The only online publication for women in Greater Cincinnati
Real Estate

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So, why should you talk to a great real estate agent prior to remodeling?

 

  1. Top agents work with a lot of buyers and know what they are looking for in homes today.
  2. Top agents go through as many as 100 homes in one week with multiple buyers. With this experience, we can bring a lot of ideas and options to the table you might not have considered otherwise.
  3. Agents regularly connect contractors and remodeling companies with their buyers to update their newly purchased home.

 

Did you know in the Greater Cincinnati the average return on investment is:

 

Midrange

Job Cost

Resale Value

Cost Recouped

Basement remodel

$61,767

$35,375

57.3%

Bathroom Remodel

$16,136

$9,008

55.8%

Sunroom Addition

$73,736

$32,413

44.0%

Major Kitchen Remodel                 

$58,916

$32,992

58%

 

(Numbers are from Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report 2011-12)

 

 

Higher End homes recoup even less in the same categories.

 

With these numbers, homeowners need to take a long hard look at how long they plan to live in the home and what their resale value is projected to be for their immediate area. It’s not always wise to make certain updates to a home just prior to selling it.

 

Feel free to contact me with any questions: Beverly.Corsmeier@cbws.com

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When thinking about this whole notion of “man caves” I realized that it’s actually a pretty cool idea. I got a little jealous and wanted to start a trend of “girl caves”…then I realized that my entire house is a girl cave. So ladies, let’s give the boys their own space for doing boy things so we can keep our seven rooms worth of “girl caves.” What exactly does your guy need to have guy time with the guys? Take a basement, office, or garage and add these easy man cave must-haves. Voilà! A spot for the boys and a little peace and quiet for you in any girl cave room of your choosing!

 

1. Manly Paint – Drinking beer and playing video games is a guy-time activity best enjoyed in a room of blues, greys, or your guy’s favorite color…not grandma’s old floral wallpaper. Take the time to paint and make the space his! Also, this is the place for hanging Miller Lite signs, sports memorabilia, and singing fish. Embrace it! And then close the door.

 

2. A refrigerator – Men like to eat and drink. This is a pretty obvious man cave must-have but if forgotten could be catastrophic. And after one of your girls’ day shopping sprees, it might not hurt to stock the fridge with beers and beef jerky.

 

3. Technology – Whether he loves watching the game on a flat screen or reading poetry on his Kindle, let this be the place where he can do it! Some other great tech treats for him are Garage Band, his Xbox, or an iHome. Let him game, jam, or pretend to be an NFL player all he wants and as LOUD as he wants!

 

4. Games – Adults love games, too! A poker table, pool table, dart board, or miniature bowling are great additions to the man cave. It might even make you want to sneak in and throw a strike or two when he’s not home!

 

5. The world’s most comfortable couch – That disgusting, broken couch that he’s had since college and smells a bit questionable? If it’s his favorite seat just grab a slipcover and put it in the man cave. Okay, maybe don’t let it go THAT far, but make sure there is plenty of comfortable, easy-to-clean seating for him and the boys to enjoy their time without having to worry about spills and stain-removal.

 

While “man caves” allude to the idea of a get-away for him, get involved in the creation process. It’s surprisingly fun to see how a guy defines the “perfect room.” It might not be color palettes and patterns, but he’ll appreciate the space and you’ll have the coolest spot in the neighborhood on game day!

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Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao, Spain

Boutiques are full of special, unique pieces that serve as closet-gems to their owner. Those items that shiningly stand out among the J.Crew sweaters, Gap denim and Target tees. Their shops act the same way; a boutique is its own little treasure box hidden away between restaurants and bars and in the smallest of alleyways. It is finding and appreciating these places that make boutique culture so desired.

 

In real estate, certain buildings and presentations of architecture serve the same purpose. They create a piece that makes the person experiencing it feel awe and want and admiration and happiness all at once. While these buildings don’t quite fit in your closet, they are just as noteworthy as a one-of-a-kind boutique find.

 

Click here to check out some of the coolest presentations of architecture in this top 10 list:
1. Cubic Houses, Rotterdam, Netherlands
2. Dancing Building, Prague, Czech Republic
3. The Ufo House, Sanjhih, Taiwan
4. Kansas City Public Library, Missouri, United States
5. Ferdinand Cheval Palace a.k.a Ideal Palace, France
6. Forest Spiral Hundertwasser Building, Darmstadt, Germany
7. Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao, Spain
8. Bahá’í House of Worship a.k.a Lotus Temple, Delhi, India
9. Ripley’s Building, Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada
10. The Crooked House, Sopot, Poland

 

Want to add a few boutique-chic pieces to your home? I highly recommend checking out Joseph Williams Home in Over The Rhine.

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You’ve protected the American dream. We’ll help you own it.”– Coldwell Banker

 

Veterans are the epitome of America’s VIP. After months or years of giving, sacrifice, and courageously facing challenges, many of these men and women are returning home. So first of all, thank you and welcome back!

