Kristin D. Smith's (callkdsmith) Blog


    Rural Linn County, Oregon Foreclosure List - 1/13/12
    Rural Linn County, Oregon Foreclosure List - 1/13/12
    Stat MLS # Price   Address   City Beds Baths Yr Blt SqFt Price per SqFt Acres
    ACT 647610 $77,900   701 Weber Av   Brownsvill 3 1 1979 1040 74.9 0
    ACT 647463 $52,000   1901 Main St   Lyons 3 2 1989 1512 34.39 0.57
    ACT 647009 $66,500   736 Birch St   Lyons 3 1 1946 1382 48.12 0.31
    ACT 646556 $60,000   112 12th St   Lyons 2 1 1930 1008 59.52 0.26
    ACT 647565 $129,900   1095 SW 2nd St   Mill City 3 2 1971 1620 80.19 0.25
    ACT 646755 $48,500   480 SW 7th Av   Mill City 4 2 1997 1404 34.54 0.16
    ACT 646005 $48,000   268 SE Hazel St   Mill City 3 2 1999 1026 46.78 0.11
    ACT 646754 $79,900   38624 SE Birch St   Scio 2 1 1930 1038 76.97 0.17
    ACT 648133 $54,900   1666 Elm St   Sweet Home 2 1 1950 1184 46.37 0.14
    ACT 647614 $80,700   1037 Pleasant Valley Rd   Sweet Home 3 1 1963 1032 78.2 0.3
    ACT 645894 $119,900   47570 Santiam Hwy   Sweet Home 3 1 1947 1217 98.52 4.02
    Linn County Oregon: Bank, Corporate and HUD Owned Homes - 1/13/12 Provided by Kristin D Smith - kdsmith@kw.com - 541-974-5550 - www.FindHomesInAlbany.com CONTACT ME TODAY FOR MORE INFORMATION - PHONE, TEXT OR EMAIL Keller Williams Realty Mid-Willamette - Each office is independently owned & operated. Licensed Broker in the state of Oregon. Information deemed reliable but not guaranteed.

    Lebanon, Oregon Foreclosure List - 1/13/12
    Lebanon, Oregon Foreclosure List - 1/13/12
    ACT 648220 $70,000   2779 Birch St   Lebanon 2 1 1950 1092 64.1 0.26
    ACT 648034 $19,900   70 1/2 W Maple St   Lebanon 1 1 1920 720 27.64 0.05
    ACT 647768 $164,900   3142 S 12th St   Lebanon 3 2.5 2006 2188 75.37 0.2
    ACT 647767 $149,000   1026 Charlie Av   Lebanon 3 2 2006 1638 90.96 0.17
    ACT 647680 $149,900   3168 S 10th   Lebanon 3 2 2006 1638 91.51 0.14
    ACT 647639 $169,000   1033 Charlie Av   Lebanon 3 2.5 2006 2050 82.44 0.18
    ACT 647530 $149,000   1052 Charlie Av   Lebanon 3 2 2006 1638 90.96 0.18
    ACT 647124 $154,900   1021 Charlie Av   Lebanon 3 2.5 2006 1751 88.46 0.15
    ACT 646458 $225,000   2391 Mountain River   Lebanon 5 2.5 2007 3072 73.24 0.19
    ACT 646401 $79,900   276 S 6th St   Lebanon 3 1 1947 1152 69.36 0.2
    ACT 646385 $185,000   3160 S 12th   Lebanon 3 2.5 2006 2188 84.55 0.43
    ACT 646383 $179,000   1090 Charlie Av   Lebanon 3 2.5 2006 2050 87.32 0.24
    ACT 646382 $172,900   1083 Charlie Av   Lebanon 3 2.5 2006 2050 84.34 0.16
    ACT 646377 $174,900   1055 Charlie Av   Lebanon 4 2.5 2006 2188 79.94 0.18
    ACT 646277 $174,900   1076 Charlie Av   Lebanon 4 2.5 2006 2188 79.94 0.16
    ACT 646123 $59,900   422 Russell St   Lebanon 4 2 1940 1588 37.72 0.17
    ACT 647942 $160,000   30787 SW Larson Rd   Lebanon 3 3 2008 4330 36.95 5.4
    ACT 647536 $175,000   545 Central Av   Lebanon 3 2 1993 1848 94.7 2.48
    ACT 644955 $252,900   30780 Hazen Ln   Lebanon 2 2 1974 1704 148.42 4
    ACT 643930 $56,700   37734 River Dr   Lebanon 2 2 1977 1200 47.25 1.15
    ACT 639823 $249,900   2895 Stoltz Hill  Rd   Lebanon 4 3 1998 2660 93.95 4.76
    Linn County Oregon: Bank, Corporate and HUD Owned Homes - 1/13/12 Provided by Kristin D Smith - kdsmith@kw.com - 541-974-5550 - www.FindHomesInAlbany.com CONTACT ME TODAY FOR MORE INFORMATION - PHONE, TEXT OR EMAIL Keller Williams Realty Mid-Willamette - Each office is independently owned & operated. Licensed Broker in the state of Oregon. Information deemed reliable but not guaranteed.

