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Thursday, August 28, 2014

Things you MUST do NOW if you are listing your home for sale in the spring.

Are you selling your home next spring?  Read This Now!

Preparing for the Spring Real Estate Market in 55014, 55038, 55126, 55110, 55127
Many homeowners that plan on selling their home in the spring don't think ahead to call an agent the summer or autumn before... and they may be hurting themselves money by doing so!

Let's face it, selling a home can be a real pain. Meetings and paperwork then cleaning and showings in hopes for an offer to negotiate and we haven't even mentioned moving or find a new place to live yet!  It only makes sense that get professional help early in the process.
When a good agent gets involved early in the home sale process, you can save yourself headaches and set yourself up to get more money for your home! 

So, if you plan to sell your home in the spring, call me TODAY so I can share some of my secrets with you and get your home sold with the least amount of headaches for the most amount of money on your timeframe - SPRING!!

You will be happy you did!

P.S. You may be wondering why I didn't post my secrets here...  they wouldn't be secrets if I did now would they? :-)

15 Easy Steps To Buying a Home in the Twin Cities

6 Things That Turn Buyers Off

Room Dimensions 101

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

VIDEO 1483 Sherman Lake Rd, Lino Lakes, MN Presented by Sarah Marrinan.

1483 Sherman Lake Rd, Lino Lakes, MN Presented by Sarah Marrinan.

Click link to see more photos, school, area information and more:

Exquisite custom built two story home rivaling new construction!
Enjoy high end finishes throughout this turnkey home and over $70k in gorgeous, practical landscaping by award-winning Imperial Homes.
The main floor features a gourmet kitchen opens to the two story great room with built-in cabinets and fireplace. In addition to an oversized island and custom cabinetry, this kitchen has a generous in-kitchen dining area. The study and formal dining room are conveniently located just off the large foyer. The screened in porch is a wonderful way to enjoy summer evenings bug-free. Main floor laundry and a large closet off the garage are well designed for practical use. There are three bedrooms on the upper level which overlooks the great room.
The Owner's suite has a large walk-in closet plus an enormous master bath with separate toilet. This home also features a Jack and Jill bath between the other two upper level bedrooms. Lower level family room features a wet bar and gas fireplace. It walks out to a private terrace including a luxury hot tub that makes you feel like you are on vacation at a resort. Additionally, the lower level includes a bedroom, bonus room and large storage area. This space could be a mother-in-law suite! The three car garage is extra deep (great for a boat or extra storage!) and is insulated and plumbed for heat.  From central vac to sump pumps, every detail was considered in this home! Just across from the trail to Pheasant Hills park, this location is sure to impress!
This neighborhood is seviced by the sought after Centennial School District #12.
Lino Lakes has much to offer such as the Centerville Lake Beach & Picnic Pavilion including 18 neighborhood parks.
Under 30 minutes from Minneapolis or St. Paul downtowns. Convenient shopping, movies and other entertainment!

You can also text 2099118 to 67299 for more info.

1483 Sherman Lake Rd Lino Lakes, MN 55038
Contact Sarah Marrinan for more information. Keller Williams Premier Realty 651-964-0289

VIDEO 1621 Highway 96 E, White Bear Lake, MN Presented by Sarah Marrinan.

1621 Highway 96 E, White Bear Lake, MN Presented by Sarah Marrinan.

Click link to see more photos, school, area information and more:

 One level living, Four car garage! New carpet, paint, lighting and flooring! Huge closets, huge bedrooms and bathrooms! Insulated 2 car garage is double deep and ready to have a finished third bedroom or could be left as it is for all of your toys or hobbies!
No association fees. Small and semi-private lot is easy to care for. Clean, dry crawl space storage area is 56x23!

1621 Highway 96 E White Bear Lake, MN 55110
Contact Sarah Marrinan for more information. Keller Williams Premier Realty 651-964-0289

VIDEO 6417 Royal Pines Pl, Lino Lakes, MN Presented by Sarah Marrinan.

6417 Royal Pines Pl, Lino Lakes, MN 

Presented by Sarah Marrinan.

Click link to see more photos, school, area information and more:
6417 Royal Pines Pl Lino Lakes, MN 55038
Contact Sarah Marrinan for more information. Keller Williams Premier Realty 651-964-0289

Beautiful rambler on a pond and .71 acre lot!
Very open floor plan with eat-in kitchen and formal dining room.  Kitchen features a Large center island, 42" oak cabinets, recessed lighting & stainless appliances.  Finished LL walkout has loads of windows, built-ins, room for a pool table, a custom bar and HUGE storage room that could be finished as a den.
Enjoy quite time on this paver patio by the pond! Three bedrooms on the main level as well as a mud room/laundry with large closet with a closet system and built in ironing board! The Owner's suite over-looks the pond and has a spa-like bathroom with whirlpool tub and separate shower.

