Real Estate Information Archive

Blog

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 106

Factors to Consider When Buying A Home For Kids

by Jane Fischer and Associates

In today’s blog post, we are going to discuss factors to consider if you are a home buyer with children. There are several major factors that parents consider as they look for a new home: number of bedrooms, yard to play in, local school district, safety of area. These are all incredibily important. But, there are other factors that often get overlooked and can have a serious effect on the livability of the home for everyone in your family. Here are the additional factors you should consider as you look for your dream family home in Mason City IA!


Open Floor Plan

Basements and bonus rooms are important to have so kids can have their own areas to play, especially as they get older. When they are younger, however, it is important that you can supervise them at all times. This is where an open floor plan comes in handy. When the kitchen, dining area, and family room are all connected, you can keep a watchful eye on your children while still being productive. Plus, even after the kids are older, this is still a great area for the family to gather together throughout the day.


Bedroom Placement

Although the number of bedrooms is important to ensure your family has enough personal space, it is equally important to consider where those bedrooms are placed. If the home has multiple stories, it is possible that the master bedroom is located on the first floor while the rest of the bedrooms are upstairs. As a parent, you need to decide whether you will enjoy the privacy of having a room on a separate floor or whether you want to be close to your children at night and have all the bedrooms together.


Potential Burns

Kids like to touch things and a home can be filled with lots of hot items that are easy to forget about. In particular, you should consider how the home is heated. Older homes will likely have radiators which are incredibly hot and will cause serious burns. It might be best to only look at homes with central heating if your children are small to eliminate this risk. Gas fireplaces are great but the glass doors on them become dangerous when a fire is going. Make sure you monitor your children during and after a fire and put some sort of protection over the fireplace's on switch so the kids cannot accidentally turn it on when you aren't around.


View of the Backyard

Make sure that the interior of your home provides easy sightlines to the backyard. You will receive piece of mind by being able to watch your children play outside while you get some chores done inside.


Flat Yard

Steep hills can add some visual interest to your landscaping but they make it difficult, and potentially dangerous, for children to play. Find a lot that is flat so all of your children's favorite activities will be fun and easy.


Know the Neighbors

Try to find out who the neighbors are and make sure there are not any dangerous individuals living within the area.


Sidewalks

Parents often consider how busy a street is when making housing decisions. But, even on a quiet street, sidewalks add an extra element of safety by removing the children at play even farther away from the road. Plus, it is more inviting for family walks around the neighborhood.


Nearby Amenities

Parents know how difficult it can be to pack everyone and everything into the car everytime you need to go some where. This is why it is great for home buyers with kids to find neighborhoods that have amenities within walking distance. See what schools, parks, restaurants, stores, and other amenities could be easily walked to from the home.



We hope this blog gave you a some helpful information what to factors to consider as a home buying parent! If you are ready to Buy your dream family home in North Iowa, search our Homes for Sale. Work with the Top Realtor Mason City by giving us a call today at 641-425-4900 or visiting our website at http://www.janefischer.com/.


It's Time for Rockford Fun Days!!!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

Celebrate every thing that you love about living in beautiful Rockford, Iowa at the 10th Annual Rockford Fun Days!!! It is the ultimate summertime celebration in your home town. Friday, July 14th, and Saturday, July 15th, will be filled with all your favorite family fun events! Dine on delicious food, compete in the disc golf and kickball tournament, catch the parade, play some games, see incredible live performances, and so much more!

 

One of the best things about Rockford Fun Days is the Jon Tumilson Go Crush It 5K Challenge and Kids Frogman Fun Run! This annual run/walk honors the memory of Navy Seal and local hero Jon T. Tumilson. This brave man lost his life in Afghanistan on August 6th, 2011 while serving his country. Honor his memory by participating in the event or cheering on all the racers.

 

 Here is all the information you need to make the most of your time at the 10th Annual Rockford Fun Days!


Schedule of Events

Friday, July 13th

3:00 pm - 6:00 pm | Race Registration and Packet Pick Up for Jon Tumilson Go Crush It 5K Challenge | Rockford Fossil and Prairie Park

  • $40 per participant
  • Register HERE!

8:00 pm | Family Movie Night: The Lion King | Pocket Park

Saturday, July 14th

8:00 am | Opening ceremony for the Jon Tumilson Go Crush It 5K Challenge | Rockford Fossil and Prairie Park

8:30 am | Jon Tumilson Memorial 5K Run Starts

9:30 am | Kickball Tournament | Town Hall Fields

  • Contact Monica Murray at (641) 430-5253 to participate

10:00 am | Jon Tumilson Frogman Fun Run | Rockford Fossil and Prairie Park

  • Open to kids ages 12 and under
  • $25 per participant
  • Register HERE!