    Albany, Oregon Foreclosure List - 1/13/12
    Albany, Oregon Foreclosure List - 1/13/12
    Stat MLS # Price   Address   City Beds Baths Yr Blt SqFt Price per SqFt Acres
    ACT 647977 $165,900   4133 Somerset  Dr NE Albany 4 2.5 2006 1911 86.81 0.24
    ACT 647976 $174,900   3118 Clay  St SE Albany 3 3 1967 1605 108.97 0.31
    ACT 647934 $74,900   711 Fulton St SE Albany 2 1 1950 885 84.63 0.13
    ACT 647818 $45,900   1070 23rd Av SE Albany 3 1 1948 1080 42.5 0.19
    ACT 647512 $134,900   2453 25th Av SE Albany 3 1.5 1977 1032 130.72 0.23
    ACT 647208 $119,900   1035 13th Av SW Albany 4 2 1942 1131 106.01 0.13
    ACT 646371 $224,900   3119 Hannah Av SE Albany 3 2 2007 2014 111.67 0.15
    ACT 644868 $105,000   2127 28th Pl SE Albany 3 1.5 1975 1418 74.05 0.16
    ACT 645521 $104,000   1523 Howard Dr SE Albany 3 2 2007 1415 73.5 0.16
                           
    Albany, Oregon: Bank, Corporate and HUD Owned Homes - 1/13/12Provided by Kristin D Smith - kdsmith@kw.com - 541-974-5550 - www.FindHomesInAlbany.com CONTACT ME TODAY FOR MORE INFORMATION - PHONE, TEXT OR EMAIL Keller Williams Realty Mid-Willamette - Each office is independently owned & operated. Licensed Broker in the state of Oregon. Information deemed reliable but not guaranteed.

    Keller Williams Realty in Albany, OR is having a Grand Opening 1/19/12!
    Keller Williams Realty in Albany, OR is having a Grand Opening 1/19/12 from 5:00-7:30 pm. Please join us in the celebration of the expansion of the Albany branch of Keller Williams Realty Mid-Willamette! While you appreciate our beautiful new building at this event, we also invite you to enjoy a silent auction benefitting the Albany Boys and Girls Club.  Drawings will be held for fabulous prizes such as a weekend at a luxury condo on the coast; you won't want to miss out! Yummy hors d'oeuvres and sweets will be available for your enjoyment as well.  As an added bonus & thank you for reading this blog, here's what I will be bringing to the event! CREAM WAFERS - originally gotten from my Mom's 1970's era Betty Crocker cookbook, but also found on Allrecipes.com Ingredients: 1 c. soft butter1/3 c. whipping (heavy) cream2 c. flour1/3 c. granulated sugar Mix thoroughly butter, cream & flour.  Cover & chill at least 1 hour. Heat oven to 375.  Roll about 1/3 of the dough at a time to an 1/8" thickness on a floured, cloth-covered board. (Keep remaining dough refrigerated until ready to roll.)  Cut into 1 1/2" circles. Transfer rounds with spatula to a piece of waxed paper that is heavily covered with the granulated sugar.  Turn each round so that both sides are coated with sugar.  Place on an ungreased cookie sheet.  Prick rounds with a fork about 4 times.  Bake 7-9 minutes or just until set but not brown; cool. CREAMY FILLING - 1/4 c. butter, softened3/4 c. powdered sugar1 egg yolk1 tsp. vanilla Cream all ingredients until smooth & fluffy.  Tint with food coloring. (Add water for spreading consistency if necessary.)  Spread filling on one wafer, and top with a second wafer.  Makes 5 dozen. I hope you enjoy the recipe, and I look forward to seeing you when Keller Williams Realty in Albany, OR has their Grand Opening on 1/19/12!

