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Date Archives: March 2015

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March
16

 

It's almost here!   So many of us are anxiously awaiting the onset of warmer weather and the energy of spring.  While you get yourself geared up for spring cleaning and swimsuits, we suggest planning an area of the yard for a garden.  Having a garden of your own is a wonderful way to connect with the natural landscape around your home and grow fresh flowers, veggies, and herbs for your home. 

 

Flowers

It's always a boon to have fresh flowers in a vase on the table.  Growing your own flowers around the house gives you a steady supply of luscious color and life to bring into your home each week.   Flowers are a wonderful way to brighten and liven up any room in your home and add extra value when showing the space to potential buyers.   

 

Vegetables

There's nothing quite like eating and sharing food with your family that you've grown and harvested yourself.  Although few of us are farmers these days, we can still enjoy a nice salad from our own gardens if we plant a few heads of lettuce, cucumber, and every Ohioan's favorite: tomatoes.  A vegetable garden brings a connection to the earth that we're all sometimes missing in the modern industrialized world.  Be careful to fence your garden or you'll be feeding the neighborhood rabbits and deer!

 

Herbs

Not everyone is totally invested in the medicinal nature of wild herbs but there are certainly other usesfor standard herb gardens. Sage, Basil, and Chives are common herbs used in the kitchen and are quite simple to grow in anoutdoor garden or even an indoor window box.  Herbs can also be burned as an aromatic, similar to potpourri. 

 

Studies show that working with plants and getting your hands in the dirt of the Earth can actually reduce stress and anxiety so what have you got to lose?   Send us pictures of your gardens this year and we'll post them to our Instagram!

March
16

 

2014 was a relatively strong year for real estate across the farm belt and greater Midwest.  However, the National Association of Home Builders predicts 2015 will be even stronger for single-family homes, despite the continued rise of mortgage rates.  While the recovery seems to be delayed in many states, Ohio is noticing a resurgence of interest in homes and available land.  In the meantime, let's focus on the standard best practices that have kept us strong for decades.

 

It's the Little Things

The best possible presentation of a house is necessary to capture an eager buyer's eye.  Little things like trimming the bushes near the front door, changing out old welcome mats, and de-cluttering closets and shelves will add to an already well-prepared home. 

 

Take Notes

If you're a buyer looking at the home options available on the market, you're probably seeing several properties a day.  In this situation it's helpful to keep a notebook on you and make notes on the properties you visit.  Pros and Cons for each house will help you make a decision later on.

 

Sell for Spring

The winter months are over so it's time to start thinking springtime at your home.  Fresh flowers are always a nice touch for highlighting the rebirth of warm weather and add color and life to the rooms of your home.  Spring cleaning is important, especially to wash away the salt brine from the winter roads and the clutter that accumulates while we're hibernating. Take advantage of the smiles brought on by the sunshine.  

 

Transparency is Trust

A smart home buyer is going to hire an inspector or two to investigate the quality and possible problems with a property so it behooves sellers to be forthright with the state of the home.  Don't try to hide anything because buyers will assume you're hiding even more.  Try to get minor fixes out of the way like plumbing leaks and paint jobs.

 

We're all hopeful this year on both sides of the real estate market so let's keep the enthusiasm rolling and make this a great year for home buyers and sellers!

March
13

 

It's getting warmer every day and we're on our way to Spring!  Northerners are always sick of winter by March and the promise of warmer weather on the horizon is usually the only thing keeping us from going stir-crazy with the cabin fever.  We're all personally excited about the return of warm weather because the Indian Lake area really comes back to life.

 

Fishing & Boating

Kicked off by this year's Indian Lake Boat Show, the Lake itself will be the perfect place to get a boat on the water and cast a line.  Fishermen come from all over Ohio to fish in Indian Lake.  There is no horsepower restriction on the water so boats of all sizes and speeds can be found cruising along the surface.  Grab a fishing license and get ready to get out on the water!

 

Hiking & Camping

As the weathergets warmer, more and more of us are eagerly venturing out of the house to explore the trails and parks that make Ohio such a beautiful place to live.  Indian Lake State Park has a number of exceptional landscapes to explore from its winding network of trails and campsites.  We always love hearing from the out-of-town visitors that make it to thearea for the first camping of the season.

 

Local Festivals and Events

In addition to appreciating the natural world around us in the spring time, many of us are gearing up for several fun, family-friendly festivals and street fairs that dot the many townships and communities around Indian Lake.  The Boat Show and Maple Syrup Festival are just the start of a long summer of community fun.

 

We're as excited for this year's warm weather as anyone.  If you have plans or suggestions for how to celebrate the thawing snow, leave a comment!

March
10

It seems like winter is never going away here in the northern part of Ohio and even across the northern Midwest!  Perhaps the season is starting later and finishing later.  Either way, as residents of this beautiful state, it can sometimes be a daunting challenge to make it through the cold months.   In case you're struggling, here are a few tips from the locals on weathering the winter.

 

 

Shovels are Your Friend

No one likes to get out there and do it but, let's face it, if you don't shovel your sidewalk and driveway, there's no going anywhere!   Keeping a clear walkway can prevent slipping and injury for you and any passing neighbors.  Likewise, it seems like a good solution at the time, but just driving over the snow on your driveway only packs it down and turns it to slippery ice.  Make sure you shovel the snow off the drive before you roll your car across it.  You'll thank yourself later.

 

Salt Prevents Slipping

When the ice is really bad and it's impossible to walk a few steps without slipping and falling, you can put down a scattering of salt brine to help.  The salt will soak up and melt the ice, stabilizing the slippery surfaces and providing traction for your shoes and tires.  Salt can help with sidewalks and driveways.  Unfortunately, it's also really messy and after the northern Ohio snow is all gone, you'll have a residue of salt on your car and across the pavement.  Nothing a little spray of the garden hose can't take off, however.

 

Let Your Car Warm Up

In the summer time, if you're in a hurry or late for work, you can just jump in your car and take off like a crazy blaze of fire.  Not so in the winter.  When the weather in Ohio is cold and freezing temperatures have settled in overnight, it's important to let the car run for ten minutes or so before driving it anywhere.  Driving a cold engine can cause damage to fluid lines and the transmission.  Don't risk it.  Let the car idle for a few minutes before it goes anywhere.

 

If you stick with some of the tried and true tips from well-seasoned Ohioans, you'll have no trouble getting through the snowy season and into spring.  While you're here, enjoy some of the beautiful natural landscapes in the parks and wild areas as the snow settles onto naked tree canopies and across lush green pines.  

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