11:00 am | Parade | Downtown Rockford

  • Parade Line Up at 10:30 am in the RRMR School parking lot (1460 210th Street)
  • Contact Monica Murray at (641) 430-5253 for parade inquires

11:30 am | Awards Ceremony for the Jon Tumilson Memorial 5K Run | Central Park

11:30 am - 3:00 pm | Food, Games, Inflatables, and Vendors | Central Park

1:00 pm - 3:00 pm | Photo Booth | Central Park

  • $1.00 for one 4x6 photo

1:00 pm - 3:00 pm | Kids Disc Golf Clinic & Tournament | Central Park

  • Contact Jeremy Schlader at (319) 415-6055 to participate

1:30 pm | Pedal Tractor Pull | Central Park

  • Open to kids ages 3 to 8
  • Register that day at the Wrist Band Stand

3:00 pm | Magic Show | Central Park

3:30 pm | Greased Pig Catch | Rockford Fire Station

4:30 pm - 6:00 pm | Adult Disc Golf Tournament | Central Park

  • Contact Jeremy Schlader at (319) 415-6055 to participate

5:00 pm - 6:00 pm | Dead Engine Drag | Main Avenue

5:00 pm - 7:00 pm | Dinner | Rockford Fire Station

6:30 pm - 7:30 pm | Hypnotist Show | Rockford Fire Station

8:00 pm - 12:00 am | Sideshow Bob (80’s & 90’s Rock) | Rockford Fire Station

Dusk | FIREWORKS! | Central Park



Jane Fischer and Associates Team would like to take this time to remember the sacrifice that Navy Seal Jon Tumilson made for us and our country. We hope everyone in Rockford has an amazing time at this year’s Rockford Fun Days!

 

Image Credit: Rockford Fun Days

 

It's the Clear Lake Bicycle, Blues and BBQ Festival!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

Are you ready?  It's time for the great Clear Lake Bicycle, Blues and BBQ festival!

Date:  July 6-8, 2018

Where:  City Park, Downtown Clear Lake and other locations throughout the area.

Time:  Starts 5:00 pm Friday night

The proceeds from this event support improving a healthy lifestyle through bike related activities that include;  creating and improving bike trails, bicycle safety training and cycling events and activities.

There will be superb food, fantastic blues music, and a USCF sanctioned road race on Sunday!  You won't want to miss this wonderful summer event.

Click here for the schedule of events:  Events

The great blues sounds will come from the following groups:  Brother Sun Sister Moon, Left Wing Bourbon, Brandon Santini, and Jimmy Nick.

July 7th will be the terrific Brews on the Beach on the shores of Clear Lake!  Space is limited so get your tickets now

 


Make it a great holiday weekend with these fantastic local events!  See you there!

Keep your Pets stress-free during 4th of July Celebrations!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

The 4th of July celebrations are upon us!  While this is a day to celebrate our nation's independence with BBQ, picnics, parties, and fireworks, our pets often endure quite a bit of stress while it's all going on.  Animals, in general, have a 120-decibel pain threshold, but fireworks are extremely painful as they come in at a 170-decibel range;  way beyond what our pets can handle. 

Keep your pets pain and stress-free with these tips:

1. DO NOT TAKE YOUR PETS TO FIREWORKS DISPLAYS!

2. Utilize an interior room to keep them while the loud noises are happening.

3. Switch on a TV or radio to distract them from the noises outside.

4. Whichever room you choose to house your pets during this time, make sure they do not have an escape route.  Many pet control and humane society's experience a high number of animals during this time.

5. If at all possible have one family member stay home with your pets.

6. Provide them with their favorite toys, bed, and blankets during this time.

7.  If you've hosted the annual celebrations, make sure to clean up all debris before allowing your pet to roam your yard,  This debris can be poisonous to them if they begin to chew.

Wishing you, your family and pets a happy and safe Independence Day!

Great Summertime Home Improvement Projects

by Jane Fischer and Associates

In today’s blog post, we are going to discuss 7 home improvements you should make this summer. Summer just officially began. This gives you ample opportunities to take advantage of the beautiful weather and make some great updates and improvements to your Mason City IA home that will allow you to get the most out of your summer and increase the value of your home! Here are 7 prime home improvement projects to complete this summer.

