Area Real Estate News & Market Trends

You’ll find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That’s because we care about the community and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you! Be sure to FOLLOW our Facebook page for early notifications of all new listings. 

Dec. 8, 2020

An Open Canvas – The Vermont Market

An Open Canvas – The Vermont Market

 

At New England Landmark Realty, we are experienced in dealing with sales on the Vermont market, which is a unique American real estate market. We've seen that those who want to buy land or property in Vermont often have their own specific ideas and goals and plans related to what Vermont has to offer.

 

The Vermont market is unique in its rustic environment and deliberate public planning. Here are some of the driving forces that inspire people to buy real estate here.

 

Getting Away

 

Many of our buyers purchase real estate in Vermont as a place to vacation. A significant number of them are using their Vermont properties to get a time-out from bustling urban environments in places like New York City, Washington DC or other regional metropolitan areas. We have seen what these buyers value in properties, and because we know the lay of the land when it comes to this state market, we can help guide someone toward the choices that will suit them best.

 

Cut the Commercials

 

Other Vermont buyers are attracted to the area because of the protectionist mindset in local public planning that carefully limits commercial signage, chain stores and other aspects of American commercialism.

 

You can see in other markets all over the country how unfettered development leads to a kind of chockablock visual result that many people consider to be an eyesore. By limiting the amount of signage, building footprints and commercial development of natural land, Vermont has really become a haven for those who believe in natural environments. Just visiting the state gives people a new frame of mind, if what they’re used to is the sameness of American suburbs and mini-malls. But unlike some of America’s other wild places, there’s something purposeful about the Vermont landscape, something that’s hard to match elsewhere.

 

Re-Homing and Sustaining

 

Other Vermont buyers have particular goals in terms of making their households more sustainable.

 

This unique rural aspect of Vermont makes it a prime place to work the land or raise livestock, or do other local sustainable projects. In this case, many of our buyers are looking for minimal building footprints, with larger areas of undeveloped land attached.

 

We have the land, and the homes. We have excellent visual tools and search functionality right on our website, to help Vermont buyers to search for their dream property. Contact us about your plans to participate in one of the most desirable U.S. real estate markets in the country. Be sure to check out our “featured properties” and other tools on the site, and reach out with any questions. Welcome!

Nov. 5, 2020

Preparing for Winter in Vermont

It's no secret that the winters are cold in Vermont. The cold makes way for the snow, and a winter wonderland is born. Children enjoy snow days off from school, making snow angels and scarfed snowmen with carrot top noses. Hot cocoa with marshmallows and whipped cream sit unassumingly near the fireplace. Snowy winters are all well and good for the children in your life, but this same beautiful natural occurrence can wreak havoc on a home if you don't take the necessary precautions. Before that happens, check out these tips to keep your home toasty and warm, and your heating costs low.

Preparing for Winter in Vermont

Seal your Windows and Doors

There are many ways to weatherize your home, but caulking and weatherstrips can be a great way to protect your home from air leaks that seep in through small cracks and openings.   Maintain the durability and longevity of your home by sealing these gaps. These are apparent in doors and windows, and also where plumbing, ducting, and electrical wiring comes through walls, floors, and ceilings. 

Insulation is the Key

There are several different areas of your home that require insulation.  Your attic is a prime example. Since heat rises, you don't want it to hang out in your home's upper levels without heating the lower levels. You can use do it yourself foam insulation sprays for smaller cracks and gaps. Remember, proper ventilation is needed, so don't limit airflow by closing off vents without consultation. Renovated basements are also on the list of areas that should be insulated. If you use your garage as a man cave or workspace, you might consider insulation. 

A Plan of Action

Be prepared for the unexpected. Create a disaster plan ahead of time if you are in an area of unpredictable weather. Stock emergency supplies, and be sure not to forget to install a carbon monoxide detector as well as a smoke detector. Keep important papers safe and have property insurance papers handy. Only heat rooms that you use and spend time in each day. Close off unused areas of the house. Have an emergency plan of somewhere you can go should you lose heat. Think about joining a Community Emergency Response Team in your area. 

Take Care of your House

Your house is more than a place; it's a home. It will last longer if you take the necessary precautions to update and winterize your home each year. If you are in the market for a new home or are looking to sell, please visit New England Landmark Realty for all of your home buying and selling needs.

Posted in Vermont
Oct. 9, 2020

Essential Elements Your Virtual Home Tour Needs

Over 14,000 homes are sold every day in the United States. While the COVID-19 pandemic has slowed down the housing market a bit, many analysts don’t see this downturn lasting. If you are attempting to sell a home during this confusing time in history, you have to embrace the power of technology. Working with an experienced real estate agent is a crucial component of getting your home sold quickly. 