    Have breakfast with Santa in Downtown Albany!
    Have Breakfast with Santa in Downtown Albany!  Join happy holiday celebrators this Saturday, December 17th at 10:00am at the beautiful Sybaris Restaurant.  For $20 per person, you will get a wonderful breakfast, then the kids can have that special one on one time with Santa himself and tell him all the goodies they're hoping for.  Each child will get a toy and even have a free photo taken by a professional photographer.  There will even be a fun craft and an activity sheet to color!  What a great time! After breakfast you can shop the Downtown Albany merchants, like the newly opened Toy Factory.  Maybe get your nails done with Dana McRae at LaBelle Boutique on First Av.  What about picking up a cute outfit or handbag at 1st Hand Seconds (and support women at the same time)?  Find yourself a new fishy friend at All For Fish on 3rd Av.  Create that special unique gift for grandma at Surefire!  Of course, you can also browse any of the many antique stores in Downtown Albany and find those special gems from the past. Following all that fun, you won?t want to miss the special FREE Christmas movie ? It?s a Wonderful Life (1946) ? playing at the Pix Theater at 2:30 pm.  Don?t forget to get your popcorn from the snack bar!  Come early to make sure you get a good seat for this heart-warming holiday classic. Wow, there?s so much that you can do this Saturday!  And to think, it all started because you decided to have breakfast with Santa in Downtown Albany!

    When is the Christmas Tree Lighting in Downtown Albany?
    "When is the Christmas Tree Lighting in Downtown Albany?"  Your kids have probably shouted this to you in the past week if you live in Albany, OR.  Well, so you can be informed and answer something other than, "I don't know!" the next time they ask, it's December 3rd, 2011 at 5:15pm after the 4:30pm ?Twice Around the Block? Christmas parade.  There will be all kinds of great Christmas things going on and the local downtown store owners will be having their window displays out as well. In addition to the parade and shopping that is available in Downtown Albany, another great thing you can do is take in a movie at the Pix Theater!  Actually, on Saturday, November 26th, at 12:30pm, they will be broadcasting the OSU/UO Civil war on the big screen.  Admission is for adults 21 and up and $5 will reserve you a seat at this fun event.  Come on down to the Pix and cheer on your favorite team! Then if the kids have been really good, and you are ready for a holiday treat, bring them down to Sybaris on the morning of December 17th for a breakfast with Santa!  Each child will get to visit with Santa and get a free toy.  A professional photographer will be there to capture the happy memories this day will bring.  Later, at 2:30, the whole family can take in the Christmas classic movie, It?s A Wonderful Life being shown at 2:30pm at the Pix. Come to Downtown Albany, visit our new Keller Williams Realty location across from Two Rivers Market, (make sure that you come by and tell me "HI!") and enjoy the fun events.  Of course, if you think you might want to find a new Linn County home for Christmas, I can help you with that too!  Now, I hope that finally gives you the answer to, "When is the Christmas Tree lighting in Downtown Albany???"

