Asheville Mountain Real Estate Blog

Asheville, NC real estate for sale. Information for buyers, sellers and mountain homeowners, without pressure. Rich content for those who are far away about what it is like to live here through the generous use of media. And some nostalgia with our, "Baby Boomers' Fun Stuff", Thanks for stopping by.

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Location: Mars Hill, NC, United States

A small, highly personalized real estate firm specializing in mountain homes and land in greater Asheville.

Friday, June 29, 2007

SART: Mars Hill, NC Summer Theater Schedule


Summertime in most areas of the country means the opportunity to see some theater productions within driving distance. Mars Hill and the Wolf Laurel area are no different in that regard, with the renowned Southern Appalachian Repertory Theater, or simply "SART" for short.

SART is hosted at the intimate Owen Theater, (pictured above), at Mars Hill College each summer. This year, the season runs from June 13 until August 26, and features an ambitious schedule of five productions. "The Fantastiks", "To Kill a Mockingbird", a musical adaptation of "Little Women", "Incorruptible", and an original production about mountain music entitled "The Memory Collection" will grace this season's calendar.

Here are some added outbound links, and remember to support live theater and music.
SART Review: From The Asheville Citizen Times

SART Website: Complete List & Dates of productions for Summer 2007.

Ticket Info: From the SART website.

Directions: from the SART Website

Thanks for stopping by,
Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty Website
TEL: 828 689 2055
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Filed Under: Slices of Mountain Life Wolf Laurel Items

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Thursday, June 28, 2007

Baby Boomer Fun: Gary Lewis and the Playboys 1965-66


Last week we visited with my favorite UK pop band, Herman's Hermits. This week, my favorite US pop band of the era, Gary Lewis and the Playboys. These guys compiled an impressive run of hits for a brief period of time, and they remain part of the soundtrack of our lives. I must point out the following:

From Wikipedia:
In 1965 Gary Lewis was Cash Box magazine's "Male Vocalist of the Year," winning against nominees Elvis Presley and Frank Sinatra and was the only artist during the 1960s to have his first seven single releases reach Billboard magazine's Top 10.
Bio at The Playboys Website: Includes booking info and current gigs.
The Playboys MySpace Page: Has few tunes to hear and current info.
The Late Carl Radle's Website: Bass player who cast his shadow over two decades of rock and roll, worked with Derek and the Dominoes, Joe Cocker, Leon Russell, Delaney and Bonnie, Bob Dylan, and many more.

Video Clip: "Sure Gonna Miss Her", which topped out at #9 during 1966. I was 13.

PLEASE NOTE: Videos do disappear from the web from time to time. Lots more Gary Lewis and the Playboys performances can be found here.

ENJOY! 2mins 13secs

Thanks for stopping by,
Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty Website
828 689 2055
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Filed Under: Baby Boomer Fun Stuff

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Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Going Green in Asheville, NC: A Point of View & Resources


It is really a shame that the words "going green" carry such politically and emotionally charged rhetoric. In my opinion, going green is not political at all. It is a personal decision to reduce costs, and this is a basic premise in a capitalist society. It is also a decision to save money, a key component of self reliance, and these are two of America's core values, are they not?

Buying a home is one of the longest of long term investments that many people will ever make, and so, the decision to reduce the costs of operation, (capitalism), and to save money, (self reliance), should be key, and maybe some green items will work for you.

The Basic Formula
The arithmetic of green decisions in the home is not unlike making a teenager understand that the 5 Liter Mustang may have a lower purchase price than the Chevrolet, but the cost of operation needs to be added. And so it is with green homes, it is the cost of installation plus cost of operation over time that will serve individual buyers and homeowners best.

My only point is to decide what is best for you.

From Mountain Express: A very large list of local resources and information for Western North Carolina, including some items not commonly mentioned such as matters of indoor air quality.

From NAR: A very short read summarizing some basic statistics and trends.

