting a head start on packing!

3. Rent a Storage Unit/Start Moving

Houses tend to sell better with less furniture in them. By eliminating a few pieces of furniture it makes your space feel bigger and it also makes for a better flow throughout the home. If you don’t already have a new home where you can store your furniture, we highly recommend renting a storage unit to keep your items safe until a later and more convenient time.

4. Make Minor Repairs

Don’t feel like you need to remodel the entire house before you can sell it. Before you start spending loads of money on a remodel try selling your home with just a few minor repairs. Here are a few you can do:

  • Patch holes in the walls
  • Paint
  • Replace burned out light bulbs
  • Update outdated cabinet hardware
  • Fix leaky faucets/shower heads
  • Have your floors professionally cleaned

5. Clean Up the Outside

Your home’s curb appeal plays a major role in the selling process. The exterior of your home will create the potential buyer’s first impression and if it isn’t a good one, then why would they want to see more? So to make that first impression a good one there are a few things that need to be done:

  • Make sure your house number can be clearly seen and read
  • Keep driveway/sidewalks swept and clean
  • Paint faded shutters
  • Trim down your bushes
  • Planting flowers can add a nice touch
  • Keep your lawn nice and trimmed
  • During the winter clear away snow and ice off from driveway/sidewalks
  • 6. Clean & Keep Clean!

Last but not least, it is time to deep clean your home! When trying to sell a house it is best to keep it sparkling clean and smelling good! Try to keep your home clean at all times because you never know when a realtor will call with a potential buyer wanting to see your home. If your home isn’t cleaned and organized then you may not want anyone to see it on such a short notice. Just remember that when you are trying to sell your home you never want to turn away an opportunity to show it!

Team Roberts Can Help!

We hope these tips will make getting your home ready to sell a little easier. If you qualify for our Hero Reward Program then find out how you can save as much as $5,000 when sell a home with Team Roberts.

If you want someone who can make the selling experience a good one then please contact Team Roberts for any of your home buying or selling needs! Allow us the honor to serve you and get the “Service You Deserve, People You Trust!”

Home Improvements Infographic

To help you find ways that you can quickly make some home improvements, we are including “Home Improvements That Take 10 Minutes Or Less!” infographic to download and share with friends and family. Please share a comment with us below about your home buying search or experiences.

Posted in Selling Home
Feb. 27, 2017

Benefits to Buying a Home vs Renting

Are you thinking about buying a home?

There is nothing quite like buying and owning your own home. A large part of the American dream involves the idea of working hard towards home ownership and settling down in a community where one’s children can grow up safe and secure with a good education and future opportunities.

However, many people are afraid of the commitment that comes with buying a home.
 
When it comes to buying a home there are many advantages a purchase like that provides as opposed to renting a home or apartment. While renting may have a few immediate benefits, buying a home can pay off in the long run through tax breaks, equity, creative freedom, and putting down solid roots in a local community.

In fact, buying a home and making monthly mortgage payments may actually prove to be less expensive in the long run than it is to pay rent!  Team Roberts Real Estate understands many people dream of owning their own home and if you are struggling with that decision, we have provided you with this list of just a few benefits that come with owning a home.

You Save More Money

When you purchase a home you are putting your money (monthly mortgage payment) into a “forced savings account.”

Really!

Each month when you pay your mortgage, you are reducing the overall principal that you owe and increasing the equity you have in your home. Equity is the difference between what you owe on your home and the value of it. When, and if, you sell your home you can get back that equity. If you sell your home for $200,000 and you only owe $100,000, you can pay off the remaining mortgage and keep the other $100,000 worth of equity… now doesn’t that sound great!

Fixed Payment

Unlike when you rent, your monthly fixed house payment will not go up. Today it seems as if renting costs go up quite often. Your landlord can tack on any sort of fee or increase and add that to your monthly rent. Apartment complexes usually wait until the last 30 days before you need to re-sign your yearly contract to tell you your rent will be going up. That doesn’t leave you with much time to decide if you can afford the new monthly rent or not. With a fixed mortgage rate it is easy to gage your monthly and yearly budget.

