Winterize Your House. Hose Bibs and Crawl Space Vents.

Most of the leaves have fallen.  The sky is dreary. Some houses have Christmas

Hose still attached?

decorations; yet pumpkins still exist.  And, yes, the city has put salt brine on the roads for tomorrow’s snow.  Winter is coming!  No, the dead are not attacking from north of the wall, but have you prepared your house for the cold weather.  Here are two common problems I have found looking at so many houses with buyers and sellers. 1) Not removing your garden hoses from the outside spigots and

Vents still open?

2) Not closing the vents/access to the crawlspace.

 

 

 

Remove Your Garden Hoses or Risk Broken Pipes!

You may or may not have used the garden hose the whole year and forgotten it hidden

Remove hoses from Spigots

behind the bushes.  But, it is about to become a means to burst your pipes in the cold weather.  A garden hose filled with frozen water becomes a heat sink to freeze the water inside the faucet pipes and cause them to burst!   Ahh, but I have anti-freeze spigots and this does not affect me.  Wrong!  Anti-freeze spigots do not work if the hose is still attached.  An anti-freeze spigot is designed to have the shutoff valve inside the house (or basement / crawlspace) to prevent water from being exposed to freezing temperatures.  But if the hose is still attached then frozen water will extend from the hose into the spigot.  The frozen water then has a chance to burst the pipes inside.  Remove your garden hoses and allow the anti-freeze spigot to work.

Anti-freeze hose bibs have the valve inside to prevent frozen water from bursting pipes.

If you leave hoses attached, the water inside the spigot can freeze and burst pipes.

Shut the Crawlspace Vents and Make Sure the Access is Shut!

Close the crawlspace vents.

If you have a crawlspace, then you have openings to keep the space ventilated in the summer to prevent stagnant air during the warm months.  Now, during the winter months, these vents and openings should be shut to prevent freezing temperatures in the crawlspace.  Similar to the hose bib issue, we do not want any pipes to freeze and we want you to spend less on winter heating bills.

 

Consider adding optional vent covers.

 

Make Sure the Crawlspace Access is Shut

 

 

 

 

 

Cheers, Eric.

Team Howlett Residential Real Estate, TeamHowlett.com

Day after blog. It’s never too late!

Parkside Seafood House and Oyster Bar

Ok, I’m just going to say this. The Parkside Seafood House and Oyster Bar is the best restaurant in town.  It is located on 1902 Scott St, Lafayette.  Eric is from Massachusettes, home to the best cod in the world. We have vacationed in Maine, home to the best lobster in the world. We have lived in Puget Sound, home to the best Halibut in the world. We have lived in Pescara, Italy, home to so much good fish it takes your breathe away. Our favorite waiter always used to say “This fish is our ocean!” So we are picky.

Meg is enjoying our favorite oyster.

The oysters are so fresh that you feel the sea breeze in your face. We have dined here 3 times and have enjoyed it every time

We would also like to do a gratuitous plug for our amazing bungalow that is one block away from the best restaurant in town. This house has so much going for it. There is a complete Mother-in-law/rental/teenage get-away in the back of the house. Check it out! 1902 Thompson St, Lafayette Home for Sale

Only 2 Blocks from Parkside Seafood House, this cute bungalow on 1902 Thompson St is for sale.

We are holding an open house on November 16th from 1-3 and are holding a drawing for a $50.00 gift certificate to the Parkside Seafood House and Oyster Bar.

Come and visit us!

Meg

Architecturally Specific Home Staging

Team Howlett had a big challenge this week. We’re offering a rustic real estate property in West Lafayette IN for sale.  We wanted to give it a cabin feel without turning the property into a cliche.  In the master bedroom, we chose mission style furniture and warmed it up with a Martha Stewart quilt.

1st Floor MBR. Mission Style, wood floors and sunny windows.

The large dining room was large enough for seating for eight, so we chose one of our traditional sets and set the table for a feast! Simple white dishes, mason jar mugs, and quilted placemats add to the homey feel.

Dining Room seating for 8. Classic dining room set with simple country decorative items.

In the living room, we paired simple off white furniture with rustic coffee and end tables.  We’ve been getting the property ready for the market since the beginning of the year, so Meg has been on the prowl for decorative items with a cabin feel for several months. The feedback from the agents so far has been really positive!

Modern furniture with rustic style wood balcony. Large windows & deck access with nature views.

