What’s Different in a Sellers Market??


Fewer homes for sale– if you know how many houses sell per month and how many houses are currently for sale; then it’s Economics 101. The demand is greater than the supply. (if you have been wanting to sell – now is an Excellent time – call one of the 3 Realtors on the Eisenlauer Team)

List Price/Sale Price – houses are selling closer to list price , sometimes even over list price. Now is not the time to lowball the seller. February 2016 – sales are 95.9% of original list price.

Buyers must be pre-qualified – In the current market – you will not be taken seriously without a pre-qualification letter . “If you don’t provide a pre-approval letter from your lender when you make your offer, you won’t even be considered as a serious buyer. Getting a  pre-approval is free; it also helps you determine your budget and will give you an idea of what your monthly payments will be.” says Luke Landis at Movement Mortgage.

Days on the Market – homes are on the market for fewer days right now. If you are in the buying process – have your ‘ducks in a row’ and be ready to write an offer with your Realtor – sooner!  Right now, the Des Moines median is 78 days on the market.

Another consideration – in a buyers market, you may be competing against 2 or more other buyers. Consider ahead of time how you can be competitive.

  • Price is not the only consideration. Being able to be flexible in your closing date may give you an edge. Some sellers will want ASAP closing – others may need a little more time to move to their next home.  Flexibility may be a deciding factor.
  • Repairs – Maybe you have skills and time that the sellers don’t. You may be able to negotiate doing some required/requested repairs on the seller’s behalf.
  • Personality – Sometimes a seller will choose to sell to someone they like.  I am not suggesting that they would discriminate for or against someone because of nationality, religion etc. But consider writing a letter to be presented with your offer.  Let the buyer know the things that are especially appealing about the house they have loved. Give them some details about yourself . 95% of people buy (and sell) on emotion and justify logically.  Personify yourself!

Next post – will be suggestions if your house is on the market and NOT receiving showings or offers.



Iowa Redneck Formula – Top Ten

RayGun had it right...

            RayGun had it right.

I’m sure there was a government grant to figure out a formula for whose home-town is more redneck than another. Who else would need to know or want to know?

First, the dictionary defines redneck as: A white person who lives in a small town or in the country especially in the southern U.S., who typically has a working-class job, and who is seen by others as being uneducated and having opinions and attitudes that are offensive.”

So if you are a person of color, I guess you can NOT be a redneck.  I’m pretty sure there’s plenty of outrage and offense for any and all subgroups in Iowa.

Now the components that make a town more or less Red Neck:

  • Number of bars per city
  • Number of mobile home parks per capita
  • Number of tobacco stores per city
  • Number of places to get fishing gear
  • Number of guns and ammo stores per city
  • Walmarts, Golden Corrals, Bass Pro Shops, and dollar stores nearby

So according to the ‘science’ of Jeff Foxworthy and Red Green geeks, you might be a redneck if you live in:

  1. Fort Dodge
  2. Spirit Lake
  3. Denison
  4. Bloomfield
  5. West Liberty
  6. Missouri Valley
  7. Fort Madison
  8. Red Oak
  9. Maquoketa
  10. Osceola

Coming soon – the Snobbiest Cities in Iowa

All data and info is from Road Snacks.



Tchotchke Index – Are you kidding ??


Tchotchke,  pronounced  chach-ke.  It’s an appropriate time of year to contemplate the economic impact of the gifts we buy for the person who needs nothing.

One of my favorite blogs – DemoMemo invented a Tchotchke Index. I love this blog, because, as we all know – Figures don’t lie, but liars can figure! You won’t believe the studies that have been done and conclusions drawn from them. Check it out- DemoMemo.

First -consider what defines a tchotchke.  Some say a decorative item for the home. Some say cheap and tacky items displayed in the home. Bauble, bric-a-brac, curio, trinket, knickknack. No matter what you call them, we all have them,  we’ve all received them, we’ve all given them. But did you ever imagine that the economic health of our country could be gauged by how much we spend annually on tchotchkes?

Self-storage facilities might also be an indicator of our love of trinkets. The assumption is that when we feel economically solid, we spend more on fluff decor. DemoMemo claims that the index peaked in 2000 and fell to it’s low in 2003.  The good news is that 2014 spending on useless bric-a-brac shows cautious optimism. We’re up from 2013, but less than 2012.

So, if you’re feeling comfortable in the wallet – purchase a purely non-essential bauble and feel at peace with the universe.

Iowa’s Longest Garage Sale


The longest garage sale in Iowa is a trail of fun and quintessential Midwest-America sites.

  • Homemade pie.
  • Every socio-economic group buying AND selling!
  • Farm antiquities.
  • Clothes – old and new.
  • Almost cheap and very expensive prices.
  • Clean garages and road-side stands.
  • 4-H food stand
  • Towns you never new existed – Dawson, Bouton, Jamaica, Bayard, Bagley and more.
  • Pickled green beans, cucumbers and salsa.
  • Bars and resturants and town halls welcoming visitors from across the country.
  • Deals and steals and high-priced rip-offs.

It was a great daytrip, fun adventure and yes, we’ll do it again next year!

Iowa’s Own Longest Garage Sale


7147853You’ve heard of the worlds longest garage sale that starts in Michigan and stretches across several states and ends in Alabama? You might not know that Iowa has it’s own “longest garage sale”. It’s stretches across towns along HWY 141 and starts Friday Aug 7 and ends Sat Aug 8. If you dream about scavenging good deals, this is the Queen Mother. You can visit towns in Iowa you never knew existed – Dawson, Ute, Jamaica. And some you’ve driven through before, Perry, Grimes, Granger, Bayard and Bagley. You can eat home-made pie and beef burgers along the way!  Would love to see what treasures you find. And we’ll post pics of our favorite finds.

Adel Iowa Sweet Corn Festival Aug 8 2015


Truck Loads of fresh sweet corn dipped in a river of butter and served FREE to all.

Parade, vendors and many more activities – 20 miles west of Des Moines at Adel Iowa’s scenic square.