1. Start a Vegetable Garden

Fall produce is delicious! Continue to put healthy, fresh food on your kitchen table by starting a garden with plants that thrive in cooler weather. We recommend beets, cabbage, carrots, and kale.


2. Update Your Landscaping

Landscaping helps increase your home's value. Now is the perfect time to spruce up your yard so that it is looking its very best this fall and far into next year. You can choose to work on your landscaping yourself or hire a landscaping consultant or architect. Some landscaping centers offer free consultations, which is a great option if you need help coming up with initial ideas or knowing what would best accentuate your home's features. It can be easy to spruce up your landscaping on a budget. One great way to save some money? Mason City offers Free Mulch to residents!


3. Renovate Your Deck

Your wood deck requires yearly maintenance. Water and cold weather can lead to rot and cracking in the boards. Inspect the deck yourself or hire a professional inspector if you notice any problem areas. Spend the time and money to renovate your deck as necessary so you can continue to use it on those warmer fall days and to reduce the risk of further damage during the winter.


4. Buy New Patio Furnishings

End of season means great sales! As the weather cools, retailers will be looking to move their outdoor inventory quickly. Take advantage of huge savings on patio furnishings and lawn care equipment now.


5. Get Rid of Your Old Grill

Just like patio furnishings, grills will also be deeply discounted. Buy the grill you've always wanted so you can host those great fall football parties and be ready to barbecue all summer long next year.

6. Add an Outdoor Shower

Whether you want it for relaxation or to wash off after a hard day working outside, a great upgrade to your home can be the installation of an outdoor shower. Consider placement, sizing, materials, and plumbing as you think about adding this fun and convenient outdoor feature.


7. Install a Swimming Pool

We all know the summer months in North Iowa can get hot, hot, hot! Always dreamed of cooling off in your very own pool? The end of summer is the perfect time to install your dream pool. Get ready to have the best summer ever next year by adding a pool now. With soil that is easier to dig in, deals offered by pool builders, and less need to utilize your yard as the weather cools, take advantage of the end of summer by adding this ultimate upgrade.

We hope this blog gave you a some helpful home improvement ideas for the summer. If you are looking for more tips or need help Buying or Selling your North Iowa home, work with the Top Realtor Mason City IA! Give our experienced Team a call today at 641-425-4900 or visit our website at http://www.janefischer.com/.

 

4th of July Extravaganza in Beautiful Clear Lake!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

Celebrate our nation's freedom in beautiful Clear Lake IA for the ultimate Independence Day celebration! Enjoy 6 days of festivities during Clear Lake's 4th of July Extravaganza!!!! From Friday, June 29th, through Wednesday, July 4th, downtown Clear Lake will be filled with family fun activities and events! Check out amusement rides, bingo tent, midway, open-air vendor market, live music in the bandshell (North Lake View Drive), and so much more! The extravaganza will culminate in an Independence Day parade down Main Avenue and North Iowa’s most spectacular firework display over the lake!! Celebrate our nation's birthday and all of the freedoms that we enjoy at this incredible 4th of July event!

 

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Friday, June 29th

  • 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm | Arts & Craft Fair 
  • 5:00 pm | Evans United Shows Carnival opens
  • 7:00 pm | GRIN (Classic Rock)

Saturday, June 30th

  • 10:00 am - 9:00 pm | Arts & Craft Fair 
  • 12:00 pm | Evans United Shows Carnival opens (Wrist Band Day ​12:00 pm - 5:00 pm for $17)
  • 12:00 pm | BINGO tent opens
  • 7:00 pm | Arch Allies (Tribute Band)

Sunday, July 1st: Family Fun Day

  • 11:00 am - 5:00 pm | Arts & Craft Fair 
  • 12:00 pm | Evans United Shows Carnival opens
  • 12:00 pm | BINGO tent opens
  • 1:00 pm | Family Feud Game Show 
  • 3:00 pm | Family Fun Time Games 
  • 7:00 pm | Strait Run (Classic Rock)

Monday, July 2nd

  • 10:00 am - 9:00 pm | Arts & Craft Fair 
  • 12:00 pm | Evans United Shows Carnival opens (Wrist Band Day ​12:00 pm - 5:00 pm for $17)
  • 12:00 pm | BINGO tent opens
  • 7:00 pm | Nick Hickman (Country)

Tuesday, July 3rd

  • 10:00 am - 9:00 pm | Arts & Craft Fair 
  • 12:00 pm | Evans United Shows Carnival opens
  • 12:00 pm | BINGO tent opens
  • 7:00 pm | The Hepperly Band (Cover Band)

Wednesday, July 4th

  • 10:00 am | Parade
  • 11:00 am - 9:00 pm | Arts & Craft Fair 
  • 12:00 pm | Evans United Shows Carnival opens
  • 12:00 pm | BINGO tent opens
  • ​1:30 pm - 3:30 pm | Denny's School of Dance
  • 8:30 pm - 10:00 pm | Clear Lake Municipal Band
  • 10:00 pm | ​Fireworks (Musical Tribute on 106.1FM, AM1490, & AM1300)

 

Jane Fischer and Associates Team wishes everyone in Clear Lake a very Happy & Safe 4th of July!  