Amenities: Walk-out Basement, Main Floor Laundry, Main Floor Bedroom, 3 BR on One Level, All Living Facilities on One Level, Sauna, Deck, Patio, Separate/Formal Dining Room, Eat In Kitchen, Kitchen Window, Stainless Steel Appliances, Main Floor Full Bath, Private Master, Full Master, 3/4 Basement, Separate Tub & Shower, Hardwood Floors, Tiled Floors, Washer/Dryer Hookup

Monday, August 25, 2014

11 Shocking Facts You May Not Know About Real Estate Agents

The more you know, the better decisions you can make.  Understanding some of these common myths about real estate agents will help you to better understand them and in turn hire the best agent to suit your needs instead of hiring based on discounts and assumptions.

Check out these 11 assumptions about real estate agents that are quite off base.

Technology used to sell houses

1) With today's technology it's easy to sell a house.

Quite the opposite actually.  The vast online portals and opportunities for advertising mean that agents must be "on their game" now more than ever.  From using professional photography to monitoring their listings' "online reputation" top agents spend a ton of time and money staying on top technology and providing the best services for their clients and exposures for their clients' homes.

2) Agents are paid the entire commission.

Definitely not. For most agents, they are splitting the commission with their broker. It can be as low as 50/50.  Agents are not employed by the brokerage so the agent's portion of the split is then used to pay for their business expenses, taxes and personal insurances/retirement. Oh, and to feed their families. (See #5.)

3) Agents get paid to drive clients around or show property.

Not so. We only make money when a transaction is closed and funded. (See #2). We are not employed. We have no salary or hourly wage. See also How Does My Real Estate Agent Get Paid? True and False

4) If you’re not being offered as much as you want for your home, your agent just isn’t working hard enough.

Usually not. An overpriced home just doesn't sell. Also, unless it is a cash sale, your home will have to appraise. The appraisal will be based off comparable sales of similar homes in your area that have recently sold.  A home that doesn't appraise will not be financeable. Your agent has no control over this. Just because your neighbor is asking $50,000 more for his home still doesn't mean that is what it’s worth, or what he’ll actually get for it when it eventually sells. Location, updates, condition and more factor into the price of a home.

5) All Real Estate Agents are rich.

While real estate can be a big money maker, it’s also true that 20 percent of the agents do 80 percent of the business. It may seem like an agent makes a lot of money at once on a transaction, but real estate is a very expensive business to be in. Namely, yearly and monthly dues and fees to national and state associations, local MLS, local showing service, and your broker. Plus, the agents pay for gas, signs, advertising, key boxes, websites, professional photography, health insurance, etc. Pretty much anything real estate related comes out of the agent’s pocket. Most are lucky to walk away with 1 percent of a transaction.

Not all good real estate agents have billboards and fancy cars!

6) Real Estate is an “easy” job since its just "putting a sign in the yard" or  “driving around and looking at houses.” 

Real Estate is VERY hard. It is constant marketing, prospecting, and handling complex transactions. It can be a lot of time and effort with no guaranteed return. Agents are trying to make a living like everyone else. It can be extremely stressful. It’s very rewarding to find someone the right property, but until the transaction closes, it’s pretty high stress for the agent as well as the client.

It’s rarely part time. Agents are constantly expected to be answering calls, emails and texts often including nights, weekends and holidays on top of the 9-5 activities they perform. And it’s not easy either. Agents work with people on the biggest financial transactions of their lives. It’s emotional and complicated. Agents NEED to shut down and take a break from this to stay at their best.

Not all agents are created equal and not just anyone can be an agent. An agent has to be a special person that is knowledgeable, helpful, and very thick skinned. We deal with emotional people, rude people and time wasters every day. We have to stay up to date with mandatory continued education classes and be great negotiators.

7) An agent can only show his or her own listings, or those of their sponsoring broker.

Sarah Marrinan, Twin Cities Real Estate AgentNot true. A buyer’s agent can show any listing on the market. The buyer's agent's commission offered is generally negotiated between the seller's agent and the seller at the time of listing. That said, if the seller's agent brings in the buyer, the agent will make “both sides” of the commission. In Minnesota, this is called Dual Agency if the agent has representation agreements with both the buyer and seller.  Search homes listed buy ALL brokers!

8) Real Estate are just trying to make a sale, and will lie or stretch the truth to do so.

