Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Mortgage Interest Rate Tracker --- has "creeped" to 4.125% today

Let todays wind blow you into my OPEN House on Silver Lake Street in Oconomowoc $195,000

Join me for an Open House preview of this 4 bedroom, 2 full bath home in Oconomowoc this Wednesday from 4-5:30pm.  Priced at $195,00 -- it's located on Silver Lake Street in the heart of the city. 

Click on link for detail, contact me for additional info or come see for yourself on Wednesday!!!,,1

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Wauwatosa Ranch for under $160,000

A FLICKERING FIRE will light up your evenings in this very comfortable sizeable ranch home with 3 bedroom, 1.5 bath. In a friendly neighborhood, with two car garage and large fenced yard, a barbeque gathering is a must. Home features family room with fireplace, plus formal living room, formal dining room. So much bigger than it looks. Hardwood floors. Great opportunity to get in a home that has been well taken care of and earn some equity! This home is loaded with charm and needs a new loving family. Email or call!  GREAT DEAL at $160,000

Click on MLS link below for detailed info,,1

"Our" House is for sale in Waukesha - - - $240,000

For MLS listing and detailed infor click onlink,,1

Top of the world views. An updated well taken care (I know this for a fact because it's our home) of 4 bed, 2 fulls baths,2.5 garage move in condition home with nice sized yard.Walk out basement with full size windows. Hardwood floors,ceramic tiled baths, beautifully finished large rec room with natural fireplace,built in cabinets and wetbar.A nice deck overlooking the city lights and a nicely landscaped yard plus additional patio area.This home is modern w new windows,newer mechanicals and all appl included. Sellers are motivated and eager to take advantage of the interest rates and move up ourselves!

If U R on your way ''up'',this is the house 4 U!

Today's wind should take of the rest of the leaves left on the trees!!! Hopefully they have also been blown out of the gutters ---- but just in case....

It's a Dirty Job...
How to keep your gutters and downspouts flowing

Cleaning gutters is one of those lovely fall tasks
Gutters and downspouts work hard to protect your house from moisture damage. If gutters leak or downspouts are clogged, water can spill out and accumulate near foundations, soaking the soil and causing foundation walls to settle. In worst-case scenarios, moisture-laden soil presses in on basement walls, causing bulging and cracking. Water can even be forced inside by means of hydrostatic pressure.

Keeping gutters and downspouts in good condition requires regular maintenance.  I advise doing this chore twice each year—in spring and in the fall. "Yes, it can be messy, and you might get dirty. But it's definitely worth it."

Steps to clean your gutters
•Clean leaves, sticks, needles and seeds from gutters, scooping out debris with a garden trowel or gloved hand. Don't try to remove the debris with a hose because that may cause downspouts to clog.

•Remove the pasty goo made up from the tiny granules from asphalt roofing shingles that have mixed with dirt and water.

•Flush out residual matter, using a garden hose.

•To clean downspouts, turn on the hose full blast and thread it into the drain opening.

•Check gutters after flushing for pools that indicate low spots. Gutters should be sloped about one vertical inch for every 15 to 20 horizontal feet so that they drain properly. Adjust gutters as necessary.

Repairing gutters

Install new hangers to hold gutters firmly in place. Typically, gutters are attached with straps, hangers or long nails inserted through metal collars—a system called "spikes and ferrules." Gutter screws hold better than spikes.Don't bother replacing straps, renailing old spikes or adding new spikes. Because you must pry up roofing materials to replace straps, it's easier to make repairs using individual gutter hangers with self-tapping screws, available at home improvement centers.

Also replace spikes with gutter screws and matching ferrules. "Over time a spike is always going to push out, a gutter screw really has holding power."

Fix leaks

Fix leaks at seams with silicone sealer. Although patch kits are available for repairing rust holes in steel gutters, the patches will prove to be only temporary. "If you've got rust holes in steel gutters, they're pretty much finished. It's better to get new ones."