From Realtor Magazine: The best parts of this article are down the page where many simple aspects of homes are mentioned including the efficiency of copper roofs, windows, LED lighting, timber framing, low flow baths,and more.

From The NY Times: (Registration Required):
This one is from second home specialist, Amy Gunderson who has been cited by us before. I was glad to see this summary of the necessary point of view when considering green aspects of homes:
“You are not going to find the price-sensitive shopper in our stores,” said Lisa DiMartino, the vice president for marketing of Environmental Home Center, a green-home retailer with stores in Seattle and in Portland and Bend, Ore. “These are materials that are durable. You are going to pay for that. But the cost in the long run can be less than other products you are going to have to replace.
Just about says it all right there.

Good Luck, and Thanks for stopping by,
Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty, Inc
828 689 2055

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Filed Under: Buyers' Archive Home Owners Archive

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Saturday, June 23, 2007

Home Insurance: A Collection of Quick Thoughts for the Weekend


When signing out from hotmail, the MSN home page inevitably comes up. So I decided to look around the MSN Real Estate Section, and collect a few items about home owners' insurance.

In an earlier posting, I briefly mentioned some aspects of saving on second home insurance costs. Examples mentioned at that time included, a deduction for gated communities, certain considerations for rural fire departments, as well as deductions for monitoring one's second home in real time from afar via the capabilities of the Internet. Those resources are available here, in a new window.

Today's posting takes a broader look at insurance, and hopefully includes some easily missed details.

12 ways to save on homeowners insurance:
A very general checklist, some of which are elementary, such as to shop around, or to raise deductibles. The author mentions getting quotes online, be aware however that it is normal for such quote portals to require registration, and be prepared for email and phone calls. All in all, the information is not especially deep, but would serve as a useful reference to buyers and owners.

Is your home underinsured? 8 key tests:
As with any article of thisnature, some of the items are obvious, such as insuring for replacement cost, while others are more intricate, for example:
Homeowners are often lulled into complacency because they have "guaranteed replacement" or "extended replacement" policies, which sound like they'll rebuild a home regardless of the cost, said attorney Amy Bach of United Policyholders, an advocacy group for insurance consumers.

But true guaranteed-replacement policies are almost extinct, and virtually all insurers cap the payouts at 100% to 150% of the amount for which the home is insured.

The author here goes on to mention thinking seriously about the contents of one's home, which leads me to a couple of other resources for buyers and owners.

Insuring those pricey possessions:

As a former working musician, who actually sustained damage to an expensive instrument, I would suggest reading the linked article.

Lastly, no real estate blog in a second home market could pretend to be complete without:

20 insurance tips for empty-nesters:
Covers a lot of ground here from auto, to health, to a child's dorm room.

And,since insurance is all about disasters, large and small, it is fitting to end with:

10 after-the-disaster do's and don'ts:
A mixture of personal safety and insurance advice.

Thanks for stopping by,
Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty, Inc
Anti Spam Graphic: tom AT blackbearre DOT com

828 689 2055

Filed Under: Buyers Archive Homeowners' Archive

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Thursday, June 21, 2007

Baby Boomer Fun: Herman's Hermits: 1965


No serious blogging today, we will get back to that tomorrow. Just a baby boomer fun post for now, so here goes.

This is my favorite UK pop band from the 1960's, with a most underrated tune, "Listen People". This clip is from the film "When the Boys meet the Girls", (1965), with a cast that includes Connie Francis and Liberace.

The Hermits had 15 top 40 hits from 1964-1967, this song peaked at #3 in Feb, 1966. I was 13, and the song has been a favorite ever since.

Herman's Hermits Home Page
Peter Noone's Website
The Hermits on Wikipedia

PLEASE NOTE: Videos do disappear from the web from time to time. If this video becomes unavailable, then find plenty more of Herman's Hermits performances at this location.

Enjoy!! 2 mins 21 secs.

