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TubaChristmas and Tom Fetty Krugerrand Auction this Saturday!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

Head to Mason City's Southbridge Mall (100 South Federal Avenue) this Saturday, December 9th, for some festive fun and holiday good cheer!



The day begins with the annual Tom Fetty Krugerrand Auction from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm. All monies raised during the auction are donated to our local Salvation Army. Help support a great cause this holiday season!  


Then, stick around for the 32nd annual North Iowa TubaChristmas concert in the mall’s Center Court at 1:00 pm! TubaChristmas is a live musical performance of everyone’s favorite Christmas carols by local tuba, baritone, euphonium, and sousaphone players. Beginning in 1974 in New York City, TubaChristmas concerts are now held every year throughout the country and around the world. North Iowa is proud to boost one of the largest such concerts in the nation! Enjoy a rousing performance of the greatest Christmas tunes by 100 local musicians!



Are you a musician? Come participate in TubaChristmas! Tuba, baritone, euphonium, and sousaphone players of all ages are welcome. Please head to the Mason City High School band room on Saturday morning at 10:00 am for registration. Cost is $10 per participant. Rehearsal will begin at 10:30 am. Musicians should bring their own instruments, Santa hat, and music stand. Be sure to decorate your instrument for the holiday!



Jane Fischer and Associates Team
wishes everyone a festive holiday season in Mason City and throughout North Iowa!  

 

Image Credit: Jake Rajewsky/Globe Gazette

Winterize Your Home in 7 Easy Steps!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

The cold winter days are finally upon us in North Iowa! Increase your home's energy efficiency, save money on your heating bill, and keep your family nice and cozy all winter long by following these 7 Easy Steps to Winterize Your Home!

 

1. Dodge Drafts! Drafts can waste 5% to 30% of your home's energy use, according to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)! Save that energy by placing a draft blocker under your doors.


2. Use A Window Insulation Kit! Head to your local hardware store for some plastic for your windows. This adds an additional buffer against the cold.


3. Add Storm Windows! Skip the plastic and install storm windows that will last you for years to come. Studies show that these windows can save 12% to 33% on your heating costs every year!


4. Caulk Windows & Doors! Air leaks throughout the house waste a lot of energy. Be sure to caulk and seal all your windows and doors properly.


5. Replace Furnace Filters! Dirty filters increase energy use by restricting airflow. Plus, the irritants trapped in it can make your family sick! Your furnace filter should be changed every month during the winter. To save time and money (in the long run), consider using a permanent filter.


6. Monitor Your Heat! Make sure you turn down the thermostat everytime you aren't home to reduce energy waste. Also, save money by turning down your heat a degree or two and wrap up in a warm blanket instead!


7. Lower Your Water Temperature! According to the DOE, you can annually save 4% to 22% by turning down your water heater's temperature! Most water heaters are automatically set to 140ºF. Lower the temperature to 120ºF. Trust us, you won't notice the difference....aside from the money you will be saving!

 

Looking for more homeowner, buyer or seller tips? Visit our website!

 

Like and Follow-us on Facebook for more great tips and new homes to the market.


 

Mason City Ranked One of the Safest Cities in Iowa!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

With fun community events, exciting cultural and entertainment amenities, beautiful recreational facilities, and excellent local schools, MASON CITY is a great place to call home! On top of all of these incredible attributes, Mason City is also SAFE! It was recently ranked the 9th Safest City in Iowa!

 

Home security website SafeHome recently released their list of the safest cities, with a population of at least 60K, in the state. They calculated their rankings based on recent crime data from the FBI as well as from the U.S. Census. When the results came in…..Mason City received an overall Safety Score 78.38!

 


Call this safe community home! Check out our Current Homes for Sale in Mason City! Give the Jane Fischer and Associates Team a call today or visit our website at http://www.janefischer.com/!  

 

Getting Your Home Ready for Thanksgiving Guests!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

Not only will you be filling your bellies with an incredible feast this Thanksgiving but you will also be filling your house with holiday guests! Get your home ready for all your friends and family now so you do not need to stress later this week! Prepare your Mason City house and keep your guests comfortable throughout Thanksgiving by following these simple steps!