 

Buying a home is an exciting time for anyone and knowing the benefits and options available to you are an important part of the home buying process. Through VA loans, there are many benefits for veterans buying homes. Did you know about VA loans? Probably not, because they often go unknown and unused. So here’s the skinny on the big, fat benefits of VA loans:
– In most cases, no down payment
– No prepayment penalties
– Assumable mortgage
– Financing up to 103% of the sales price
– No monthly mortgage insurance premium
– Ability to refinance an existing VA loan

 

How awesome does that sound? VA loans are just one of those little gems to be found in the great world of real estate. Are you a veteran looking for a new home? Is a friend, family member, or neighbor a veteran looking for a new home? I’ve put together a Veteran’s Home Buying Guide to disperse all the benefits of VA loans! For more information, or to receive a packet for you or a friend, e-mail me at !

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Trends are everywhere and about everything. When to try wearing neon, when to switch your nail polish to pastel, when to eat nothing but smoothies for a week, even that one where we all put feathers in our hair. The thing about trends is they usually start out as someone’s opinion of what should be hot right now. With real estate, trends are opinions. These trends are facts about what’s going on in the market and while they are often overlooked, real estate trends might be the deciding factor on when to put your house up for sale.

 

In Hamilton, Butler, Warren and Clermont counties year to date 4,958 houses have been sold. There are 10,550 current active listings. And just since the beginning of May, 355 houses have been sold in those counties.

 

In Boone, Kenton, and Campbell counties in Northern Kentucky there have been 1,323 houses sold this year. There are currently 1,723 active listings. And in May, 84 homes have been sold so far.

 

So what does this mean for you? The trend is that inventory is low and houses are selling! Many homes for sale are getting great offers or even receiving multiple offers. If you’re considering selling, it looks like this trend is in your favor. But remember with real estate, this trend could be over as fast as those feather hair extensions were traded for ombre color.

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“He huffed and he puffed and he blew the house down”… or not. That’s right, straw houses are a new trend in going green and gorgeous homes.

 

In the west, homes are being built out of straw bales! They are small but expandable, and extremely energy efficient. Plus, the inside is extremely aesthetically appealing and can be decorated to your taste.

 

I’m a huge proponent of using green materials and building energy efficient, environmentally friendly homes. This new development is a fresh take on an old tale. And the best part? No wolf will blow this thing down.

 

What are your thoughts? Would you consider an “au natural” straw bale home? Check out www.balewatch.com to see floor plans and learn more about this eco-conscious concept.

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News flash: moms love pictures. The resulting living room décor is pictures from EVERY one of Tommy and Kate’s soccer games for the past SEVEN years. This display of personal affects isn’t going to help sell your house. The perfect compromise? Photograph wall collages. Interior design meets memory lane with this stylish new trend in displaying family photos.

 

Black and white photos are great for a collage because they keep it looking simple and chic. Photos can be arranged symmetrically or in a scattered arrangement – get creative!

 

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If you’re looking for a few pops of color, don’t be afraid to add in different artistic pieces including monograms, quotes, greeting cards, or even invitations and programs from previous events.

 

Use your home to enjoy memories and build new ones…just keep it clean, uncluttered, and utterly fabulous!

 

To get started with your design ideas check out the video below for a DIY tutorial from HGTV and send your name and mailing address to liveandplaycincinnati@gmail.com to receive 10% off coupons to Lowes!

 

 

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Does your home need a house doctor? Regardless of whether you are considering selling your home or plan to stay there for a long time, there are certain regular check-ups that you need to do to keep your home happy and your life a little more hassle-free! Here is a simple to-do list for every spring and fall to help keep your home in tip-top shape:


Outdoors
• Clean Gutters and be sure all downspouts take water away from your foundation.
• Keep all vegetation growth away from the foundation and roof of the home.
• Do not put wood piles near your home. Termite inspectors will call a “foul” and state that the home may have damaging bugs (wood piles almost always show termite, carpenter ant or boring bee activity)
• Be sure you have a chimney cap/screen or its equivalent to keep out rain and critters. It’s also a good idea to have a chimney sweep pay your home a visit!

 

Plumbing
• Check all faucets in home for leaks, replace washers or faucets as necessary – don’t forget the hose bibs.
• Check for leaks under sinks.
• Does your sump pump run properly? Do you have a battery backup? Is it in good working order?
• Be sure that your toilets do not constantly run. The cost of the parts is under $10 but your water bill can quickly exceed that if not corrected.
• Clean bath/shower caulk, remove and replace as necessary.

 

Those little things we forget to think of…
• Clean dryer vent to prevent fires.
• Have your Heating and Air Conditioning serviced twice a year. Be sure to change filters regularly
• Clean the coils of your refrigerator/freezer gently with a vacuum brush.
• Replace/repair all screens in windows and doors.
• Double check your attic for critter intrusion. Repair any entrance points and set a have a heart (live) trap. Be sure to check trap twice a day until you are sure no animals were trapped in the attic after the repair. Don’t be cruel and forget to check the trap leaving the animal to die of thirst/starvation.

 

Best bang for your buck? Consider having all windows washed- nothing looks better than looking out sparkling windows on a sunny day! It’s a luxury for some but to have your home professionally cleaned twice a year really helps with the forgotten places like baseboards, behind toilets, under the fronts of cabinets etc. After all, happy home = happy life.

 

If you are thinking about putting your home on the market, consider a pre-home inspection. This will be a huge help to know what you need to repair before you have a buyer under contract and have to renegotiate price or repairs to sell your home.

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