Thanks for stopping by,
Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty Website
828 689 2055

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Wednesday, June 20, 2007

AVMs: Looking At Auto Valuation Models in a Mountain Micro Market


I am prompted, by a call from a client yesterday, to revisit and expand on some issues surrounding automated valuation models, or AVMs. AVMs allege to determine the "true value" or to appraise homes and land by crunching a database with various algorithms. These models are increasingly common with lenders, and the burgeoning online valuation industry.

One does not need to know what an algorithm is to comprehend immediately that any such valuation will only be as good as the database itself. A database for this purpose must be complete and timely, i.e., it must have ALL sales, and it must do so in REAL TIME.

As our blog showed in a Feb, 2007 posting which looked at a number of AVM, online valuation websites, none were complete or timely when compared with our mountain micro market in real time.

Nevertheless, this remains a hot topic, not only in the real estate blogosphere, but for the industry in its day to day workings. The issue will continue to be topical as consumers flock to the internet for buying/selling information, and as lenders seek to eliminate human beings from the process and streamline costs.

Who Is Pushing AVMs?
To this observer, the only people praising AVMs turn out to be lenders, and the online valuation industry, both of whom have weighty financial imperatives to do so.

It is very difficult to find an online valuation website that is NOT backed by a big money, nationally branded realtor or lender. Their sites are heavily weighted to their own listings or interests, and nearly ALL require registration for their services. Can anyone say bias? And, what's with the required registration? Buyers and sellers beware.

Fannnie Mae's Official Guide has this to say on the "Strengths and Weaknesses of AVMs":
The strengths of AVMs relative to traditional real estate appraisals are speed, reduced costs, consistency, and objectivity. This is not to suggest that conscientious, skilled appraisers lack consistency and objectivity.
As the poet said, "damned by faint praise"?
And later:
AVMs have three principal limitations:
* First, they are dependent upon the accuracy, comprehensiveness, and timeliness of the data they use. Data issues can include incomplete public records, insufficient sales of properties with comparable features within a specified geographic area, and a lag between the time when the market data are current and the AVM uses the data to generate an estimate of value.
* Second, AVMs cannot be used to determine the physical condition and relative marketability of a property.
* Third, AVMs can never fully incorporate the breadth of knowledge and judgment of a skilled appraiser. (Emphasis Added)
The Real Estate Tomato, (an odd name to be sure, but one of the most influential real estate blogs), did a more detailed comparison of AVMs and humans. Again, speed and cost are the only positives attributed AVMs. Some added drawbacks, not pointed out by Fannie Mae can be seen in the table, approximately 1/3 of the way down the page.

What jumped out at me in The Tomato posting was that AVM databases are typically 30 days behind real time, and the AVM "search criteria" is usually "address" alone. Never mind square feet, bedrooms or breathtaking mountain views it would seem.

Consumers' Summary:
For the forseeable future, both buyers and sellers should look to AVMs as mere ballpark suggestions. Their databases are clearly inaccurate as my February survey showed. When push comes to shove, for a true value, especially in a mountain micro market, there is no substitute for a human being.

Thanks for stopping by,
Tom Ploski

Black Bear Realty Website
828 689 2055
Anti Spam Graphic: info AT blackbearre DOT com

Filed Under: Sellers' Archives Buyers' Archives Wolf Laurel Archives

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Saturday, June 16, 2007

Asheville & Mars Hill NC Vacation Haven: Considerations in Renting Your Second Home


Amy Gunderson, who writes about second home issues for The NY Times, has an article this week entitled: "Attracting Vacation Home Renters". After some amount of time the NY Times requires registration for its articles, so I will preserve some of the high points, and my own point of view with our local market on this blog.

The thrust of her discussion is that the vacation rentals market is ever more crowded. As such, second home owners need to think about amenities, furnishings and such that will distinguish their home from the rest. To wit:
In an increasingly crowded vacation rental market, high-speed Internet access, plasma televisions, and even 500-thread-count Egyptian cotton sheets can help distinguish a home and bring in renters.
Gunderson adds that making a vacation home amenable to families with children can also lessen vacancy rates. Included under this thought would be such things as DVDs, or, as one lessor did, even adding an X Box 360.