1. Let there be light!

You might be able to navigate your house in the dark but your guests cannot! Make sure to provide them with ample lighting during the night so they can safely walk to the areas they need to reach. Add nightlights to hallways, bedrooms, and bathrooms. Make sure that all outdoor lights are working properly.

2. Clear the clutter!

Ensure ample space for your guests by removing any unnecessary clutter. Place these items in closets and storage so they are out of the way. Clear off tables and counter tops.

3. Create a great first impression!

The foyer is the very first impression your guests will have. Make it welcoming! Also ensure it is functional for your guests. Clear out your personal items so guests have an easy spot to place their coats and shoes.

4. Prep your kitchen!

Your kitchen is going to see a lot of action on Thursday. Make sure that you have all the essential items you need easily accessible. Create a comforable spot for guests to hang out in the kitchen and keep you company while you prepare your food!

5. Make it cozy!

Create a relaxing spot for guests to get some rest. Ensure that all guests have ample bedding to stay warm at night. Consider adding a ceiling fan to your guest bedroom so your guests can control their own temperature.

6. Stock your bathroom!

Keep you bathroom fully stocked with toilet paper, toiletries, and towels. Have all these items easily accessible so guests can find them when they need them!


Jane Fischer & Associates wishes everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving!  

 

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

Your favorite North Iowa holiday tradition is almost here!  It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas opens this weekend!!!!  Head to beautiful Music Man Square to enjoy the holiday spirit with family, friends, and neighbors. Marvel at the spectacular window displays and decor as you as transported back to Christmas in 1912! Celebrate the holiday classic “It’s Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas, composed by Mason City native Meredith Wilson. The stunning holiday display is open to the public this Saturday, November 18th, from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm and will be open daily now through Christmas. Admission is $10 for adults and $5 for children.

 

Celebrate the opening of this grand display at Holiday Premier of It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas this Friday, November 17th. From 6:00 pm until 9:00 pm, get access to the festive wonderland in Music Man Square early. Enjoy holiday music, a special presentation of The Nutcracker, delicious samples from Hy-Vee East, a live and silent auction, and so much more. Tickets are $50 per person or $350 for a table of 8. Tickets can be purchased at Hy-Vee East and Music Man Square.

 

Also, be sure to stop by Music Man Square every Sunday in December to have your photo taken with Santa!

 

Jane Fischer & Associates cannot wait to see you all for a jolly good time this holiday season in Music Man Square!

 

Image Credit: Visit Mason City

Reasons to Celebrate All Month Long!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

Thanksgiving might be November's star holiday but there are several other days within the month worth celebrating! This month is all about appreciation, togetherness, and celebration! With national and international holidays, there is plenty to be joyful about in November! Here is one fun and easy way for you to celebrate each of these month's best holidays!

 

 


 

November 11th - Veterans Day

Celebrate by thanking a veteran you know for their bravery and service!

November 13th - World Kindness Day

Celebrate by performing a random act of kindness to a total stranger!

November 16th - World Tolerance Day

Celebrate by learning more about a culture that is different than your own!

November 20th - Universal Children’s Day

Celebrate by taking a child in your life out for a fun activity or healthy, delicious treat!

November 23rd - Thanksgiving

Celebrate by giving thanks for your many blessings this year!

November 25th - Small Business Saturday

Celebrate by supporting your favorite locally owned business!

November 28th - Giving Tuesday

Celebrate by donating your time or money to your favorite charitable cause!

Check out our Blog for fun decorating tips and holiday ideas all season long! Jane Fischer and Associates Team hopes everyone in North Iowa enjoys making these unique holidays a part of yours and your family's traditions!

Get Your North Iowa Home Ready for Trick or Treaters!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

The streets of North Iowa will soon be filled with ghosts and goblins, princesses and cowboys! Trick or treating is right around the corner! Get your home ready for all the trick or treaters this Halloween! Follow these simple tips to make your home safe and festive for all your frightful guests!


Make a Clear Path

Ensure that there is a clear and safe route to your front door! Avoid trips and slips by clearing of your driveway and walkways of all debris. Keep the yard clear of all items, such as bicycles, toys, and yard equipment. Make sure that any decor is situated away in the grass or along the porch.


