Island Realty Luxury Homes

Island Spring Newsletter is Out!

by Virginia Prichett 18. April 2012 07:49

Read the full version to get market stats, event calendar and tips on getting ready to sell your home!


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Good Real Estate News!

by Virginia Prichett 23. January 2012 09:22

On January 19, the RI Association of Realtors issued a press release that single family homes sold in December (2011) increased 19% from a year ago. This was the 6th consecutive month of year over year increases! Pending sales (homes that are under contract but not yet closed), rose 17% from the year before.

Incredibly low interest rates, increased affordability and buyer demand are all given as reasons for the increase.

Having lived through the endless consumer retail sales reports of the "holidays", beginning on Black Friday and ending just before the new year, I think the "attitude" of the public is more upbeat, more hopeful, and more willing to spend than in years past.

So much of what we each do is motivated by how we "feel" and then what we say to each other in conversation about our "feelings"........ so I rejoice in this upbeat January 19 report. 

Spread the word. There is good real estate news. Let's keep it going.

 
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A Fun Activity Right Nearby! - Polo at Glen Farm

by Elaine Infantolino 27. June 2011 07:23

Newport vs. Boston, June 25

Last week, I was generously offered a pair of tickets to see a polo match in Portsmouth, just over the bridge from Jamestown.  It is not an activity that I have ever really considered attending or one that I even knew could be found here.  I have always been a horse lover and rode quite a bit when I was younger, but the thought of polo for me just always brought to mind a crowd of people, dressed to the nines with over-the-top hats and white gloves, sipping on champagne, sitting all prim and proper on the sidelines. Well, let me tell you. I was dead wrong. And I’m so glad that I was!

A polo game is not one that will leave you dazed and confused, wondering what the heck just went down over the last couple of hours. No, it is pretty easy to pick up the basics of the game (and it certainly helps to have a seasoned group of regulars sitting next to you explaining every detail). Although the official rules, according to the US Polo Association, take up 55 pages in a book, there are only a few that you need to know to follow. The Newport Polo Club website states: ‘In a nutshell: don’t hit your horse or anyone else’s with a mallet. You can’t play left-handed. No dangerous riding. Abusive play and language are not allowed. If a player comes off his or her horse, the clock can continue to run; if a horse falls down, stop the clock.’

As for the nature of a match, it’s really a fun time! No stuffiness here. It is essentially a big tailgate party. People bring their beach chairs, blankets, grills, coolers, dogs, umbrellas, kids, etc. and set up around the perimeter of the field. Attire is whatever makes you feel comfortable on a warm summer night sitting on the grass. You can expect to be there about 2 hours. There are 6 chukkers to a game, each one lasting 7 ½ minutes. But there are always penalties, time between chukkers to change ‘ponies’ and half time to consider. Half time is entertaining as spectators are invited to the field to help replace the divots. For me, the most exciting part was hearing the thunder of hooves as the horses race back and forth. It is an aggressive game, but beautiful as well. You will be amazed at the speed of the ponies as well as how agile they are when they have to make quick maneuvers. Apparently, good polo ponies know the game just as well, or better, than their human counterparts, and play the game to win. I overheard someone say that if a rider were to make a wrong move, it is not uncommon for the horse to get upset.

The announcer kept us amused with his comments and at the end, I participated in what he called ‘that sweaty hand slapping thing’ where you can line up around the field and the riders will come by and slap your hand.

Oh, and I think I just may have to find the perfect hat for my next match.

Polo matches are every Saturday at Glen Farm in Portsmouth.  Pricing is very reasonable at $10/adult for general admission.  Check out their website for a schedule and more information.  (http://www.glenfarm.com/)



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Hot Off the Press!

by Virginia Prichett 15. June 2011 08:39




Our newsletter is out!  Let us know if there are any topics that you would like to see covered in future issues.  If you would like to receive a full copy, please send an email to homes@islandrealtyri.com.