Replacing gutters

If you need to replace your gutter, steel gutters generally perform better than aluminum or vinyl. "Aluminum gutters move too much during weather changes, the expansion and contraction causes nails and screws to loosen up. And vinyl comes in 10-foot lengths, meaning there are lots of seams that need to be sealed."

Both steel and aluminum can be installed without intermittent seams, and the best steel gutters feature baked-on enamel finishes with 40-year warranties. Expect to pay about $450 for a professional to install new gutters and downspouts on a typical two-story suburban house.

A safety tip
Remember that gutter maintenance often means working on a ladder. As you work, make safety a priority. Make sure your ladder is firmly planted, and don't stretch to make repairs.

Monday, October 25, 2010

New Listing in Oconomowoc ----- It's very nice and affordable too! $195,000

The house is a two bedroom and 1.5 bath home located on a quiet drive close to everything in Oconomowoc.

The living room is oversized and has a catheral ceiling, which is mostly wood. It has a gas fireplace in the middle and large windows on both sides. It is open to the dining room and kitchen. The kitchen was also completely done, with custom cherry cabinets with snack bar, ceramic floor and backsplash and stainless steel appliances.

The master bedroom is a large loft overlooking the living room. It does have a 1/2 bath -- which has been redone with a ceramic floor. The main bath or downstairs bath was completely tore out (to studs). The ceramic shower is a walk in builit in shelving and a double spouted faucet heads. The floors are also ceramic and the vanity a custom maple with granite counter. The bathroom door is a custom ornate door.

The carpet is a friase, the color is called coffee --- its a deep tan color. Its a top grade carpet and is throughout the house.

The backyard deck has been replaced and extended, its two tiered and it goes around the house... at the end of it you will find a hot tub. The yard is amazing and has a screened porch and windowed storage shed. It is fenced in and has perenials everywhere. (Hostas, day lillies, bleeding hearts, ferns, saliva, and things I haven't a clue to what they are. It also has 3 liliac bushes).

The basement is full sized.

Contact me for more details, or to see the house.  Its been well taken care of ----- I know because it's OURS!

Click the to see MLS listing


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

‎5 Reasons You Should Sell Your House TODAY!

Selling your house in today’s market can be extremely difficult. It is for that reason that every seller should take advantage of each and every opportunity that appears. Each fall, such an opportunity presents itself. This fall, that opportunity may be just too good to pass up.

Below are five reasons you should consider when pricing your house to sell in the next 90 days. Meet with LISA BEAR and mortgage professional today and see whether it is the right move for you and your family.

1. Entering this time of year, the buyers are more serious.

We all realize that buyers are not quick to pull the trigger on the purchase of a home today. There is no sense of urgency with the supply of eligible properties at all time highs. However, at this time of year, the ‘lookers’ are at the stores doing their holiday shopping. The home buyers left in the market are serious and are more apt to make a purchasing decision. Less showings – but to more motivated purchasers.

2. If you are moving up, you can save thousands.

The Chicago Tribune stated in an article last week that sellers who want to ‘trade up’ should act now:

It could be a bigger house, different neighborhood or a better school district, but it comes with a higher price tag. Do the math; this might be the right time.

A home that was once worth $300,000 may now be worth $240,000 in a market where prices have fallen 20 percent. Wow, you think, the seller is taking a bath. But that seller may also be a prospective buyer who wants a house that once was valued at $400,000. With an equivalent market drop and a realistic listing price, that house may now sell for $320,000. So, in effect, the person is losing $60,000 on the sale of one home but coming out ahead $20,000 on the purchase of another.

Keep in mind the spread may be even greater. There’s a smaller pool of potential buyers for more expensive homes, so sellers may be more willing to cut their price to get a deal done.

3. Interest rates just fell again – to 4.19%.

Professor Karl E. Case, the founder of the Case Shiller Pricing Index in an article in the New York Times last month actually did the math for us:

Four years ago, the monthly payment on a $300,000 house with 20 percent down and a mortgage rate of about 6.6 percent was $1,533. Today that $300,000 house would sell for $213,000 and a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with 20 percent down would carry a rate of about 4.2 percent and a monthly payment of $833 … housing has perhaps never been a better bargain.