Keep Your Pets Away

You might have the world's friendliest four legged friend but keep them securely locked away from the front door. You have no way of knowing how they will react to the little visitors constantly coming to your front door. In addition, some trick or treaters might have a fear of dogs. Make sure that they feel comfortable when they come to your home.


Let There Be Light

A light on at the front door lets trick or treaters know that candy is available at your home! More importantly, though, it helps the kiddos see their way to the front door, ensuring a safe journey to their treats.


Make It Festive and Welcoming

Add some festive decor to your front entryway. Although part of the fun of Halloween is the over the top scares, consider choosing decorations that will not frighten the littlest ones coming to your door.


Stock Up On Candy

Hit the stores and make sure you have an ample supply of candy! You want to make sure that all the trick or treaters can get goodies at your home throughout the evening!



Community Trick or Treating Hours

Sunday, October 29th


Monday, October 30th


Tuesday, October 31st



Jane Fischer and Associates Team wishes everyone in North Iowa a very happy and safe Halloween!

Autumnal and Halloween Fun in North Iowa!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

Fall is fully upon us and Halloween is just around the corner! Enjoy the festivities of the season in North Iowa! Whether you are looking for something frightfully scary or something that celebrates the beauty of autumn, there is a great event for you. Check out our recommendations for things to do this October in Mason City and Clear Lake!

Halloween Hike at Lime Creek Nature Center

Explore Lime Creek Nature Center on a spooky evening hike. Learn about all the creatures that call the center home from your trail guide and enjoy refreshments after all that fresh air. The outdoor fun takes place on Thursday, October 19th, from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm. The hike costs $3 per person and reservations are required. Call (641) 423-5309 to reserve your spot!

 

Cocktails and Canvas "A Night in the Pumpkin Patch" at Clear Lake Arts Center

Get artistic at an Arty Party at Clear Lake Arts Center on Friday, October 20th. Join instructor Linda Dlouhy as she helps you create your very own “Starry, Starry Pumpkin Patch” while enjoying refreshments. The cost is $30 for members and $32 for non-members (cost includes all supplies right down to the paint smocks). Space is limited. To register, Call (641) 357-1998 or email clac@cltel.net to register!

 

Haunted Hike at The D and D Ranch

Find frights around every corner at The D and D Ranch (2532 South Shore Drive, Clear Lake). Every Friday and Saturday night, along with Halloween, 7 pm to 11 pm. Begin in the Halloween Museum before braving the haunted, wild west town. This fun and scary Halloween attraction costs $12 per person.

 

Scarecrows at Central Garden

Enjoy the crisp fall weather and beautiful autumnal setting of Central Gardens as you admire the scarecrows that now populate the gardens. All the scarecrows were handmade by local residents and organizations. This exhibit is open daily.

 

Boogie Spooktacular at Surf Ballroom

Dance the night away with Boogie and the Yo-Yo’z at Surf Ballroom. This great concert will take place on Saturday, October 28th. Doors open at 8:00 pm. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at door. Must be 21+ to attend.


 

Price Reduction: 2708 Sunrise Ct, Mason City, IA

by Jane Fischer and Associates

Price just Reduced on the Home you've been waiting for!

2708 Sunrise Ct., Mason City IA  $374,000.

Contact the Jane Fischer and Associates Team of Century 21 Preferred for more details!

Avoid These 9 Home Buying Myths!

by Jane Fischer and Associates

Congrats! You have decided to buy a new home! 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 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.

 


Ready to Buy your dream home in North Iowa? Give Jane Fischer and Associates Team a call today or visit our website at http://www.janefischer.com/!   

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 30

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Contact Information

Jane Fischer & Associates
Century 21 Preferred
2800 4th Street SW #3
Mason City IA 50401
Cell: 641-425-4900
Office: 641-424-9400
©2017 CENTURY 21 Preferred. CENTURY 21® and the CENTURY 21 Logo are registered service marks owned by Century 21 Real Estate LLC. Equal Housing Opportunity. Each office is independently owned and operated.