The article also speaks to the idea of renting a second home on the vacation market by yourself. Links are provided to such web sites as How To Rent By Owner, Vacation Rentals By Owner, more commonly known as, and Home Away.

I find that I must take exception to this gung ho, do it yourself position and offer a few caveats to potential vacation landlords. My own experience at The Wolf laurel Ski Slopes during heavy house rental weekends in winter is all the recollection I need. Owners should not underestimate the number of after hours calls that will happen, covering everything from no hot water to "I can't find the switch for the power downstairs."

In the opinion of this observer, whatever fees and conditions are negotiated with a rental agency are well worth the added freedom in one's personal life.

Thanks for stopping by,
Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty Web Site
Anti Spam Graphic: tom AT blackbearre DOT com
828 689 2055

Filed Under: Homeowners' Archive Buyers' Archive

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Friday, June 15, 2007

Fodder for Cocktail Talk: Five Fads in Home Renovation


CNN Money has an interesting article online. It is their nominations for "the five dumbest home renovation fads". This kind of list is very subjective of course, but the truly useful part of their report is that they offer alternative ideas on how to approach each of the areas they addressed.

In the links below, you will find the "right way and the wrong way", according to Money Magazine, to handle renovations involving, great rooms, kitchens, garages, porches, and built in lighting.

CNN Money: The Five Dumbest Home Renovation Fads
CNN Money: Home Renovation Calculator
From Our Blog: Spotting Signs of Home Improvement Fraud

Thanks for stopping by,
Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty Website
Anti-Spam Graphic: tom AT blackbearre DOT com
828 689 2055

Filed Under: Buyers' Archive Homeowners' Archive Sellers' Archive

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Thursday, June 14, 2007

Drought in Western North Carolina: Some Potted Plant Tips

Year to date rainfall in Western North Carolina is a little over 12 inches, it should be a little more than 24. Stream flows are at 40% or so of their 80 year averages.

It happens in summertime, with more hours of leisure that perhaps one's plants could be forgotten. In dry weather, the consequences of this are greater than in years of normal rainfall. Below is quick little video tip to make that water go a little longer in your outdoor potted plants, though some people tell me this claim is bogus. Decide for yourself.
The "embed" feature of this video is dysfunctional, Click the link to view in a new window.

You can view the entire series of gardening tips here.

Thanks for stopping by,
Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty Website
Anti-Spam Graphic: tom AT blackbearre DOT com
828 689 2055

Filed Under: Tips for Mountain Homeowners

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About Fireplaces: A Mars Hill & Wolf Laurel Hot Spot


With the advent of gas logs, fireplaces have come to reclaim a central place in the American home, and it is certainly the case here in the Mars Hill, NC and Wolf Laurel area. Other than eliminating all of the soot and particulate problems however, the architecture of most of them remains unchanged, and thus the issue of heat loss and wasted dollars remains.

This little posting was inspired by a look at home renovation ideas where I came across the following slide show at "This Old House", which looks at some fireplace and mantle design/decorating schemes. Obviously, any thorough blog for mountain homeowners should also offer resources for fireplace efficiency, for our wallets, as well as the region, and the planet.

Whether you use your fireplace(s) with wood or gas, here is a list of links to increase efficiency. Most are short reads, much is common sense, but as always, the utility here is to provide a reference for when you do undertake that home improvement/spring cleaning project.

The Fireplace Shopper: Quick List and Outbound Links.
Fireplace Lowdown: An entire blog, apparently devoted to ALL things about the fireplace.
From LSU: A slightly more academic discussion of fireplace heat loss, with suggestions.
From Bob Vila: An off the beaten path suggestion on fireplace efficiency.
Conscious Choice: A question and answer format, with a few more hidden ideas.
From This Blog: A previous posting that includes information on chimneys and chimney sweeps.

