Tag Archives: central vermont home

Warren Buffett’s thoughts on Real Estate

Well, spring has descended upon us!  I am trying to enjoy the 70 degree weather here in Vermont in March – and trying not to think about how this over-the-top spring like weather is affecting the local economy. 

While the weather patterns dictate our local travel and tourism based economy, there are some general economic factors that support a healthy real estate forecast for 2012 and beyond.  Recently, Warren Buffett – the so called “Oracle of Omaha” was interviewed on CNBC.  He recommends buying real estate over investing in a diversified group of leading companies. 

It has been a long time since buyers and sellers heard that kind of good news!

Buffett said that along with stocks, single-family homes are cheap and attractive investments.  In contrast, investments in Treasury bills, gold or simply keeping money in cash are not as attractive.  He also said that if he had a way to buy “a couple hundred thousand single-family homes” and easily manage them, he would “load up on them” and “take mortgages out at very, very low rates”. 

In reality, managing “a couple of hundred thousand single-family homes” is an impossibly Herculean logistical task.  In my last blog I mentioned several reasons for the real estate market improvement:

  • Interest rates are at a historic record low.
  • Baby Boomers are nearing retirement and have the ability to snap up high end properties at lower than usual prices.
  • Some people who watch the real estate market feel we won’t see further drops in value.
  • Some buyers who have been on the side-lines for the past several years are ready to re-enter the market.

Let’s face it – it is much easier to buy stocks with a few keystrokes and mouse-clicks.

So while this news is good for investors and Warren Buffett followers – who really will benefit?  When asked if a young individual should buy stocks or his first single-family home, Buffett recommended buying a single-family home with a 30-year mortgage.  “It’s a terrific deal,” he said.  “It’s a leveraged way of owning a very cheap asset now and I think that’s probably as an attractive an investment as you can make right now.”

Are you looking to complete the “American Dream” and own your own home?  Are you interested in the second-home market?  There are great buys to be had out there and interest rates make an attractive investment.  As I’ve mentioned before – if you are thinking about buying property in this area – now is the time to do so!

Until next time, Irene

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This month’s featured town – Weston, VT

Weston Playhouse on the Green

Weston, Vermont is a beautiful village and never more so than during the Holidays.  Originally part of Andover and called “West Town” it was incorporated in October of 1979 because Markham and Terrible mountains blocked travel between the town’s halves.  Route 100 South out of Ludlow to Weston has always been referred to as Terrible Mountain – most people don’t know there is an actual mountain named as such!

As beautiful as Weston is while driving through town, there are hidden treasures as well.  Vermont’s oldest professional theater, The Weston Playhouse Theater Company was founded in 1935. This non-profit organization serves a community of artists and audiences through a broad spectrum of dramatic works and educational programs.  Visit www.westonplayhouse.org for the exciting shows scheduled for next season.  

The Kinhaven Music School is celebrating 60 years next July!   They offer four classical music programs each summer providing a music making experience where friendship, mutual support, learning and community are always present.  Find out more about the music classes and workshops for both youths and adults at www.kinhaven.org

Do you know about the Benedictine Priory on Priory Hill Road?  Founded in 1953 and inspired by a monastic tradition reaching back to the earliest centuries of the church, a community of Benedictine Monks have created their own community about four miles north of the village.  All are welcome to visit and the Chapel, Visitor’s Center and grounds afford an atmosphere in which quiet reflection and prayer are accessible to all.  More information is available at www.westonpriory.org.

I chose to write about Weston in December because of its small town beauty during the Christmas season.  What could be more beautiful than shopping during the Holidays?!  The Christmas Shop has the best selection of Ornaments you’ll find.  Artistically placed and decoratively arranged, this shop provides an experience you won’t want to miss. 

Then take a walk across the street to the Vermont Country Store.  This is the original store founded by the Orton Family in 1946 along with their first catalogue.  Think of catering to a farmer’s wife back in the day – they still adhere to old fashioned values set forth by Vrest and Ellen Orton.  The Vermont Country Store takes pride in being purveyors of the practical and hard to find.  When you check out their website at www.vermontcountrystore.com you’ll find their Customer Bill of Rights – including a 100% guarantee.  The Vermont Country Store is a great place to find one-of-a-kind gifts with superior customer service!

