The only online publication for women in Greater Cincinnati
Real Estate

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Big demand and small supply means higher home prices ahead. If you’re planning to buy a home later this year I would consider moving up your time frame. Not only are home prices expected to be higher this fall, mortgage rates are as well. I wish I had a crystal ball for what happens after the election!

 

Multiple resources like National Multiple Listing Service (NMLS) and Ohio Association of Realtors (OAR) report that U.S. home prices have risen for the third consecutive month based on both monthly and annual calculations. Home prices rose by 2% between April and May 2012, and are expected to rise another 1.4% between May and June 2012.

 

While home buyers that are still trying to ready themselves for a purchase, they may not welcome the news of higher home prices ahead. It’s tough to cheer against a stabilizing housing market especially given how far home values have fallen.

 

Since late last year, home prices have been climbing slowly and steadily nationwide. Prices remain far below the April 2007 peak however and that’s creating opportunities for today’s home buyers with mortgage rates at below 4 percent and low down payment programs such as the FHA’s 3.5% down payment program readily available. Home buyers have more purchasing power today than at any time in history.

 

Assuming a $2,500 monthly mortgage payment and 20 percent down:
• Historical Average Rate (8.75%) : A $2,500 monthly mortgage payment affords a purchase price of $397,000
• Today’s Average Rate (3.66%) : A $2,500 monthly mortgage payment affords a purchase price of $682,300

 

More homes are going under contract to sell than at any time in the last two years and inventory is shrinking. There are fewer than 2.5 million existing homes for sale nationwide, down from 3.1 million last year, and just 145,000 newly built homes for sale.

 

Have you been trying to sell your home in the past few years only for it to expire? Now is the time to price it correctly, polish, stage it and get it on the market with a proven successful agent. Chose wisely! Statistics show that less than 1% of Realtors are utilizing new technology and social media to market homes although that is where the public is spending the majority of their time. Selling your home is much more than a sign in the yard and being “listed” in the local MLS.

 

Are you a buyer? Chose a Realtor that represents you and not just trying to make a sale – the agent should want to build a relationship, help you purchase at the best price possible in hopes of getting the listing years down the road when you are ready to sell.

 

Please feel free to text, email or call me if you have any questions or would just like to explore options. I love what I do and believe building relationships not hounding people. Earning trust is very important in today’s society.

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Beverly Corsmeier


Selling a client’s home isn’t just a matter of putting a sign in the yard, a lockbox on the door and the listing in the MLS. These are only the very basic functions when beginning to sell a home.

 

In the past five years, the entire world of communication has evolved into a mass of social media, networking and new way of thinking, doing and being a professional in real estate. With the crash of the economy over the past four years, the market has taken a hit on home values across the nation.

 

Most people have purchased a home with the expectation of it being an investment of their very hard earned money and was/is expected to yield a return. In many cases, due to the housing market and buyer expectation, selling a home is extremely stressful and may not bring the value a seller wants. My nature is to face a challenge head-on and find creative solutions to help people achieve their goals. Research, tenaciousness and optimism helps to keep me on a path to help my clients reach their goals. This isn’t to say that my clients don’t have to be realistic, but I give them facts to work with and 110 percent of my efforts.

 

In the video below, I discuss my vast knowledge of Cincinnati. This isn’t just social events and locations of cool places – which, of course, I do know and love. It’s also the neighborhoods and different cultures in the sense of an urban versus suburban environment, access to parks or playgrounds, driving distance to the nearest grocery store or the time it will take to get to a place of employment. In fact, I was recently honored to be on a city bus tour with Mayor Mallory and a group of select agents to learn about existing and future developments across the Tri-State.

 

I also developed a website you might enjoy: LiveandPlayCincinnati.com. It’s not as a “real estate” website, but instead, it’s an information hotspot. After living in other parts of the United States, the one thing I found difficult with each move was learning the various neighborhoods within a metropolitan area, and what to do in each. I often wondered why there wasn’t an easy way to get an unbiased opinion of different suburbs and what areas were suited to my personality. That’s what I strive to offer with this site and I hope you enjoy it!

 

Representing buyers is a joy in this business. Whether finding them a new place in their hometown or giving tours of the entire Cincinnati area to someone moving in from out of town. Yes, my car has 300,000 miles on it out of love for what I do. It is very important to leave no stone unturned and to be sure a buyer has the knowledge to make their own informed decision.

 

If you are looking for an agent that works for you, truly cares about building relationships and not just about making a sale, I would like the opportunity to meet you and for you to get to know me. My profession is based primarily on referrals and constantly seeking new clients. I’d like the opportunity to impress you with knowledge, integrity and drive to succeed.


Please watch the webcast below as I chat with Cincy Chic‘s Amy Scalia, and feel free to email me at Beverly.Corsmeier@cbws.com if you have any real estate needs. I look forward to hearing from you!

