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Have you Visited the Whittenberger Planetarium?

Boise has many attractions and sites to see.  If you are new to Boise, or even if you are not, the Whittenberger Planetarium is an excellent excursion for the whole family.

Located in Caldwell, Idaho, at the College of Idaho campus, the Whittenberger Planetarium offers programming through the year for every age. Considered a suburb of Boise, Caldwell is located on the Northwest side of Boise in Treasure Valley.  You will find a great learning experiences and beautiful star gazing available just a few minutes outside the city.

Opening to the public in 1969, the Whittenberger Planetarium has been a part of the Boise area attractions public outreach programs for over 40 years. Offering programs, tours, and field trip opportunities, the planetarium also expanding their public outreach in the 1990s by purchasing a portable planetarium available for rent by groups. 

The 24-foot domed theatre seats 50 people and offers a variety of shows including northern and southern constellations, moon views, and sun as well as daily and seasonal changes in the night sky that are visible in the various season. Specialized shows include those focusing on Saturn, Winter and Summer Solstice, Venus Transit, Autumn Equinox, and Constellations. The planetarium typically sponsors an Astronomy Day each year. Show schedules are available on their website.

If you are looking for something fun to do in the Boise area, consider a visit to the Whittenberger Planetarium.  Check out their website at http://www.collegeofidaho.edu/planetarium.

Are You Doing Some Spring Updates?

by Randy Gridley

Are You Doing Some Spring Updates?

Sping is a great time to do some updating around your house? If you are making a list of those much-needed updates, consider this list of 10 Home Maintenance Tips for Spring on Yahoo! Real Estate by Paul Bianchina.

Whether you plan to start with cleaning up the yard or getting up on that roof and taking care of those neglected gutters, these tips are a great start to getting your house ready for the beautiful spring and summer months.

The Importance of the Home Inspection

by Randy Gridley

The Importance of the Home Inspection

Due diligence: it’s a phrase you hear a lot in real estate. Most agents toss it around, assuming their clients understand the concept. Many don’t.

In a nutshell, due diligence describes the expectation that homebuyers will take the steps necessary to inspect and investigate the property before binding themselves to its purchase.

While there are a number of ways to perform due diligence – reviewing the survey, checking that building permits were issued for any improvements – the most important step of all is that of obtaining a professional home inspection. 

The Idaho Code requires sellers to complete a property condition disclosure form. This form outlines all defects known to the seller. It is up to the buyer, however, to discover if the property has latent defects and that process requires the assistance of a home inspector.

Many homebuyers confuse the appraisal with the home inspection. The appraisal is performed, at the behest of the lender, to determine the home’s current market value. While the appraiser may take measurements and check certain aspects of the home, the process does not replace the home inspection and none of the information gathered is shared with the buyer.

Another common misconception is that the home inspector will find every possible defect in the home. Home inspectors, first of all, aren’t there to look for problems. The inspection is to let you know the condition of the home at the time of the inspection.

Furthermore, inspectors perform a limited examination of only the visible and accessible areas of the home. While the inspector will remove access panels to major systems and perform a visual inspection, he or she will not dismantle anything to find out if there are problems. There is no way he or she can tell you what lies within the walls or under the foundation of the home.

That said, the home inspection will provide you with a great deal of the information you need to make an informed decision about purchasing the home.

There are no state-mandated licensing requirements for home inspectors in Idaho. This makes finding a qualified, experienced inspector quite challenging. Ask those that you interview about their membership in the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) and check with ASHI to ensure the inspector is certified with them. To become certified, an inspector must pass rigorous exams, have a certain number of inspections under their belts and then maintain their certification by attending continuing education classes.

ASHI maintains a database with contact information for their certified Boise area home inspectors.

Feel free to email or call me with any questions about the home inspection process or how to find a local inspector.

Secrets to Selling Your House Fast

by Randy Gridley

Secrets to Selling Your House Fast

When you are ready to sell your house, you typically hope to sell it easily and quickly. No one wants to see their house on the market for months on end without any prospects or offers. So how do you get your house to sell fast? Here are some secrets to getting it on the market and sold as quickly as possible.