4. You beat the rush of inventory that is coming next year.

Every year there is an increase of inventory which comes to market from January through April as homeowners put their houses up for sale in preparation for the spring market. As an example, here is the number of listings available for sale in each of those months in 2010.

January – 3,277,000

February – 3,531,000

March – 3,626,000

April – 4,029,000

You won’t have to worry about this increasing competition if you sell now.

5. You have less ‘discounted’ inventory with which to compete.

This year, sellers of non-distressed properties have been given an early holiday present. With banks declaring a suspension on the sale of many distressed properties (foreclosures), there has been a large supply of discounted properties removed from competition. No one knows how long this self imposed moratorium will last. However, while it does, every homeowner has a better chance of selling their property.

Bottom Line

If you are looking to sell in the near future, there may not be a more opportune time than this fall. Serious buyers, great move-up deals and less competition from foreclosures creates the perfect selling situation. Don’t miss it!

Article compliments of The KCM Crew
The house shown is for sale in Waukesha.  Ask me about it!

Friday, October 15, 2010

If we could only go back....

Tips to Lower your Utility/Energy Bill and put money in YOUR pocket

Tips to Lower your Utility/Energy Bill

1. Adjust your thermostat.  As a rule of thumb, every degree you lower a thermostat's set temperature in the winter or raise it in the summer will save 1% of energy costs over an 8 hour period.

Wisconsin weather is calling for thermostats to be turned on soon.... so lower your thermostat at night and use extra blankets on your bed. Not home during the day? Then adjust accordingly.

2.  Turn down the water heater temperature to a maximum 120 degrees.  Lower it to 80 degrees if you are going to be away from home for more than a couple days.  If you have a gas water heater, this tactic will save you gas, not electricity.

3. The refrigerator is one of the biggest energy users in the home.  To operate at maximum efficiency the door should only be opened briefly and adjust the COLD control according to the manufacturer's directions.  Vacuum refrigerator coils to remove excess dust.

4. Unplug appliances like microwaves, stereo's, VCRs and printers that do not have to be plugged in all the time, but use energy when plugged in.  Simply unplugging these appliances can save a lot of energy.

5.  Use the microwave as much as possible, instead of heating up the stove or oven.

6. Replace standard incandescent light bulbs with high efficient compact fluorescent bulbs, which use from about one quarter to one third the energy to produce the same amount of light. Though most cost more than conventional lights, they last up to 13x longer.

7. Don't use nightlights that remain plugged in an outlet. Instead, use motion sensor night lights that only light when they detect motion.

8. To help lower water bill, install low-flow shower heads and toilets.  Take shorter showers and turn the water off while brushing teeth.  Collect rain water in a container and use that water to water your plants.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Images: Montgomery Ward Mansion In Oconomowoc - Photos - WISN Milwaukee

Images: Montgomery Ward Mansion In Oconomowoc - Photos - WISN Milwaukee

Historic Oconomowoc Mansion On Market - Video - WISN Milwaukee

Historic Oconomowoc Mansion On Market - Video - WISN Milwaukee

October is Fire Prevention Month - Tips to fireproof your home

Fire-proof your home

There are numerous actions you can take to keep your family and home safe from the dangers and damages of fire. I have recommendations for you to consider today.

Detect and protect: Install smoke detectors on every floor of your home. Test them every month and replace batteries annually. The United States Fire Administration says working smoke detectors double the chances of surviving a fire. Also consider a fire alarm system that alerts the fire department when activated or sprinkler system. All of these can help save lives and money.

Location, location, location: When buying or building a home, consider whether it’s located in the proximity of a fire hydrant or other qualified water source and a fire department. This helps extinguish fires faster and lowers homeowners insurance premiums.

Check your wiring: In homes 25 years or older, have a professional check the electrical wiring and make sure it’s capable of handling the electrical voltage used in the home. Many older homes contain fuse systems designed to handle less voltage. Updating electrical wiring to a circuit breaker with at least 100-ampere service can reduce the chance of a fire and lower insurance premiums, too.