 

Editor’s Note: This is a special advertising supplement, paid for by Beverly Corsmeier.

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Imagine, the sound of frogs, the sight of twinkling across the yard and into the trees from lightning bugs on a warm summer night, stars extra bright from lack of city lights, wildlife everywhere, serene mornings with a cup of coffee on your porch as the sun comes up with nothing to hear but the first sounds of nature as they wake …ahhh, living in the country!

 

Many buyers are unaware of the special financing available for rural home purchases. Click here to learn more about USDA Rural Housing Loans.

 

With more and more companies allowing employees to work from home it might makes sense to look to the rural areas for a home. There are some gorgeous properties in the outlying counties ranging from very low price points to very high. Mind you, the government has designated specific areas which qualify for a USDA loan. Click here to look up property eligibility.

 

A quick note: Banks do not like to lend on acreage or on used mobile homes. Both of these will increase the need for creative financing, increased down payment and an agent who knows how to get you to the right lender. Mortgage lenders all have specific financing programs. These programs can change constantly. If you have good credit and an acceptable debt to income ratio it is a matter of finding the lender that has the program that fits your needs. Be sure to work with a real estate agent that is on top of the ever changing world of mortgage lending. I am an eternal optimist and I know that if there is a will there is a way to accomplish anything. As an agent, it is important that I know as much as I can about financing and what lender or program can best serve my clients. The loan officer is the expert, but it is my job to get you to the one that best fits your needs.

 

Feel free to email me at Beverly.Corsmeier@cbws.com if you have any questions or are curious about what’s currently on the market.

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Picture this…You’re looking at houses with your agent, you enter a nice home and open the foyer coat closet. GASP! So much “stuff” falls out that it is impossible to get it all back in and close the door. Don’t laugh! I have actually had this happen on multiple occasions – we wondered if we were on candid camera!

 

With that said, sellers, clean and organize your closets. It’s amazing how well a home shows when a closet looks like it’s straight out of Martha Stewart Living. To a buyer, this speaks volumes as if the entire house has been very attentively kept (subconsciously, all maintenance has been attended to regularly).

 

Take one room at a time; clean and organize. Remove as much extra clutter as humanly possible. A garage or basement with very neatly stacked boxes says, “we’re serious about selling our home”. With the economy crash of the past four years, and the large number of distressed properties on the market, a cluttered home appears more like a distressed sale and sellers receive much lower offers.

 

While organizing and cleaning your home, don’t forget about the front and back exterior of the home. Get rid of anything laying around or not in use. Exterior clutter is just as bad as interior and it will usually prevent people from wanting to see the inside of the home. Remember, curb appeal! Lastly, plastic tubs for storage is a great way to organize and make things neat and tidy in not only your closets but also your storage areas and garage. I have found Big Lots, Old Time Pottery and Garden Ridge to have fantastic prices on these wonderful tubs complete with lids. Clear or opaque, they stack easily and look great on shelves.

 

If you need guidance, suggestions or advice, feel free to contact me!

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SELLERS:Are you thinking about selling a home over the summer? Many people look to get moved and settled before school starts back. This means many buyers searching for a home are going to have children in tow. Kids can make or break a deal in seconds. If the kids hate the house, you are pretty much done. If they love it, and it is at least close to fitting the budget, it could be a slam dunk on the spot.

 

So, here’s the secret to selling a home this summer: Get the kids to love it! This shouldn’t be too hard. Kids usually hate being dragged around in the car for hours on hot days, especially toddlers and those who are finally on a break from school. Perhaps stage your home with swings in the back yard, setting up a video game system with large screen TV inside or have a few strategically placed very cool toys is all you need to seal the deal. Watch their parents try to drag them out then. Cookies, juice boxes, little bottles of water – whatever it takes to appeal to the potential buyer’s children. This is especially important if your realtor is holding an open house for you.

 

Lastly, be sure to use an agent who will provide details on local schools and local attractions the kids will love. If you sell the kids on the house and neighborhood, it helps the parent(s) to make a supported decision.

 

BUYERS: What a great time to buy! Agents have the ability to do finite searches within the Realtors MLS. Of course number of bedrooms and bathrooms is an easy search for anyone to do on the internet. But what about the considerations of the yard, neighborhood (ie: sidewalks, urban living or suburban in a pool community), amount of street traffic, proximity to school(s), HOA rules (no swing sets or playhouses). Be sure you are using someone willing to go the extra mile to research for you and not just researching houses. Your agent should know the area inside and out to help you make an informed decision.

 

Moving into a new home over the summer months gives your children a chance to make new friends in their new neighborhood prior to starting school. This takes away a lot of stress for the first day at a new school.

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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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