Archive for September, 2007

Weekly Housing Statistics From The Minneapolis Association Of Realtors

The number of Single Family homes on the market is up over 12% from this time last year.

That translates into about a 10 month supply of homes. The supply of condominiums is slightly higher.

Click HERE to access the full report.

The Weekly Market Activity Report states that the average market time for a single family home is 135 days, a 25% increase from this time last year.

So, what does it mean…..?

If you are selling your home this means that you have to work that much harder to make your home stand out against the rest of the inventory out there on the market. Staging your home and pricing it aggressively are two critical ways to accomplish this. Professional photography and an aggressive online presence also give the potential buyers the information they need to get off the fence and set up a showing.

If you are thinking of buying a home it means that there are more choices then ever for you to consider. With interest rates remaining low (for the time being anyway) now is an excellent time to buy!

However it is important to look at the purchase of a home as a long term investment.

The days of “flipping” houses are over (for now at least). If you are planning to buy, consider appreciation of your investment over the long term, say five to ten years minimum, rather then one to three.

But most important is to look at a property as to how it serves you, and how improvements you choose to make will increase your quality of life as well as the home’s potential resale value.

That is the REAL American Dream.

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Bikes=Freedom

Six gears make boys go fast.

“Come on, Dad. We’re like the slowest family.”

On his previous bike, a single speed with 16″ wheels, Ty was pretty slow. Now, as you can see the boy is not afraid to kick it down.

He needs a little training on riding in the peleton and proper passing techniques, but that’ll come.

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Pet Rescue-Act 3

On Friday a friend of mine was going to pick up our foundling for a trial run.

He’s got a large dog who has been menaced by cats before and he had some concerns that they wouldn’t get along, but was willing to try.

That morning I came downstairs and let her out of the kitchen where we keep her in order to prevent unsupervised kitty related badness and was received warmly.

Then she made a furtive move to the litter box and did her business in an appropriate manner, something that had been eluding her for the previous week.

She seemed to know that something was up and was pouring on the kitty cuteness extra thick.

Long story short; she put he ‘whammy’ on me, and I didn’t have the heart to give her away.

So for the first time in my life, I’m a cat owner.

She’s insanely cute.

She’s a six-toed freak

And she’s completely nuts

Her name is Gigi, and she’s the newest, highly attractive member of the Shin Cross family.

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The Most Wonderful Time……

Autumn is without a doubt my favorite time to be on two wheels. I’m especially prone to spending hour upon hour (or even all day) in the saddle. I might have some late-season goal I’m trying to reach, or I just might find a dozen short trips to make, spinning from one place to the next.

Today’s first trip was with Diggy. He’s a full-on retro-grouch, riding his vintage RB-1. Earlier this week we began the task of resurrecting his MB-4 into a boss single-speed for the winter, but I digress….

We met on the Greenway, and pedaled around the Lakes. He’d never taken the route to Fort Snelling, so we made our way down the Parkway and South along the river to the Fort trail. When we got near the bottom I asked if he wanted to climb a hill that would tear his legs off, he didn’t squawk, so I led him up the hill to the Mendota Bridge.

After a brief rest we headed back as it was almost time for my son’s soccer practice.

But something very big had to happen first.

It’s my son’s seventh birthday this Monday, and just as I had done with his sister before him I splurged and got him his first brand name bike; a Kona Makena with 6 speeds, hand brakes and twenty inch wheels.

He was a little nervous about the hand brakes as his previous bike was a coaster, but it took him all of ten seconds to get the hang of it.

First adventure on the new bike: the Greenway to Kix Field.

This well kept field is home to the UrbanStars soccer league. He and a number of other kids his age get nice reversible jerseys to wear to bi-weekly games with good coaches and no goalies. He has a blast.

Afterward we picked up dinner at the Midtown Global Market.

All said and done, I probably put on 40 miles. I’ll chalk it up to prep work for Cyclo-Cross season.

That is if I survive the Homie Fall Fest.

Links:

Massive Group Peleton Training=Critical Mass: Story HERE

London Car Free by 2030=The Good Life: Story HERE

Eye Tattoos! HERE

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The Landis Verdict Is In

Guilty.

I’ve got nothing to add to that.

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Cycling Memorial To Slain Rider

Pulled from an article in the Minneapolis Star Tribune:

 

In his free time, Mark Loesch loved to ride his bicycle. That’s what he was doing last Wednesday night when he went for a spin and never returned home.

Loesch, 41, was found dead the following morning on the lawn of a house in south Minneapolis. He died of multiple blunt-force head wounds. His bicycle was found a short distance away.

To remember the avid cyclist and father of four, friends, family members and concerned residents will host the Mark Loesch Memorial Walk and Bike at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday. Riders and walkers will retrace the route Loesch might have taken through the Kingfield, Bryant, Bancroft and Powderhorn neighborhood on the night he was killed, said event organizer Linda Shay.

The 1.2-mile route will begin at Martin Luther King Park at 4051 Nicollet Av. S. and use the 40th Street Pedestrian Bridge to cross Interstate Hwy. 35W to Elliot Avenue S., then north to where Loesch was found.

Members of Mad Dads, an organization that fights crime and drugs and works to support communities, youth and families, along with city council members, will speak at a memorial planned in the 3700 block of Elliot Avenue. During the memorial, people can light candles, leave flowers and honor Loesch, Shay said.

Funeral services were set at 2 p.m. Tuesday at Lakewood Cemetery in Minneapolis. Donations may be made to the Mark Loesch Memorial Fund at Associated Bank, 5353 Wayzata Blvd., St. Louis Park, MN 55416.

Come if you can. I’ll be there.

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This Just In…..

Very important news as the Fed lowers the key interest rate a half point with the specific motive of helping prevent a continuing housing slump.

Full story HERE

Also in an effort to help homeowners from becoming a statistic in the current rise in foreclosures the House of Representatives is pushing for affordable housing grants and government back loans to be offered to low and middle income homeowners in danger of losing their house.

Full story HERE

This would allow homeowners who are watching their payments increase dramatically as their mortgage rates adjust get a “non-cash-out” refinance package that will get them out of their adjustable rate mortgage and into a fixed rate FHA loan. This is great news.

If you’d like more information about this expanding FHA program give me a call and I’ll direct you to a home mortgage professional who can help walk you through the process to see if you qualify.

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