One of the main things a real estate agent will advise you to do is to create a virtual home tour for interested buyers. In most cases, a real estate agent will help you create and advertise this listing. Before posting a link to your virtual home tour online, you need to make sure it has some of the following elements. 

Include a Picture of Your Home’s Floor Plan

Some homeowners get so wrapped up in including flashy camera angles and top-notch transitions in their virtual tour that they forget about some basic elements. While walking a person through your home virtually is a must, you also need to provide them with more context about how your residence is set up. The best way to do this is by including a picture of your home’s floor plan. 

If you don’t have a floor plan handy, try contacting the builder who constructed your residence. In some areas, the local building permit agency will have a copy on file. If you can’t track down a floor plan using these methods, you may have to work with your real estate agent to hand draft one. By including this information, you can give online home buyers the information they need to decide whether or not your residence is the right fit for their needs. 

Video Footage of Appealing Home Features

A walkthrough of your home is only one of the things your virtual listing should include. You also need to make a video that highlights the great features your home has. These features should include things like energy-efficient appliances, doors and windows. 

Getting video from inside of your garage is also a good idea. If you are unsure about what features to highlight in this video, seek out the guidance of your real estate agent. They will be able to give you a breakdown of the features home buyers like. By producing a video with these great features, you can entice buyers and sell your home in record time. 

Good Audio and Lighting

If you are developing a video tour of your home to show to online buyers, making sure it is well-lit is vital. Poor lighting can make your home look unappealing and dull. You also need to make sure that there the audio featured in the virtual home tour is crisp and easy to understand. With these two elements in place, you can provide consumers with a great representation of what your home has to offer. 

Need Help Selling Your Home?

 

If you are ready to put your home on the market, let New England Landmark Realty help you out. Our team will work hard to help you find motivated buyers.

Posted in Home Buyers
Sept. 2, 2020

Top Home Architectural Designs

There are thousands of different styles of homes all across the globe. Some architectural designs are used so commonly that they develop their own style and become a baseline for houses. You’ll notice when searching for houses, that many homes share similar designs and characteristics.  While there is a variety of homes, some of which get very creative, most houses you see a branch from only a few popular styles. With that being said, here are some of the most common house styles in the U.S.A.


The “Cape Cod”

One of the first styles we will discuss is the “Cape Cod” home. The Cape Cod home is probably what comes to mind when you think of traditional American housing. With a nice rectangular body and sloped roof, Cape Cod homes are all about symmetry. Often found with many windows around the house, especially in the front, these homes often feel spacious and open, while being midsize in structure. Cape Cod homes are also notable for having a chimney rising up from the center of the house. These houses are no stranger to weathering the elements and are often found in areas where the climate consists of heavy snow and rain.

 

Mediterranean 

The second popular home style is, of course, the Mediterranean style. This style of home gets many of its traits from the Spanish, Italian, and other architecture found along the Mediterranean Sea, hence the name. Many homes from this style feature terracotta roofing, tan exteriors, arches, and outdoor patios. These homes often feel open and spacious with large windows and doors leading to outdoor entertaining spaces.  These types of houses are commonly found in places with warmer tropical climates such as California and Florida. Because of their layout, Mediterranean homes are easy to cool off, not just by traditional air conditioning, but by opening the doors and windows as well.

 

Contemporary

The last style of house we’ll look at is the style of Contemporary. Contemporary homes are a more recent style of housing, showing roots in design from the 1970s. These house designs focus on fluid lines, open spaces, large windows and areas for light to come in, and creative visuals. These houses are definitely eye-catchers as they tend to stand out from traditional homes. Contemporary houses are found all around the world and have gained in popularity due to their more modern esthetics. 

 

Your Dream Home

When looking for your dream home, consider the styling of the various types of homes that we see today, and determine what fits best into your lifestyle. Let New England Landmark Realty help you find the perfect home for you, one that reflects your style and enhances your way of living.

Posted in Business
July 31, 2020

3 Home Features Modern Buyers View as Essential

Are you ready to become one of the nearly 5 million people who will buy a new home this year? If you answered yes, then you need to view researching the homes on your local market as a must. Rushing through the home buying process is a recipe for disaster.

Before you hit the market looking for a home to purchase, you should probably make a list of features you want. Having this list will make this process easier for you and your real estate agent. Below are some of the most popular features most modern home buyers view as essential.

3 Home Features Modern Buyers View as Essential

1. Energy Efficient Windows, Doors and Appliances

Being a homeowner can be both stressful and expensive. Most new homeowners are adamant about finding ways to reduce their monthly utility bills. Accomplishing this goal will require you to find a home with tons of energy-efficient upgrades. Modern home buyers typically go for homes that have well-insulated doors and windows. If a home has old and drafty windows, it will cost you a lot of money to replace them.