There are many Inn’s and places to dine and I couldn’t do justice to them all by naming them here.  If you have never been to Weston, visit the Village of Weston Website for more detailed information.  www.westonvt.com 

The entire village of Weston is listed on the National Register of Historic Places so the “prettiest village in all of Vermont” will be preserved for future generations.  Weston is magical under a blanket of snow!  I hope to see you on a Sleigh Ride in Weston soon!

Vermont Country Store

 
 

Until next time, Irene

99-Cent Store Solutions

  • 99-Cent Store Solution #4: Loose Cabinet Hinge

    Yesterday we showed you how to handily repair drywall for $10 in case Charlie Sheen drops by your place. But back to reality. If one of your kitchen cabinets is hanging on for dear life … Read

  • 99-Cent Store Solution #3: Patch Drywall Hole

    Yesterday’s torn-screen fix cost all of $1.98 (including an impulse purchase). Today’s is the priciest in this weeklong series—but still under $10. Read

  • 99-Cent Store Solution #2: Torn Window Screen

    Yesterday, we shared our discovery of the 99-cent store as a practical resource for home improvement supplies. We repaired a scuff mark on a countertop for less than $3. Today, we’re going to get rid of one of life’s greatest annoyances for less than $2. Read

  • 99-Cent Store Solution #1: Scuffed Countertops

    At HouseLogic, we love to find and share inexpensive solutions to household problems. Our five solutions this week—one a day—don’t even require a trip to your big-box home improvement store—not that we don’t love stocking up at Lowe’s or Home Depot. Instead, pay a call to your 99-cent store. Its aisles are crammed with the inexpensive (and multipurpose) wares to fix what’s ailing. Read

  • Shotgun Plan for Lending Industry Woes Disincentive to Home Ownership

    New government safeguards may protect investors—but at what cost to you? Proposed regulations would cripple your ability to buy and sell a home and cause property values to plunge. Read

Visit houselogic.com for more articles like this.

Copyright 2011 NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®

REDUCED! Vermont Farm House on the Okemo Shuttle Route!

Cute and Cozy Vermont Farm House!  3 bedrooms, New front Porch approx 4 years. Standing Seam Roof (98). Wood Floors thoughout. Large EIK with custom cabinets. Post and beam barm offers expansion possibilities – On the shuttle bus route to Okemo. Walk to Post OFfice, Bakery and Singletons.. Priced to sell at $164,900. Owner Licensed Realtor in Vermont.

In the Heart of Vermont ski Country

Right between Killington and Okemo ski resorts. Located just off VAST (Snowmobile Trails) there are possibilities for direct access to the trails the building features a heated garage which would be a perfect place to store and work on your sleds. It is also equidistant to echo lake and Woodard reservoir and just down the road from the Coolidge historical sites, Long Trail brewery, and the village of Woodstock this is the perfect location for year round vacation or daily life! There are 4 bedrooms, 4 large bathrooms, and an updated kitchen. Each room has individually controlled thermostat, and a propane fireplace. The building is very energy efficient! Owner financing available – this is not a drive-by – Priced to sell!  $229,900.00

Log Home in Shrewsbury!

What more could you want?  All it needs is you and your creative flair. Some of the special features of this 3 bedroom, 2 bath Log home set on 7.8 acres are: 2 car detached garage, end of the road location partially finished basement, wood burning stove, and  mountain view. The style you love at a price you can afford. Great value $228,275. #4025912

South Central Vermont Home Buyers Master the Mortgage Maze

A simplified guide for buyers of South Central Vermont home.

To a South Central Vermont home loan shopper, there may seem to be an endless–and confusing–array of mortgage types. Of course you want to choose the option that is best suited to your current and future financial situation, but understanding the terminology, types, and monetary ramifications is not always easy. Mortgages generally fall into four categories (fixed rate, adjustable rate, step, and balloon) according to the interest rate and duration of the loan.

Basic terminology;

Fixed rate–The interest rates do not change during the life of the loan, thus allowing you to know the amount of your payments.

