Blog :: 2008

Interest rates in Burlington Vermont are Fantastic

We are quickly approaching the new year with interest rates at incredibly low levels. Can you believe in some instances that I have seen some rates quoted under 5%. Who knows how long this is going to last? Now is the time to make your move. Sellers are motivated and prices are at extrememly attractive levels. Give me a call and I can help you find the home of your dreams or just drop me an e-mail and I can get the process started today. Brian

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    Christmas Eve in Burlington Vermont

    Well today is Christmas Eve and as we get ready for the Holiday shared with family I take pause to think about how lucky I am. Yes, the economy is in a downward spiral, and the uncertainty of when it will turn around is in our forethoughts everyday, but with that said, we must realize that there is still health and family to turn to in these tough times. Christmas may be very difficult for millions of families this year, and because of that, my thoughts and prayers go out to them. For myself, I prefer to give than to receive. I prefer to see the smiles on my children's faces as we share time together as a family. I think the most rewarding things in life evolve around spending time with my wife and children, family and friends. If I can combine that with good health, I sometimes feel like the luckiest man in the world on Christmas Day.

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      Interest rates in Vermont hit record low

      Yesterday was an incredible day for people looking to lock into a low interest rate. A number of mortgage companies had reduced their rates to 5% with zero points. I haven't seen rates that low in probably 15 years. What an unbelievable opportunity to purchase a home if you are looking. Don't wait for them to go back up to 7%. Take advantage today. Give me a call and I will help you out. Brian

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        Tis the season to be Thankful

        As it gets closer to the Holidays,I find myself thinking how thankful I am for so many reasons. Yes the economy is in complete chaos and we are not sure when it is going to get better, but as it stands today, I am thankful. I am thankful for my health and my family. For without these two things there would be less happiness in my life. I am thankful for my friends and business associates who I get to interact with and test me whenI least expect it. I am thankful for all my current and past clients, because without them, I would not have been able to live the life that I have truly enjoyed. I am thankful for difficult times that make me appreciate the good times even more. I am thankful that things are not worse, cause they always can be. And I am thankful for living each day as if it were my last, because that way I don't take the simple pleasures for granted, because those are the things that are really important in life. What are you thankful for?

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          Ride the Interest Rate Wave in Burlington Vermont

          If you are not in the real estate game right now, you may want to consider it. Recently the interest rates have been rising and falling like the stock market. Some days are really good and some days, well you know the rest of the sentence. Most recently though a number of lucky people locked into a fixed 30 year mortgage with zero points for 5.375%. Yes that is what I said. We haven't seen these types of rates for 4 years !! With prices being so competitive now, it may be the perfect time to upgrade. Nothing like a perfect storm for those savvy investors and homeowners to know when the time is right to perform. Low interest rates, great supply to choose from and incredible prices are a great way to build value in the long run. If you would like some help in figuring out how to go about it, give me call. You will be glad you did. Brian

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            Vermonters feel the Pain from Mortgage Fallout

            The mortgage mess that was created by greedy executives, loan officers and traders is felt by not only those directly involved, but also those of us who live far away from the eye of the storm. The economic woes that this has created is being felt by all of us and it is world wide. How could so much be so overlooked for so long is a guess to me. The fact that the International economy is being affected only confirms the fact of how huge a problem there was without and checks and balances in place to protect all of us from this happening. Now we see in the news each week, of a new scoundrel who has bilked billions of unsuspecting investors or someone who is trying to extort others for their own personal gain. The question is, when is this all going to stop and who is going to improve the current system that is in place?

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              That's My Final Answer

              In today's world of immediate gratification and response it is easy for all of us to want the economy to be fixed and fixed yesterday. After all, a big reason we are in this financial discord is because of the quick and easy money made available by the lending institutions and the people who ran them. The reality of it all, I think is finally settling in with everyone. There are no quick solutions, and there are no easy available answers. This problem is not going away tomorrow or the next day. It is going to take some time and it certainly is not going to be pain free. So the next time an offer is made that seems to good to be true, like fast easy available credit or money, I would suggest that you step back and think it through. The consequences of your actions may not be worth the risk that you are taking. And that is my final answer. What do you think?