 

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Rhode Island Housing - A Great Resource

by Elaine Infantolino 2. June 2011 08:52



Homebuyers
There are so many things to consider when purchasing a home and the list can be daunting if you are new to the process.  This is one of the most significant investments in your life and you want to approach it armed with as much knowledge as possible.  This is where Rhode Island Housing can help you.  This is an organization created to make it easier for people to make Rhode Island their home.  They provide low-interest loans, grants, education, advocacy and consumer counseling so you don't have to go it alone.

Homeowners
For those who already own a home, there is a wealth of information to help people maintain or improve their homes.  They are also a resource for those who may need help keeping their home.

Coming Up
If you are thinking of buying your first home, you can learn everything you need to know at a free Homebuyer Education class.  They run from 6:30-9:30PM and are offered at locations around the state.  The Rhode Island Housing newsletter published the following dates for the classes:

June 8 Smithfield
June 13 Providence
June 21 Warwick
June 27 Middletown

Contact Tammy Fisher at 401.457.1245 or tfisher@rhodeislandhousing.org to register. 


Visit their website at www.rhodeislandhousing.org.


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Sheep Shearing Day at Watson Farm of Jamestown

by Elaine Infantolino 9. May 2011 08:57

As a newcomer to living in Jamestown, I thought I would take the opportunity to highlight a place that may be of interest to new residents or visitors.  Or maybe even spark the interest of longtime residents who may have seen signs for this spot, but never stopped by to explore.  The place I’m talking about is Watson Farm on North Main Road.  This past weekend, on May 6, the farm held its annual Sheep Shearing Day.  And what a fantastic activity for the family!  It was wonderful to have such an experience right here, minutes from home.  We didn’t have to venture over either one of the bridges for a day of learning and hands on experience  (Do I sound like a true Rhode Islander yet?)


Founded in 1796, Watson Farm is a 265-acre property and is a working family farm.  The original farmhouse is still standing and is used by the Minto family as their home.  The animals on the farm are grass fed during the year and a rotational grazing method is employed.  Raising the animals on grass, as opposed to grain, reduces labor and costs.


The Sheep Shearing Day is an opportunity for visitors to see the animals up close and personal.  And when I say up close, I mean my 3-year old daughter was able to hold baby chicks and ducks in her hands and pet newborn lambs.  She was able to see the sheep losing their ‘coats’ and understood that no, it did not hurt them.  Then she made her very own small sheep out of a pipe cleaner and pink wool, spun from a previous harvest. We saw a Red Devon cow, lots of cats, a rooster and the border collies that are used to herd the sheep.  We hiked up the hill to see bright green fields and a herd of sprightly sheep bounding up and over one another.  She got to see that in fact, there are black sheep, like in the song she’s been singing over and over. The expansive views of Narragansett Bay are like a painting.
 

And to top it all off, there was the best tree swing ever!  This was quite possibly the favorite activity for many of the kids.  The swing was made of a big piece of wood and tied to a huge tree by good, strong rope.  So simple, yet so entertaining.  We watched the ‘big’ kids go swooping up high, where you know they could feel that little twinge in their bellies.  My daughter mustered up her courage and didn’t try to stop me as I loaded her up a little more, a little more….Then I let go and swooooooshhhhhh!  I could hear her giggling and the people standing in line saying, ‘Look at that face!’  She was loving it!

Sometimes we get so caught up in the hustle and bustle of life.  Or we busy ourselves with activities that cost a lot of money, or make you interact with machines, or keep you cooped up indoors.  Don’t get me wrong, sometimes these are great, and necessary.  But I have to say, this was such a nice escape.  Things my daughter has read about or discussed in school became a reality.  And I felt like this activity really gave us the chance to connect on a more personal level.

All that from a little farm on Jamestown.   

For more information, go here.

 

-Elaine Infantolino

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How's the Jamestown Market?

by Carol Hopkins 5. May 2011 08:26



As a full time real estate broker and part owner of Island Realty in Jamestown, RI, I am very active and visible in my community.  I usually begin my day with a visit to Jamestown Fitness.  With just a cup of coffee under my belt at 7 AM, I crawl over to the treadmill.  I estimate that the day will begin and end with the same questions: “Hi Carol, how’s the real estate market?  Good?  Bad?  Slow?  Crazy?  How are prices?  What’s the village home on the market for? What did that waterfront home sell for? Here’s the good news.  People recognize me without any make-up on with a red pony tail sticking straight up in the air…and they think of real estate when they see me!  And the day goes on with visits to McQuades, East Ferry Deli, Bakers, Slice of Heaven, Bill Del Nero, the Trat….the list goes on.

