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Livonia Real Estate | Blog

Monday, May 15, 2017   /   by Paul Wolfert

SLAM Method for Comparing Houses for Sale in Michigan

By: Paul Wolfert
I call it SLAM: an easy to remember abbreviation that can help any of my Michigan house hunters quickly rip through listed houses for sale. Any house that scores high in each area is investigated on a deeper level (we go check it out with our eyeballs).
The four parts of the SLAM list:
Schools. The eventual resale value of a candidate property isn’t usually given much consideration early on—but should be. A major issue when it comes to resale is the neighborhood’s school district rating. Schools head the SLAM list because—especially for those who don’t have school-aged children—the quality of a property’s school district is easy to overlook. It can also be an indicator of other community quality issues.
Location. It’s the key element that can’t be adjusted, improved upon, or glossed over—and it’s the reason why “location location location” is the cliché that won’t go away. ...

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Monday, March 20, 2017   /   by Paul Wolfert

9 Terrible Michigan Home Improvement Ideas

By: Paul Wolfert

When it’s one of those weekend days when the Michigan weather has refused to cooperate with outdoor plans, one way to fill the idle time is to go online in search of home improvement ideas.
It’s too easy to get lost in the sea of photos on Houzz or Pinterest. I’ve been there.
You probably won't pull the trigger on any of them for your own place—but it’s pretty fun to review the almost unlimited number of weird and inventive ideas people slapped onto the ‘ol interwebs.
When it comes to the kitchen, for instance, there are endless home improvement ideas. There’s the herb garden wall (in addition to a green thumb, a powerful sunlamp in the ceiling is required) or the pool table top that slips right over the center island. That one wouldn’t work if your kitchen’s island is plumbed: the water faucet would stick up and ruin everything. Unless you have a wicked “ball off the faucet, into the corner” tr ...

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Thursday, March 16, 2017   /   by Paul Wolfert

The Best Time to Sell a Home in Michigan

By: Paul Wolfert

What time is it?
Time to move! Maybe.

The timing for when to buy or sell a home in Michigan can be a decision that pretty much makes itself.

Sometimes family demands call for a move to larger or smaller pad; sometimes a change in career demands or a schooling decision requires a residential switcheroo.

But there are other times when an eventual move is in the cards—but timing is flexible.

That’s a situation where the whole decision can sometimes be based on guesses about the future of Michigan home prices.

This is when people ask me “how much do you think that house will cost next year?” or "Do you think my house will go up/down in value?"

Nobody likes to be taken by surprise—especially if the surprises were predictable.

As we venture into the peak real estate selling season here in  Michigan, it would be nice to know the direction home prices are headed.

Right now, it looks as if mortgage interest ra; ...

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Tuesday, March 14, 2017   /   by Paul Wolfert

Viewing Homes Online: Annoyingly Good Situation

By: Paul Wolfert

Nowadays, leisurely swiping through an endless supply of homes online while relaxing in your underwear seems almost natural. It’s actually a gorilla-sized leap forward in terms of home-hunting productivity.

Scratch that. It’s a King-Kong sized leap.

Back when my grandfather opened Century 21 Row, it was entirely different. You’d need to get in an agent's car to find out what’s available. Hopefully wearing more than just underwear. But whatever...I wouldn't judge.

My tiny brain has a hard to imagining a speedier and more convenient way for buyers to examine the crazy number of properties for sale in Wayne County, Oakland County, or any other county in Michigan.

It’s even good for sellers. Being able to view houses that are currently for sale gives them an awesome way to examine the neighborhood competition.

In a matter of minutes, homeowners can make sure their house is priced right and is in line with what the current ; ...

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Monday, March 13, 2017   /   by Paul Wolfert

A Groggy Near Collision of Daylight Savings and St. Pat’s

By: Paul Wolfert

SUNDAY, SUNDAY, SUNDAY! marked the annual “spring forward” sleep-robbing occasion: the switch to this year’s Daylight Savings Time.

“Springing forward” may sound like a spirited, energetic exercise, but for Michiganders like me who do our best to keep regular hours, this week it will probably produce, at a minimum, an extra yawn or two. Especially from my kids.

If it sounds as if I’m a bit grouchy about the whole thing, it’s only partially true. I hardly missed the hour between 2 a.m. and 3 a.m. on Sunday.

Intellectually, I know that the hour is actually in the bank: come fall, everyone in Michigan will get the hour back. Without interest, though.

Despite the Daylight Savings enthusiasts’ objections, the way the Earth and Sun naturally cooperate with each other seems perfectly satisfactory. The gradual lengthening of daylight proceeds slowly enough to give everyone in Michigan ample time to adapt without ...

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