Adjustable rate (ARM)–the interest rate is tied to certain indexes plus a margin and can fluctuate up or down, thus affecting each payment,

Step–the interest rate and monthly payment remain the same for a specified period of time. After that the interest will change to the prevailing rate and will remain there for the duration of the loan.

Balloon–a loan payment that expands after a certain amount of time. Basically it functions similarly to a fixed rate mortgage in the earlier months/years with a delayed steep increase at the end,

The following information, courtesy of Mortgages.Interest.com, outlines the type of mortgage, the loan characteristics, and the situations most appropriate for each one. If,  for instance, you plan to live in your South Central Vermont home more than 10 years and desire stability in payment amounts, then a fixed rate mortgage is for you. If, however, your finances are currently strained, but you know that in 5 to 10 years your monetary situation will improve or that you will most likely move within 10 years, then an ARM or balloon mortgage may be better for you. Being familiar with these options allows you to discuss them intelligently with your real estate agent and/or lender and then select the type which best fits your circumstances.

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Staging Your South Central Vermont Home For An Open House

You are selling your South Central Vermont home and the first Open House only a week away. The house is filled with clutter and things you don’t want to throw away. But the clutter is not appealing to potential South Central Vermont home buyers. What do you? Here are staging tips for an Open House.

8 Staging Tips For An Open House

1. Remove the clutter.

Having a garage sale is out when removing clutter because the Open House is only a week away. You don’t want to stuff the garage or closets to the gills either. One solution is to rent an off-site storage facility or stack boxes neatly in a basement or crawlspace.

2. Stage each room.

The first thing to do is clean from top to bottom. Make sure windows and light fixtures shine and are in working order. If the room is crowded, put some furniture in the storage facility. Finally, pick a focal point that will attract buyers when they see the room. For example, the focal point of a bedroom is usually the bed, and for a music room, it’s the piano.

3. Use the rule of three.

First, remove everything from counters and table tops, including coffee tables and side tables. Then re-accessorize using the rule of three…using 3 items of varying heights. For example, on an end table you can place a lamp (high), a small plant (medium), and a book (low).

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Basic Steps for First-time South Central Vermont Home Buyers – PART IV

A simplified guide for painless purchasing of your South Central Vermont home,

Be patient. You’re getting close to the finish line and will soon be the owner of your first home. Just a few more steps to go…

1. Homeowner’s insurance policy

Adequate homeowner’s insurance is a requirement of all lenders, and it is certainly in your best interests to protect the investment you’ll be making in your South Central Vermont home. To find the policy that is right for you, you should shop around for the best value. Check online for quotes from at least three reputable agencies. Be aware that some companies offer a discount of 30%-40% if you buy online. Other possible discounts can result from insuring both your home and the contents or by insuring your home and your car with the same company. Check to see if you need flood insurance, as many properties in South Central Vermont do. Know the replacement value of your home, taking into consideration any unique features. Think about probable inflation increases at renewal time. Will your insurance agency automatically adjust your coverage, or will you have to request a change?

2. Preparations before closing

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Basic Steps for First-time South Central Vermont Home Buyers – PART III

A simplified guide for painless purchasing of your South Central Vermont home.

Okay, you’ve made your lists of: must have” and “would be nice” features, and you’ve identified desirable neighborhoods with the schools and amenities that meet your needs. Now it’s time to seriously shop for your first-time South Central Vermont home.

Before you even step outside to begin the search, your agent will email to you listings which meet your criteria, and you can “visit” many of them online via a virtual tour. Once you have narrowed down your choices, your agent will arrange for you to look at–in person– your selected properties. A few bits of advice here:

1) Take notes on each home you tour. Too often individual details blur after you’ve seen four (or more) houses in a day.

2) Look past the owner’s furnishings and décor. Concentrate on the features you have identified as important and try to picture yourself actually living in the space.

3) If you have decided that you don’t need a “move-in ready” residence, look at the potential of the property. Would simple cosmetic changes make a considerable difference?

4) Listen to both your head and your heart. Sometimes a property really does “speak” to you, and you know you have found your new home.

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