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                Congratulations to our Top Agents in November!

                Jeanie Gracey, Realtor

                Jeanie Gracey, Broker

                Lydia Wisloski, Realtor

                Lydia Wisloski, Realtor

                Jeanie and Lydia Sales Associates with CENTURY 21 Advantage in South Burlington, were named the offices top sales associate in the month of November.

                We are pleased to recognizeJeanie and Lydia with this honor. Their competitive intelligence, professionalism and dedication to homebuyers and sellers have made them a valued and trusted real estate resource for the Greater Burlington community and a major contributor to the overall success of our office.

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                  Holy Cow It's December

                  Where did this year go? It seems like it went by so fast. I think that happens as we get older. We get busy with the kids schedule and then work and before you know it, it's December. It's odd this year that we really don't have any snow on the ground yet. Typically, we get snow around Thanksgiving or before and then we wait it out. Having said that, we'll probably get 6 inches tonight. The stock market continues to bounce from new highs and lows on a daily basis which causes the interest rates to go up and down as well. Two days ago they dropped half a point and you could get an owner occupied rate with zero points for 5.375 %. What an amazing deal !! Today it is back up around 5.9% If you pay attention you can really save some money not only on your home, but on investment property as well. When the rates went down on for primary homes they also went down on investment property to 5.625%. A number we haven't seen in about 4 years.

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                    With Confidence comes Calm

                    I am not a financial analyst or profess to be, but what I do know for sure is that the economy needs some sign of hope in order for the chaos to subside. If you watch the seven o'clock news you certainly come away feeling depressed. The doom and gloom they promote is enough to send all of us to counseling whether we need it or not. Unfortunately, we have no one standing up and reassuring us that we will make it through these tough times. I think when the new President takes his office it is absolutely necessary for him to portray confidence and to spell out a plan on how we can turn things around. Often times it is not the circumstances that will determine the outcome of events, but the attitude that we take about the circumstances. As a baseball coach and leader of our team, I know that strong leadership during tough times can lesson every one's anxiety and provide a calm in the midst of an awful storm.

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                      The First Snow

                      Well today was the first significant snow that we received that actually affected travel early this morning in nearby Williston. I left Burlington at 7:30 am with a few flakes seen intermittingly on may way to an 8:00 appointment in Williston only 15 minutes away. What a difference 15 minutes makes. As soon as I hit the middle of Williston, the snow just hits. There is an inch of snow on the ground and there is black ice on the roads. The traffic slows to a crawl and the roadI am on gets closed due to an accident. AsI head back towards the office in South Burlington there is another accident on a side street, so they have that blocked off. AsI travel a half mile further, the traffic comes to a stand still and the police and ambulance go flying by me again. Itake a side street and a bit of a detour to try to get back to the office. I am about a 1/4 a way from the office and a car darts out of a side street right in front of me. I hit the breaks only to go sideways on the ice and almost end up against a pole. I ended up straightening it out furious that someone would do that under these conditions. I make it into the office no worse for wear, but am truly glad that most of my days don't start out like today.

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                        The Healthiest City in the US

                        Well, it's official, Burlington, Vermont was just declared the healthiest city in America by one of the pollsters out there. I have been talking about this for a long time. We live in a wonderful area with so many opportunities to exercise and take advantage of our surroundings. It truly is nice to see that we are getting recognized on a national level for what we feel is a local paradise.