Thanks for stopping by,
Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty Website
Anti-Spam Graphic: tom AT blackbearre DOT com
828 689 2055

Filed Under: Homeowners' Archive Buyers' Archive Sellers' Archive

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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Mars Hill, NC Homeowners & Buyers: Spotting Home Improvement Fraud

It is only before the age of 50 that most of us engage in the do it yourself aspects of home improvement. After that, dollars spent nationally begins to lean heavily towards contractors. As such, the subject of spotting scams in the industry would be a worthwhile subject for today.

One does not need to look very far to find that the common signs of home improvement scam are agreed upon, and these include:
-soliciting door to door
-has materials "left over from another job"
-no phone listing in local business directories
-offers discounts if you find more clients, accepts only cash, asks you to get the required building permits, etc.

Good "Spot the Signs of Home Improvement Fraud" Pages:
The Better Business Bureau
The Federal Trade Commission
Find Local BBB
File Complaint With The BBB
Search a Company With The BBB
Mars Hill, NC Yellow Pages

Some areas of scam not normally addressed would include radon, chimneys, and termites, worth reading for those with fireplaces in the Wolf Laurel area:
Chimney, Termites and Radon Scams
National Chimney Sweeps Guild Page

Lastly, as they often do, a good extensive resource from AARP on the matter.

Thanks for stopping by,
Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty Home Page
828 689 2055
Anti-Spam Graphic: tom AT blackbearre DOT com

Filed Under: Tips for Buyers, Tips for Sellers, Tips for Mountain Homeowners

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Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Elkmont Synchronous Fireflies: Wolf Laurel Things To Do in The Great Smokies


This must be a truly amazing experience. If one has the time to do so, I have heard Wolf Laurel Country Club members describe it as "the greatest thing I have ever seen."

Synchronous fireflies have only recently been "discovered" in the Elkmont section of The Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Dr. J Copeland of GA State Univ. had been as far as SE Asia to study the phenomenon, only to find that a local Knoxville man had been "watching the show" for over 40 years. Yes, local residents had known for decades, but the existence of these creatures had somehow escaped science.

Peak viewing is two weeks in mid June each year, and more than 8,000 visitors/year now view the fireflies. Information about transportation and "firefly etiquette" can be found in the links below.

Official National Park Service page on The Fireflies: Includes info about the trolley service and proper behavior in this natural setting.

Channel 10 Knoxville: Trolley Info

Channel 10 Knoxville: Firefly Update

ChattoogaRiver.Org: More firefly info.

Reporting by "Appalachian Voices"

A University of Connecticut Neurobiologist's Page.

Elkmont, TN on Google Maps

Enjoy the Show, Be Nice, Leave Only Footprints, and Thanks For Stopping By,
Tom Ploski

Black Bear Realty Home Page
Anti Spam Graphic: tom AT blackbearre DOT com
828 689 2055

Filed Under: Slices of Mountain Life

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Monday, June 11, 2007

Fun For Baby Boomers: Wolf Laurel Country Club Avoids Diplomatic Incident


In a recent telephone call, I had occasion to resolve a heated international trivia debate at The Wolf Laurel Country Club. Residents of two continents, in-laws I believe, were in disagreement over the artist who performed "Hey There Little Red Ridin' Hood". The answer of course is Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs. The song peaked at #2 on Billboard in August of 1966.

In 1965 however, the # 1 song of the year belonged to this same group. Much to everyone's surprise, (remember that other big band in '65, The Beatles?), "Wooly Bully" topped the charts. The video below is from "Hullabaloo". I was 12, how about you?