 

Image Credit: Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce


 

Debunking Home Buying Myths!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

In today’s blog post, we are going to discuss 9 major home buying myths. We know that there is plenty of information and advice out there for home buyers. Unfortunately, there is a lot of misinformation too! From process to financing and everything in between, it is easy to be overwhelmed as a home buyer and make mistakes that could have been easily avoided. Let us debunk 9 major home buying myths to help you smoothly find your dream home in Mason City IA today!

 

Myth 1: The first step of the process is looking for a house.

Although the home search might seem like the obvious first step in the home buying process, it is not. Your first step as a home buyer should always be getting your finances in order! Make sure that your credit is in top form and, most importantly, get pre-approval on a mortgage. By doing these two things, you are able to focus your home search on those houses that actually fit within your budget. Pre-approval also makes you more attractive to sellers from the get go.


Myth 2: 30-year mortgage is your best finance option.

30-year mortgages can be deceiving. Monthly payments on 30-year mortgages are lower than those that are 15-year. However, since the amount of money borrowed is the same for both options but the time frame is twice as long to pay back on the 30-year mortgage, you end up paying MORE over those 30 years and at a higher interest rate. This is not to say that a 30-year mortgage is not right for you. Just make sure to do plenty of research to truly decide what loan option best fits your financial situation. Check out our Finance Information for help with this step of the process.


Myth 3: A down payment must be 20%.

Buyers can avoid paying for Private Mortgage Insurance by making a 20% down payment. However, not all lenders require that amount. You may be eligible for loans with a 5 or 10% down payment if you are willing to pay for PMI monthly. Additional down payment assistance options, such as FHA loans, might also be available for you.


Myth 4: Your only upfront cost is the down payment.

When budgeting for a new home, many home buyers only consider the initial down payment. However, you want to budget for additional costs that can always occur during the buying process. These costs include, but are not limited to, credit reports, closing costs, inspections, and insurance.


Myth 5: You cannot buy a home if you have bad credit.

You will undoubtedly have an easier time buying a home if your have good credit. However, you are not out of luck if your credit is less than ideal. There are several financing options, such as FHA loans, that you might be eligible for. Just make sure to do your research first to make sure that you are selecting an option that is best for you now and in the future.


Myth 6: You can skip the home inspection.

Home buyers should always complete a home inspection. Save money and time by discovering any issues with the house during the inspection process.


Myth 7: You will lose the house if you don't offer asking price.

Home buyers often worry that they will lose out on their dream home if they do not offer the asking price. Although doing so does make you attractive to the seller, there are other things you can do that will often cause the seller to be open to negotiation. By having a pre-approved loan, awesome credit, and a down payment ready to go, sellers know that you are 100% ready to make the purchase. Additionally, if the home inspection unveiled any issues with the home, you can negotiate for a lower price based on the findings and necessary repairs needed.


Myth 8: Home buying is easy on your own.

Whether it's your first home or you have purchased a new home in the past, working with an Experienced Realtor during the home buying process is always a good idea. We are filled with a wealth of helpful knowledge. We are experts on the local market, have years of negotiation experience, and can help take a lot of the stressful work off of your hands.


Myth 9: Your immediate needs are the most important deciding factor.

Choose a home based on your needs now AND in the future. Although it is impossible to know your future, you want to pick a home that you will continue to fit your potential lifestyle needs that have developed 10+ years from now. Consider the home and the neighborhood.

We hope this blog gave you a some helpful insights as you proceed throughout the home BUYING process. If you are ready to get started, work with the Top Realtor Mason City IA! We can help you find the perfect property to fit your needs within the North Iowa Homes for Sale! Give our experienced Team a call today at 641-425-4900 or visit our website at http://www.janefischer.com/.

 

Here We Grow!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

 

Jane Fischer & Associates Team has moved! Come visit us at our new location at 1002 East State Street, Suite B, Mason City!

