Seller Real Estate Myths – Truth or Fiction?

Myths are commonplace in our world; it can be hard to distinguish between the truth and fiction with such established lore. Unfortunately, myths are profuse on both sides of the transaction when it comes to real estate. On Myth Mondays, we will be analyzing common real estate myths and using our experiences/knowledge to label them as truth, fiction, or somewhere in between.  THIS MONDAY, OUR REAL ESTATE MYTHS ARE SELLER-FOCUSED:  You should price your house higher so you have room to negotiate. Home values listed online are accurate.  You should always renovate your kitchen & bathroom before you sell. Going… Read More

2024 Color of the Year – The Selections by Notable Paint Brands

As we head into winter, it’s a great time to think about color, at least in Wisconsin! Every year, paint brands decide upon a color that they believe will embody the next year or be the new hot design choice; plenty of companies have already released their new color for 2024. It’s always a fun way to learn about new paint colors and maybe even get a new color to paint a wall or two.    Sherwin-Williams – Upward  Sherwin-Williams has elected to go blue this year, choosing their paint Upward as their 2024 Color of the Year. They refer to… Read More

Zombie Buildings: The Rise of Empty Office Space

They’re not out for your brains, but the empty office buildings have been termed zombie buildings – as they sit vacant, wasting away. These “zombies” are, largely, a result of the pandemic and the boom of work-from-home that came with it. Even now, three years on, hybrid work has become more of the norm, and these buildings remain empty. Experts fear these these buildings represent a debt timebomb and a potential destruction of the commercial real estate market as we know it, as commercial landlords walk away from these zombies.  What requirements must a building meet to be a zombie?… Read More

5 Invasive Plants that Could be Invading your S.E. Wisconsin Yard

Invasive species are detrimental to native ecosystems, by out-competing native species for limited resources. These species can be animals, insects, or plant life. You’ve likely heard about pythons in Florida, wild boars in the south, and carp taking over waterways; meanwhile, the vast majority of invasive plants are more likely to avoid widespread media coverage. Although invasive plants may avoid media scrutiny, it does not mean they are less of a danger. Invasive plants are categorized as harmful non-native trees, shrubs & herbaceous plants spread through global trade, human/animal transport, and gardening & their entry has negative impacts on the functioning… Read More

Sinking Investment: Sinkholes Impacting Home Ownership

It’s every homeowner’s nightmare, their house crumbling away – but for some, this nightmare is their reality, as sinkholes swallow their homes.  What are sinkholes? Sinkholes are holes in the ground that form when water dissolves the rock on the surface, resulting in a sinking of the ground. Although they can be naturally occurring, there are also actions taken that can cause them to develop, including:  Decline in water levels Disturbance of the soil Point-source of water The concentration of water flow Water impoundments Heavy loads on the surface There have been a few prevalent sinkhole subdivisions in the news in… Read More

Is Airbnb Over: A Look at the Short-Term Rental Industry

The short-term rental: a furnished and self-contained housing unit rented for a short period (less than 30 days), has exploded in popularity in recent years; even the pandemic couldn’t slow its growth. However, recently, the topic of the sustainability and longevity of this industry has emerged. In fact, a hashtag about the phenomenon has been created – #Airbnbust.  The company most synonymous with short-term rentals is Airbnb. A site where homeowners can put a property online to rent on a short-term basis, even just a night. Originally started as a way to make rent in the expensive San Francisco, the… Read More

Accessory Dwelling Units – The Solution to a Housing Crisis?

What is an Accessory Dwelling Unit? An Accessory dwelling unit or ADU is a secondary housing unit on a single-family residential lot. There are different types of ADUs, with most falling under the following categories: 1) Detached ADU  2) Garage/Shed Conversion ADU 3) ADU Above Secondary Structure  4) Attached ADU 5) Basement Conversion ADU 6) Internal ADU Although there can be many different types of ADUs, they have some similarities. These include aspects like. . . Being an accessory to another housing unit Being significantly smaller than a standard U.S. home Differing zoning regulations to a standard home    Drawbacks… Read More

5 Ways Trees Benefit Homeowners

Trees are an integral part of the environment, providing habitat, cover, cooling effect, and oxygen. However, did you also know that trees benefit homeowners who plant them in their yards? The following 5 points are reasons why homeowners should consider planting another tree, or two, in their yards.  1) Increased Property Value  Landscaping is a large part of curb appeal, and trees can be a large part of landscaping. They’ve been found to have an impact on property value, with mature trees adding to a property’s value (the percentage can vary from 2 to 15% depending on other factors). The study… Read More

Real Estate Wire Fraud: Unfortunate Reality in the Modern Age of Realty

Real estate is not immune to scams; one that has become more common is real estate wire fraud. This scam occurs when a scammer contacts a homebuyer through phishing, tricking them into wiring cash to a fake account. This is a complex scam, with well-developed conversations to convince homebuyers to trust them as valid entities.  Unfortunately, it’s one of the most prevalent cybercrimes in the United States, with over 13,000 people falling victim to it in 2020, a 17% increase from 2019. The highest reported came in the form of emails, with hackers forging emails and other information to assume… Read More

Are “Green” Homes Worth It?

In today’s society, things are evolving to become more sustainable to reduce carbon footprints and the effects of climate change. This includes the construction and remodeling of homes.   Some of the new elements included when building “greener” homes are: Living roofs Solar panels Greywater recycling systems Sustainable construction materials Better insulation practices  The popularity of these initiatives has boomed as people begin to “greenify” their lives due to news on climate change; in addition, environmentally friendly homes cut down on total energy costs. Although there are new construction practices to create more eco-friendly homes, there are also plenty of renovations… Read More