    I can email from my phone! And you can too...
    Ever have one of those things happen, when you've been working & working forever to try & get something to work & for the life of you, it won't?  Well, today was NOT that day for me!  I finally got my email sending to work!!!  My entire office couldn't help but hear the shouts (literally) of joy coming from my cubicle when it got fixed.  OH HAPPY DAY!!! So in the KW spirit of sharing, I wanted to give a brief instruction of how to get your Palm Pre phone sending emails. This may work for you if you have a different type of phone, but I have been tryingso hard to figure out how to do the Pre, that I figure there's got to be other people out there like me searching google.com on how to do this & getting no results! :) Obviously this is if you phone supports data plans & can send/receive emails...: Turn on the phone - DUH! Open the email application Open Preferences/Accounts (on the Pre you tap the top right hand corner & it will show the option) Click/Tap/Press Add an account Enter your email address & password Give the account a name & complete the rest of the profile Create a new signature if desired Type in the email address you want replies going to. Turn on Sync deleted emails (this will save you MAJOR time in your inbox!!) Choose how many days of email you want to see & how often you want to sync If you get your emails on your laptop, you can cheat & make this much easier, if not, it can be tricky because you will HAVE to have some setting information from your email provider: ON THE COMPUTER: Open your email (I use Outlook 07) and click on Tools>Account settings.  Choose the account you want to sync with in your computer. Double click to open it, then make sure you can see whether you have a POP or STMP email account. ON THE PHONE: Choose your mail type (POP or STMP) ON THE PHONE: Enter your incoming mail server (found in the settings on the computer or from your company tech person/support) ON THE PHONE: Enter your user name & password (what you usually use to log in to this account from your computer) ON THE PHONE: Enter the Port number the email is sent with (found on the computer - see section below if you can't find it) ON THE PHONE: Enter any encryption (I personally have it set to NONE) To find your outgoing server information: (Here's where I messed up & it's CRITICAL if you want to be able to SEND emails!) ON THE COMPUTER: In Outlook, on your Internet Email settings account window click on the button that says MORE SETTINGS. ON THE COMPUTER: It will open a smaller Internet Email settings window.  Click on the tab that says Outgoing Server.  This will give you the information you will need for the phone. ON THE PHONE: Enter your Outgoing Mail Server (STMP) ON THE PHONE: Turn off or on Authentication (username & password) I have mine ON ON THE PHONE: Enter username & password (NOT THE SAME AS INCOMING MAIL SERVER!!! Can you tell this is where I made a mistake?) ON THE COMPUTER: Go back to that smaller Internet Email settings window. Click on the tab that says Advanced.  Here you will see the port numbers for both incoming & outgoing emails.  It will also tell you if your server required an encrypted connection. ON THE PHONE: Enter port number (again, NOT the same as incoming) ON THE PHONE: Choose correct encryption SAVE ALL YOUR NEW SETTINGS! :) If you have a Pre, it is a swipe of your finger from right to left over the button at the bottom.  This saves your settings & you should now be able to send & receive emails! If you have read through all this - Wow! I'm amazed!  Hopefully it will help you.  I also just thought doing a blog about how to do this would help a lot if someone else wants to know how & I am the one that forgets. :) Keep in mind this is just how I figured it out to send kw.com emails and may or may not work with your phone or email.  I can't be responsible for it working or not if you attempt it.  I probably can't troubleshoot with you either because of distance & I'm a kind of, trial & error learning kinda girl. :)

    New phones - a blessing or a curse?
    I have to say, I loved my Palm Centro cell phone. It slept by my bed, it went everywhere with me.  Needless to say, when I used the bathroom in the Phoenix airport & it disappeared, I had really lost a friend. Enter the Palm Pre.  Yes, the insurance would have gotten me a new Centro, but would it have been the same?  So I now have this great phone that can perform rings around my old one, but I still feel handicapped.  I mean, I like it, but the love isn't there yet.  I can almost send emails from it (waiting for a password) but at least I can receive the emails & filter out the junk.  It is saving me time when I sit down in front of my laptop - I'm excited about that! So as I learn to love my new friend, I still need to figure out how to import my Outlook Contacts & sync the calendar.  If anyone knows how to do this, I would be greatly appreciative of the tips.  Until then, me & "Bree the Pre" (as my daughter calls my phone), will be getting to know each other better & slowly but surely building up a good working relationship.  I'm sure we'll soon be inseparable as well. :)

    A note to Albany, Oregon sellers...
    What a crazy market we are in!  A house can be priced "right" now & overpriced in a month.  Staging is important, yet pricing trumps it every time. I think the most important thing to know is that right now, bank owned properties (REOs) and Short Sales are driving the market down for the most part.  Even appraisers right now are having to use comps from foreclosed properties to determine home value. It's a great market anyway though, because the buyers are out there!  That's the exciting part.  There are people looking to buy.  Don't be discouraged, just keep plugging along & keep in contact with your agent.  Unless of course, you don't have one... :) Kristin SmithKeller Williams Realty Mid-Willamettewww.callkdsmith.com

    Hot property!
    I don't know about your neck of the woods, but in Albany, OR, you can't keep good properties down!  This week I had a client call me about a house for sale just about half a mile from my house.  It's currently bank owned & had only been on the market for 5 days.  I called right away when he told me that the asking price was about $89,000.  When I was finally able to talk to the broker, he'd already received 6 offers on the property!  To top it all off, when I went by, there wasn't even a SIGN in the yard! If you know of any great homes needing to be sold quickly in Albany, let me know!  I'm doing my best to help these clients find a smokin deal!  They're looking for a good, solid starter home for $130K or less.  Call me if you have something that would meet their needs & let's talk business! Cheerfully,Kristin