 

 Our team serves the entire Mason City Iowa real estate market, as well as the surrounding communities of Clear Lake, Rockwell, Rockford, North Springs and Osage areas. Let us help you with all of your real estate needs. Whether you are a Home Buyer or Home Seller, Jane Fischer & Associates is committed to helping you achieve all of your real estate goals! Come see us today!

Rock Your Summer at Friday Night Live!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

It's time to have a rockin' good time in Mason City IA!! Friday Night Live kicks off this Friday, June 15th!

 

Head to beautiful Central Park in downtown Mason City for an evening full of fun. Dine on delicious food and beverages from your favorite North Iowa establishments. Find unique wares at the craft marketplace. Enjoy great family activities, including the MacNider Art Museum Imagination Playground, Inflatable Bounce House and Inflatable Obstacle Course. And, of course, dance the night away to incredible live music! Each of the 4 community events will take place from 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm. Do not miss out on this FREE summer time fun for the whole family to enjoy.


 

Friday Night Live Music Lineup

June 15th | Billy McGuigan

July 13th | Betty & The Gents

August 17th | The Hepperly Band

September 21st | The Chocolate Crackers



Jane Fischer & Associates cannot wait to see you all summer long at Friday Night Live in beautiful Mason City Iowa!

Image Credit: Main Street Mason City

 

Pricing Mistakes to Avoid as a Home Seller!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

In today’s blog post we are going to discuss common pricing mistakes made by home sellers. Determining the price you are going to list your home at is the first big decision you will make after deciding to sell your home. It is just as important as the initial decision to list your home. If you price your home to high, you risk the chance that home buyers will not be interested. If you price your home to low, you risk not receiving the full amount that your house is worth. Making sure the price is correct from the very beginning will help avoid either of these scenarios. In order to ensure that your home is priced correctly from the start, work with a knowledgeable and experienced Real Estate Team as soon as you are ready to put your home on the market and avoid these common types of home pricing mistakes!

 

Mistakes Based on Emotion and the Past

Your house has become a home from your years living in it. It is always an emotional process when you decide to move. The personal memories that have become attached to your home can cause you to value the property more than it is actually worth. While we fully realize that this is easier said than done, you need to remove your emotions from the pricing process. Buyers are not going to pay more based on your emotional attachment. You need to price it based on what is physically in front of the buyers. Along the same vein, you cannot base your current selling price based on what you paid. The housing market at this very moment in time is different than it was when you purchased the home (even if it was in the recent past). Buyers want the best deal on the home based on the current market in the North Iowa area.



Mistakes Based on the Competition

Understanding what homes are selling for in your neighborhood is an important aspect of the pricing process. However, it can also lead to many mistakes made by sellers who do not understand how to properly utilize this information. When you research what similar homes are being sold for, be sure to take into account all the amenities and features of the home. Just because your home has the same number of bedrooms and bathrooms as another home on the market doesn’t mean that it should be priced exactly the same. You need to know if there are any renovations or additional amenities that have been added that need to be taken into account for the selling price. You also need to recognize that other comparable homes might be priced incorrectly. This is where working with an experienced real estate team comes in handy because they can accurately assess the competition. You should also consider how quickly a home might be needing to sell. Other sellers might be pricing their homes lower in order to stand out from the competition and speed the process along. In the end, be diligent in your research. This will allow you to have a profitable and successful sale of your home.



Mistakes Based on the Process

Price negotiations between you and potential buyers is an inevitable part of the process. Today’s buyers are much more informed on the value of homes on the market. You need to make sure you are just as informed. This will allow you to price the home appropriately and attract the kind of home buyers that is perfect for your home right from the start. Another common mistake made by sellers occurs if the home has been sitting on the market for a while. If it has, you have priced the home to high and you need to make an adjustment. Instead of making several, small price cuts, you should make a larger cut (typically $10,000+) to show buyers that you are serious about selling your home.  


 

We hope this blog gave you a little more insight into pricing your home to sell. However, we realize that you might still have some more questions. For more Home Selling Tips, give our experienced Team a call, visit our website, or visit our Facebook Page. We are here to help if you're considering Buying, Selling, or Investing in Real Estate in the North Iowa. Contact us today at 641-425-4900 or http://www.janefischer.com/.

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 106

Share This Page

Contact Information

Jane Fischer & Associates
Real Estate Consultants
1002 East State St., Suite B
Mason City IA 50401
Cell: 641-425-4900
Office: 641-424-HOME (4663)

2018 Jane Fischer & Associates Real Estate Consultants Logo are registered service marks owned by Jane Fischer & Associates Real Estate Consultants. Equal Housing Opportunity.