You also need to check out the appliances in a home before buying it. The last thing anyone wants is to buy a home filled with outdated and energy wasting appliances. If you are unsure about how to assess how energy-efficient a home is, consulting with your real estate agent is smart. These professionals have extensive knowledge of modern homes, which is why getting guidance from them is so crucial.

2. Having a Garage Comes in Handy

Storage space is something most home buyers want tons of. Buying a home with limited storage space will result in tons of headaches in the future. One of the best ways to increase the amount of storage space you have access to is by investing in a home with a large garage. Not only can a garage provide you with storage space, it is also a great place to park your vehicles.

As you inspect potential home purchases, be sure to assess the condition of the garage doors. If the doors look old or damaged, you will probably need to replace them if you decide to buy the home. While this is an expensive upgrade, it will improve curb appeal and can help to make your new home more secure.

3. The Power of Landscape Lighting

The outdoor features a home has is also something you need to consider before making a purchase. Choosing a home that has landscaping lights is a wise move if you care about curb appeal and security. These lights are also a great way to highlight the architectural appeal a residence has.

Most homes that have landscaping lights will also have an appealing landscaping design. Before you buy a home with a great landscaping design, you need to make sure you can afford to maintain it.

Are You Ready to Buy a New Home?

If you are ready to invest in a new home, contact New England Landmark Realty.

Posted in Home Buyers
July 9, 2020

The Best Kept Secrets to Help You Buy a Home

The Best Kept Secrets to Help You Buy a Home

Buying a home is a huge investment. In fact, it is the biggest investment most people will ever make. If you are ready to make this purchase, you likely want to get a great deal. Several things that will help you with this are found below.

Keep Your Money in Place

It isn’t a good idea to make any significant purchases or move your money in any way approximately three to six months before you purchase a new home. You can’t afford to make any significant changes with your credit score or profile. Lenders want to have proof you are reliable and want an easy-to-follow paper trail so they can help you find the right loan for your needs. If you open a new credit card, acquire too much new debt, or buy many high-ticket items, you will find it difficult to get a loan.

Be Pre-Approved for Your Home Loan

There is a huge difference between a buyer who is pre-qualified and one that is pre-approved for a mortgage loan. Anyone can get the pre-qualified status; however, if you take it a step further and get pre-approved, it means that a lender has looked into your financial background and information and know how much you can afford and based on this how much they are willing to lend you.

When you are pre-approved, it will help you save energy and time, so you aren’t going from place to place looking at houses that you won’t be able to afford. It also gives you the opportunity to shop around to find the best interest rates and the best deals. Be sure that you do plenty of research ahead of time to ensure there are no hidden costs in the loan that you are pre-approved for.

Avoid Being Caught in a Border Dispute

It is important to have a survey of your property done so you know precisely what you are purchasing. When you know where the property lines are, it will help save you the hassle and frustration of a property dispute with your neighbors. Also, in most cases, your property taxes are based on the amount of property that you have, so it is essential to have a precise and accurate map created.

Don’t Attempt to Time the Market

You should not obsess with attempting to time the market and determine when the right time to buy really is. It isn't possible to figure out what the housing market is going to do. A good time to buy is when you find the ideal house that you can afford to purchase. Remember, real estate is cyclical, and it will go up and down. If you attempt to wait for the right time, you are probably going to wind up missing out.

When it comes to buying a new home, there are more than a few factors you must consider. When you are informed and know what to consider is the best way to ensure that you get the property you want and need.

Posted in Home Buyers
May 15, 2019

I Can't Hear You!

 

 

NELANDMARK blog

 

Every Realtor has had a near disaster in their career. I am no exception.

 

There’s the one about the seller who insisted on learning everything they could about buyers before letting them through the door. A long list of questions. Talk about opening yourself up to violating Fair Housing Regulations. Yup, we had to fire that one.

 

Fair Housing Regulations are in place for a reason, and the Justice Department can levy fines up to $100,000. Recently social media advertising platforms have been fined for allowing advertisements that violated Fair Housing regs. Bottom line is that no one has the right to discriminate against anyone when it comes to housing.

 

What does that mean for the average home seller and their Realtor? I suspect some home sellers don’t even think about how questions may be interpreted by buyers. But we need to be very careful in the questions we ask to eliminate even the impression of discrimination. 

 

Personally, I do not know of a situation in Vermont where a Realtor has been called on this, but the risk is there. We don’t hesitate to cancel a listing contract if a seller insists on putting us in danger of a violation. Luckily it has only happened once. I like to believe Vermonters really do not want to discriminate, so we don’t run into it very often.