Billboard's Top 50 Songs: 1965

Sam the Sham Web Site

Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs on Wikipedia

(Please note, videos do disappear from the web from time to time. Find more Sam the Sham at this link here)


Thanks For Stopping By,
Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty Home Page
Anti Spam Graphic: tom AT blackbearre DOT com
828 689 2055

Filed Under: Baby Boomers' Fun Stuff

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Sunday, June 10, 2007

Buying Land: Mars Hill, NC and Wolf Laurel Considerations

In a resort market such as ours, many clients who come here with an interest in buying land have not done so before. This posting is for you, and includes a selection of links, articles, and checklists to help you bear in mind the general considerations in the land buying process.

From CNN Money: A 2003 article that is still topical. Many of the points made are quite obvious, such as considering proximity to paved roads, utilities, zoning and so forth. Still, a useful introduction for potential land buyers.

From An overview, with additional links about the land buying process. References include links about wells and septic systems, since city water and sewer are not typically part of the infrastructure in rural locations. The Wolf laurel Resort does however have an excellent community water system in place.

About Septic Systems: A short article on septic system basics, including links about care, upkeep, garbage disposal impact, and so forth.

From (Sometimes a site with pop-ups): A short discussion on loan types and options that are most suitable for a land purchase.

More About Water
No discussion of mountain land would be truly complete without a reference to "dowsing". It is something that is embedded in the culture here, and is suggested as a necessary step by many local, long time mountaineers that I have encountered. I offer no opinions on its efficacy, but will note that Albert Einstein was apparently a proponent of dowsing. Decide for yourself about this little aspect of mountain mystique.

American Society of Dowsers: Official Website.

Wikipedia Entry on Dowsing: Everything, (and more), that one ever wanted to know on the subject.

From Presents studies on dowsing, rebuttals, and a wealth of links.

Thanks For Stopping By,
Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty, Inc Home Page
Anti Spam Graphic: tom AT blackbearre DOT com
828 689 2055

Filed Under: Tips For Buyers

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Mars Hill, NC, Asheville, and "The Guy Who Picks the Best Places to Live"


Asheville, and by their proximity, Mars Hill, NC and The Wolf Laurel Resort have been named to yet another "Best Places to Live" listing by Bert Sperling. The Asheville region comes in at number 8, with the following brief analysis:
Asheville is situated at the foot of the Great Smoky Mountains, the highest part of the Appalachian Range. A low cost of living and affordable housing (median home price $202,100) offset the area's low measure of diversity and unremarkable economy. This mountain getaway was settled in the 1850's as a slow-paced health retreat, and it continues to be appealing to both families and retirees. Since the median age of Asheville residents is above the national average, retirees moving here will find themselves happily surrounded by their peers.

Sperling's website and resource list is apparently one of the heavyweights for this kind of endeavor. We appreciate the top ten designation, but the text is a little dull for a place that is "best of". C'mon Bert.

In a bit of irony, I find the criteria entered into his various algorithms to be more revealing and descriptive of why we like it here. The NY Times, in its coverage of the man, lists these as: (Registration required at the NY Times after some period of time.)
economy and jobs; cost of living; climate; education; health and health care; crime; transportation; leisure; arts and culture; and quality of life, which includes physical setting, downtown core, heritage and overall appearance.
Take some time to look around our blog and our website for some visuals and links that might give some depth to the Asheville/Madison County experience, or contact us for any further info.

Other Asheville Named to "Best Of Lists"
Asheville Chamber List of "Best Of Lists" (PDF File)
Links About Living Here: Black Bear Web Page

Thanks for stopping by,

Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty, Inc
Anti-Spam Graphic: tom (at) blackbearre (dot) com.
828 689 2055

Filed Under: Tips for Buyers Wolf Laurel Items Asheville News

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Friday, June 08, 2007

Professionally Staging A Home For Sale: Valid Industry or Just Paying For Common Sense?

I will confess that I formerly harbored a less than elevated opinion of those who make a science out of staging homes for sale. My too quick reaction was always something along the lines of "Do I or my clients really need to pay someone for the common sense advice to clean the bathrooms and rake the yard?"