Again, not all agents are created equal but in this situation, those that are unethical are often quickly out of business. Not only are there legal liabilities, a realtor’s business is based off referrals. They’d rather have you refer three friends than tell three friends about your bad experience.

9) Driving a fancy car or having a bunch of “million dollar listings” is a directly related to how good an agent is.

Not necessarily. Some agents have huge, very visible businesses. Some do not. There are plenty of great agents that provide wonderful, personalized service that do not have a billboard or magazine cover. Find an agent that you get along with, who understands your needs. Judge them by experience, not the car they drive or ads they run.

10) You’ll get a better deal if you buy directly from the listing agent.

Not true. In the majority of contracts, the seller has agreed to pay a set commission beforehand. If the buyer has their own agent, the commission is split between the listing agent and buyer’s agent. It makes little difference to the seller either way. In fact, it will likely help you, as a buyer, to have your own representative during negotiations.
Do You Know WHY The Listing Agent Wants you To Call Them Directly About The Home They Are Selling?

Find an agent the is a REALTOR

11) Real Estate Agent and REALTOR® mean the same thing.

Not true. The NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (NAR), “The Voice for Real Estate,” is America’s largest trade association, representing 1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries. Only agents that are members of NAR are REALTORS®. Agents that are REALTORS® abide by the NAR Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice. 

What else do you want to know more about?
How foreclosures work
What do agents do for buyers? (How agents get paid)

Friday, August 22, 2014

One visit gets you pre approved and plans made!

Get a free real estate consultation!
Buying? Selling? Investing?

We can help!

Come see us on Thursday, August 28th!
8:30am - 6:00pm
Walk-in or by appointment!


Friday, August 15, 2014

Somethings you just have to see for yourself... [VIDEO]

Something you just have to see:  

So, would you buy Poseidon's Fortress?

If you would, call me. I can help!

Friday, August 8, 2014

Home loan applicants must read this today!

Hurry! You only have until the 16th to get your application in!
There have been recent updates to the Fannie Mae guidelines for waiting period on short sale and pre-foreclosure applicants.
If you were trying to qualify under the two year waiting period at 80 loan to value per the current guidelines you only have until the 16th to get your application through!
 D. Benjamin Harris

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

PRICE REDUCED!! 1621 Highway 96 E, White Bear Lake


1621 Highway 96 E, White Bear Lake, MN Presented by Sarah Marrinan

Are you looking to buy a home in White Bear Lake?
Click link to see more photos, school, area information and more:

This Home has One level living and a Four Car Garage! 

New carpet, paint, lighting and flooring! Huge closets, bedrooms and bathrooms! Insulated 2 car garage is nearly double deep and ready to have a finished third bedroom or could be left as it is for all of your toys or hobbies! This one is priced to move quickly! Call today!

1621 Highway 96 E White Bear Lake, MN 55110
Contact Sarah Marrinan for more information. Keller Williams Premier Realty 651-964-0289

Monday, August 4, 2014

Why professional photography in real estate?

Is it important to have professional photography done when selling your home?

The online listing is both the first "showing" of your home and the "lasting impression" so the photos are crucial.

Ameture photo - dark, all garage

Professional photo - bright, balanced photo showing detail

Photography is not just an important element of real estate marketing; it’s fast becoming the most essential one. More than 92% of today’s house-hunters use the internet to research properties (according to, and these prospective buyers rank photography as the most important tool in searching for a home online. With so much information available online these days, you only have a few seconds to grab potential buyers’ attention.

Great photography can draw a buyer in. Bad photography can turn them away. A professional photographer has the skill to show a property at its very best.

When you put a home on the market, you’re competing against lots of other properties. 
If those properties are highlighted with attractive, well-lit and well staged photos and yours isn’t, you’re going to have more trouble getting potential buyers in the door. This could cause your home to sit on the market longer than it would have otherwise — making what would be seen as a “fresh” property look stale.

A better-photographed home will sell faster because more people are enticed to visit the home and people know what they are getting before they even set foot in the home. The first impression is essential. If homebuyers aren’t sold on the images, they see online, chances are they will move on. It can also affect their perception of a home prior to seeing it. A good photograph will have a positive emotion associated with the home.

Emotion is the No. 1 trigger of the affluent buyer, so use it to your advantage. A good photo can speak not a thousand words, but a million words.

Continue reading...

Why is it important to sell your home fast?

Sell your house for Top Dollar

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Your Mission: Home Inspection

What is a home inspection? How do home inspections work? How does a home inspection contingency work? How long do I have to do a home inspection?
Watch now to find out!

Home Buyer's Home Inspection

Are there other things you should get tested?  More questons? Call me!

Did you read the story about the Perfect House?

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