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                          Great Buys

                          There are some incredible buys out there right now and the interest rates have dropped about a half a percent this week. The rates are highly volatile right now and there is no predicting what they may be doing in the future with the economy in such disarray. In fact, our prediction is that they may ultimately go up causing the anticipated savings on further price drops to dissappear. I saw a deal yesterday that someone jumped on and saved themselves about $50,000. Now that's a lot of dough. I also have seen starter homes finally sell for starter home prices. If you want to buy, now is THE time. If you don't think you can get a loan, call me because If you have good credit i know I can find a banker that is more than willing to give you a loan. They are back knocking on our door again looking for business. Brian

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                            Gas Relief

                            There always seems to be two sides to every story and that is what we are going to talk about today. The bad news is that the economy is taking one on the chin, with the mortgage debacle, the economic doldrums and the increase in unemployment numbers. With that said, there is a bright spot with the cost of gasoline. In the past year we have seen gas prices go from over $4 a gallon, now down to around the $2.75 mark. I know eventually it will more than likely go back up, but for now let's be happy with the direction that those prices have recently gone. Click here tosee what the prices are around your neighborhood. Hope this helps in choosing your route to work and back.

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                              Election Results

                              The United States and Barack Obama made history yesterday in his winning the Presidential election. What an incredible time to be an American. Whether you voted for him or not, I think everyone should be proud of what he accomplished and what America was willing to do with courage and forthrightness. It wasn't that long ago that this would not have even been a remote possibility, but now it has transpired and for that, Democracy has become the victor again. My biggest hope now, is for him to be able to develop the plan that will reduce America's debt and get the economy rolling again. There are too many people suffering right now because of the past mistakes made by so many Wall Street executives, mortgage bankers and life-time politicians.

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                                Travel to Burlington

                                Recently, there was a great article in the New York Times about outstanding places to visit and Burlington was the featured place and destination. It was fun to see them highlight a number of venues that I have talked about in the past, and the ambiance of the Church Street Market place. It really is such a quaint and diversified setting, whether you want a feel of Paris at Leunigs Restaurant, to the casual dining experience of locally grown vegetables on your pizza at Flatbread Pizza on St. Paul street. On Saturdays and Sundays in the summer, the local farmer's market on the lawn of City Hall makes for a wonderful experience. Walk a bit further West and you are the waterfront where you can rent a bike, stroll the path along the lake or visit the Echo Center and all it has to offer in Lake History and more. If you have never been here, you are really missing out on one of the best places to not only visit, but to absolutely reside as well.

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                                  Video Tours

                                  Today's real estate market has changed from years ago and consumers have access to more information than ever before. With that said, there is always one common denominator that we have found for people searching for homes on the web. They love pictures. Not only pictures, but home virtual tours. If a picture says a thousands words than the photo stories we provide speaks millions. Our customers tell us that it makes them feel like they are in the home. Because of this, we are moving to have all our listings have a video tour. It takes additional time and money, but in the end, we feel like it doesn't get any better than like being there.

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                                    Our First Snow

                                    We had our first light snow here the other day, just in time for Halloween. Ok, that's not funny, but we did. It was odd to see the white blanket of cold as I headed East towards Williston. Burlington did not get any to cover the ground, but we got to see snow flakes. When I was driving downtown in the early morning, I saw what looked to be a college student with his ski boots slung over his shoulder heading to his car. I thought at the time, oh to be young again. The first snow is always exciting to the young, and not so much to me.There will be plenty of time to shovel. Don't get me wrong, I really do enjoy skiing, I just prefer to do it in December and beyond rather than starting in October.

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                                      Don't Believe all the Bad News

                                      Have you noticed how negative the print media and television new's anchors have been recently concerning the economy? Well I certainly have and Iwonder to myself, do you think they might be creating some of the misconceptions out there? Sure things are not what we would like them to be, but on a local level, the real estate market is prime to be taken advantage of. We have a better than average supply of homes (homes for sale between $100,000 and $250,000) with better than average interest rates and people can make great purchases at this time. Don't believe that you can't get a loan. We have a number of local lenders that are more than happy to loan to a good qualified customer. Are you trying to time the market? If so, you are gambling a potential good thing away.

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