Some time ago however, I perused the home staging blogosphere and found some quite valid insights into the sales process. The observations of these folks are the kinds of things that are still largely common sense, but might easily be overlooked and I humbly stand corrected. Professional staging, like most things I suppose, is something that might be right for some clients after all.

There are some parts of selling a home that involve valid psychology, and a knowledge thereof. If you are a do it yourself type, then definitely do take the time to ponder some of these resources and execute accordingly with your realtor. If you tend to be a delegating type, then by all means, contact us for local staging practitioners and referrals.

Resources For Sellers & Brief Commentary

The Sellers Road Map: A useful primer/introduction in order for you to maximize one of the 5 most important decisions you and your family will ever make, to sell your home. This comes from, and while I have previously contended here, that zillow is NOT the place to go for home valuations, their "wiki pages" are a treasure trove of fundamental information.

Do It Yourself Staging Tips: Everything from new bath towels to colored coat hangers in closets.

Faux Staging: I can personally attest to the effectiveness of this procedure. These are excellent and inexpensive ideas for new construction, or for those who must "pre-pack" to move. We have been approached by firms of this nature in our market, so please feel free to contact us.

From Inman Blog: A whole set of search results on the pros and cons of staging.

The Best For Last: Two great points, that staging will allow sellers to target their buyers by furnishing in the appropriate manner and style. Second and most valid point is that staging "neutralizes" the home.
Staging neutralizes your home so that buyers feel relaxed and comfortable while viewing it. If a home is too personalized, buyers will feel as if they are invading your privacy, making them feel awkward about being there.

Awkward buyers do not buy.

Thanks for stopping by,
Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty, Inc
828 689 2055

Filed Under: Tips For Sellers

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Thursday, June 07, 2007

Asheville Region Images: Vol 1

I really believe in the presumption that a real estate blog is NOT the place to overtly promote business. Instead, it should be a place for web visitors to assess the agency in terms of skills, depth of knowledge, effort, and even personality.

A regional blog such as this one, should also endeavor to find ways to let far away second home buyers "feel" what it is like to live here. Today's posting is simply a shuffling of images on the sights, attractions, recreational and cultural opportunities that surround Wolf Laurel.

Hope You Enjoy

Thanks for Stopping by
Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty, Inc Home Page
tel: 828 689 2055
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Filed Under: Slices of Mountain Life Buyers' Archive

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Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Resources For Second Home Owners, Buyers and Sellers
Intsallment # 1

Postings such as this one will be added, amended, and referenced by link from time to time as new developments and information about the ownership and purchase of second homes evolves.

"For Buyers": Basic primers, calculators, dictionaries, law, and news on real estate pertinent to home buyers can be found at our Black Bear Realty page.

Second Home Insurance Tips: Save on Homeowners Insurance with a number of often overlooked items. These include a 10% discount for gated communities, some issues relating to rural fire departments, and second home monitoring via the web. This last idea has been addressed in detail by this blog HERE.

Real Living Blog: A 4 part series on purchasing a second home, fairly extensive in its scope.

Courtesy of Inman Blog: Basic Home Defect Categories:
A useful index of items to bear in mind for buyers, homeowners, and for that matter sellers as they ponder the preparation of their home for marketing.

Zillow Home Inspection Guide
: Again, a tool for buyers and sellers on their respective ends of a transaction. A tool for homeowners with respect to general upkeep of a second home.

Outline of "The Buying Process": A Good collection of links from the Zillow Real Estate Wiki.

Outline of "The Selling Process": Useful checklist for sellers, and hopefully a way to keep your realtor on his or her toes.

Monthly Home Maintenence Schedule: Lists those small but easily forgotten items of basic upkeep.

Thanks for Stopping by
Tom Ploski
Black Bear Realty, Inc Home Page
tel: 828 689 2055
anti spam graphic: tom (at) blackbearre (dot) com

Filed Under: Tips For Buyers Tips For Sellers Tips For Mountain Homeowners

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