    What an amazing view!
    Found in Benton County, Oregon - This amazing home is only 20 minutes from Eugene or Corvallis. Check the link below! Want an exclusive website for your home? Contact me today & let's set up a time to meet - see what I can do to help you get your home sold! Kristin D Smith Keller Williams Realty Mid-Willamette E: kdsmith@kw.com C: 541-974-5550 O: 541-497-6510

    What an amazing view!
    Found in Benton County, Oregon - This amazing home is only 20 minutes from Eugene or Corvallis. Check the link below! Want an exclusive website for your home? Contact me today & let's set up a time to meet - see what I can do to help you get your home sold! Kristin D Smith Keller Williams Realty Mid-Willamette E: kdsmith@kw.com C: 541-974-5550 O: 541-497-6510

    Customer Service - how important is it?
    What do you look for in customer service?  Is it a smiling face, going the extra mile, bringing a cup of coffee?  I'll tell you what I like. I'm sitting at the Power Kia Customer Lounge in Salem, OR.  As the proud owner of a pre-used Kia Optima, let me tell you, these people know customer service.  When I first brought the car here, I was a new owner & had a problem with the driver's door - it wouldn't open.  They went above & beyond, looking it over for me and asked if my timing belt had been replaced.  Turns out that it hadn't, and if I had gone much further, I could have had major damage done to my car.  They didn't push me to have something done, they educated me.  They showed me what needed to be done for my safety and why it needed to be done. I like to look at my real estate business the same way.  If I give my clients great customer service, they're going to tell others about it.  Who knows - they might even blog about me! :)  If my client wants to buy a house, I want to help them understand the process, not just drive them around to different houses and say, "Do you like this one?".  With sellers, I work at exploring all options, not just the everyday "list your house on the MLS and see what happens".  I love to think outside the box.  In fact, just today, I wrote up a reverse offer on one of my listings, hoping that we can get it sold.  Is that the norm?  Not really.  Do all brokers do this?  Definitely not.  But there are those of us out there that do! So whether you're looking to buy a home or sell a home, pay attention to the customer service.  Ask your friends if they know someone - even interview the agent.  Tell them the top 3 things you're looking for in an agent & be honest.  You will be working with this person for a while & they're going to know a lot about you.  It's important that you have a good and comfortable relationship with your agent. Kristin SmithKeller Williams Realty Mid-Willamettewww.callkdsmith.com ~ kdsmith@kw.com ~ 541-497-6510

    Coffee Cup Wisdom
    I love my coffee.  Straight up black at home and work, but when I'm out with friends, meeting clients, or just wanting a break, it's a grande Pumpkin Spice Latte from Starbucks - with whip! One of my favorite things to do is read the little "The Way I See It" quotes on the sides of the cup.  A while back they "decided" they were going back to the original look and I thought the quotes were gone forever - tragedy!  But no, at this point at least our local Starbucks on Pacific Blvd. at the Fred Meyer is back to having the cups with quotes.  This of course was also after the Christmas red cups during the holidays! Anyway, I was sitting in a real estate accountability group meeting on Tuesday, and a friend of mine came in with her venti cup.  On the side of it was the following quote: (This isn't my hand, but I managed to find a picture online) What an inspiration!  I strive to be the kind of real estate broker that aims for this type of transaction.  Whether it's someone buying their first home, or a seller trying to get their home sold, I want to be that one agent that wins races & moves mountains.  While I know that's a lofty ambition, isn't is said that "If you shoot for the moon, even if you miss, you'll end up in the stars"? Kristin SmithKeller Williams Realty Mid-Willamettekdsmith@kw.com ~ www.callkdsmith.com ~ 541-497-6510