Price it right – Really, this is the most important aspect of ensuring your house sells quickly – pricing it right. Many of us believe that we have a great house that is special, especially with all those amenities we have added over the years. However, unless you find the right buyer, which can take time, not everyone puts emphasis on the same amenities that you do. Therefore, pricing your house to sell is the most important aspect of selling your house fast. “Pricing it to sell” means that you need to consider what the average price of homes in your neighborhood is, for homes that are similar in size and room count to yours, that have sold.  Then put an asking price on your house that is comparable or below what these homes sold for. When pricing your house you need to decide your priorities – is it to get the most money out of your house or sell it fast? This can help you determine the best asking price for your home.

Maximize your space – No one is attracted to a cluttered home. Make sure that you unclutter and maximize space. This means that you may want to consider getting rid of unwanted and “decorative” furniture. You may even consider renting a storage unit and start removing furniture and extras.  Another consideration is to hire a professional stager or affiliate with a realtor trained in staging your home for sale. This can be a great way to make you rooms look bigger than they are and give your house a clean and organized appeal to potential buyers.

Be willing to negotiate – In the end, you need to be willing to negotiate with a potential buyer. They may want a different move-in date, part of their closing costs paid, or certain repair taken care of before they purchase the home. If you are willing to be flexible and negotiate with a buyer, you will find that your house will sell much more quickly.

Selling your home is an exciting time.  To ensure that it sells fast, you will want to make sure you follow some of these tips to give your house the best chance of a quick sale.

Kitchen Updates – Quick and Easy Kitchen Improvements

by Randy Gridley

Kitchen Updates – Quick and Easy Kitchen Improvements

Selling your house is an exciting time. But the preparation can take time and effort. One of the biggest selling points in a home is the kitchen.  Having a great kitchen is very appealing and can help you sell your house more quickly.

If you are hoping to sell your house, one of the best areas on which to concentrate your updating and staging efforts is the kitchen. Regardless of the size and price-range of your house, concentrating your efforts on the kitchen can pay dividends.

Here is a list of quick and inexpensive things you can do to your kitchen to make it more appealing to buyers and get your house ready to sell.

  • Blinds – Make sure you have nice, composite wood blinds that let in light and compliments the kitchen décor. Having a well-lit kitchen is very important but a nice window covering is equally important.
  • Hardware - Bring your cabinets up to date by replacing the hardware. You can find inexpensive hardware in brushed bronze at your local hardware superstore that gives the cabinets a more modern look.
  • Back Splash – Purchasing some cheap mosaic tiles on clearance at your local home supply store allows you to install a back splash that gives your kitchen practicality as well as an updated look.
  • Counter Space – Do you have a lot of floor but little counter space? Maximize your space by purchasing a portable kitchen island that can give you more counter space as well as give your kitchen a homier feel.

With just a few updates, you will have your kitchen more appealing, up-to-date, and ready for sale with just a small investment of time and money. Kitchens sell the house so get your house ready for sale with these kitchen improvements.

Top 5 Reasons You Want to Hire a Realtor When Looking for Your Next Home

  1. Knows the Market – A Realtor knows his or her market and therefore can help you determine your price range, the neighborhoods that may be best for you, where you can find the best deals, and what is going on with the real estate market at the time. This can benefit you when deciding financing, loans, and down payments.
  2. Time –A Realtor can help you find what you are looking for while saving you a significant amount of your valuable time. You can the Realtor what you want and set a time to see the homes and the Realtor will do the rest.
  3. Legal – There is a lot of paperwork when buying a home. Having a Realtor means that you have someone that knows what you are legally responsible for disclosing, finding out, and how to fill out all the paperwork the right way when making an offer and accepting an offer.
  4. Representation – Having someone that is on your side and represents you can be a positive experience. It means that your Realtor can take calls, answer questions, and represent you if there are any issues. Having a representative at the closing table is good as well because they can answer any questions you have, make sure everything is going as agreed, and help you navigate the sea of paperwork that accompanies a home closing.
  5. Negotiation Skills/Expertise – One of the most important reasons to hire a realtor is that a realtor has the negotiation skills and expertise to help you navigate to the home buying process.  Their skills in negotiation help present your offer in the best manner to make it appealing to a seller. In addition, their expertise will be helpful in determining the best offer, concessions, and closing deals that will work best for you.

What You Need to Sell Your House Fast

by Randy Gridley

What You Need to Sell Your House Fast

Today’s competitive market means that all homeowners hoping to sell their homes quickly need to be savvy marketers. This means understanding the real estate market, at least a little, and doing the right things to get their homes seen by the right people and make it appealing to home buyers.

Finding a good real estate agent is the first step. He or she will help you get your home listed, make sure it is seen by as many potential home buyers as possible, and advise you on how to give you home market appeal.