Please call for a showing.

Meg Howlett, Realtor, Associate Broker, Coldwell Banker Shook, 765-414-6531, mhowlett@shook.com.

Flipping your own house

There’s a lot of talk about getting rich quick by “flipping” houses. Fueled by the HGTV

Before. Dark paint, burns in the carpet, patches in the walls, windows covered, and clutter.

shows, you simply find a distressed property, fix it up, sell it and voila! You’ve made money! Right? Well, the thing is, this is much easier said than done. You have to be prepared for the unexpected. Who knew that the tub would fall through the second floor bathroom into the kitchen the day after closing?! (This happened to a client of mine when I was a broker in Washington State)

After. Living Room: Freshly Paint and Fixed Walls, New Carpeting, Sunny Windows, and Team Howlett Staging. Move-in ready home for sale!

Here’s a safer bet. If you are considering moving for whatever reason, how about flipping your own house? New carpet, paint and other more minor repairs can make a world of difference. If you want to do the work yourself, please have Eric and I stop by ahead of time to give a free consultation on the best way to proceed.

 

Before. Lots of clutter. Damaged walls, burn marks in floor.

Check out these before and after pictures from our seller in Lafayette! Our seller was out of town, so Team Howlett, with the amazing help of Property Solutions, did the “flip” for him. Jeff Martin,owner of Property Solutions, is a genius in getting the biggest bang for the buck for our sellers. He painted the entire interior, including walls and all trim, replaced both bathroom floors, recarpeted all bedrooms and great room, and put a new counter top

After. Freshly painted walls, repaired flooring, cleaned, cleared and staged. Then fantastic photos to market.

and mirror in the master bath. All materials and labor were only 5,000 and the seller stands to make at least twice that from putting the money in ahead of time.

 

 

 

Before. Master bedroom. Dark, damaged walls, stained carpets.

 

Then Team Howlett came in and worked our FREE staging magic!  This transformation of real estate in Lafayette is astonishing!  Click on any of the photos to expand!

 

 

 

After. Newly painted, sunny windows, new carpets, and staged to perfection.

We never get tired of seeing a job well done.  Give us a call to see how we can help you!  We pride ourselves on pre-sale project help, great staging and then fantastic photos!

 

 

 

 

Before. Master bath. Burn marks on sink, worn sink, damaged mirror, scratches on walls.

Team Howlett.

Meg Howlett, 765-414-6531.

Eric Howlett, 765-414-1795.

Realtors. Residential Real Estate Experts.  Coldwell Banker Shook Broker Associates.

 

After. New countertop, new mirror, new vinyl flooring, freshly painted and staged with decorative items. A bathroom you would be proud of.

Snow & Ice = winter weariness!

I honestly don’t know anyone over the age of 10 who is happy about all the snow we’ve

Hard to park for an hour if the space has snow piled in it!

received in 2014! The hardest thing is all the ice. I know the businesses are trying to clear their parking lots, but it’s just impossible to get rid of the underlying ice until we have a melt. Private citizens are doing the best they can too.  If you are within the city of West Lafayette, here are the guidelines for snow removal from the www.westlafayette.in.gov website.

“Property owners or occupants are responsible for clearing snow and ice from sidewalks that are adjacent to their property? Section 66.01 of West Lafayette City code requires that the owner or occupant of a property adjacent to a sidewalk removes snow and ice within six hours after daylight and after snow fall has ceased.

If you live in West Lafayette IN then you will need to clear your sidewalks. Or you will get a fine. Community service is a good thing.

Failure to remove snow and ice from sidewalks may result in fines and costs for clearing the sidewalks. Fines up to $50 can be issued to the property owner or occupant if a sidewalk for which they are responsible is not cleared. Also, failure to remove the snow and ice may result in the clearing of the sidewalk by the city and the owner being charged for the costs, which start at $80.

Enforcement priorities are elementary school routes first, followed by commercial and retail areas, and then residential neighborhood streets.”  Think spring everyone!!!

West Lafayette IN Home for Sale

Meg & Eric, Team Howlett, are your West Lafayette Real Estate Experts. Buying or Selling. We Help!

Meg, 765-414-6531, or Eric, 765-414-1795.  Please call us today to help you buy or sell your home.  We’ve been selling homes in the current conditions! We just harness up the Huskies and get to work! We are full time real estate agents and care for you!