Keep the campfire outside: Temperatures in a wood-burning stove can reach 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit. Because of the increased fire and injury risks, many insurance companies charge higher premiums for homes with wood-burning stoves. Dispose of ashes properly in a galvanized metal can. Keep the can away from flammable materials, including your house, wood pile, weeds, etc., until they are completely extinguished.

Home construction considerations: Homes with exterior walls, floors and roofs made out of fire-resistive materials, such as brick, adobe, concrete or tile, decrease the fire risk and may cost less to insure.

Tips for Making your home Safer

•Keep children out of the kitchen when cooking as they might knock over a pan and get hurt.

•Never put a deep fryer on the stove and leave the room. Fat heats up very quickly and can easily catch fire. If it does get too hot never pour water on it, just turn the stove off and leave it to cool down.

•Too many plugs in one socket can start a fire so put one plug in each socket. This is very important for items that use a lot of electricity, such as washing machines, dish washers and electric fires. If you only have one socket get an electrician to put more in for you.

•If a plug starts feeling hot or has black marks on them unplug them from the socket immediately and call an electrician. Do the same thing if you see any loose or broken wires.

•When you finish a cigarette make sure it is really out and never throw it in the waste bin. It is wise to keep a bucket of sand on the porch to put your cigarette butts in, never throw them in the trash can.

•If you are using candles at Christmas, in the bathroom or in a power cut make sure they are firmly set in a holder so they cannot fall over. Never put them anywhere near papers or curtains which can blow in the wind and be very careful if you have put real candles on a Christmas tree.

•Have a fire plan in case of emergency. If your alarm goes off for real you need to know the quickest way out and everyone should know where the door keys and window lock keys are kept.

Bed Time Checks

A lot of fires start at night when many people are asleep so do some checks before you go to bed.

•Close all the inside doors and fire doors as closed doors slow down a fire.

•Unplug things that use electricity but not fridges and freezers.

•Check your cooker is off and also the rings on the hob.

•Do not leave your washing machine or television on at night. A lot of fires start when the TV is left on standby and it overheats.

•Turn heaters off no matter how cold it is and never have a heater close to the bed.

•If you have a coal fire or open wood-burner put a fire guard in front of it.

•Check there are no obstructions blocking the doorway on your escape route, either inside or out .

•Keep a torch handy and put the keys were everyone can find them.

If you do have a fire do not try to put it out yourself, call the fire brigade and make sure everyone gets out safely. If you cannot get out stay together in one room and tell the fire brigade you cannot escape, they will advise you what to do.

Oconomowoc Luxury Home makes News!

WISN channel 12 news tonight at 10pm will feature The Knollward Estate, former home of Marjorie Montgomery Ward, daughter of the founder of Montgomery Ward mail order catalog business and presented by luxury home specialist Lisa Bear of Remax.

For sale 5.5 and 6.5 million

Monday, October 11, 2010

"It is important to familiarize yourself with the use of fire extinguishers in your vicinity, as improper or untimely use may be counterproductive." Wikipedia (encyclopedia)

"FIRE!" The words, or a fire itself, can create panic in a theater, danger in an automobile, or destruction on a boat. However, it can do the same thing at your home. So get a fire extinguisher and keep it handy. It's more essential to your comfort and safety than any piece of furniture.

Experts suggest that you get a fire extinguisher rated "ABC," indicating that it can handle most common types of fires: wood and paper, flammable liquid and electrical. Locate it in a visible, accessible place, preferably near an exit. Check the equipment periodically to make sure it's fully charged. Your smoke detectors will alert you to a problem, and your fire extinguisher will give you peace of mind and a tool for an emergency, if and when you need it.

This information is provided in order to keep your family and your home safe. Whenever you need to familiarize yourself with real estate values, homes for sale, schools, or demographics, reach out to my web site at It's easy.

My goal is to help you avoid any problems or emergencies in your real estate transactions. I can help you with information about your home's value, a possible move, or any other real estate matter. If you or a friend has a real estate problem or emergency, sound the alarm! I'll be alert for your call, anytime you need me.

Lisa Bear


(262) 893-5555