    Why I do what I do...
    So I was sitting here and thinking...in this struggling economy, why is it that I stay in Real Estate?  Here are a few of the reasons I thought of: 1. I love the people.  You simply cannot trade the feeling that you get when you help that young couple buy their first home, or that single make the most confident step of independence. 2. I love a challenge.  Ok, so lately, I could do with a little LESS challenge, but there is a certain amount of a "high" you get from matching people up to homes. 3. I love my town.  In Albany, OR, we have a population of between 40,000-45,000 people, so we can still be considered a small community.  It's fun to go out & see the different neighborhoods and "discover" areas that I haven't seen before. 4. I love my brokerage.  Truly, in all my years of business, I have never worked for a company so encouraging and supportive.  It's amazing to see how everyone rallys around coworkers who have a car accident, or get stricken with cancer - and no one expects compensation.  It's just what we do for each other. 5. I love paperwork.  You guessed it, I was being facetious! :)  For everyone who thinks our job is easy, they need to walk a mile in our shoes - make sure they're the high heeled ones that we gals have to wear to make ourselves look professional. But the real reason I stick with it?  I want to help people.  It kinda goes back to Reason 1.  The people I've met have become more than just customers or clients, they've become my friends.  I'm so looking forward to all the new friends that I will be making in 2009.  If you want to be one of them ;), give me a call, but above all, have a wonderful year! So why do you do what you do? Kristin SmithKeller Williams Realty Mid-Willamettekdsmith@kw.com ~ www.callkdsmith.com ~ 541-497-6510

    A few more ways to boost your home's showmanship...
    So yesterday, I posted a few easy tricks to make your home show & present itself better in this current market.  Today, I thought I'd talk a bit about some ways to make it better that might cost a little more and/or take a bit more time. Clean the carpets.  Really, this isn't that expensive of an item (depending on the size of your house) but it can make a night & day difference in how your home shows.  Think about it, if you were buying a home, wouldn't you want to walk into one that looked & smelled super-clean?  If it didn't, I know I'd expect to have the sellers make the price of the home reflect it's condition. Have a professional stager come in.  Believe it or not, it really doesn't cost THAT much to get an initial consultation.  Margaret_Oscilia is a gal that I've worked with who will go through and use even the client's own furnishings to stage the home.  Her consultation to me was less than $200! Paint.  Anywhere.  Inside, outside, if it needs touching up - do it!  Should you paint? Well, if your house is the same color it was when you moved in, it probably could use a new coat of paint.  If you've done a lot of custom colors throughout (like cottoncandy pink in your daughter's room, or spongepainting red & blue in a son's room) you would do potential buyers a favor by neutralizing the room a bit. Wallpaper.  Don't put it up, take it down.  Especially if it was done in the "trendy 90's" abstract patterns & colors.  It was just right then, but now it makes your house look dated.  I went through a home yesterday that is beautiful, but the wallcoverings are so dated that it was a little hard to see past it.  Same goes for the draperies of that era - the loud florals should come down, and some simple neutrals go up.  You'll be amazed at the difference it can make for a low investment cost. Declutter.  This one is probably the hardest & most painful of them all.  I know - it's a TON of work!  But think about this, you are wanting to move, you will have to pack it anyway.  Why not get it done now?  Not only will you have a more "spartan" look in the house (allowing the buyers to envision their OWN stuff in the house), you will also have half the house packed already! Best wishes for getting your house sold! Kristin D SmithKeller Williams Realty Mid-Willamette541-497-6510 ~ kdsmith@kw.com ~ www.callkdsmith.com

    Is your home "show ready"?
    There are a few little things that you can do to easily make your home "show ready".  Here are some quick & easy things to do: Put away medications.  You don't want people to see what kinds of meds you're on, and believe me, if they're out, people look. Throw dirty clothes, towels, etc into a hamper.  It will only take a few minutes and it will make the room look so much better.  If you don't have a hamper, you can put them in a plastic bag, laundry basket or whatever & put them in the garage, a closet or the laundry room. Light a candle or two.  Not only will that give ambiance, but it can cover any smells that you might be used to, but others may not. Secure the pets.  While you may love Fluffy or Sparky, the person visiting may not.  If at all possible remove them from the property, but if not, at least kennel or crate them during the showing time.  Most showings last 30-45 minutes at the most, so it won't be too long for them to be confined. Pick up toys.  Not only will that make the rooms seem larger, but it can keep someone from tripping over something & injuring themselves while they're in your house. These are just a couple little things, but if you do them, they can help your home sell quicker because it's more pleasing to the eye, and it can help the buyers visualize the home as their own. Best wishes in getting your home sold! Kristin D SmithKeller Williams Realty Mid-Willamette541-497-6510 ~ kdsmith@kw.com ~ www.callkdsmith.com