My answers are based on what I do, every day.  I sell and list real estate primarily in my hometown of Jamestown. The market is all of the above! How’s that for a clear answer?  I can usually answer the value questions as well!  Aren’t I something?

So here’s the real scoop…There is healthy inventory on this small island, with houses for sale in the mid $200,000 range all the way up to 9 million.  As of today, almost 100 properties total!

Prices are down from the “good old days” of 2006 and 2007.  Houses are selling but the competition is stiff and buyers are very knowledgeable of what the market looks like right now. My advice is that if you are a Seller or are thinking of selling, get ready to negotiate. Your home should be staged and in tip top shape. The biggest mistake a Seller can make right now is to “test the market”.  You will not pass the test!  An overpriced property will sit and not sell.  A perfectly priced property will sell quickly, especially if there is no deferred maintenance.  Keep in mind, statistically buyers are looking on the internet for approximately six months before even getting in the car to look at real estate.  They have access to what is listed, what has sold, and what has been on the market “forever”!!

My advice to Buyers is to see a banker or mortgage broker prior to viewing homes and making offers. Having that piece of paper puts you in a much better position to negotiate on your behalf.  It is a “Buyers Market” at the present time. When and if you are involved in a multiple offer situation (and they are happening on perfectly priced homes), keep your offer as “clean” as possible with few contingencies.  You are likely to have an offer accepted if you can forego a mortgage contingency or inspections, but ONLY if you are in the right position to do so.  Don’t take chances you can’t afford.  Also, for those of you that have been waiting to finally afford something here, the time is right.  If you are a first time homebuyer, there are many programs available such as FHA and R.I. Housing.  For the first time in a long time, these programs can help you afford a home in Jamestown!

I close with many thanks for being able to work and live in such a great town and always welcome questions and chatter about real estate. I invite you to stop in our office and meet our wonderful team.

 

Sincerely,

Carol Hopkins



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<p><a href="http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/view_photog.php?photogid=721">Image: renjith krishnan / FreeDigitalPhotos.net</a></p> 

Appeal Via the Curb - Preparing to Sell Your Jamestown Home

by Greer Beecroft 15. April 2011 11:41

As is almost always the case when selling a home, if you can’t get them in to see it you can’t sell it to them. 

The ability to entice and attract potential buyers to a house has to do with three main factors; location, price and Curb Appeal.  In my opinion curb appeal is at the top of the list.  I have actually had clients request to see a house either out of their price range or in a location other than where they thought they wanted to live, because of its curb appeal.

Most buyers cannot visualize changes, and often won't look at a house if the initial look doesn't appeal to them. Home buyers who can visualize changes, and are prepared to make them, expect you to reduce the price of the house to compensate for the work they plan to do.

Here are several very inexpensive and simple things a Seller can do to create a curb appeal that will make a great first impression. 

  • Paint the trim and front door to brighten them up

  • Add window boxes

  • Create new planting beds  and an accent garden on either side of the walkway, driveway, front steps or front door to frame the entry

  • Change out lighting fixtures

  • Replace all hardware with new updated hardware

  • Add shutters

  • Add accent trim or detailing around doors and windows to make them pop

  • Add arbors, pergolas or fencing

  • Replace gutters and downspouts

  • Create a walkway

  • Install landscape lighting

  • Remove or trim over-grown shrubs

  • Fix or replace broken items around the exterior of the house

  • Remove weeds from garden beds and within the cracks of walkways and driveways

  • Pressure wash the exterior of house

     


Most of these ideas can be accomplished in a very short time.  Here is a great example of seller improvements:

 

 





-Greer Beecroft



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It's Tax Time! Homeowners - Don't Make These Mistakes

by News Source 21. March 2011 11:54

Visit houselogic.com for more articles like this.

Copyright 2011 NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®

Reprinted from HouseLogic.com with permission of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®





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