Your Space is Truly YOURS

Yes, you can make any rental homey and “you,” but you do not truly own it. Many times in a rental situation there are many rules on what can and cannot be done when it comes to painting or decorating. When you own a home you can change anything you want about it and if you need more space or want more “openness” you can create that by knocking out a wall or adding on. If you are renting and want more space the only option is to move and find something that is a better fit. Who really likes to move?

Tax Deductions

Another plus is that homeowners have the benefit of deducting their mortgage interest and property taxes paid each year when it comes time to prepare state and federal income taxes. When you buy or refinance you can often deduct some closing fees a well. Here in Iowa, there is a tax credit funded by the state for qualifying homeowners called the Homestead Credit, and is generally based on the first $4,850 of Net Taxable Value.

Home Buying Benefits

Hopefully these benefits will help you make a decision about buying your own new home! If you are looking for a dependable REALTOR® and ready to take this next big and exciting step in your life, then contact us today! We want to help you find the home of your dreams. If you qualify for our Hero Reward Program then find out how you can save as much as $5,000 when buying a new home with Team Roberts. Allow us the honor to serve you and get the “Service You Deserve, People You Trust!”

Rent or Buy Infographic

To help you make that all important decision to rent or buy, we are including “Rent or Buy” infographic to download and share with friends and family. Please share a comment with us below about your home buying search or experiences.

Posted in Buying Home
Jan. 23, 2017

Choosing the Perfect Real Estate Professional

Are you looking for a real estate agent?

Buying a home is an exciting adventure and a huge undertaking. Sometimes it can be a bit stressful and even produce a little anxiety. Whether you are looking to purchase your first home or want to buy something different from your current home, a good real estate professional can guide you through the process past the stress and around the rocks of anxiety.

Like most things, it really pays off to do some research before choosing a real estate agent or broker to help you find the home of your dreams. The first thing you may want to decide on is what type of real estate professional are you looking for?

Real Estate Professionals

There are many different terms and titles that go with being a real estate professional and knowing which one to contact can be confusing. Here is a brief explanation of the different titles used by real estate professionals:

  • Real Estate Agent – someone who earns a real estate license can consider themselves as a real estate agent. In order to earn this license each state requires a minimum number of hours in a classroom and pass a state administered final exam.
  • Realtor® - this is a real estate agent who is a member of the National Association of REALTORS®. As a member, the Realtor must uphold to the standards, codes, and ethics of the association.
  • Real Estate Broker – someone who has an education and experience beyond that of a real estate agent. In addition to passing the real estate agent exam, a real estate broker has completed advanced courses and passed a brokers exam. Brokers can own their own company and are able to work alone or hire agents to work for them.
  • Associate Broker – someone who has received a broker’s license but has chosen to work for a broker and is managed like an agent.

Now that you have a good understanding about the different types of real estate professionals, you need to choose who will best help you accomplish your goals. Like every other profession, real estate has both good and bad professionals out there and your time spent researching the local market is critical!

What is a REALTOR®?

Not all real estate agents are the same and not all abide by the same code of ethics. Associations like the National Association of REALTORS® are dedicated to handle all transactions honestly and to treat all parties involved fairly. REALTORS® have a higher level of buying and selling real estate knowledge and faithfully follow a strict code of ethics not found with other real estate professionals.

Finding the Right Fit

Now that you know which type of real estate professional you want, it is time to choose the best REALTOR ® for you. It cannot be over emphasized how important research is and the internet can be a great asset during your search. Keep in mind however, part of your research should include interviewing potential Realtors® in person. Here are just a few questions you should be asking during your interviews:

  • What kind of experience do you have?
  • What is your marketing plan for selling?
  • Do you have references?
  • How do you plan on communicating with me?
  • Do you handle both sides of the transaction (buying and selling)?
  • What is your knowledge on home loans?
  • What are your sales stats?

These are just a few questions to help you get started on a conversation with a potential REALTOR®. Once you have narrowed down the choices it is time to choose the REALTOR® who is the best fit for you and your situation.