    This shifting market...
    So I got a little bored today and decided to do some research.  Ok, I admit it, I wasn't bored, I was curious as to what happened last year in my area.  I knew it wouldn't be that hard to figure out, a few strokes of keys and clicks of a mouse in the MLS & viola! I had the numbers I was looking for.  (And to those of you out there that have had a DISC profile done, you would be curious to know that I am a high "I" with an almost non-existant "C". Weird, because I like stats.)  Anyway, here's what I found: In Albany, Oregon, from 1/1/08-12/31/08 sold statistics are as follows: 1 BR homes: 22 BR homes: 613 BR homes: 4414 BR homes: 915 BR homes: 216+ BR homes: 1For a total of 617 homes sold. For that same time period one year before (in 2007): 1 BR homes: 62 BR homes: 883 BR homes: 6254 BR homes: 1655 BR homes: 366+ BR homes: 3For a total of 923 homes sold. That's a downturn in the market of over a third.  What does that mean for you & me?  It means it's time for a shift.  A shift in mindset, activity, and the way we run our business in general.  We can't expect things to just drop in our laps & come together on their own anymore.  We have to be proactive.  We have to make an effort.  I'd love to see those people who think our jobs are a piece of cake try to do them for us now.  We work hard!  Be proud of it!  Today I had a pre-listing appointment & met with a buyer, but it didn't come from hoping something would happen, it came by WORKING. Well, I'd love to chat some more, but hey, I have phone calls to make... Kristin D SmithKeller Williams Realty Mid-Willamette541-974-5550~kdsmith@kw.com~www.callkdsmith.com

    The winter chill doesn't have to affect the sale of your home
    Just because it's chilly outside doesn't mean that your house sale is going to go cold.  There are a few things you can do to make it seem more cozy & desirable when people come to view it.  And here's an added benefit, you don't have to spend a fortune to do it! 1. Check the entry.  When people come to view your home, you don't want them to have to battle piles of snow or icy sidewalks.  Take a shovel & clear a path, or throw some rock salt out to melt the steps.  The last thing you need is to have someone slip & fall! 2. Warm up the inside.  Do you have a fireplace?  Make sure there's a great fire blazing when the home is going to be shown if at all possible.  Also, if you can, keep the thermostat turned to a comfortable temperature.  If the house is too cold, buyers are going to scurry to get out of the house as quickly as possible & you want them to linger & look. 3. Keep it light & bright.  During the holidays, have your Christmas tree lights on and make sure the house lights are on as well.  Open the curtains throughout the house (show off those super clean panes) and let the natural sunlight in as well. 4. Cozy up the house.  Maybe the living room sofa could use a couple of throw pillows.  How about that quilt or afghan from grandma?  Drape it neatly on an overstuffed chair & turn a book upside down to give the feeling that someone was just reading. 5. Decorate with care, but by all means decorate!  This time of year, buyers are expecting to see decorations in homes - it gives the feeling of a "happy" mess.  Do be careful however, you may not need every single one of your collection of 1000 Santas on display.  Besides, when it sells, you'll have that many more to pack back up! 6. The nose knows!  Grab a crockpot and it put out to simmer with an orange that has had a million cloves stuck into it.  Or maybe you have some cookie dough in the freezer that you can quickly throw in the oven before people come.  Then, put them on a plate with a note & offer them to the people touring your home.  Trust me, they're not going to forget the house that had goodies for them. 7. Floors need love too.  Have some booties by the front door so people can see that you care about your house, and want it protected.  Besides, it also allows the client to think about what kind of flooring you have and what they would do if they owned the home.  They might even slip their shoes off & try out the cushiony softness of the carpet!

    Rates are great to Buy or Refi!
    Are you kidding?  4.5% for 30 year conforming???  What is holding up the consumer?  I sure wish that I were in the position to refi, but for those of us in the Real Estate industry, we don't get to take part. But the good thing?  We can help the customer!  Whether you're a buyer, investor or real estate agent, this is a fantastic time for buying.  The inventory is at an all-time high, the rates are at an all-time low, and the fruit is just ripe for the picking. Here's my challenge:  Give a lender or your real estate agent a call.  Find out if there's any benefit to you with these fantastic rates.  If you don't, I guarantee, you are going to wish you had in a few years.  You never know, you just might save yourself a lot of money!