Here are four things you will want to do to get your house sold fast that you can control.

  • Prepare you home with proper staging, de-cluttering, and a good cleaning.
  • Ensure your home is photographed well and presents a good image of the property.
  • Increase curb appeal with a little landscaping and good exterior cleaning.
  • Price your home comparable or better than surrounding properties.

Here are four things that will help your house sell fast that you cannot control.

  • Neighborhood appeal.
  • Good school system.
  • Short supply of available homes with similar appeal.
  • Right fit for the buyer.

Most of all, you will just want to be a knowledgeable seller. You need to understand the market around you.  Ask questions of your real estate agent and prepare your home for sale. Be prepared to respond to offers quickly by knowing your plans, your budget, and the range of offers and concessions you are willing to accept. Having a clear plan and a good understanding will help you go far in getting your home sold as quickly as possible.

Getting the Most Out of the Sale of Your House

As the real estate market continues to climb, many potential sellers have decided to tread the uncertain waters of the market and set out to sell their homes.  The sale of your house is a process and one that needs to be navigated carefully. Using some of these strategies will help you prepare for the sale of your house and help ensure your home is desirable to potential buyers.

Listing/Marketing – It is important to get the marketing right. You want to hire a good realtor that has an Internet presence and uses sophisticated marketing techniques to ensure as many potential buyers as possible see your home.

Photos – A snapshot of your home last Christmas, covered in snow and twinkle-lights, is not the best choice for a sales brochure. Make certain you have professional photos of your home available for your listing and marketing brochures.

Staging – Ask your realtor about staging or hire a professional real estate stager. Having your home staged for photos and showings can make a big difference. Staging will help your rooms appear larger, roomier and more appealing to potential buyers. Be prepared to clean out closets and clear out clutter and don’t forget to let in the light. A dark home is not one that is appealing to most buyers.

Pricing – As the market continues to be a buyers’ market, pricing has everything to do with a successful sale. Being greedy and asking for the higher amounts than your area is pricing will only drive away potential buyers. When determining your listing price, you will want to consider comparable pricing or under pricing to help with the sale of your house.

Financing – With many buyers recovering from financial issues over the past few years, homes offering financial incentives will attract potential buyers. Consider picking up some of the closing costs or pre-paying property taxes. These simply incentives, advertised up-front, can make your home much more appealing to all potential buyers. You may even want to consider seller financing if it is something with which you are comfortable. This is a great way to help attract buyers than do not have the typical 20% down payment required by many lenders.

Preparing for the sale of your house can take some work. Ensuring you have a great realtor on your side and offering an appealing home through innovative marketing can help ensure your home is on the top of many potential buyers’ must-see lists.

Houses for Sale in Boise ID

View a few houses for sale in Boise ID under $150,000 furnished by IDX/MLS.  These listings below are always current up to date each morning.  Click on these listings below no matter which date you are reading this article.

Homeownership Has Some Surprising Advantages!

According to CNN Money, homeownership can be very important to your dating life.  “In a survey of 1,000 single people, more than a third of women and 18% of men said they would much rather date a homeowner than a renter. “

What’s this mean to you? Homeownership can have even more benefits than you may have realized.

And what about those that live with their parents after college? This can have an even more detrimental effect on your social life.  Less that 5% of all singles in the survey said they would even consider dating someone that still lived with their parents.

Read the complete article at...

If you are still renting or living with your parents then here are some houses for sale in Boise Idaho provided by IDX/MLS to view that are under $125,000.  These listings below are current and updated each morning so it does not matter when you click on these listings...

Home Price Recovery May Be On the Way

It’s March, and that means time for home buying season. With trends showing home buying on the upward trend, it may mean that this spring will be a better spring for home buying then 2011.

According to the National Association of Realtors, the improving economy, rising rent prices and job developments are contributing to the home buying market improvements.  It is anticipated that credit will open up over the course of the next few months and therefore assist in the increase in home buying and recovery of the home prices.

Read the full article at...

View a few houses for sale in Boise Idaho under $200,000 with 3 bedrooms +, 2 bathrooms +, furnished by IDX/MLS. These listings are current and updated daily so it doesn't matter when you view these listings:

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 16




Contact Information

Randy & Doyelene Gridley
Silvercreek Realty Group
1099 S Wells St. Suite 200
Meridian ID 83642
Randy's Direct Office: 208-859-7060

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