Our Team

Team Roberts Real Estate and RE/MAX Real Estate Concepts would love the opportunity to sit down with you and discuss your buying or selling options. Our team members are REALTORS® and as mentioned earlier that means we are a part of the National Association of REALTORS® and uphold a strict code of ethics. These guidelines protect and keep our clients like you safe.

Contact us today and schedule an appointment!

Posted in Real Estate Agent
Feb. 11, 2016

Eat Farm Fresh Cooking Near Urbandale Homes at the Machine Shed

Eat good food near Urbandale homes.Since 1978, the Machine Shed family of restaurants has been serving up the best in Midwestern hospitality. People in Urbandale homes are lucky to have a Machine Shed right in town. This is the place to go to get incredibly fresh food, sourced from local farmers. All the cooking at the Machine Shed is done from scratch--they even peel their own potatoes. Come in for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Start off the day with a hearty platter of eggs, sausage, and bacon, or dig in to a stack of fluffy pancakes. For lunch, fill up with plowman’s meatloaf or an old-fashioned pot roast. For something a bit lighter, choose one of the soups or a salad. At dinner, sample some of the offerings from the best smokehouse on Urbandale real estate and get hickory smoked pork ribs or beef brisket.

Kids from Urbandale homes are invited to come for a free cooking class. Held once a month, this a great opportunity to learn to follow a recipe, handle kitchen tools, and learn about nutrition. Call 515-270-6818 to reserve your spot. Groups are welcome.

The Machine Shed is founded on a belief that food should bring people together. Be sure to visit them online and download some of their helpful ebooks for holiday entertaining guides, instructions on canning and freeze drying, and gardening tips.

Posted in News
Feb. 8, 2016

Learn Rock Climbing on Grimes Real Estate at Climb Iowa

Go climbing on Grimes real estate.Climb Iowa is a unique business on commercial Grimes real estate. The 10,000 square foot climbing gym opened in 2008 and quickly became one of the top things to do in Grimes. Both novice climbers and those who have lots of experience are welcome. With 200 routes to choose from, there will be something to interest everyone. There’s also a fitness room and yoga studio to round out the options.

Instruction is offered to both kids and adults. Learn the basics of climbing and how to take care of equipment. Kids can attend camps in the summer or during spring and winter breaks from school. The Youth Adventure Climbing (YAC) Team is a great choice for kids who love climbing. Weekly practices allow them to hone their climbing skills, while getting valuable life lessons in problem solving and team building.

Adults may take introductory and advanced movement classes, belay class, and Climbing Wall Association (CWA) certification classes. Private instruction is available for both kids and adults.

Climbers who expect to return to this Grimes property to practice climbing often should consider a punch card or annual membership for discounts on climbing time and gear rental, as well as discounts in the Climb Iowa shop.

Visit Climb Iowa to get more details on classes and prices.

Posted in News
Feb. 3, 2016

Join Hyperion Field Club, a Johnston Property for Fun and Fitness

Go golfing on Johnston property.Hyperion Field Club offers Johnston property owners a world-class facility for golf, tennis, swimming, and overall fitness. The golf course was completely redesigned in 1992 by Bob Lohmann. The course is set on a hill overlooking Des Moines and opens in early spring. There is also a no-wait practice facility where members may hone their skills. Three tennis courts offer another opportunity for outdoor fun. Clinics and lessons are offered, and during the summer there is a full calendar of events and competitions.

The fitness room offers members from Johnston homes state of the art machines and a weight room for working out. There are also many group classes offered, so it’s easy to get in shape and make friends at the same time. The swimming pool is open from Memorial Day through Labor Day. The zero-depth entry helps those who are unsteady on their feet to enter easily, while the diving board is a favorite of dare devils. Swimming classes are offered to everyone from babies to adults. Kids ages four through 17 can compete on the swim team.

Hyperion Field Club offers members several dining options on its Johnston property. The Sportsbar is the place to have a sandwich with friends and relax with a beer after a game of golf or tennis. Families enjoy the quiet of the Sunset Dining Room. The Greens Dining Room is adults-only and hosts events like wine tastings and cocktail parties.

Visit Hyperion Field Club to learn more about this lovely facility and inquire about membership.

Posted in News