    Oregon market statistics
    We all hear how "bad" the market is right now, but do you ever look at the actual numbers?  I know that I frequently overlook them & their importance, but sometimes I will check them out & be pleasantly surprised.  Just for kicks, I thought I'd post the recent statistics for the Mid-Willamette Valley. These stats are for the month of November, 2008 - cover Linn & Benton counties, and were pulled from our local MLS - Willamette Valley Multiple Listing Service, based in Salem, OR:
    Residential/Acreage Types Albany North Albany Brownsville Corvallis Lebanon Sweet Home
    Units Sold 12 mos to date 510 106 14 509 250 147
    Average Sales Price $196,698 $313,098 $225,686 $299,634 $180,022 $160,442
    Average Square Footage 1,569 2,231 1,678 1,827 1,499 1,405
    Average Cost per Square Foot $125.00 $140.00 $134.00 $164.00 $120.00 $114.00
    Average Days on the Market 149 158 123 115 133 153
    Currently Active 392 107 32 333 263 170
    http://www.wvmls.com/web/statistics.asp

    Single level home in Albany, OR
    Don't miss this beautiful home in Albany, OR! Exceptionally maintained, and crafted by Dave Glocar Custom Homes. This fantastic deal has custom touches throughout. An amazing home for the money, it has 3 bedrooms and 2 full bathrooms, is fully fenced with a large playstructure and oversized covered patio. For an appointment to view, call Kristin: 541-497-6510. Catch a glimpse of it below. Kristin Smith is a licensed Realtor in the state of Oregon. For more information on this or any other property in Linn County, Oregon, visit: www.callkdsmith.com or http://kdsmith.yourkwagent.com

    My car ATE me!
    No seriously, it did. On Wednesday, I was out on a "normal" broker tour day, driving around and looking at different homes so I can keep up on the current "homes for sale" inventory.  It was at the last house that I had my problem - I couldn't open the door!  Not the passenger door or anything easy.  It was my driver's side door.  I was faced with the option to either A: climb over the console - mountain goat style - and exit out the passenger door, OR B: roll down the window & exit "Daisy Duke" style.  For the record, neither one is very good for a professional real estate broker in a skirt & heels.  I did opt for the "mountain goat" route though.  Turns out that this incident was a Godsend for me! When it comes to cars, I'm a serious procrastinator.  I mean, as long as it's driving, I'll get the oil changed on occasion, and unless something physically prevents me from being able to drive (like not being able to open a door??!!!) I'll just keep going.  Well, this was a bit of a problem.  Because I have a Kia, I don't have a local dealership to work with.  The guys down at Knecht's suggested I run to the Hyundai dealership and see if they can work on it.  Nope, I had to run to Salem to POWER and give them my baby. "How many miles are on your car?" was the question I was met with.  "Oh, about 70,000." "Has the timing belt been replaced?" How would I know?  I'm the second owner!  So I called the previous owner after doing some backtracking and found out that, no, it hadn't been replaced.  Apparently, that's not a good thing.  I guess Kias have the type of engine that if your timing belt breaks, it throws the pistons through the top of the engine and you have to replace that! To make a LONG story short, my car is STILL in the shop, and I have a loaner from the awesome POWER dealership - thankfully - but when I get it back it's going to be in fantastic condition! Find properties, tips & more: www.callkdsmith.comFree buyer & seller resources: http://kdsmith.yourkwagent.com

    Who wants in?
    Join me if you want to ride out the SHIFT!  If you already have your copy of SHIFT, read the introduction & then introduce yourself to the group.  I look forward to "meeting" you! Cheerfully,Kristin D Smith Find properties, tips & more: www.callkdsmith.comFree buyer & seller resources: http://kdsmith.yourkwagent.com

    Introducing myself
    Hi - I'm brand new here to AR.  Obvious by the fact that I have just erased my entire blog post and am having to retype it!  I'm hoping that you will introduce yourself to me, this AR community is huge! I am a real estate broker in the beautiful Willamette Valley of Oregon.  That's pronounced, "Or-i-gun" not "Ore-ee-gone" for those of you who have never visited!  I specialize in the Albany & Brownsville communities, but currently have listings in Monroe & Harrisburg as well. I enjoy working with buyers, sellers, first time homebuyers, investors & anyone that enjoys learning like I do or wants to know more about the real estate market. I'm looking forward to being able to share in this great community & glean information from others as well.  I have another blog that features fun family activites: www.callkdsmith.featuredblog.com . Like I said, it's a fun one, but it might help you understand who I am. :) Cheerfully,Kristin D Smith Find properties, tips & other information: www.callkdsmith.comFree buyer & seller resources: http://kdsmith.yourkwagent.com