 

In talking with a potential buyer the only thing we should be asking them for is a pre-approval letter. If they are financially able to purchase, that’s all we need to know. 

 

If you have any real estate or Vermont related questions, let me know. Happy to answer all questions.

Cindy Lyons, co-owner and principal broker

New England Landmark Realty

Posted in Business
March 12, 2019

Tips for Selling Your Home in 2019

 

If you are planning to sell your home in the upcoming year, a few strategies can help you do so quickly. As you may already know, the longer your home sits on the market, the less likely it is that you'll find a buyer who offers your asking price. The best strategy for homeowners looking to sell their homes in 2019 is to set the stage using the following tips.

Clean Out the Junk 

A home that looks spacious is going to sell more quickly than one filled with clutter. Organizing your home and removing all of the junk that you've collected over the years is an excellent way to showcase the house. Decluttering your home will make it appear roomier, and allows interested buyers to see the structure's floor, walls, and aesthetic potential.

Find an Experienced Real Estate Agent 

If this is your first time selling a home, finding an experienced real estate agent can make all the difference in a quick sale. A knowledgeable REALTOR will guide you in the tasks needed to encourage a quick sale. New England Landmark Realty has 16 professional agents to help you!

Fix Broken Items 

Best impressions bring the best offers. While the broken light switch in the basement may not be on your list of priorities, it certainly is going to impact a buyer's interest in your home. Not keeping up with repairs makes homeowners look sloppy and disinterested in regular upkeep tasks. Potential buyers may wonder what else needs fixing. Don't give a buyer any excuse to offer you less for your home.

Set a Fair Price 

Before you set your asking price, take a look at what similar homes in the area are selling for at the current time. While your agent is going to provide you with the market value of your home to help guide your decision, that number may be considerably lower than your initial expectation. Finding out what other sellers are getting for their homes before you discuss your price with your agent provides a clear starting point that helps take out some of the emotional contexts to this type of decision. 

Spruce the Place Up with a Fresh Coat of Paint 

Before you run to the nearest paint store and pick up a few cans of paint, take a few moments to research popular trends in color choices. Studies show that exterior paint colors such as brown and green turn potential buyers away, while tried and true shades of white, blue, and grey are more likely to draw home buyers to your door. For interior walls and trim, you should opt for neutral colors. This strategy allows interested buyers to imagine their furnishings inside of your dwelling. 

Sell Now Rather Than Later 

The general rule of thumb is that many buyers begin to look for a home come spring. Particularly true for families with school-age children. It's a favorite time for home shopping, and with a more significant number of prospective buyers, you stand a better chance of receiving competing offers which always increase the sale price.

In the winter less inventory means less competition for buyers and anyone looking in the dead of winter is serious about buying. Either way, the truth is simple. If you don't list it, you can't sell your home. 

If you want to sell your home quickly, take the time to figure out all of the angles. Clean it and fix it up. Call us at New England Landmark Realty to help you determine what it is worth then get some help selling it. The first few weeks of a listing are always the most important ones. Get your home ready before you place it on the market for the best shot at selling it quickly in 2019.

Call us at 866-324-2427

Feb. 13, 2019

Local Tips on Local Charm

Central Vermont is all about local charm. From organic maple syrup to hand-blown glass to whimsical toy stores and bookshops; there’s a reason people love the Waterbury area. Check out this list from an 8th generation Vermonter to find a few special spots around town.

Ziemke Glass Blowing Studio

Hand blown glass has an element of mystery and magic to it, but Glenn Ziemke lets visitors take a step inside his world of molten glass. His store and studio share a wall, one that has been replaced by a massive window. It’s almost like looking into an aquarium, a visual only increased by the glass fish he crafts in a rainbow of colors.

Don’t know anything about glass blowing and how it works? A full diagram of the process and knowledgable staff are ready to answer your questions as you watch, shop, and wonder. This hidden Waterbury Center gem gives you a peek into a hand-crafted art that keeps both tourists and locals stopping by.

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Posted in Local Business
Feb. 11, 2019

Freshen Up your Kitchen: Organize and Decorate

By: Holly Pembroke • Interior Decorator • Middlesex, VT.

This time of year when the cold makes you want to hibernate and we all dream of flying away to an exotic beach, I crave hearty meals and retreat to my kitchen to cook and bake so I can fill the house with good smells and warmth.

Our old farmhouse kitchen is cold in the winter and nothing warms it up like cooking, baking, and decorating with plants. I added a mini Lemon Cypress tree to our kitchen counter to make it a bit cozier and remind myself of summer. Let’s talk about more ways to keep your kitchen fresh and inviting this year.

Creating a beautiful and functional kitchen can be overwhelming and often not seen as a priority. Here are a few steps to help the job feel more manageable.

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Posted in Home Improvement